Graduate applicants seeking regular admission to the Graduate School who are non-native speakers of English must meet the Graduate School’s English Language Proficiency Requirement for admission.
This requirement is separate from the contact teaching requirement for Graduate Assistants—students who seek to hold a Graduate Assistantship must meet those requirements regardless of if they receive an exemption or meet this admissibility standard.
The following graduate applicants are exempt from the English Language Proficiency Requirement:
native language is English.
Native language is defined as the primary language a person spoke while growing
up in their family, community, and nation.
- Receiving a degree in a country/territory that lists English as an official language of instruction such as India, Pakistan, Philippines, Hong Kong, Nigeria, Singapore, Ghana, or Kenya does NOT exempt the applicant from meeting the proficiency requirement.
- Graduate applicants who earned a bachelor’s or master’s degree from accredited US institutions or from foreign institutions in countries/territories where the official and native language is English
- Graduate applicants who hold one of the following certifications with at least a “B” or better, with the approval of the Graduate Dean: West African Senior School Examination Certificate (WASSCE), the General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGSCE), or the International Baccalaureate (IB)
|English Proficiency Test||Score||Website|
|PTE-A Pearson Test of English-Academic||
|TOEFL Internet-Based||79||TOEFL iBT|
|Institutional TOEFL1||550||TOEFL ITP|
|C1 Advanced CAE (Cambridge Assessment English)||176||C1 Advanced|
- Note: The Institutional TOEFL test is only accepted when taken through University of Arkansas' Testing Services.
- Note: The IELTS General Training exam is not accepted.
Note: The Duolingo English Test (DET) is authorized as a supplemental measure for use on a very rare case-by-case basis when all other tests are unavailable and under prescribed circumstances for admission and enrollment with the approval of the Graduate Dean.
Graduate students will be assessed for written English proficiency and receive a required placement in English Language and Culture courses (ELAC) that must be completed within their first year of enrollment in the Graduate School. Assessment is made based on writing scores from accepted tests as indicated in the below table.
|Accepted Test||Level I||Level II||Level III|
|PTE-A Pearson Test of English
|≥71||60 - 70||59 or less|
|≥26||23 - 25||22 or less|
|≥6.0-||5.5||5.0 or less|
|GRE General Test
|≥4.0||3.5||3.0 or less|
|Graduate Management Admission Test
|≥4.5||4.0||3.5 or less|
|iTEP (Writing)||≥4.0||3.1 - 3.9||3.0 or less|
|C1 Advanced CAE (Cambridge Assessment English)||≥169||155 - 168||154 or less|
- Note: Graduate students applying for a Teaching Assistantship are required to submit sufficient speaking and writing scores. Details are provided in Tests and Minimum Scores for TEACHING ASSISTANTSHIPS.
Graduate assistantships with direct student contact require competency in both spoken and written English, even if eligible for an exemption of the English Language requirement for admission. These requirements must be fulfilled before starting a graduate assistantship that requires direct student contact.
"Direct student contact" involves working with students in a teaching or tutorial role, whether in a traditional classroom setting or via distance education.
Spoken English Requirements
Competency in spoken English may be demonstrated by completing one of the two methods below:
|Accepted Test||Minimum Speaking Score||Website|
|PTE-A Pearson Test of English - Academic (Speaking sub-test)||71||PTE Academic|
|TOEFL Internet-based (Speaking sub-test)||26||TOEFL iBT|
|IELTS Academic (Speaking sub-test)||7.0||IELTS|
|iTEP (Speaking sub-test)||4.5||iTEP|
|C1 Advanced CAE (Speaking sub-test)||185||C1 Advanced|
|Spoken Language Proficiency Test||Pass||SLPT|
Successful completion of ELAC 5053 International Graduate Teaching Assistantship Training with an 80% average or above.
Written English Requirements
Competency in written English may be demonstrated by completing one of the two methods below:
|Accepted Test||Minimum Writing Score||Website|
|PTE-A Pearson Test of English - Academic (Writing sub-test)||71||PTE Academic|
|TOEFL Internet-based sub-test (Writing sub-test)||26||TOEFL iBT|
|IELTS Academic (Writing sub-test)||6.0||IELTS|
|GRE General Test (Analytical Writing sub-test)||4.0||GRE|
|Graduate Management Admission Test (Analytical Writing sub-test)||4.5||GMAT|
|iTEP (Writing sub-test)||4.0||iTEP|
|C1 Advanced CAE (Writing sub-test)||169||C1 Advanced|
|Accepted Test||Minimum Writing Score||Website|
|PTE-A Pearson Test of English-Academic (Writing sub-test)||62||PTE Academic|
|TOEFL Internet-based (Writing sub-test)||23||TOEFL iBT|
|IELTS Academic(Writing sub-test)||5.5||IELTS|
|GRE General Test (Analytical Writing sub-test)||3.5||GRE|
|Graduate Management Admission Test (Analytical Writing sub-test)||4.0||GMAT|
|iTEP (Writing sub-test)||3.5||iTEP|
|C1 Advanced CAE (Writing sub-test)||162||C1 Advanced|