Standardized Test For English Proficiency (STEP)

  Standardized Test For English Proficiency (STEP)

STEP is similar to other well-known international tests (i.e., TOEFL and IELTS). It is designed in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. The test targets students who wish to join English language programs in Saudi universities, as well as scholarship programs. It also caters to programs which require a certain level of English language proficiency, and individuals who wish to obtain evidence of English language proficiency (i.e., a certificate or grade).​

STEP serves as:

  • an admission test for students applying for English departments in the universities.
  • a verification tool for students' exemption from certain courses in English language programs (course waiver).
  • a placement test for  English departments applicants.
  • a measuring instrument of English language proficiency for students seeking to apply for teaching positions , higher studies, businesses or any other professional field.​​

​This test is designed to measure objectively the student's proficiency in English. The test is made up of 100 questions and some other trial questions that do not add up to the final total score. The following are the various parts of the test and their perspective percentages: 

  • Reading  Comprehension  40%
  • Sentence Structure 30%
  • Listening Comprehension 20%
  • Composition Analysis  10%


Test Question items:

  1. Test items are Multiple Choice type. Each question is followed by four possible answers (A, B, C, D). He/she is asked to choose the right answer.
  2. Total time allowed for the test is three hours including instructions given before the actual test.
Tests times:
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This test is presented three times every year, the test times are on the following website.

For more information and test question examples please visit the publications website.​

Students eligible to sit for STEP:

  • Students applying for English departments in the university.
  • Students applying for English departments and wishing to be placed according to their relevant proficiency level.
  • Students seeking an exemption from studying English courses in their respective programs.
  • Students applying for post-graduate studies.
  • English language teachers seeking to get a certificate in English.
  • Individuals seeking to obtain a private sector job.​​




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