many years, the Authentik magazine and newspaper have proven an invaluable
resource for A level language teachers. Authentik has now extended its
offering in the form of the Listening and Reading Comprehension Practice
tests, which focus upon the final AS and A2 examinations and enable
students to improve their examination skills through a series of
The Spanish tests come in two separate booklets, one based upon the
Reading and Writing exam and one upon the Listening, Reading and Writing
and are accompanied with a choice of either a tape or CD for the latter.
Each test is categorised within a specific topic area and the contents
page lists at which level (AS, A2 or both) the exercise is aimed. Each
booklet also lists some useful guidelines for both teachers and students
at the beginning.
The Reading Comprehension Practice Tests booklet contains fifteen tests in
total, six at each of AS and A2 level and three aimed at both levels. Each
exercise consists of one or two short articles in Spanish, followed by a
series of questions of the type students will meet in the exam, such as
multiple choice, true or false, matching lexical items, responding to
questions in Spanish and translations. The fact that the tests are short
makes them ideal for setting as homework and answers are provided for
each, so if necessary students can check their own answers or teachers can
go through them in class.
The Listening Comprehension Practice Tests booklet also contains fifteen
tests, though nine of these are aimed at both levels. The accompanying CD
or tape holds all the texts required to answer the questions and, rather
usefully, the booklet also indicates the difficulty level of each text,
along with its length and the source of the piece. Again, the questions
reflect those of the exam, including gap fills and some more extended
writing tasks, followed by the answers and the transcript of each text.
All-in-all, the Authentik Spanish Practice Tests booklets offer a useful
tool for teachers to complement working through actual past papers with
students, providing students with the opportunity of building upon their
skills in preparation for the exam.