CCI Paris Ile de France

Publié le 15 April 2021

Prepare yourself for section B of the TEF written expression: the argumentation

If you are taking the TEF and would like to prepare for section B of the written expression test, then this article is for you!

A test based on argumentation

The objective of section B is to express your point of view and you have 35 minutes to do so.

According to the statement, you will have to write a text explaining why you agree or disagree, giving arguments and examples.

This section is also known as the “letter” test. However, the term “letter” is not adequate.

In fact, it is not mandatory to write your argumentation in the form of a letter.

How to introduce your argumentation?

To save time and efficiency, we recommend that you start with a simple introductory sentence. Here are some examples to inspire you:

  • Hello, / Bonjour,
  • Madam, Sir, / Madame, Monsieur,
  • To the attention of the editorial team / À l’attention de la rédaction
  • You wrote that (rephrase the statement) / Vous avez écrit que (reformulation de l’affirmation)
  • In my opinion, I think that … / Pour ma part, je pense que
  • I read in your paper the following idea: “quote from the statement” / J’ai lu dans votre journal l’idée suivante : « citation de l’affirmation »
  • I do not agree at all, for me … / Je ne suis pas du tout d’accord, pour moi
  • Following your article indicating that (rephrase or quote the statement), I would like to react. / uite à votre article indiquant que (reformulation ou citation de l’affirmation), je me permets de réagir.
  • I am following up on the article in your newspaper which stated that (rephrase the statement), which I think is absolutely right. / Je fais suite à l’article paru dans votre journal qui indiquait que (reformulation de l’affirmation), ce qui me parait tout à fait juste.

To prepare yourself, you can consult the tutorial and the preparation workshop dedicated to the written expression test (in French).

How is the written expression test assessed?

During section B of the written expression test, you will be evaluated based on:

• the relevance of the information you transmit (are they in line with the subject?);
• the quality of the information (examples, details, illustrations);
• the overall coherence of the text;
• the quality of the sentences and the vocabulary you use (variety, precision);
• the syntax and punctuation.


Some advice to pass section B of the written expression test, by Alban, education manager: 

1. There is no need to write a formal letter, with an official letterhead: it does not earn any points.
2. Avoid long introductions and conclusions that “work” for all topics: examiners do not take them into account.
3. Focus on your personal argumentation and develop your ideas.


In which TEF can I find section B of the written expression test?

You will have to take section B of the written expression whether you are taking the TEF, TEF Canada, or the TEFAQ.

Duration of the test: 60 minutes

Composition of the test:

  • evaluation of the ability to transmit information (section A – 25 minutes)
  • evaluation of the ability to express and justify your point of view (section B – 35 minutes)


You can also consult our articles on the TEF test:

Prepare section A of the written expression test of the TEF
Prepare for the oral expression test of the TEF
Prepare for the written comprehension test of the TEF
Prepare for the oral comprehension test of the TEF
Prepare for the vocabulary and syntax test of the TEF

Don’t forget to consult our TEF preparation workshops here.

If you have further questions about the test preparation, email us at or join our Facebook group.