More choice in English language testing

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Applicants for a number of visas are being given more choice in English language testing.

From November this year, people applying for Temporary Graduate, Skilled, Work and Holiday and Former Resident visas will be able to provide the department with a test score from the Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-based test (TOEFL iBT) or the Pearson Test of English Academic.

These tests are in addition to the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and the Occupational English Test currently used.

A final implementation date in November will be published on the Australian immigration department’s website later this year.

Scores from these additional tests will be benchmarked against the IELTS equivalency. A list of the visa subclasses accepting scores from the alternative tests and a summary of test score equivalencies is available here.

The Australian immigration department will also be able to accept scores from the Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test from early 2015, and later in the year they will publish more about this test on their website. Scores from a Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) test taken before the 2015 implementation date will not be accepted however.

At this stage, we cannot confirm that applicants for the 457 visa will be able to provide the immigration department with scores from these alternative tests, because the subclass 457 programme is being independently reviewed. The review is expected to report to government by mid-2014.

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