The Camões Institute

The Camões Institute

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The Camões Institute (IC) is the Portuguese agency for external cultural and educational policy. Its purpose is to promote Portuguese culture and language, as well as Lusophone cultures in general, at University level.

The IC teaches Portuguese through 175 Higher Education Institutions, in Leitorados and Chairs to more than 30,000 students. It pays or supports 200 teachers and awards 90 scholarships for courses in Portuguese Culture and Language.

The Institute's designation (Camões Institute) pays homage to one of the most renowned poets of Portuguese literature, Luís Vaz de Camões (1524/25 - 1580), author of the epic poem The Lusiads, whose main theme is the discovery of the sea route to India by Vasco da Gama.

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The Centro de Avaliação do Português Língua Estrangeira (CAPLE) is a system of assessment and certification of Portuguese as a foreign language. It was established through a partnership between the Camões Institute, the Portuguese Department for Education and the University of Lisbon.

There are five levels of Portuguese as a foreign language and the examinations can be taken by anyone aged 15 or above who wants to prove their competence in Portuguese for educational, professional, and other reasons, in terms recognised by each certificate.