logo ELT Concourse: a free training course for TKT: modules 1, 2 and 3
The Concourse

The overview of Teaching Knowledge Test (TKT) Core Modules 1, 2 and 3


Welcome to the free course

This preparation course covers the three core modules of the Teaching Knowledge Test administered by the University of Cambridge.  There is a free Study Companion to go with the work on the website.  Get it in a new tab by clicking here.

You can, of course, simply use the practice exercises on this site without following the course (or any course).
You will then be wasting most of your time because testing yourself is not the same as learning.


What is TKT?

TKT is a modular course which is assessed via a paper-based examination.  There is no practical teaching assessment.
As well as the course on this site, a large number of institutions worldwide offer face-to-face courses to prepare you for the examinations.
You are not obliged to take a face-to-face course to enter the examinations.  You can do that at any Cambridge Open Centre.

In Cambridge's own words:

TKT shows how you are developing as a teacher. It is ideal for people who want to prove their teaching knowledge with a globally recognised certificate.
With TKT, you show employers that you:
    are familiar with different teaching methodologies
    know how to use teaching resources effectively
    understand key aspects of lesson planning
    can use different classroom management methods for different needs.

Source: https://www.cambridgeenglish.org/teaching-english/teaching-qualifications/tkt/


The overview

This page contains the overview of the course and the TKT itself.  From here, you can navigate to any other part of the course or simply begin and follow where we lead.
This course is free.  You do not have to register, sign up or pay.
You do not have to take this or any other course to take the TKT.  You can study alone and enter through a Cambridge Examination Centre.
However, this course is completely free so why not take advantage of it?
There is no guarantee that you'll get top marks in TKT, but if you do the work, you should.

On this page, and in the Study Companion, you will find information about: 

The content of the three core Modules You can click on the diagrams below to take you to the course section for each Module.
Module 1
Module 2
Module 3
How TKT is assessed and the grades you can get This part of this page explains how the examination works and what marks you need for each grade.
Examination tips Click on this link for some advice before you take the examination.
How to use this course Click on this link to find out about the main course, the revision course and all the tests.


What is in the three Modules?

TKT has three core Modules

You can click on the diagrams below to go to the index for the Module you want.

module 1

Module 1: Language and background to language learning and teaching


module 2

Module 2: Lesson planning and use of resources for language teaching


module 3

Module 3: Managing the teaching and learning process



How is TKT assessed?

For each module there are 80 multiple-choice or matching questions.
You fill in your answers on an answer sheet like this.
You do not have to write anything else.
There are 4 Bands of assessment:

  • Band 4:
    • comprehensive and accurate / extensive knowledge of areas on the TKT syllabus
    • understanding of a full range of topics
    • ability to relate this knowledge to familiar and unfamiliar situations
  • Band 3:
    • generally comprehensive and accurate / extensive knowledge of areas on the TKT syllabus
    • understanding of most topics
    • ability to relate this knowledge to familiar and unfamiliar situations
  • Band 2:
    • basic knowledge of areas on the TKT syllabus
    • understanding of some topics
    • ability to relate this knowledge to familiar and occasionally unfamiliar situations
  • Band 1:
    • restricted knowledge of areas on the TKT Module syllabus
    • understanding of a restricted range of topics
    • ability to relate this knowledge only to familiar situations

To come into Band 4, you will need 70 out of 80 possible marks (87.5%).  To come into band 3, you will need 45-50 marks out of 80 (56.25-62.5%).
We'll give you plenty of practice as we go along.  Many of the practice tests are based on the formats you will find in the real examination.
Cambridge Assessment has a document on its website which sets out in detail what each band means for each module.  You can get it from https://www.cambridgeenglish.org/Images/22185-tkt-band-descriptors.pdf.



TKT pass rates

Worldwide, the figures look like this*:

Pass Band 4 10.5%
Pass Band 3 61.4%
Pass Band 2 23.6%
Pass Band 1 1.7%

You should be aiming for at least Band 3 and this course is intended to help you do even better than that.

Pass rates around the world are very variable.  For example, in Switzerland, over 83% achieved Band 4, but in Thailand nobody did.


