Study English in Australia

When looking at your options for study in Australia, one important factor is the English language requirements. They are needed not only for entrance in your university courses, but also as a requirement for your student visa. It is important that you check the language requirements with your chosen university.

English Language Tests in Australia

There are five English language tests that are accepted for an Australian student visa application. They include IELTS (International English Language Testing System), CAE (Cambridge English – Advanced), TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), OET (Occupational English Test), and PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English)

English Language Requirements

In order to gain entry into your course, you need to meet the English language requirements of your university, and provide evidence of your English language proficiency. There are some exemptions to this:

  • students who have completed at least five years of study in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa or the Republic of Ireland
  • citizens and passport holders of the USA, UK, New Zealand, Canada, or the Republic of Ireland
  • students who have successfully completed the Senior Secondary Certificate of Education, or study at Certificate IV level or higher in Australia within two years of applying for a student visa
  • students enrolled full time in school studies as a principal course (including secondary exchange programs), postgraduate research or a standalone ELICOS program
  • Defence or Foreign Affairs sponsored students

Minimum Test Scores

The level of English proficiency required is dependent on the educational institution chosen, your country of citizenship, and if, upon arrival in Australia, you plan to complete an ELICOS course. The minimum test scores to obtain a student visa will more than likely be lower than the minimum requirements for university entry. Below is a table that outlines minimum scores for student visa applications:

English Language Test

Minimum score

Minimum score when combined with at least 10 weeks ELICOS

Minimum score when combined with at least 20 weeks ELICOS













PTE Academic





Pass (A or B)

Pass (A or B)

Pass (A or B)