The contest

The Big Challenge is a European English language contest for primary and secondary school students, enabling them to make progress in the language while having fun at the same time.
The main aim of the contest is to encourage the learning of English through a fun and educational activity, and to support the teaching of English in schools. 
A great motivational tool, the contest is taken by over 600 000 students every year in Europe.

From primary to secondary school

Multiple-choice questionnaire

45-minute test

At the school

No losers, everyone wins!

The Big Challenge Calendar


Registrations open


Registration if possible


Final registration


The Big Challenge
contest - 27.03 - 29.04.24


Contest correction




Receive your prizes


Test formats

The contest is available in a choice of two formats.

The flexible format is on paper. Students answer the pre-printed answer sheets. The questions can be projected or printed.

The Online format offers audio. It assumes that your school is sufficiently equipped for students to have individual access to the internet, but can be organized in several sessions.

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The content of the test

Test questions cover vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation and civilization.

In order to perfectly match the school curriculum, a specific questionnaire is drawn up for each level.

For each level, the test lasts 45 minutes.

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The assessment

The assessment is carried out centrally by The Big Challenge.

The questionnaires have 3 categories of questions (easy, intermediate and difficult). The most difficult questions earn the most points, and for each wrong answer, a quarter of the points awarded are deducted.

At the end of the contest, the school receives a list of its students results and each student receives a certificate showing the number of point obtained and their ranking (school, department/region, country).




Participation conditions

The Big Challenge contest is open to all students from primary to secondary school. Registration is made by the school’s coordinating teacher; individual registrations are not accepted.

The Big Challenge is financed solely by the students’ participation fees. These fees essentially cover the organisation of the event and the development of training materials that can be used throughout the year. Registration fees are to be transferred collectively by the coordinator.

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The training

On The Big Challenge PLAY app, students can practise their English with a range of games (Quiz, YesNo…). The content covers the entire syllabus and language skills in a fun and educational way.

They will also find the exam papers on the app, so they can practise under real conditions in preparation for the test.

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Every participant is rewarded with a diploma and a poster, regardless of their result, and over 50% of pupils also receive an additional prize.

The best-placed pupils receive the prestigious awards given to the top finishers at departmental/regional and national level, as well as the medals awarded to the top performer at their school.

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The organisation

Organising The Big Challenge is as simple as possible: all you have to do is register your students on our dedicated page.

For the online format, we will send you the contest access details before the event. For the flexible format, you will receive the conditions for downloading the contest material in advance.

We then draw up the scores and rankings and send the prizes to the schools. All that’s left is for you to celebrate your students’ success together!

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Find all the information you need to organise the contest in your school. Share it with your students, their parents and your colleagues.

Consult resources >



What they say

Pictures of the Big Challenge

Frequently asked questions


The Big Challenge is a major national English language contest for all students from primary to secondary school, held in the spring of each year.

It's a fantastic motivational tool that helps students make great progress in English.
Several hundred thousand students take part in the event every year in the Benelux countries.

When is the competition taking place?

The next Big Challenge will take place in schools across the Benelux region between 27 March and 29 April 2024.


How do I register my students?

Registration is very simple. It's done online on this page.
You can register your students from September.

Will my students be able to practise?

Of course they can.

Your students can also practise their English on The Big Challenge PLAY, our practice application. With a comprehensive range of games covering a wide range of English learning skills, The Big Challenge PLAY is the ideal tool for preparing for the contest.

You can use the exam papers from previous years.

How much does it cost to enter the contest?

The contest is financed solely by entry fees, and organisational costs have risen sharply in recent years (cost of paper, fuel, labour, etc.). Despite these difficult conditions, participation fees have been maintained for the 4th consecutive year.

The registration fee is €5 per student.

Do my students need to be registered to use the training application?

No, you don't need to be registered for the contest to use The Big Challenge PLAY training application.


Register your students