What are the best resources to study for B2 First (FCE)?
There are many different resources you can use to prepare yourself for the B2 First exam. They generally fall into two categories – to improve your English language ability and those that teach and practice exam skills. Keep in mind that preparation for the FCE test is key.
For more information on the registration process, you can read our article “How to register for Cambridge FCE?“. Note that you can take the test in the country of your choice. We have written articles to help you locate test centres in UK, Germany, Switzerland, Ireland, Canada, Belgium, and Netherlands.
Improving your English language ability
You can do a couple of things independently that will help improve your language skills. Simple things such as read a few articles in a newspaper, listen to a radio show (where they talk) for 10-15 minutes everyday, and go and speak to people in English. All these things will help you learn vocabulary, how grammar is used, practice fluency, writing style, how expressions are used and using them, synonyms, and spelling.
Developing those exam skills
This is more practice materials focused. You need to read through a test and analyse it – look at the structure of each paper, question types, times, and layout. Understanding how you are tested is very important. Then you look at how to breakdown questions – highlighting key words – and creating a balance between understanding the question and the time you have.
Resources available to me
There are a few good books that you could buy to help with your studies, such as First Trainer (Cambridge Publishing) which is full of practice exams for you to complete, and Objective First (Cambridge Publishing) that also has language practice and how to approach different question types. Reading anything in general will also help – if this is too broad a suggestion for you, then look at a local newspaper or invest in some graded readers (just make sure they are B2 level).
Paying for a private tutor is also a good option. You can either do these lessons face-to-face or online. You can hire a teacher that has experience in B2 First (FCE) exam skills. With them you can focus in areas that you struggle with and use them to guide you through it. General discussion also helps, as does having them check and give feedback on your writing. Cost is a factor but think about how you learn best – online or in-person.
There are many online resources that can assist you too, from blogs, to official practice materials, to exam study platforms. You should visit the Cambridge English website and download the practice exam materials that are free to the public. They also have answer keys so you can check your answers. If you Google FCE exam materials you will get many search results to look at. Just remember that some have been made by teachers or test takers, they can help but they aren’t official materials.
Online platforms are a nice study companion too. They are created by teams of education experts paid to create content to help test takers achieve a high score. GlobalExam is one such platform. We have full exam practice under timed conditions, exam skill development areas, language practice, the ability to track your own progress, and you can create your own study plan.
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We have a good success rate in helping test candidates. Take a look at our website.