How to Study in Australia without IELTS plus Alternatives to English Proficiency Tests

We understand that the general process of enrolling in your dream low tuition Australian tertiary institution as an international student can be trying and tough. Besides the many documents you have to prepare and submit, and the long essays you are expected to write, there are a few other requirements that you may not need to worry about. One of these is English proficiency, which is usually required to be ascertained through IELTS. The issue is that IELTS is expensive, and probably won’t be the only thing you’ll have to pay for when putting together your application. The good news is that there are some great universities that don’t have IELTS requirements as the only viable way of proving your English proficiency, so if you intend to save some cash, applying to them is the way to go.

Australian universities typically request international students to submit some form of English proficiency proof to be sure that english won’t be an issue while they are studying. This way there won’t be doubts about your English listening, speaking and writing abilities. In order to prove it, a bunch of universities typically prefer receiving a certification of specific standard English proficiency tests, like IELTS. What this means is that you’ll have to pay anything between  $215 to $240, which is the cost of the test.

However, if you would like to save money, many Australian universities have other alternatives to IELTS.

How to enroll in a university in Australia without taking IELTS

Before going on to talk about specific Australian universities that do not require IELTS exams, let’s delve in and explain some of the common ways in which you can be exempted from it.

  1. Possessing another English Proficiency Test certification. These alternatives to IELTS, like TOEFL or PTE, are much cheaper.
  2. Taking and passing the English Proficiency Test of the university. Majority of universities have designed their own tests, so you’ll be able to skip this step when putting together your documents because you’ll have to take their test when applying.
  3. Coming from an English speaking country. Each university has a long list of the countries they accept in order to be exempted from IELTS.
  4. Studying secondary and/or tertiary education in English. This applies even if you come from a non-English speaking country, but you’ll have to prove that the education you received was completely in English.
  5. Having a degree from a university in an English speaking country or from a program taught in English.
  6. Studying in one of their English programs before starting your career courses. This is a good option if the university decides your English level is insufficient or if you can’t prove your English skills.

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Now that you know if you meet any of the criteria mentioned, let’s jump into the specific universities to see which universities in Australia accept alternatives to IELTS.

Which specific Australian universities can I be exempted from IELTS?

1. Australian National University (ANU)

When discussing world class and quality education, the Australian National University (ANU) is definitely one of the best options. Ranked as the best university in Australia, ANU provides a wide range of options in many key areas, and is considered to have one of the best research centers in the republic.But it also offers flexible studying options, affording you the opportunity to study two Bachelor or Master Degrees at the same time, or a Bachelor and a Master degree simultaneously.

Per English language requirements, they have a tall list of options. If you are a citizen of an English speaking country AND did study secondary or tertiary education there, it will be considered proof of your language proficiency. They have about 25 countries that qualify. This also applies if you studied in another country but can prove that your education was in English.

ANU on the other hand also accepts other language proficiency tests, such as TOEFL, PTE and Cambridge CAE Advanced. They also accept local certificates from countries like Sweden, India or Austria. Lastly, the university has the ANU Access Program, which is a ten-week intensive program for international students.

Scores and grades may vary depending on the program you’d like to enroll in, so check theirEnglish language requirements page for more information.

2. The University of Melbourne

Home to over 13,000 international students, The University of Melbourne provides fantastic opportunities for students who come from outside Australia. Important public figures, including four prominent Australian prime ministers, have studied here. It has amazing facilities, a wide variety of activities that include sports and arts, and flexible study abroad options.

In order to satisfy their English language requirements, you are able to submit a TOEFL, PTE or CAE certificates, besides IELTS. They also have their own test, known as Diagnostic English Language Assessment (DELA). If you don’t get the score required, they offer different programs that’ll enable you improve your English.

Their requirements vary depending on the type of degree you are going for (graduate or undergraduate), but in general, you will be exempted from IELTS if you have an English background or education. Visit their English requirements page for more details.

3. The University of Queensland (UQ)

Around last year, The University of Queensland (UQ) was  ranked in the Top 10 of universities in Australia. This should not be surprising as it has three stunning campuses and  well over 15,000 international students from 170 countries. This university currently has the biggest number of Australian University Teaching awards and is part of Universitas 21.

Per English language proficiency requirements, they actively accept certification from other tests besides IELTS, including TOEFL (iBT and PB), CES, PTE, and BEP. They equally accept certification from certain local tests and interstate subject equivalents.

Note that you are exempted from IELTS if you completed high school in one of the 30 English speaking countries indicated on their website. This also means if you’ve studied in an institution recognized by UQ or if you worked for three years or more in an English speaking environment.

Please do well to check their English language proficiency requirements page to learn more. Read carefully as it has a lot of information and many documents with their regulation.

4. The University of New South Wales (UNSW Sidney)

This institution is placed within the Top 50 universities of the QS Global World Ranking, and is a leading university in the research field. It’s also a member of Universitas 21 and is internationally ranked as 28th in terms of employability across board.

They do utilize tons of options for proving your English language proficiency besides IELTS. Other tests they accept are TOEFL, PTE, CAE, and CPE. However,if you sat for the ANU College Access Program, you are exempted from this. You can also take their English course, called UNSW Institution of Languages University English Entry Course (UEEC).

UNSW also accepts applicants who studied senior secondary or tertiary education in one of the 29 English speaking countries of its list. So assuming you have 2 years or more of relevant work experience using English, this can equally be used to prove your English proficiency. They even accept candidates with a professional translator or interpreter certificate, so check their website for more info.

Please do not forget that these English proficiency requirements differ from the English requirements you must have to get a student visa. And don’t forget to check the scholarship section of these universities, they also offer them to international students!

I am confident that that this article on universities in Australia without IELTS was helpful and will assist you in studying on cheapest tuition.

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