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Study in UK without IELTS
Study in UK without IELTS

Study in UK without IELTS

The UK is home to some of the top Universities in the world. So, it is no wonder that students from across the globe aspire to study here. But it is not easy for many students to qualify in the English language proficiency tests that are conducted.

Let’s begin by understanding the different types of Visas in UK. There are three different types of Visa in UK. They are:

  • Short-term study visa
  • Student visa
  • Child Student visa

Short-term study visa:

  • Purpose of the Visa must be : To study an English language course
  • Duration of stay:  6 months or 11 months
  • Is extension possible ? No

Tier 4 (General) UK Student Visa:

  • Conditions to be satisfied: You must be 16 or above.
  • Purpose of the Visa must be : To study or work
  • Duration of stay:  No specific duration
  • Is extension possible ? Yes

Child Student visa:

  • Conditions to be satisfied: You must be between 4 and 17 years old
  • Purpose of the Visa must be : To study at an independent school in the UK.
  • Duration of stay: 
Age  Duration
For children under 16 Course length (up to 6 years) plus 4 months afterwards
Between 16 or 17 Course length (up to 3 years) plus 4 months afterwards
  • Is extension possible ? Yes

Is IELTS needed for UK?

It is indeed true that there are Universities in the UK which offer admissions without IELTS. You can pursue courses like MBA in UK without IELTS.

Does it mean that one can enter the UK without IELTS?

Yes. But you cannot enter the UK without qualifying in any one form of English language proficiency test. 

You must understand that there is no difference between gaining an entry to the UK without IELTS or any equivalent English language proficiency test and studying in any of the Universities in the UK without IELTS or any equivalent English language proficiency test. Because the University that you apply for is the Tier-4 sponsor who is going to evaluate your English language abilities.

Role of English language proficiency tests in procuring a UK visa?

Generally, you don’t need proof of English language ability for a child student visa and short term study visa. But do check with your school [ for child student visa] or  course provider [ for short term student visa] if they have any. 

To procure a Tier 4 or General VISA, a candidate must get 40 points out of which 30 points are reserved for Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies( CAS)  from a Tier-4 sponsor. It is not permissible for the sponsor to issue the CAS before confirming that the candidate has met the English Language understanding requirements.

Following table can be taken as a guideline for the IELTS score required by any international student. For example, if the student is from India, then the table can be interpreted as the UK student visa requirements for Indian students without IELTS.

Level of the National Qualification Framework (NQF) Level of CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) Corresponding IELTS Band (or) IELTS score for UK 
For a course under the Level 6 Minimum B1  is needed. CEFR B1 corresponds to IELTS band 4
For a course of the Level 6 or higher B2 Level and higher. CEFR B2 corresponds to IELTS band 6

Also check: IELTS Band Score

Is it possible to procure a UK study visa without IELTS?

Yes, It is possible to get a UK visa without IELTS. IELTS is just one of the tests that the Tier-4 sponsor uses to check the English language proficiency for the Visa seeker. 

If not IELTS, the Tier-4 sponsor may resort to other forms of English language tests such as SELT ( Secure English Language Test). If the candidate qualified in SELT, the sponsor puts the unique SELT reference number in the candidate’s CAS. The candidate must use the number provided, on their visa application to confirm that they have passed the test.

Also, the candidate might have to prove their knowledge of English in the form of an interview for a visa in the home country, or when in the UK (at the airport).

Also Check: Study in UK with IELTS

If not IELTS, what do Universities ask for? 

There are UK universities without IELTS requirement. They may ask for the following:

  • Universities may ask for the medium of instruction of the previous education of the candidate. This is a valid proof. 
  • Some universities require the candidate to appear for an online interview. The university will check the  level of English of the candidate directly.
  • Candidate’s high school or senior year scores may be taken into consideration. For example, 10th and 12th grade mark sheets containing English language scores as desired by the University.

Is IELTS required for UK Universities?

Not all Universities ask for IELTS. There are exemptions too. Following are UK universities without IELTS requirement: 

  • University of Plymouth
  • University of Portsmouth
  • Swansea University
  • University of Warwick
  • London Southbank University
  • University of Greenwich
  • University of Central Lancashire
  • Aston University
  • Northumbria University
  • Robert Gordon University
  • University of Bolton
  • Birmingham City University
  • Riga Technical University
  • University of Northampton
  • Sheffield Hallam University

Many students are under the wrong assumption that IELTS is required for London. But it is not true. The London Southbank University listed above is a classic example of a University in London which gives admission without IELTS.

Note: These Universities may have their own methods of assessing the English language proficiency of the candidate. It is the candidate’s responsibility to find out what type of test the University requires.

Also check :

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