Students planning to study at a UK universities have a lot to think about when it comes to choosing a course, a place to live, securing finance – along with checking visa and English language requirements. Thankfully lots of help is at hand from universities, agents and other organisations.
One thing I get asked time and time again is: what are the English language requirements for UK universities? The short answer is: it depends where you are from and what you plan to study. For the (slightly) longer answer, we’ve just produced some straightforward guidelines on the requirements and how they apply to Cambridge English exams. So which Cambridge English exams do students need?
Students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland do not need a student visa, they just need to meet the English language requirements of the institution they are applying to. In terms of Cambridge English qualifications, Cambridge English: Proficiency and Advanced are accepted for degree level courses (e.g. undergraduate and postgraduate). They are also accepted for courses that are below degree level. It’s also worth noting that students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland can also use Cambridge English: First for other below degree level study such as foundation or pathway courses.
What about students from outside the EU, EEA and Switzerland? These students will need a Tier 4 student visa. Cambridge English: Proficiency and Advanced qualifications can be used for undergraduate and postgraduate applications, as universities on the UK Visa and Immigration’s Tier 4 Sponsors list can choose which exams they accept for courses at degree level For courses that are below degree level, applicants need a test from UKVI’s list of Secure English Language Tests (SELTs). IELTS for UKVI – delivered jointly by Cambridge English Language Assessment, the British Council and IDP: IELTS Australia – is the test we recommend, and is the only SELT that can be taken outside the UK.
Obviously the best piece of advice to students is to make sure they check English language requirements with the institution they are applying to. The guidelines are supported by detailed FAQs available on the Cambridge English website.
Regional Manager (UK & Ireland), Cambridge English