Studying in Australia and Student Visa English Language Requirements

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As English is the medium of instruction in Australia, proficiency in speaking, listening to, reading and writing English is essential. Some Student visa applicants are required to provide the results of an English language test.

All international students seeking admission in any Australian university must provide evidence of English language ability, which meets the minimum requirement of admission.

Applicants will be deemed to have satisfied the English language requirements if they can provide evidence that they meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • English Language Tests and University English Courses
  • Prior study in the medium of English
  • Other qualifications
  • Residency

English Language Tests and University English Courses

Australian Universities recognise a number of English Language tests and English Preparation Courses, which can be undertaken to meet the University’s English language requirements.

Most of the universities require the English course or test to be taken no more than two years prior the commencement of the program.

Only original test certificates are acceptable at the Australian universities and they do not accept the certified copies of English language results. Independent verification will be done for IELTS and TOEFL scores.

IELTS is the most popular English Test, which is recognized in most of the Australian universities. Some other programs are also mentioned below which may be accepted.

  • IELTS – Academic version only
  • TOEFL – Internet-based Test (iBT)
  • TOEFL – Paper-based Test (PBT)
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE)
  • Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE)
  • ANU College Access Program

What is IELTS?

IELTS is the International English Language Testing System which tests English proficiency across the world.  It is one of the world’s most popular English-language tests for study, work and migration in many countries. More details about the test can be found at the ielts.org.

Prior study in the medium of English

Students who have successfully completed at least one year of full-time education at a university or post-secondary education institution where the medium of instruction and examination was English, may not be required to undertake the language test.

Students may have to provide statement or certificate on official letterhead. No certified copies are accepted. However it may not be accepted if the study was completed two year prior to the commencement of the degree program at an Australian University.

Other Qualifications for Language Proficiency

In addition to the English Tests and University Preparation Courses, Australian universities also accept number of other academic qualifications as meeting the English language requirements. They may be country specific and can be found on university websites. Above qualifications may be acceptable to the admission but do not make the students qualified for student Visa.

Residency

Students may not be required to take an English Language test if they have lived in Australia, or other predominantly English-speaking country, for a period of 5 years or more, immediately prior to the commencement of the program. Again, this may not be acceptable to student visa.

Student Visa English Language Requirements

The Australian Immigration Department accepts test results from the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test and the Occupational English Test (OET) taken in any country.

Additionally Australian Immigration Department accepts test result of following language tests for study purpose taken in any country.

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-Based test (TOEFL iBT)
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic
  • Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test (also known as Certificate in Advanced English).

Important

If you intend to apply for admission in an Australian university and a further student visa application, read the information on the university and immigration department’s website to check if you need to provide your English language results to meet the English language requirements.

Students may get accepted to the Australian university with low TOEFL or IELTS score, however they might not get visa before they will not qualify for immigration department’s eligibility criteria.

Wishing you success!

Indu Dager

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