English examinations


Students throughout the school are entered for a number of different international examinations.


In the Upper School students are entered for Cambridge ESOL examinations, IGCSE examinations and most students also study for the International Baccalaureate Diploma.

Success in these examinations has led to an increasing number of Markham students continuing their education after school by entering some of the best universities around the world. 


  • Unfortunately, in 2020, due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the school was unable to administer these examinations as usual.

  • Although the students obtained excellent levels of achievement in their on-line lessons, they were unable to sit the actual PET, FCE or CAE examinations.

  • If circumstances permit, it is hoped these examinations will be available for them in 2021.

Preliminary English Test (PET) (For students in Primary 5)

We have gradually moved this examination down the school and it is now taken in Primary 5.

A pass in this examination indicates that a student has acquired sufficient English skills in reading, writing, speaking and listening to operate efficiently in an English-speaking country.

First Certificate in English (FCE) (For students in Secondary 2)

As with PET, we have gradually moved this examination down the school. It was originally taken in S5 but is now sat by all students in S2.

FCE is an intermediate-level examination that tests the level of English required for further academic study at university or clerical, secretarial and managerial work in business. Successful candidates receive a certificate awarded by the University of Cambridge recognised by universities and employers throughout the world.

Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) (For students in the Sixth Form)

Most students at Markham follow the two year IB Diploma programme. Those who opt to study the one year National Programme are entered for the CAE. The CAE is a high-level English examination that requires both ability and motivation from the students if they are to do well.

Local and foreign universities give English course credits for passes in FCE and CAE and possession of these certificates will be of great value in future academic study.