Are you thinking of taking the Cambridge English A2 Key exam? Are you new to learning English and wanting to study for your first formal qualification? Then you’ve come to the right place! 

We share everything you need to know about A2 Key, including what it is, why you should take it, how to prepare and succeed in the test, and much more. So let’s get started!


What is A2 Key?

A2 Key (which used to be called the Key English Test KET Exam) is an exam provided by Cambridge Assessment English. It’s a basic or ‘elementary’ level English exam, aimed at learners who have reached the A2 English level. A2 is the second level on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale, which goes from A1 ‘beginner’ to C2 ‘proficient’.

The A2 Key exam tests if you can use English to communicate in simple situations, by:

  • understanding simple written information;
  • understanding simple spoken information; and
  •  interacting with an English speaker by answering and asking simple questions.

You can take this test as either:

  • A2 Key — for general English, higher education or adult learners; or
  • A2 Key for Schools — with content designed especially for school-age learners.

Both options feature the same level, skills and exam format. 

What is the exam format?

The A2 Key exam is made up of three papers: Reading and Writing, Listening, and Speaking: 

The three A2 Key exam papers

The papers in the A2 Key exam contain the following parts:

The parts of the A2 Key papers
A2 Key is offered as either a paper-based exam or a computer-based exam. You can book and take the test at your local exam centre, which you can find here.

Why should I take A2 Key?

Studying for and taking A2 Key has many amazing benefits! The content of the exam is based on real-life situations, so you can learn and practise English that you’ll use in your everyday life. Also, Cambridge qualifications are accepted around the world, helping you get into higher education courses and jobs. It can also give you the confidence to use English in your future life, studies, career or travels.

Above all, A2 Key is your key to opening up your English Language journey. It can help to improve your English so you can move on to the next levels, such as B1 Preliminary and B2 First. It can also lead you on to higher-level tests like IELTS, PTE, OET and TOEFL. 

Your key to unlocking the English language

How do I prepare for A2 Key?

If you want to pass the A2 Key exam first time, it IS possible! All you need is the right preparation. In the past, your only options for Cambridge English A2 Key KET preparation were studying old-fashioned textbooks or spending a lot of time and money doing a course. But we have great news for you! Now there’s an exciting, new online course you can take that’s modern, fun and best of all, FREE! Plus, you can do it from your own home but still with real life teachers! It’s called Level 1 from E2School, and it has everything you need to prepare for A2 Key.

In the E2School Level 1 course, you’ll learn all the skills you need to improve your general English, including vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation. You’ll also cover all four English language skills tested in A2 Key: reading, writing, listening and speaking. There are online course materials, Live Classes, and of course plenty of practice for the A2 Key exam.

You can find out more and try Level 1 for FREE here.

Are there any resources to help me?

There are lots of great resources to help you prepare for A2 Key:

Sample tests

You can visit cambridgeenglish.org to find a free paper-based sample test and a free computer-based sample test.

Vocabulary list

For a free A2 Key word list, you can download this really useful Cambridge English: Key (KET) vocabulary list.

Activities

Click here for more free activities to practise and improve your English. 

> Complete resourcesE2 School also has a full range of teaching resources and materials to help you pass A2 Key. 

How can I succeed in A2 Key?

To do really well in the A2 Key exam, you need high quality teaching materials and amazing teachers, as well as lots of practice. Most of all, you need to master your basic English language skills. We know this is hard! English is a very difficult language to learn. So we’ve made a great Grammar Review course to make English grammar rules easy for you to understand and remember. We also have a great pronunciation course called SpeakingLab to help you talk clearly and fluently and make you a confident English speaker. With these tools to support your Level 1 journey, you can succeed at A2 Key!

Is A2 Key right for me?

Not sure whether A2 Key is the right English level for you? Take this FREE thirty-minute Placement Test to find out. It will let you see what level of course and test you need.

If you’re not quite ready for A2 Key, don’t worry! We have a Level 0 course perfect for beginner level. Or if you’re looking for a higher level, E2School can take you each step of the way, with courses from Level 0 to Level 4. From there, you can go on to our sister school, E2 Language, where you can prepare for higher level tests like IELTS, PTE, OET and TOEFL. 

The courses on offer at E2School and E2LanguageSo what are you waiting for? Visit E2School.com, and unlock your English Language journey today!

By Paula Siddle