English Language Requirements Blog Post

In this post, we’ll talk about the English language requirements for Australian visas. First of all, let’s be clear that English is the main language spoken in Australia (duh!), including being the official language. Although the country has many ethnic groups communicating in languages other than English, you will still need to demonstrate that you can speak English.

International students, along with other temporary workers, and permanent migrants are expected to prove that they have a sufficient ability to communicate before they are granted a visa. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, if you are a family member migrating with your primary applicant or student coming here to study ‘English’. Other than that you pretty much have no choice (oh another exception is humanitarian visa..but it’s Australia come on!). In fact, most of our visas have a section dedicated to ‘English language requirements’. Depending on the visa you want to apply for (or the points you aim to receive) you will need to prove a different level of language ability. To use the IELTS scale, 7 on each band is considered proficient level. It is also the highly desired score by international students, who want to migrate to Australia on a Point Tested visa.

It is worth pointing out that students and migrants now have more than few ways (tests) to prove their command on language. On top of IELTS and TOFEL, Australia now accepts 5 more tests as an official language test for visa purposes. In total there are 7 types of tests (some computer base) that you can test and prove your language ability. Here is the complete list:

  1. International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
  2. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) Paper-Based test
  3. TOEFL internet-based test (also known as TOEFL iBT)
  4. Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test (also known as Certificate in Advanced English)
  5. Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE)
  6. Occupational English Test (OET)

How much do you need then?

It depends! Overseas workers coming to Australia as cooks can get away with as low as 4.5 each band, whereas most professionals need at least 7 even to get their skill assessment done (yes English is required for everything). In this article, we’ll focus on 7 each band. To prove that you have proficient (IELTS 7 equivalent) English, satisfactory test scores for the relevant tests are as follows:

Test Score
1.     International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

 

At least a score of ‘7’, in each of the components of (reading, writing, listening and speaking) must be achieved within the three years prior to the application of the visa
2.     TOEFL internet-based test (also known as TOEFL iBT) At least 24 for listening, 24 for reading, 27 for writing and 23 for speaking. Must be achieved within the three years prior to the application of the visa
3.     Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test (also known as Certificate in Advanced English) A score of at least ‘185’ in each of the components of (reading, writing, listening and speaking) must be achieved within the three years prior to the application of the visa
 

4.     Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE)

A score of at least ‘65’ in each of the components of (reading, writing, listening and speaking) must be achieved within the three years prior to the application of the visa
5.     Occupational English Test (OET) At least a score of ‘B’, in each of the components of (reading, writing, listening and speaking) must be achieved within the three years prior to the application of the visa

 

A little more about PTE

Many candidates prefer PTE over IELTS due to its efficiency. It is a computer-based test, and results are available within five business days (as oppose to IELTS which takes 10 business days). We’ve partnered with some of Melbourne’s renowned providers to bring you the quality preparation classes. Our trainers are driven and highly proficient. They will teach you how to perform well on the big day.

Remember, it takes more than fluent English to score your best.

If you’re taking a PTE test and would like to increase your chance of success, please contact us today.