Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)
This framework was set up by the Council of Europe and is presently the European reference for language competence for all its inhabitants. It is made up of 6 levels (A1, A2,B1,B2,C1 and C2) and lays down in great detail what is expected in each of the language skills: speaking, listening, writing, and writing (oral expression, oral comprehension, written expression and written comprehension).
The University of Cambridge estimates that to reach A2 level you need to have done between 180 and 200 study hours, for B1, between 350 and 400 hours, for level C1 between 700 and 800 hours and for C2 1000 and 1200 hours. Bear in mind that these are rough estimates and depend on one’s own personal motivation, interest and effort as well as other related factors.
Further information can be obtained about the Common European Framework Of Reference For Languages and the Council of Europe on their website :