The Global Scale of English (GSE) is a standardised, granular English proficiency scale from 10–90. It is psychometrically aligned to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. The GSE Learning Objectives describe what a learner should be able to do at every point on the Global Scale of English for reading, writing, speaking and listening.
The GSE Teacher Toolkit is free to use. We ask you to tell us a bit about yourself so we can understand who is using it. If you tick ‘yes’ to receiving marketing materials, then we may also periodically ask you to fill in a survey or send you relevant information. We use this information to make improvements to the GSE Teacher Toolkit.
Business English Teachers can now search the GSE Teacher Toolkit for a particular job (e.g nurse) or job family (e.g healthcare practitioners) to find the GSE Learning Objectives that are most important for that role or industry. This can be used to inform lesson/curriculum planning. GSE Learning Objectives were identified for specific job roles using data from the O*NET database. The work activities and tasks listed for each occupation in the O*NET data were matched to GSE Learning Objectives, based on the communicative skills required to do that task in the English language.
Work Activity: schedule dining reservations
GSE Learning Objective: Can understand the main information in a simple work-related phone message.
This work is currently in beta and we welcome feedback from users. For more information about how GSE Job Profiles was developed, read our report.
O*NET™ is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. For more information visit www.onetonline.org.
The GSE Learning Objectives for Young Learners have been newly created to reflect the second language needs of Young Learners and the context in which they are using this second language – namely the classroom - describing skills related to playing games, singing songs, interacting with teachers and classmates.
The GSE Learning Objectives for Adults follow the model of the CEFR more closely, reflecting the language needs of adults and young adults who are using that language outside the classroom.
As Young Learners mature into Young Adults, they will gradually migrate to the GSE Learning Objectives for Adults, since the reality of their language needs is also changing. Once they start travelling and studying in English, they will need to master some of the adult set of learning objectives.
No. The Global Scale of English is a single proficiency scale. All GSE Learning Objectives (Adult, Professional, Academic, Young Learners) are rated on the same scale and the psychometric (IRT) analysis - carried out before any data is made publicly available - compares all sets of data with each other on that same proficiency scale.
There is, however, a difference in what a Young Learner and an Adult Learner at the same GSE level will be able to do. GSE Learning Objectives describe particular functions that can be performed by a language learner at a particular level of proficiency – but Young Learners and Adults will be exposed to different language due to the differing contexts in which they are operating and different language functions will have differing relevance. Young Learners and Adults will learn different language functions since different age groups naturally have different communicative needs and preferences and operate in different environments.
Therefore, a Young Learner at GSE 30 will not necessarily be able to do the GSE Learning Objectives for Adults that are at or below this level since they may not be of communicative relevance to them. Similarly, there will be GSE Learning Objectives for Young Learners that adults will not necessarily be familiar with since they are not of communicative relevance to them.
Whether you're searching in Learning Objectives, Grammar or Vocabulary, use the slider if you want to limit your search to a particular CEFR level or range of GSE values. Drag and drop the start and end points on the slider to set the range.
If you want to search for a specific grammar point, e.g. 'future perfect' you can simply type it in the box. You can also use the open-search box as a filter when searching for Grammar. For example, if you want to find all the Grammar points about prepositions, type preposition into the open search.
Handy searching tips:
You can use quotation marks to get an exact match e.g. "prepositions of place".
You can also use an asterisk as a wildcard to search for anything starting or ending with a particular string of letters, e.g. ad*.
Use boolean operators like AND to do advanced searches or look for strings containing two words, e.g. preposition AND place.
The database recognises both British and American spellings of words so either form can be entered into the search box.
GSE Grammar is organised by grammatical category. Click on the Grammatical Category button. Browse the list to find the grammatical category you are looking for. You can also use the other filters to narrow the search results if you wish. When you’re ready, click on Show results.
As well as searching by the main grammatical categories, you can also narrow down your search to look at specific sub-categories. For example, within Modal Verbs, we can look specifically at one or more sub-topics.
When you’re searching in Learning Objectives, you’ll first need to select the type of learner you’re teaching. Choose from learners of Academic English, learners of Professional English, General Adult English, or Young Learners aged 6-14.
As you carry out your search, the criteria you select are added as filters. The filters are shown underneath. Click to hide/reveal them. You can delete the filters from this area too to modify your search.
Your results are ordered by GSE value from the highest to the lowest. Click on the column heading to re-order from highest to lowest. You can also click on the column heading for Learning Objectives to order them alphabetically.
In your search results, you can see a resource icon is displayed when there are resources available. Click on the icon to show the list. You can view each resource in a new web page by clicking on the 'display' symbol, or you can download the resource.
Once you have found the Learning Objective you want to teach, click on the extra information arrow to the right. There you can also see any related grammar points that learners might need to perform that particular language function. Similarly in the Grammar section, you can see which Learning Objectives are associated with a particular grammar point.
You can download your search results for use offline. Click on the 'Download results as PDF' button. Note: that if your search is large, only the first 50 results will be exported.
When the file is ready, click on download. The PDF file contains your search results in the same order they appeared onscreen. You’ll also see a QR code - use this with a QR scanner app and it will bring up the full list of search results on your mobile device.
GSE Vocabulary also includes over 80,000 collocations. You can find these in the ‘extra information’ area - click on the drop-down arrow to the right of the results. Collocations are displayed in order of frequency from most frequent to least frequent. The first 5 are shown, click on ‘show more’ to see them all.
GSE Vocabulary analyses English according to different word meanings. To see the definition of a particular meaning, you can either hover over the word or you can see it in the ‘extra information area’ - click on drop down arrow to the right of the word.
GSE Vocabulary is organised by topics. In your search results, you will see in the Topic column the sub-categories a word belongs to. One word meaning can belong to different topic areas, for example the ‘fork’ that you eat your food with belongs in Food and drink and House, home, and daily life. You can find the full topic list for each word in the extra information area - click on the drop-down arrow to the right, then on ‘show topic tree’.
Vocabulary: Why do some words have asterisks or N/A?’
For some GSE Young Learner Vocabulary words, an asterisk appears alongside the GSE value. These words are still being rated - the GSE value shown is provisional.
For some vocabulary words, N/A appears instead of a GSE value. These words are part of a set, for example days of the week, numbers, religions. They are not treated individually