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English language requirements for undergraduate students

All undergraduate applicants must demonstrate a standard level of academic English or Welsh language that will enable them to benefit fully from their course of study. For the majority of applicants this can be evidenced using a GCSE in English or Welsh language at grade C/4 or above.

In addition to meeting the academic language standard, applicants who require a Student Route visa to study in the UK must also present an acceptable English language qualification in order to meet UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) requirements - in most cases this will be the same language evidence.

We accept a variety of language qualifications for entry and for some programmes we may ask for higher grades in order to cope with the requirements of the course. Search our course list to find out the English language requirement for the course you are interested in.

With the exception of Medicine and Dentistry, you will not be required to further demonstrate your English language level if:

  • you have obtained a full bachelor (e.g. BA, BSc) or higher (e.g. MA, MSc) degree which has been taught through the medium of English and awarded by a UK institution (including degrees jointly awarded by a UK institution and another institution) or
  • you have obtained a full bachelor or higher degree that has been taught (in its entirety) in a country on the UKVI list of exceptions (excluding Canada) or
  • you are a national of, and have the equivalent of a pass in a High School qualification from, a majority English-speaking country on the UKVI list of exceptions (including Canada) or
  • you are a national of Canada and have obtained a full bachelor or higher degree that has been taught (in its entirety) in Canada and awarded by a Canadian institution or
  • you are applying from a University that has a formal partnership agreement in relation to English language requirements (applicants from partner institutions should contact their current place of study for more details on eligibility).

Distance learning and self-taught degrees are not acceptable for English language evidence.

Accepted language tests

Please note, that these tests are currently not accepted for entry into undergraduate Medicine (MBBCh) or Dentistry (BDS): Bellerby's Foundation - Academic English Skills; Kaplan International Foundation Certificate; NCUK EAP; University of Michigan ECPE.

Our acceptance of the TOEFL iBT Home Edition is currently under review. Applicants are advised to take an alternative English language test.

Test acceptedEquivalency to
GCSE grade C/4
Equivalency to
GCSE grade B/6
Test validity period
(from date test taken)

Bellerby’s Foundation - Academic English Skills (accepted only when taken as part of a full academic Foundation programme)

60%

70%

One academic year

Cambridge Assessment English: C2 Proficiency (Certificate of Proficiency in English) / C1 Advanced (Certificate in Advanced English)

176 overall

185 overall

Two calendar years

Cardiff University English for University Study Exit Test (EFUS)

At least B+ overall with a minimum of C+ in each subskill

At least A overall with a minimum of B in each subskill

Two calendar years

Cardiff University Pathways to a Degree (accepted only when progressing onto the relevant degree programme)

Pass

Pass

One academic year

Cardiff University Pre-sessional programmes

Pass in the 20-, 12-, or 8-week course

Pass in the 10-week course

For immediate progression only

IELTS (Academic) test from a recognised IELTS test centre (including one skill retake)

At least 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each subskill

At least 7.0 overall with a minimum of 6.0 in each subskill

Two calendar years

Kaplan International Foundation Certificate (accepted only when taken as part of a full academic Foundation programme)

English language module/overall EAP grade: 65%

English language module/overall EAP grade: 70%

One academic year

NCUK English for Academic Purposes (EAP) (accepted only when taken as part of a full academic Foundation programme)

Overall EAP grade of B

Overall EAP grade of A

One academic year

PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic)

At least 69 overall with a minimum of 59 in all communicative skills

At least 76 overall with a minimum of 62 in all communicative skills

Two calendar years

Study Group International Foundation Programme - Academic English Skills (accepted only when taken as part of a full academic Foundation programme delivered by Study Group and studied in the UK)

60%

70%

One academic year

TOEFL iBT including Home Edition

At least 90 overall with a minimum of 17 for writing, 17 for listening, 18 for reading, and 20 for speaking

At least 100 overall with a minimum of 20 in each subskill

Two calendar years

Trinity ISE II/III

II: at least two Distinctions and two Merits

III: at least a Pass in all components

II: Not accepted

III: at least a Merit in all components

Two calendar years

University of Michigan Certificate of Proficiency (ECPE)

750 Pass (P)

Not accepted

Two calendar years

School-specific requirements

For undergraduate programmes that have an IELTS subskills requirement that differs from the University minimum, the following equivalencies apply.

