DELE exams

The DELE exams are designed according to the guidelines of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) and the Manual for relating the exams to the CEFR, both of which are produced by the Council of Europe. The repertoire of linguistic content that can be included in the DELE exams is set out in the document Plan Curricular Plan of the Instituto Cervantes. Niveles de Referencia del Español (NRE), developed by the Instituto Cervantes based on the CEFR descriptors.
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How to register?

Registration for the exams must be processed through the means provided by the Instituto Cervantes within the established deadlines. There are two ways to register for the DELE exam:
  • Online, through this portal, in the case of candidates in Spain (for all levels except school).
  • At each examination center, in the case of DELE exams held outside Spain.
Payment of registration fees may be made by the means of payment determined by the Instituto Cervantes (by the electronic means determined in the case of online registration) or by the corresponding examination center (always specifying the concept “Matrícula DELE” together with the date of the exam and the academic level of the desired diploma). To register for these tests, it is necessary to provide, in addition to other compulsory personal details, a unique e-mail address for the candidate. This e-mail address, for whose proper functioning the candidate is responsible, will be used, if so, established by the DELE examination center or the Instituto Cervantes, for the communication of all aspects related to the Instituto Cervantes and the DELE diplomas, their exam dates and communication of your grades or grade review decisions.

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Frequently asked questions

The current legislation (Law 12/2015, of 24 June, and Law 19/2015, of 13 July) which regulates the procedure for obtaining Spanish nationality by residence, establishes, among other requirements, that applicants must pass two tests designed and administered by the Instituto Cervantes: The DELE Spanish diploma level A2 or higher, which accredits a basic knowledge of the Spanish language, and The Spanish constitutional and socio-cultural knowledge test (CCSE), which accredits knowledge of the Spanish Constitution and Spanish social and cultural reality.
You are exempt from taking the DELE A2 or higher exams:
  • Nationals of Spanish-speaking countries or territories,
  • Persons under 18 years of age
  • People with judicially modified capacity,
  • People who already have a basic (A2), intermediate (B1) or advanced (B2) level certificate from the Official Language Schools.
They may be excused from taking the DELE exams, provided they can prove it and the Spanish Ministry of Justice so decides:
  • People with learning disorders or difficulties of more than 65%
  • People who have a degree in official studies, taken in Spain and in Spanish, at an intermediate or higher level.
  • Persons who have studied Compulsory Secondary Education in Spain. partial waiver
  • partial waiver
  • Persons who cannot read or write
If any of the personal details in your registration include an error, you should request a correction as soon as possible from the Instituto Cervantes User Service Centre (CAU) and, after selecting the subject “Request for modification of personal details”, define the change to be made in the text field of the form. Remember to tick the box that allows the Instituto Cervantes to collect your details on your behalf, so that it can verify compliance with the requirements to make the requested change of personal details.
You must include the photo ID with which you will present yourself at the examination center to take the DELE exams. If you are taking the DELE A2 exam in Spain for the purpose of nationality by residence, you must register with your NIE.
You can use Visa and Mastercard credit and debit cards to pay electronically. Instituto Cervantes does not request or store any information about your card but delegates this action to the payment gateway TPV Virtual Santander Elavon Merchant Services.
The Instituto Cervantes provides guides for DELE candidates which include basic information about the description and the DELE exam papers.
On the day of the DELE exam, three DELE exam papers (Reading Comprehension, Listening Comprehension, Written Expression, and Interaction) are administered starting at 9:00 a.m. in all examination centers around the world. If, due to extraordinary circumstances, the Instituto Cervantes decides to change the exam administration schedule, it will inform all registered candidates sufficiently in advance. The Oral Expression and Interaction test can be taken on the day of the written exam or on earlier or later days, or at the timetable established by the examination center, so candidates should pay attention to the announcement of their examination center.
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