UK visa English tests

26 May 2015

New English test introduced for UK visa application.

The Home Office introduced a new secure english language testing (SELT) on 6 April 2015 for migrants who need to meet the English language requirement as part of their UK visa application.

The changes come following a BBC investigation last year which uncovered systematic exam fraud in which potential student visa applicants were caught cheating on ETS TOEIC exams leading to the Home Office immediately suspending ETS as an approved provider.

The Home Office will only accept the following test’s taken inside the UK on or after 6 April 2015:

  • IELTS Life Skills
  • IELTS
  • Integrated Skills in English and Graded Examinations in Spoken English provided by Trinity College London

For test’s taken outside the UK on or after 6 April 2015:

  • IELTS Life Skills
  • IELTS

The newly launch IELTS Life Skills was launched in April 2015 and aimed at visa applicants who need to meet the English language requirement at levels A1 & B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).

Transitional arrangements have been put in place of for visa applicants who took a test prior to 6 April 2015 and these will continue to be accepted as part of visa applications until 5 November 2015.

Applicants will be required to input their unique reference number on their visa application form(s) which will be used to verify their score/pass using the IELTS SETL Consortium online.

If you are unsure if you meet the new requirements or require immigration advice on if you hold the correct English test, please do not hesitate to contact us on +44 (0)20 3617 1111. We offer a free 10 minute advice session with a regulated immigration adviser.