Flo-Joe for Cambridge English Exams

Cambridge English: Proficiency

Discover some of the common structures tested in the Use of English Key Word Transformations task

CPE Use of English: Part 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |

About Part 4 Key Word Transformations


In the Part 4 Key Word Transformation task you will be given a complete sentence followed by a second, incomplete sentence. You must complete the second sentence (in between three and eight words) so that it has the same meaning as the first using a word given that must not be changed. In the exam you transfer your answer to a special answer sheet. Part 4 tests your knowledge of grammatical and lexical structures, and your ability to rephrase a structure using a common expression or pattern. Each correct answer is worth TWO marks.

Now try our exercises


1. Comparative structures
Structures like 'as........as', 'the ........ the' are practised in the Key Word Transformation exercise:
Online Exercise | Print Version

2. Expressions/common lexical patterns:
This exercise highlights common patterns such as 'go according to plan' or 'show signs of improvement'.
Online Exercise | Print Version

3. Phrasal verbs
Sometimes the change you have to make will include transforming a phrasal verb to a single word equivalent, or vice versa, e.g. 'put up with' = 'tolerate':
Online Exercise | Print Version

4. Conditionals and formal structures
Any type of conditional sentence may appear in this part. This exercise includes a variety of conditional structures as well as some more formal structures, including inversion:
Online Exercise | Print Version

Dos and don'ts


Remember to put the key word in your answer and do not to change this word into a different form. Don't write more than eight words; remember that contractions, e.g. 'haven't', count as two words. Don't leave the answer sheet blank for any question. If you don't know the correct answer you should always make a guess; you may still get one mark if your answer is partially correct.

How to improve


As with all the other parts of this Paper you should endeavour to read as much as possible in English. If you want extra practice with similar exercises then consider signing up for CPE Exam Success Plus!

Try a test


Try an online Use of English Part 1 (Open Cloze) test in the 'Practice Tests' area.



Print off a mark sheet to keep a record of your scores.

When you've finished these exercises try an online Use of English Part 4 (Key Word Transformations) test in the 'Practice Tests' area.

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