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What are English Proficiency Tests?

Your ability to speak, write, and read with fluency in English is crucial to your success as an international student in the US. Universities expect all students to be proficient in English at their time of admission.

If your native language is not English, you must submit results from one of the following English proficiency exams: TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic.

You do not have to submit an English language exam score if:

  • Your native language is English

  • You completed four years of study in the US (undergraduate, graduate, or a combination of both undergraduate and graduate study)

  • You received the equivalent of a four year college education from a non-US school where English is the official language of instruction. This one is more of a grey area because different universities consider this criteria differently. 


The universities usually reserve the right to require any candidate to submit results from an English language exam if they believe the applicant’s proficiency in English may not meet admissions standards.



What is IELTS? 

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a standardized language proficiency test required as an entrance criteria for people who want to move to certain countries for educational, immigration and occupational purposes.

The test is jointly owned by the British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia, and Cambridge Assessment English and is accepted by over 10,000 institutions across 140 countries worldwide. Usage of either UK or US English is therefore accepted in IELTS.

There are two types of IELTS: Academic and General Training. Depending on the entry requirements of your study program, you might need to take either the Academic or General Training IELTS exam. For higher education in the US or Canada, the ‘Academic’ test of the IELTS system needs to be taken.

The IELTS exam score is valid for 2 years after the test date.

IELTS Sections:

  • Reading

  • Writing

  • Speaking

  • Listening

IELTS Length: 2 hrs. 45 min

Scores: 0.0 - 9.0. 


Band score of 1 for a non-user through to 9 for an expert user.

If you'd like to learn more about the IELTS and how to best prepare for the exam, download the Connexio App and check out the "Guidance" section. 



What is TOEFL?

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is a standardized test to measure the English language abilities of non-native speakers who aspire to pursue higher education in English speaking countries.

The test is accepted by over 8,500 academic and professional institutions across 130 countries. It is managed by US based Education Testing Service (ETS) and accepts American English.

The TOEFL exam scores remain valid for 2 years after the test date


TOEFL Sections:

  • Reading

  • Writing

  • Speaking

  • Listening

TOEFL Length: 3 hours

Scores: 0-120

If you'd like to learn more about the IELTS and how to best prepare for the exam, download the Connexio App and check out the "Guidance" section.