The English language requirement for the Bachelor of Dental Science (BDS) is:

GCSE/IGCSEIELTS (Academic)PTE AcademicTOEFL iBTTrinity ISE II/III

Grade B or grade 6 in GCSE English Language

At least 7.0 overall with a minimum of 7.0 in speaking and a minimum of 6.5 in all other subskills

At least 76 overall with a minimum of 76 in speaking and a minimum of 69 in all other communicative skills

At least 100 overall with a minimum of 24 in speaking and 22 in all other subskills

II:  Not accepted

III: at least a Merit in all components

The English language requirement for the BSc Adult Nursing, BSc Children’s Nursing, BSc Mental Health Nursing, and BSc Midwifery is:

GCSE/IGCSEIELTS (Academic)PTE AcademicTOEFL iBTTrinity ISE II/III

Grade B or grade 6 in GCSE English Language

At least 7.0 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in writing and 7.0 in all other subskills

At least 76 overall with a minimum of 69 in writing and a minimum of 76 in all other communicative skills

At least 90 overall with a minimum of 22 in writing and 24 in all other subskills

II: Not accepted

III: at least a Merit all components

The English language requirement for the BSc Diagnostic Radiography and Imaging, BSc Occupational Therapy, BSc Operating Department Practice, BSc Physiotherapy, and BSc Radiotherapy and Oncology is:

GCSE/IGCSEIELTS (Academic)PTE AcademicTOEFL iBTTrinity ISE II/III

Grade B or grade 6 in GCSE English Language

At least 7.0 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in all subskills

At least 76 overall with a minimum of 69 in all communicative skills

At least 100 overall with a minimum of 22 in all subskills

II: Not accepted

III: at least a Pass in all components

The English language requirements for the Law and Politics programmes are:

GCSE/IGCSEIELTS (Academic)PTE AcademicTOEFL iBTTrinity ISE II/III

Grade B or grade 6 in GCSE English Language

At least 6.5 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in writing and a minimum of 6.0 in all other subskills

At least 69 overall with a minimum of 69 in writing and a minimum of 62 in all other communicative skills

At least 90 overall with a minimum of 22 in writing and 20 in all other subskills

II: a Distinction in Writing and at least one Distinction and two Merits in other components

III: at least a Pass in all components

The English language requirement for MBBCh Medicine is:

GCSE/IGCSEIELTS (Academic)PTE AcademicTOEFL iBTTrinity ISE II/III

Grade B or grade 6 in GCSE English Language

At least 7.0 overall with a minimum of 7.0 in speaking and a minimum of 6.5 in all other subskills

At least 76 overall with a minimum of 76 in speaking and a minimum of 69 in all other communicative skills

At least 100 overall with a minimum of 24 in speaking and 22 in all other subskills

II: Not accepted

III: at least a Merit in all components

The English language requirement for the MPharm Pharmacy programme is:

GCSE/IGCSEIELTS (Academic)PTE AcademicTOEFL iBTTrinity ISE II/III

Grade B or grade 6 in GCSE English Language

At least 7.0 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in all subskills

At least 76 overall with a minimum of 69 in all communicative skills

At least 100 overall with a minimum of 22 in all subskills

III: at least a Pass in all components

Other accepted language qualifications

If you are able to submit acceptable evidence that you have completed one of the following academic qualifications and attained the required grade or score, you will not be required to provide additional evidence of English language ability.

Academic qualification

Programmes requiring GCSE grade C or 4

Programmes requiring GCSE grade B or 6 (including Healthcare, Law and Politics, and Pharmacy)

Dentistry (BDS) and Medicine (MBBCh) only

A or AS level in any subject taught through the medium of English

Grade D

Grade C

Not accepted

Austria Reifeprüfung/Matura English

2 (gut) in both written and oral

2 (gut) in both written and oral

Not accepted

Belgium Diploma van Secundair Onderwijs /
Certificate d'Enseignement Secondaire
Superieur English

80% / 16 out of 20 /
grote onderscheiding / avec grande distinction

80% / 16 out of 20 /
grote onderscheiding /avec grande distinction

Not accepted

Botswana General Certificate of Secondary Education (BGCSE) School Certificate English language

Grades 3-6 (credit);
Grade C

Grades 1 and 2 (distinction); Grades A and B

Not accepted

Denmark Studentereksamen

Level A
Grade 10

Level A
Grade 10

Not accepted

European Baccalaureate English as First Language

6.5 out of 10 (65%)

7.0 out of 10 (70%)

8.0 out of 10 (80%)

European Baccalaureate English as Second Language

7.5 out of 10 (75%)

8.0 out of 10 (80%)

8.0 out of 10 (80%)

Finland Ylioppilastutkintotodistus/
Studentexamensbetyg English

Grade 5 (magna cum laude) or above

Grade 5 (magna cum laude) or above

Not accepted

French Baccalauréat General, or Diplome du Baccalauréat Technologique, where English is the first foreign or modern language (Langue vivante 1/LV1 or Langue vivante A/LVA) at Terminal/National level

Grade 14

Grade 14

Not accepted

French Baccalauréat (Baccalauréat Français International (BFI) or Option International du Baccalauréat (OIB)) Language A English language and literature

Grade 10

Grade 10

Not accepted

GCSE or GCE O Level English Language

Grade C or 4

Grade B or 6

Grade B or 6

GCSE or GCE O Level English Second Language

Grade B

Grade A

Not accepted

GCSE or GCE O Level English Literature

Grade C or 4

Grade B or 6

Not accepted

Germany Abitur grade 12 English when taken
as an achievement/main/intensive course

Grade 12 (gut)

Grade 12 (gut)

Not accepted

Ghana Senior Secondary School Certificate (1994-2006)Grade CGrade B

Not accepted

Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE) English

Grade 4

Grade 5

Grade 5

IGCSE English First Language

Grade C or 4

Grade B or 6

Grade B or 6

IGCSE English Second Language

Grade B or 6

Grade A or 7

Not accepted

Indian Standard XII English

Accepted subjects: Core English, English, English language and literature, English (Special), First or Second language English, General English

Not accepted:
- Functional English
- Standard XII English and Higher Secondary English (HSC) from Punjab, Gujarat or Haryana states.

