Prepare for the test of written expression

Second Language Evaluation – Writing

Before taking the test

Review the sample questions below to help you prepare. Note that there are two types of questions in this test.

Question type 1: Fill in the blank

You are presented with a text containing a blank line. Choose the best word or group of words to complete the text from among the four response options.


1.  Plusieurs personnes auront la chance d'obtenir une chaise ergonomique _______ les mois à venir.

  1. par
  2. sur
  3. en
  4. dans

In this case, answer choice 4 best completes the text. Therefore, you would select number 4.

Question type 2: Error identification

The response options are selected words or groups of words within the text that have been bolded. Your task is to identify which one of these bolded sections contains one or more errors. If none of the bolded sections contains one or more errors, select answer choice 4, “Aucun des choix offerts.”


2.  Laquelle des sections en caractères gras suivantes comportent une ou plusieurs erreurs? S'il n'y a pas d'erreur, sélectionnez « Aucun des choix offerts. »

Le ministre de l'Environnement a récemment prononcé un discours dans l'assemblée générale annuelle (1) de l'Association canadienne de l'hydroélectricité. Le ministre en a profité pour souligner les initiatives visant à encourager (2) les producteurs d'énergie renouvelable, les particuliers ainsi que les entreprises (3), et à réduire leurs émissions de gaz à effet de serre.

  4. Aucun des choix offerts.

In this case, answer choice 1 is the best answer. Therefore, you would select number 1.

Test day

  • bring two pieces of signature identification with photo, and your Personal Record Identifier (PRI) if you are a federal public servant
  • arrive 15 minutes before the scheduled test time
  • you are not allowed into the room after the test session has started
  • budget your time during the test:
    • you have 90 minutes to complete the test (add 20 to 30 minutes for administrative procedures)
    • answer all questions and do not spend too much time on a question you find difficult
    • choose the answer that seems the best by first eliminating the choices that seem most unlikely
    • guess when you are not sure. There is no penalty for wrong answers
    • keep in mind that the questions at the beginning, middle and end of the test are of different length and complexity, with those at the beginning being the shortest and simplest
    • if you feel unwell before or during the test, tell the assessor or the officer in charge. Otherwise, if you continue to the end, you must accept the test result and the retest restrictions

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