Differences between DELE and SIELE

Do you want to formalize your Spanish language skills and obtain a globally recognized qualification? SIELE and DELE are the two official certifications that assess the level of competence and mastery of the Spanish language.

Both certifications are recognized by Instituto Cervantes, which is the institution responsible for promoting the Spanish language and culture abroad.

DELE and SIELE exams comparison.

These qualifications can open many professional and personal opportunities for you, whether you want to enhance your resume, pursue international employment, study at a Spanish university, or establish a residency in Spain. But what are the differences between them? Which one is more suitable for you?

DELE Exam

The DELE (Diploma of Spanish as a Foreign Language) is a qualification issued by the Spanish Ministry of Education. It assesses Spanish language proficiency levels from A1 to C2 through an examination conducted by the Cervantes Institute.

The DELE diploma has indefinite validity, and international recognition within regulated educational systems, and is administered at official examination centres during specific international exam sessions.

Differences between DELE and SIELE 1

SIELE Exam

The SIELE (International Spanish Language Evaluation Service) certificate is a language proficiency accreditation promoted by various entities, including the Cervantes Institute, the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), the University of Salamanca (USAL), and the University of Buenos Aires (UBA), from different countries.

The SIELE certificate is valid for five years and is widely recognized by professional institutions and universities in Spain and Latin America. It can be taken in-person or online through authorized examination centers.

Key Differences between DELE and SIELE

The main difference between DELE and SIELE is their validity: the DELE diploma recognizes your Spanish language skills indefinitely, while the SIELE certificate is valid for five years.

Moreover, the DELE diploma assesses overall Spanish language proficiency within the CEFR levels (A1-C2), whereas the SIELE certificate provides a score-based evaluation with equivalent levels to CEFR (A1-C1).

Test structure

In terms of the test structure, the components are similar, including Reading Comprehension, Listening Comprehension, Written Expression and Interaction, and Spoken Expression and Interaction.

However, for the DELE exam, all components are mandatory, whereas for the SIELE exam, you can choose between the “complete” or “partial” format (selecting specific sections).

Regarding proficiency levels, DELE offers six exams for adult learners (A1-C2) and two exams for school-age students (A1-A2/B1).

SIELE has a single exam for adult learners that integrates tasks from A1 to C1.

The scoring system

To obtain the DELE diploma, you need to pass all sections and achieve a passing score corresponding to the level you are examined on.

In the case of the SIELE exam, you receive a level certificate (for the complete exam) or an individual report (for specific sections) based on a thousand-point scale, which correlates to CEFR levels.

In other words, the SIELE exam does not have a pass or fail outcome; instead, you receive a score.

Which one is more suitable for you?

It depends on your personal circumstances.

Both DELE and SIELE are official exams with international recognition, but they have different evaluation methods.

In general, SIELE is considered more flexible and dynamic due to the variety of competencies assessed and the adaptability of each individual learner.

In fact, with SIELE, you can choose the exam date that suits you best and even select which competencies you want to evaluate. DELE exams have specific dates that can be consulted here.

Based on our experience, if you want/need to obtain a quick level certificate to access university, pursue a master’s degree, or identify areas for improvement in your Spanish language skills, we recommend taking the SIELE exam.

We also recommend the SIELE exam if you prefer to gradually assess and achieve a comprehensive level or focus on improving specific language skills that interest you.

Differences between DELE and SIELE 2

DELE and SIELE exams preparation

At Taronja Spanish School, we offer the opportunity to enroll in our private classes (in person or online) specifically designed to prepare for the official DELE and SIELE exams.

We can arrange your SIELE exam with a 48-hour notice. Our school will provide you with detailed explanations and assist you with all technical aspects. Additionally, you can take the SIELE exam online from the comfort of your home.

Feel free to request more information from us without any commitment.

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Differences between DELE and SIELE 4
Daire Fallon Avatar
Daire Fallon
I did a 3 week summer Spanish course in the school.
I highly recommend. I'm a teacher myself and was very impressive by the communicative methods and the quality of the teaching.
The school offers a wonderful Co curricular programme and we really enjoyed the activities, including a tapas crawl and lots of cultural events plus a beach party.
Totally recommended.
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Elizabeth Watson Avatar
Elizabeth Watson
Profesores Excepcionales y instrucción único. ¡Voy a volver!
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Ksenia_shinshilla Avatar
Ksenia_shinshilla
5 star rating
Great school of Spanish language Several years ago I've studied at Taronja school for 2 weeks and it was a great time that I still remember. The teachers were enthusiastic and spent a lot of time with there students not only in classes but also during extracurricular activities. I had a lot of fun and learned a lot in just 2 weeks in Valencia. I still remember this great time and I would love to come back to the beautiful city of Valencia and this wonderful school!
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Sarah Bowman Avatar
Sarah Bowman
If I can learn Spanish then anyone can! In a space of 6 weeks I went from saying "sin comentarios" in class to speaking short sentences with lovely regular, irregular and reflexive verbs ?. Teachers and administration staff are professional, friendly and supportive. I am going to miss my "chitty chats" with the Reception desk ?
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Alis F Avatar
Alis F
5 star rating
4 week intensive course I spent 4 weeks at Taronja on their intensive course (20hrs/week with 4hrs of lessons each day). Class times alternated between the morning and afternoon which meant plenty of free time to enjoy the city. The teachers made sure lessons were interesting and varied, and organised lots of different activities during the evenings at which you were encouraged to practice speaking Spanish. I would highly recommend Taronja!
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Linda KH Avatar
Linda KH
I took classes at Taronja for three weeks in October and can highly recommend the school. I cannot imagine there being a better school. I scouted for months before making the decision and was so glad I had chosen Taronja. There are several points which make it such a good school. - the highly motivated and friendly teachers - there effort at getting everyone to speak Spanish only, which of course speeds up your acqusition of the language - the extracurricular activities are not only interesting, but help increase your language skills and keep you busy (if you are alone, it's nice to have something to keep you active especially the first week when you don't know your way around yet) I will definitely take more classes here. I recommend saving yourself all the time needed for researching the internet. You have made the right decision with Taronja! My greetings to everyone there. Linda
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Anita Hinkofer Avatar
Anita Hinkofer
I liked the school a lot, especially that all teachers really used modern technology! 😉 Classes were great and also a lot of fun - especially with Yara
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tigerb736
5 star rating
Intensive course for 3 weeks I went to Taronja as an almost beginner in Spanish and after three weeks I think I’ve made such an improvement but I’ve also learnt so much about different cultures and I think it has been an amazing experience.
I stayed in one of the school’s shared apartments with 4-5 other students from the school all of different nationalities and we were from the age of 18-26 and that was one of things that made my time there so special because you make such deep special bonds with other people in the same situation as you.
Over the three weeks the teachers were so engaging and welcoming along with the interns. There were multiple times where after activities we’d go to a bar or get some food and you felt so welcome and they were all so enthusiastic. In lessons each teacher found a different way to make sure you were taking in everything and the lessons were always fun. They also had a massive focus on conversation which was so helpful.
At the school there was such a range of ages and nationalities but I think we all came together really well through all of the amazing activities. My favourites were the excursions and the paella parties but all of them are worth doing as they improve your Spanish and give you opportunities to meet new people.
Thank you so much Taronja for the experience
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