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Difference Between Advanced, Fluent, Expert, And Proficient (Explained)

Difference Between Advanced, Fluent, Expert, And Proficient (Explained)

When hiring new employees, many firms look for language proficiency. Listing your language abilities on your resume could make you stand out to potential employers, whether you are bilingual or took a language in school.

The word “proficient” denotes a very high skill level. A person who is very skilled in the use of a language but who does it more diligently and at a less-advanced level than a native or fluent speaker is referred to as “proficient” in terms of language.

You can use one of the following expressions to list skills at this level:

  • Upper-intermediate
  • Working proficiency in a professional capacity

This article defines the language skill levels you can use and explains why indicating language skills on your resume is vital.

Difference Between Advanced, Fluent, Expert, and Proficient

Fluency refers to the capacity for sophisticated communication. They have the confidence to discuss various technical subjects related to their industry. You can read, write, and speak quickly about complicated concepts at this level.

Fluent refers to a high level of language skill; in this context, we discuss learning a second language or another learned language.

When a speaker is fluent, their communication is fluid rather than halting. A person who speaks a foreign language fluently typically demonstrates proficiency in the following areas:

Read The capacity to read and comprehend written works in the language.
WriteMastery of the language’s written expression. Comprehend the ability to listen to and learn language-based speech.
SpeakThe capacity to utter words in a language and have those words understood by other speakers.
proficiency in the above areas

What Do You Mean By “Advanced”?

When we refer to someone with advanced language skills, we refer to their high language proficiency level. They have a strong grasp of vocabulary, grammar, and syntax and can understand and speak clearly in various contexts.

Different proficiency levels are typically employed in language acquisition to describe a learner’s aptitude. These levels can change depending on the language studied and the precise framework used to determine proficiency.

For instance, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) employs six levels—A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, and C2—to describe linguistic proficiency.

Beginner levels are A1 and A2, intermediate levels are B1 and B2, while advanced levels are C1 and C2.

To be deemed advanced in a language, a learner must have attained at least the B2 level or higher, generally regarded as a high degree of ability. Students can comprehend complicated materials at this level, speak freely and eloquently, and effectively use the language in academic or professional settings.

A high level of competency in the language that enables the student to communicate effectively and fluently in various contexts is generally referred to as being advanced in terms of language abilities.

boy thinking
What do you mean by Advanced?

What Exactly Do You Mean By “Fluent” Regarding Linguistic Proficiency?

In terms of language proficiency, speaking, reading, writing, and understanding a language easily, accurately, and naturally. Fluent speakers can easily comprehend said and written language and communicate clearly and effectively in various situations.

Fluency is frequently regarded as a higher ability level than expressing one’s basic requirements or carrying on rudimentary discussions.

Fluent speakers can utilize the language creatively, utilizing idioms, colloquialisms, and other linguistic nuances to make their conversation more sophisticated and nuanced. Fluency in language acquisition can be hard to describe precisely because it depends on several variables, including motivation, exposure to the language, and personal learning preferences.

The capacity to speak the language confidently and accurately in various contexts is often implied, as well as a high level of comfort and familiarity with it.

In general, having a high level of proficiency in a language involves being able to speak, read, write, and understand it easily and accurately, as well as to use it creatively and successfully in several circumstances.

What Exactly Do You Mean By “Expert” Regarding Language Proficiency?

Man working on a project
What Exactly Do You Mean By “Expert” Regarding Language Proficiency?

Having a very high level of proficiency and mastery in a particular language is what it means to be an expert in language abilities. A language specialist often understands the language’s syntax, vocabulary, cultural background, idioms, and subtleties.

  • A person must be exceptionally proficient at speaking, reading, writing, and understanding a language to be regarded as an expert. They should be able to utilize the language imaginatively and with a high level of nuance and communicate successfully in various contexts, including academic or professional ones.
  • Language experts can also recognize regional dialects or other language variants and modify their language use accordingly. Additionally, they might be qualified to instruct others in the language and possess expertise in linguistics, translation, or interpretation.
  • Having a high level of mastery and proficiency in a language, as well as a thorough comprehension of its syntax, vocabulary, cultural context, and nuances, is what it means to be an expert in language skills.

Proficient language users can express themselves clearly and creatively in various settings and may also possess specialized knowledge or abilities in the language.

What Exactly Do You Mean By “Proficient” Regarding Linguistic Proficiency?

Having a strong command of the language and the ability to speak clearly in various settings is what it means to be proficient in language abilities. The grammar and vocabulary of the language are well understood by a good speaker, who can also utilize it fluently and accurately.

A person must comprehend and communicate clearly in several contexts, including reading and writing texts, discussing, and expressing thoughts or opinions. This is what it means to be regarded as a language proficiency.

They should be able to use the language effectively and have a solid grasp of the cultural expectations and traditions related to the language. In addition to knowing and using fundamental syntax and vocabulary, proficient language users may also employ colloquialisms, idiomatic expressions, and other aspects of the language.

They may speak more easily and spontaneously because they have a solid understanding of the rhythm and intonation of the language.

Overall, having a high degree of language proficiency entails having a strong command of the language and the capacity to comprehend and communicate effectively in various contexts. The language’s grammar, vocabulary, and cultural background are fully understood by proficient speakers, who can also utilize it fluently and accurately.

Fluency vs Proficiency (Understand The Difference)

Difference Between Advanced, Fluent, Expert, and Proficient

The terms “advanced,” “fluent,” “expert,” and “proficient” are frequently used to refer to various degrees of linguistic competency. Even though these phrases’ precise definitions can change depending on the situation, they typically refer to the following:


This level of language competency is generally regarded as entry-level. A skilled speaker can carry on basic discussions and chores and communicate clearly in comfortable contexts.

They can comprehend simple written materials and spoken talks and have a basic command of the language’s grammar and vocabulary.


A step up from proficiency, this level of language proficiency. A more proficient speaker of the language has a larger vocabulary and a better grasp of its syntax and structure. They can perform more strenuous activities and communicate clearly in various settings, including academic and professional ones.


This degree of language proficiency is usually regarded as superior to advanced. A person who speaks a language fluently may express themselves clearly and naturally in various contexts while utilizing idioms and other linguistic elements that add complexity and sophistication to their communication.

They can read, write, and comprehend complicated texts and discussions because they have a solid grasp of the language’s grammar and vocabulary.


The highest level of linguistic proficiency is often seen as being at this point. A proficient speaker is well-versed in the target language’s grammar, vocabulary, and cultural nuances.

They can efficiently and imaginatively communicate in various settings, including those that need specialized knowledge or abilities. They might be knowledgeable in linguistics, interpretation, or translation.

Final Thoughts

  • A person’s ability in a language increases as they gain experience, and they eventually become advanced, fluent, and expert speakers.
  • A person who is proficient in a language can accurately read, write, and speak it.
  • Even though you may need to have some expressions repeated or explained at this level, you can still confidently hold many discussions.
  • The word Fluent is overused, and many people choose to refrain from using it to describe their genuine degree of proficiency.
  • The breadth of a speaker’s vocabulary, their comprehension of the language’s grammar and structure, and their capacity to effectively communicate in a variety of contexts, including those that call for specialized knowledge or skills, are, in short, the main differences between the levels of language skills proficiency.

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