A good command of the French language is of course the key to success. However official diplomas (DELF or DALF, French GCSE, TCF) might reveal themselves a bit tricky and require appropriate training.
I am familiar with these tests and will give you all the advice you need to succeed.
Before starting French lessons, I will always ask you what your level is. Here is a guideline, made by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, used to describe achievements of learners of foreign languages:
– A1 BEGINNER: the student has no previous knowledge of French but is able to interact in a simple way: he can talk about himself and his immediate environment.
– A2 ELEMENTARY: the student is a beginner with basic knowledge of French and is able to perform simple tasks of daily life.
– B1 INTERMEDIATE: the student has reached a conversational level and demonstrates an ability to understand and maintain a discussion and give one’s advice and opinion, to deal with situations of daily life.
– B2 UPPER INTERMEDIATE: the student has a good conversational level, shows a degree of independence and a general command of the language.
– C1 ADVANCED: for those who are already fluent in French and yet are looking for improvements. The student can understand a wide range of demanding, longer texts, recognize implicit meaning, and use the language flexibly and effectively for social, academic and professional purposes.
– C2 PROFICIENCY: the person is aiming for zero mistakes / native-speaker level