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IELTS for UK Visas & Immigration

Learn about IELTS for UKVI


If you need a visa application to stay or move to the UK, you need to be aware of changes made by United Kingdom Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

  • The UK government has announced that they have changed the rules regarding language testing for some healthcare professionals who require a visa to live and work in the UK.
  • IELTS remains an accepted test for healthcare professionals in and heading to the UK.
    If you need to take a language test to work in healthcare in the UK, please contact the relevant professional body for advice.
    Information on what language test you may need for your purpose is available on the UK government website:
  • More information available here.

Register for your test

Register here for "IELTS for UKVI" and IELTS Life Skills at the test locations selected by the UK government.

  • You must confirm at the time of registration that you wish to use your test result for a UK visa application.
  • You must sit the test in an “IELTS for UKVI” test session, as UKVI will not accept results from all IELTS tests offered at these locations.

What are the changes?

If you are going to or staying in the UK, there is an IELTS test for you.

In addition to the IELTS General Training and IELTS Academic tests, which you may already know of, a test called IELTS Life Skills has been introduced.

IELTS Life Skills test is the test for people who need to prove their speaking and listening skills at levels A1 or B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). This will be a single test covering speaking and listening skills.

Find out more about approved IELTS tests for UKVI.

Are you entering a bachelor degree or higher in the UK?

UKVI has confirmed that these changes do not affect you if you are entering directly at degree level or higher at a Higher Education Institution (HEI) in the UK. Higher Education Institutions currently choose their own method of testing students’ English language ability for entry onto their courses and this will not change.

Tier 4 Student Visa (without a presessional)

If you are applying for a Tier 4 student visa to enter a university that is a Tier 4 Sponsor to study a bachelor or postgraduate degree, you must meet the English language level set by the institution. All British universities and colleges accept IELTS results. Tier 4 Student Visa applicants can apply to the UK universities listed here with an IELTS result.

Find out more information on the UK Visas and Immigration website.