CIOL Qualifications

We offer a range of fully regulated professional qualifications for linguists that are recognised by government departments, agencies, business organisations, universities and schools. We also offer applied language qualifications to accredit language skills for non-specialists in specific contexts.  

Which qualification is right for me? What are the benefits? How do I prepare? Select a qualification to find out all you need to know.

A note for candidates

Following completion of the DipTrans exam session in January 2021, CIOL Qualifications will reduce the current exam completion timeframe from 5 years to 3 years. This change will apply to all exam sessions which take place after 01 February 2021.

Currently all units that comprise a qualification must be successfully completed within a five year period for candidates to be awarded the full qualification. In 2021 all new applicants for our qualifications will be required to complete the qualification within a three year period. The three year full exam completion period applies from the first year that a candidate receives a unit certificate. Therefore, once a candidate has received a ‘pass’ in any part of an exam, they have two more years to successfully complete all outstanding parts of a qualification .

Candidates who registered and passed a unit of the qualification between 2017 and 2020 continue to have 5 years in which to complete the full qualification and will not be impacted by this change.

Advice for candidates on the Coronavirus
CIOL Qualifications is committed to supporting our centres and ensuring as little disruption as possible for our candidates. All exam sessions scheduled to take place between April and July have been rescheduled. For detailed information please refer to specific qualifications and the information published. We are constantly monitoring and reviewing the situation. Our priority is to protect the health of all involved in order to safeguard against the spread of the virus. If you have any general queries, please email
Professional qualifications for:

We pride ourselves on the range of languages in which we are able to offer qualification.

In addition to commonly assessed languages such as French, Arabic, Mandarin and Russian for example, we are also able to offer languages such as Bengali, Farsi, Romanian, Somali and Vietnamese as well as spoken/written combinations such as Mirpuri/Urdu or Pakistani Panjabi/Urdu. Overall we assess candidates in over 50 languages during the course of a year.

With quality assurance guaranteed through national regulation of our qualifications candidates can be confident that our examinations are fair, consistent and transparent.

Our qualifications are developed to meet professional language standards and are regularly reviewed to ensure that they remain relevant, reliable and valid. They are recognised by government departments, agencies, business organisations, universities and schools.

We draw on a broad network of language experts to support qualification development and delivery and provide a rigorous training programme for all those directly delivering our qualifications.