Siele: Moving Toward a Spanish TOEFL?

In recent news, during a visit by the King and Queen of Spain to Mexico, various institutions, including the Universidad Autónoma of Mexico, the Instituto Cervantes and the Universidad de Salamanca, signed a collaboration agreement with the objective of creating an electronic accreditation system to evaluate students’ level of Spanish lasting two years.

This system has quickly been compared to the famous TOEFL, which evaluates knowledge of the English language for students who want to study in more than 130 countries.


This new test, called Siele, is used internationally, as is its English language equivalent, and because of this, the test includes all existing Spanish variants in vocabulary, expressions and various registers.

It will evaluate four categories of comprehension: listening and reading as well as oral and written expression and interaction. Students will be able to choose how they want to take the test, which can be taken all at once or in parts.

Evaluation of the test will be decided on by the three institutions who have signed the agreement, guaranteeing the universality of the title. As with the TOEFL, students will not be evaluated in terms of “pass,” “fail,” but rather in terms of level, which will be expressed by a point system ranging from 0 to 1,000 points. Students will receive their grade within three weeks following their examination. If a student disputes their results, an assessing committee will review the test again.


This is a universal certification, which can be obtained anywhere in the world, although the majority of examination centers will be found in Brazil, China and the US.

Siele is expected to be launched in September 2015. The test is a boost for the Spanish language, the number of speakers of which grows every day and which is coming closer and closer to becoming a truly universal language.

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