Friday, January 20, 2017

The Four Approved Secure English Language Tests for UKVI

Migrating to the UK is more than just the submission of qualifications these days. Aside from accomplishing the requirements, aspiring migrants must also pass an English proficiency exam.

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires aspiring migrants to undergo English assessment tests to measure their language abilities. The level of difficulty and test content of the required evaluation depends on the test taker’s background and purpose.

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As of December 1, 2016, there are four approved secure English language tests for UKVI:

1. Integrated Skills in English Test (ISE)
Levels: A2, B1, B2, C1 and C2
Minimum Grade Required:
A2 – (ISE) “Pass” in Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing
B1 – (ISE I) “Pass” in Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing
B2 – (ISE II) “Pass” in Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing
C1 – (ISE III) “Pass” in Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing
C2 – (ISE IV) “Pass” in Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing

Test Summary: 
All ISE exams, except ISE IV, follow the same format. Test takers are given more than three hours to accomplish two modules that focus on Reading and Writing, and Speaking and Listening, respectively.

The C2 evaluation, meanwhile, has three parts: the Portfolio, which involves accomplishing three activities in the current year’s task list; the Controlled Written exam, which includes completing reading and writing tasks in three hours; and the Interview, which involves participating in listening and speaking tasks in 25 minutes.

Detailed information about the ISE can be found in their primary provider’s website.

2. Graded Examinations in Spoken English (GESE)
Levels: A1, A2 and B1
Minimum Grade Required:
A1 – GESE Grade 2 pass 
A2 – GESE Grade 3 pass
B1 – GESE Grade 5 pass

Test Summary: 
GESE assessment tests are candid conversations that evaluate a test taker’s verbal English skills. Exams differ when it comes to their source material and time span according to the grade level.

A1 and A2 fall under the GESE Initial tests that are designed for examinees that possess basic English skills. These assessments last from five to seven minutes. The B1 evaluation, on the other hand, is included in the GESE elementary exams. These tests take up 10 minutes and are specially developed for examinees with primary level English abilities.

Detailed information about the ISE can be found in their primary provider’s website.

3. IELTS Life Skills
Levels: A1, A2 and B1
Minimum Grade Required:
A1 – pass 
A2 – pass
B1 – pass

Test Summary: 
The IELTS Life Skills tests are qualifications for individuals who wish to extend or permanently stay in the UK. They have two main components: Speaking and Listening. The tasks involved in each assessment are designed to gauge a non-native speaker’s language skills in daily communication situations.

The higher the level, the more tasks a test taker must accomplish. A1 takes up 16 to 18 minutes, A2 takes up 20 minutes and B1 takes up 22 minutes.

4. IELTS for UKVI
Levels: B1, B2, C1 and C2
Minimum Grade Required:
B1: Listening – 4.0, Speaking – 4.0, Reading – 4.0, and Writing – 4.0
B2: Listening – 5.5, Speaking – 5.5, Reading – 5.5, and Writing – 5.5
C1: Listening – 7.0, Speaking – 7.0, Reading – 7.0, and Writing – 7.0
C2: Listening – 8.5, Speaking – 8.5, Reading – 8.5, and Writing – 8.5

Test Summary: 
The IELTS for UKVI exam has two test formats: the Academic, which gauges English language proficiency as applied in academic setting; and General Training assessment, which evaluates English language proficiency as used in practical daily contexts.

Examinees of IELTS for UKVI must know their target band score qualification when taking the exam. Both test types take up two hours and 45 minutes.

All English assessments are valid for two years. Test takers of all exams are encouraged to prepare for their required test either by self-studying or by enrolling in a training facility. Though the former is more convenient, it is more advantageous to study for the evaluation test in a review center.  

For instance, IELTS UKVI review center uses test-specific materials that can give examinees a preview of the possible contents of the actual exam. Specialists of an IELTS review center can also help test takers to adjust to the demands of the actual exam by providing mock tests.

By getting used to the pressure beforehand, they can prevent test anxiety and improve their chances of achieving their desired band score. Moreover, the coursework administered at IELTS review centers are designed for all components of the exam. From Listening to Speaking, instructors of an IELTS UKVI review center can help examinees enhance their linguistic skills specifically for the UK environment.

Test takers of the ISE and GESE are also encouraged to prepare for their exams by enrolling in review facilities.

All things considered, remember to identify which exam you need to accomplish based on your qualifications and intentions.


REFERENCES:

“Approved secure English language tests and test centres.” Gov.UK. December 01, 2016. Accessed December 12, 2016. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/573290/Approved_Secure_English_Language_Tests_and_Test_Centres.pdf

“Integrated Skills in English (ISE).” Trinity College London. 2016. Accessed December 12, 2016. http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=3192

“ISEIV (C2).” Trinity College London. 2016. Accessed December 12, 2016. http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=3197

“Graded Examinations in Spoken English (GESE).” Trinity College London. 2016. Accessed December 12, 2016. http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=368

“Grades 1-3: Initial.” Trinity College London. 2016. Accessed December 12, 2016. http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=3106

“Grades 4-6: Elementary.” Trinity College London. 2016. Accessed December 12, 2016. http://www.trinitycollege.com/site/?id=3107

“Prepare for IELTS Life Skills.” British Council . Accessed December 12, 2016. http://takeielts.britishcouncil.org/ielts-ukvi/prepare-ielts-life-skills



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