THE FIRST CERTIFICATE EXAM IS NO MORE!!
Today I have taken the rest of the parts of the First Certificate Exam. This means that I have finally taken the exam I have been preparing for from last year, and it has been an exciting experience. The exam has lasted for three hours and forty minutes and I have started it at nine o’clock in the morning, but I haven’t been able to arrive home before half past three in the afternoon as they have let us to rest for about thirty minutes after each part of the exam.
All the students gathered together in the Olympia Hotel, which is in Alboraia. I went there with two girls who are classmates of mine in my English Academy. But we were not alone at all: the hotel was totally crowed for the event. One of my mates told us she had overheard someone saying there were nearly one thousand students there! And there were quite varied people: my classmates and I were the youngest students, but there were some people who were about forty years old or more.
We did the different parts of the exam in a big, well-illuminated room, which, in fact, seemed to be a restaurant. We could take the exam in wide tables, sit down in comfortable chairs. Besides, organization was quite good. As we all had left the unnecessary things we carried and had sit down in our chairs, an army of British Council workers started to hand out the answer sheets and the exams papers. A woman told us the instructions and finally said “Good luck” at the beginning of each part.
Firstly, we did the Reading part, which lasted for one hour. After a short half an hour, we had to start the Writing exam, which consisted in two parts. In the first one, we had to write a letter to a museum manager called Carla, who had sent us a letter in which she asked us about specific details of the visit that our English classmates were going to do. Then, in the second part of the exam, we had to choose from different options: writing an essay in which we had to talk about what we loved and hated about being our age, a music report, a story, etc. I chose the essay option, because being a teenager is a very common topic, so I already had some interesting ideas to write about.
Later, we took the Use of English exam (Grammar exam) and the Listening test, which lasted from 14.20 to 15.00 h. Both of them were easier than I had expected, like the other parts of the exam. Therefore, I was quite proud of myself when I set off the big building. I checked some answers I doubted about on the dictionary I had carried with me and I happily saw I had put the right words. And there was something that gave a more transcendental, literary touch to the event: clouds totally disappeared when we finished the Listening exam. Day smiled us! And sun was like a regard to me.
To sum up, I must say that taking this exam has been an exciting experience which I recommend everyone who enjoys languages or not. While doing the exam, fear goes, since you are completely focused on what you are doing. There is no time to stupid, mental disturbances! Then, you think you will be able to do anything you aim to, and you might realize you are more skilled in strange languages than you had always thought. Besides, there are the ‘official’ advantages of taking the FCE: it is recognized by the most of European and international companies and it is the higher level before Advanced courses. I can assure you that, if you decide to take the FCE, you won’t regret it!