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Click on any CLB level in the table below to view the descriptors for writing

    Stage I: Basic Language Ability

writing Stage 1

    CLB 1

I can…

  • Fill in a short, simple greeting.
    • To______, From______, Thank you.
  • Copy words and numbers.
    • Doctor: 905-555-8888
  • Write simple personal information.
    • Name:___________ Phone Number: _____________
  • Write simple words to fill in blanks.
    • I am from _____________.
I write single words and a few memorized phrases. But, I have no control of grammar, and I have a lot of difficulty with spelling and punctuation. I cannot communicate simple ideas in writing.

    CLB 2

I can…

  • Write a short, simple greeting.
    • Happy Birthday! Good Luck!
  • Copy basic, everyday information.
    • Bob’s Auto Repair Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
  • Write personal information on a very short simple form.
    • Date of Birth: _____________ Occupation: ____________
  • Answer a simple question in writing.
    • Where do you live? I live in Canada..
I write single words, simple phrases and a few simple sentences. But, I have very little control of grammar, and I have a lot of difficulty with spelling and punctuation. It is difficult for me to communicate simple ideas in writing.

    CLB 3

I can…

  • Write a very short message to my friend.
    • Can we meet at 2:00pm? Please text me back.
  • Copy a short recipe.
    • Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer…
  • Complete a simple form.
    • Account Number: ______ Name of Bank:_______
  • Write a few sentences about a person or place.
    • I like my teacher. He is nice. He helps me.
I write simple sentences about personal familiar topics, and I am developing some control of simple grammar. But, I have trouble with word order and word forms, and I have some difficulty communicating simple ideas in writing.

    CLB 4

I can…

  • Write a short personal message.
    • Hi Anna. I have good news…
  • Copy information about two different hotels.
    • Wave Hotel: $149 per night Island Hotel: $179 per night
  • Write a simple request.
    • Please fix my fridge. It is broken. The food is not cold ...
  • Write a short paragraph about a familiar topic.
    • I came to Canada in July. The weather was hot ...
I can communicate a simple message on a personal familiar topic, and I have adequate control of simple grammar. But, I have some trouble with word order and word forms, and this sometimes makes it hard for a reader to understand my meaning.

    Stage II: Intermediate Language Ability

writing Stage 2

    CLB 5

I can…

  • Write a short e-mail message to a friend
  • Take notes from a voicemail message for personal use
  • Fill out a basic application form
  • Write a paragraph for a class newsletter
I can write short communications on routine familiar topics, and I have good control of simple grammar. But, I have difficulty with complex grammar and make many mistakes. My word forms and combinations are often awkward.

    CLB 6

I can…

  • Write a message to a colleague to cancel plans
  • Take notes in class to share with my classmate
  • Write an e-mail to ask for a refund for a product that did not work
  • Write two paragraphs to describe a familiar sequence of events
I can write short communications on routine familiar topics, and am starting to develop some control of more complex grammar. But, I still make mistakes and use awkward word combinations. I don't always use the right type of language for the situation.

    CLB 7

I can…

  • Write an e-mail message to describe a successful project
  • Write a summary of a workplace safety meeting
  • Complete an incident report form
  • Write three paragraphs about a familiar topic
I can write moderately complex communications on routine familiar topics, and I have adequate control of some more complex grammar. My writing can usually be understood, but it may seem unnatural or awkward, especially when I try to use idioms.

    CLB 8

I can…

  • Write an e-mail to a supervisor to explain about a disagreement
  • Record details of a recipe while watching a cooking show
  • Write a resume and cover letter
  • Write a short essay with opinions and supporting details
I can write moderately complex communications on routine familiar topics, and I have good control of some more complex grammar. My writing can usually be understood, but it may seem unnatural or awkward, especially when I try to use idioms. Although, I make some mistakes, it is seldom difficult for people to understand my writing. I have difficulty with longer, more demanding, or unfamiliar writing tasks.

    Stage III: Advanced Language Ability

writing Stage 3

    CLB 9

I can…

  • Write an email to a professor to explain my academic goals, request a review of my application, and ask for a reference
  • Write the minutes of a workplace meeting to share with a team
  • Write a report to update a supervisor on my work progress
  • Write an analysis of a movie’s themes and support my interpretation with examples
I have good control of complex grammar, and I am becoming more confident with demanding writing tasks. I can sometimes write about unfamiliar topics that may require research. I still make some errors, and my tone and style are not always appropriate.

    CLB 10

I can…

  • Write a formal letter of resignation to a committee
  • Write a summary of a conference presentation to share with colleagues who couldn’t attend
  • Write a proposal to recommend a new process or procedure
  • Write a research report for an academic course, including the purpose, research methods, and analysis of data
I am confident with a broader range of complex tasks, including writing about unfamiliar and abstract topics that may require research. I still make occasional errors, and my tone and style are not always appropriate.

    CLB 11

I can…

  • Write a formal letter to recommend a person for an apprenticeship
  • Write a literature review to synthesize complex information from multiple sources
  • Write a report to my client base on current industry trends, including facts and predictions
  • Write a report on findings from a pilot project, including charts and graphs to present the data
I am confident with a wide range of complex tasks, including writing about specialized topics that may require research. I have flexibility of tone and style, although I still make a few minor errors.

    CLB 12

I can…

  • Write a formal public tribute to honour someone's achievements
  • Edit the minutes of a meeting to ensure that the content is accurate and the style is appropriate
  • Write a policy or procedure manual for an organization
  • Write promotional materials for a product or service
I am a confident writer and can address a range of genres. I can write complex texts in technical or specialized situations. I rarely make errors, and I can adjust tone and style to suit the task.