The English Vocabulary Profile is based on extensive research using the Cambridge Learner Corpus (CLC). This is a collection of several hundred thousand examination scripts written by learners from all over the world that is added to every year. Combined with solid evidence of use in many other sources related to general English, such as examination vocabulary lists, classroom materials and a wide range of course books (please see our FAQ page for further details), the CLC confirms what learners can and cannot do at each level.
The EVP has also been informed by the Cambridge English Corpus, a multi-billion word corpus of spoken and written current English, covering British, American and other varieties. Additional sources for the C levels research have included reference lists relevant to academic English and frequency data on idioms. The EVP is a work in progress. Its aim is to reflect what learners DO know, not what they SHOULD know. If you see something in the EVP that doesn't reflect your own teaching experience, please let us know. The more people contribute, the better the EVP will be!
Also see Annette Capel's guide to using the English Vocabulary Profile on YouTube.