70% or

140 out of 200

70% or

140 out of 200

Not accepted

Indian Standard XII Tamil Nadu Board of Secondary Education English

140 out of 200

140 out of 200

Not accepted

International Baccalaureate English A (first language): Literature or English Language and Literature

HL 4 or SL 5

HL 5 or SL 6

HL 5 or SL 6

International Baccalaureate English B (second language)

HL 4 or SL 5

HL 5 or SL 6

HL 5 or SL 6

Irish Leaving Certificate Higher Level English

Grade H3

Grade H2

Grade H2

Irish Leaving Certificate Ordinary Level English

Grade O1

Not accepted

Not accepted

Kenyan Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) English

Grade C

Grade B

Not accepted

University of Kuala Lumpur

Pass at degree level

Not Accepted

Not accepted

Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE)

Grade 5-6 (Credit)

Grade 3-4 (Credit)

Not accepted

Malaysian SPM English (1119/O Level paper only)

Grade C

Grade B

Grade B

Malaysian SPM English CEFR

Overall CEFR score B2 (minimum of B2 in each band)

Overall CEFR score B2 (minimum of B2 in each band)

Overall CEFR score C1 (minimum of B2 in each band)

Mauritius School Certificate (GCE)

Grade C

Grade B

Grade B

Mauritius Higher School Certificate

Grade D

Grade C

Not accepted

Netherlands Voorbereidend Wetenschappelijk Onderwijs
(VWO) English

Grade 7 or above

Grade 7 or above

Not accepted

Scottish National 5 English

Grade C

Grade B

Grade B

Scottish Higher and Advanced Higher English

Grade D

Grade C

Grade C

Singapore Polytechnic Diploma

Pass

Not Accepted

Not accepted

South African Independent Examinations Board (IEB) English

Grade 4

Grade 5

Not accepted

South African National Senior Certificate (NSC) English

Grade 4

Grade 5

Not accepted

Sweden Fullständigt Slutbetyg från
Gymnasieskolan English

Grade C or VG

Grade C or VG

Not accepted

Tanzania Certificate of Secondary Education Examination (CSEE) English

Grade C

Grade B

Not accepted

Vitnemål fra den videregående skole or Vitnemal-videregaende opplaering (Norway) English

Grade 4

Grade 5

Not accepted

West African Senior Certificate (WAEC or WASSCE) in any subject (excluding local languages)

Grade C6

Grade B3

Not accepted

Uganda Certificate of Education English

Grade C/6

Grade B/4

Not accepted

USA Advanced Placement Test

Grade 3

Grade 4

English: Grade 5

USA American College Testing (ACT)

Composite score of 27

Composite score of 29

Composite score of 28 with 8 in writing

USA SAT

1250 across 2 compulsory components

1300 across 2 compulsory components

650 in both reading and writing

USA SAT Subject Tests

600 in any subject

650 in any subject

Not accepted

Zambia School Certificate / General Certificate of Education English

Grade 5-6 (Credit)

Grade 3-4 (Merit)

Not accepted

Accepted qualifications from India

The Indian Standard XII English qualification from the following examination boards are accepted:

  • Andhra Pradesh Board of Intermediate Education
  • Arunachal Pradesh State Board (Class 12th)
  • Assam Higher Secondary Education Council
  • Bihar School Examination Board
  • Board of High School and Intermediate Education, Uttar Pradesh
  • Board of Secondary Education, Madhya Pradesh, Bhopal
  • Board of Secondary Education, Rajasthan
  • Central Board of Secondary Education
  • Chhattisgarh Board of Secondary Education (CGBSE)
  • Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations, ICSE/ISC
  • Council of Higher Secondary Education, Manipur (COHSEM)
  • Council of Higher Secondary Education, Odisha
  • Goa Board of Secondary & Higher Secondary Education
  • Government of Karnataka Department of Pre-University Education
  • Government of Kerala Board of Higher Secondary Examination
  • Gujarat Secondary and Higher Secondary Education Board
  • Haryana Board of School Education
  • Himachal Pradesh Board of School Education
  • Jammu and Kashmir Board of School Education (JKBOSE)
  • Jharkhand Academic Council (JAC)
  • Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education
  • Meghalaya Board of School Education (MBOSE)
  • Mizoram Board of School Education
  • Nagaland Board of Secondary Education
  • National Institute of Open Schooling
  • Punjab School Education Board
  • Tamilnadu Board of Higher Secondary Education
  • Telangana Board of Intermediate Education
  • Tripura Board of Secondary Education
  • Uttarakhand Board of School Education
  • West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education