Examination tips

Before the examination:

During the examination:


How do I use this course?


Should I follow the guides in order?

Yes.  If you are new to TKT, follow the guides in order starting with the beginning of Module 1 (grammar) and finishing at the end of Module 3 (giving feedback).
Each part of the course is written on the basis that you have followed the previous parts.
If you are coming to this guide for some extra work and revision, you can take the guides in any order.

don't know

What if I don't understand something?

You can:


What equipment do I need?

You'll need to read and take notes in many of the guides because they have tasks for you to complete.  If you do not do the tasks, you will not learn as much or engage with the materials.
A printer will be helpful for some guides but you do not need one.


How much time do I need?

If you pay for a TKT course, whether it is online or face to face, you will find that most are around 50 to 60 hours of study time plus some private study, reading and a little research.
Some are much shorter (as little as 30 hours in some cases) and some are a little longer.  Of course, many schools call 45 minutes an hour of study time!
It is difficult to say how much time you will need because people work at different speeds and have different background knowledge and experience but, overall, you should commit to the following (more or less):

In total, therefore, you should be able to complete the course in about 60 to 70 hours and that will give you time to do the tests again and take the revision courses.


What level of English do I need?

Most paid-for courses ask that your level of English is at B2 on the Common European Framework which is more or less around level 5.5 on the IELTS scoring system.  The Cambridge First Certificate in English (FCE) is at this level.
This describes an independent user of the language and means that you:

Because this is not a taught course, you do not need to interact with colleagues and tutors and time may not be pressing, so you may be able to follow the course successfully even if you are at B1 level.  Below that, you probably do not have enough English to understand the materials.


What resources do I need?

If you follow this course carefully and also read other guides on this site which are linked to it, you will have everything you need to pass TKT.  No further reference materials or activities are needed.  You may find the Study Companion helpful.
That does not, of course, constitute a guarantee!
In addition:

The TKT course Study Companion This booklet includes some of this introduction and self-test questions (with a key) for each Module of the TKT.
The TKT Glossary (new tab) This is a list of terms and concepts useful for TKT on the Cambridge website.  Download it before you start and refer to it as you go along.
The TKT Glossary crosswords A set of 15 crossword puzzles to test you on the words in the glossary.
A grammar glossary (new tab) This is a list of essential grammatical terms with definitions and examples.
A methodology glossary (new tab) This is a list of essential methodological terminology.
Glossaries on this site (new tab) This takes you to the list of all glossaries on this site some of which are much fuller and more advanced.
Cambridge English TKT The general information page for TKT on the Cambridge site.
A 10-unit course in language analysis This course covers the elements of pronunciation, lexis, subjects and objects, tenses and aspects, modality, sentences, phrases, clauses and text structures.
The index page for initial training This section contains guides to language, skills, theory and more for less experienced or inexperienced teachers.
The index page for more experienced teachers This section contains guides to language, skills, theory and more for more experienced teachers.
Search this site Use this link if you are looking for something special.
The A-Z index This is a list of all the training subjects on this site.
Learn to transcribe This is a course to help you learn how to transcribe the sounds of English.


How do I revise?

The really simple way is to do the course again.
The other ways are to follow these links.

There are short revision courses for all three Modules.
Do not do these until you have followed the course for the Module.
Module 1 revision Module 2 revision Module 3 revision
You can repeat all the tests and exercises in each Module.
Do not do this before you have finished the course for the Module
Module 1 tests Module 2 tests Module 3 tests
When you have done the course and the tests, including the ones in the Study Companion, try a full practice examination.
Module 1 practice examination Module 2 practice examination Module 3 practice examination
If you like, you can also test yourself on the words in the glossary with:  The TKT glossary crossword puzzles

To start your course

Click on the diagrams above or use this menu:
Module 1 Course Module 2 Course Module 3 Course
The Study Companion    

Good luck with the course!

If you have any comments and suggestions, please send them to ELT Concourse using the Feedback link on the left.

*Source: https://www.cambridgeenglish.org/research-and-validation/quality-and-accountability/grade-statistics/2018