The IELTS test you take – and the score you need – will depend on both your visa requirements and/or the requirements of the institution where you plan to study or work.

Which IELTS test do I need?

Visa description Minimum CEFR level required Skills IELTS test and minimum scores required
Tier 1 (General visa)  C1 Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
7.0 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent visa) B1  Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
4.0 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 1 (Entrepreneur visa) B1  Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
4.0 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 1 (Graduate entrepreneur visa) B1  Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
4.0 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 2 (General visa) - in most cases B1 Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
4.0 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 2 (Sportsperson visa) A1 Speaking and Listening IELTS Life Skills A1 - Pass
IELTS for UKVI - 4.0 in Speaking and Listening
Tier 2 (Minister of religion visa) B2 Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
5.5 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 4 (General student visa) - below degree level and pre-sessional courses B1 Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS for UKVI
4.0 overall, and in each of the four skills
Tier 4 (General student visa) - degree level and above B2  Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking IELTS/IELTS for UKVI
5.5 overall, and in each of the four skills

Family route:

  • Spouse/partner
  • Parent of a dependent
A1 Speaking and Listening IELTS Life Skills A1 - Pass
IELTS for UKVI - 4.0 in Speaking and Listening

Family route (extension):

  • Spouse/partner
  • Parent of a dependent

A2 

(Available only in the UK.)

Speaking and Listening IELTS Life Skills A2 - Pass
IELTS for UKVI - 4.0 in Speaking and Listening

Indefinite leave to remain (to settle) or citizenship

B1  Speaking and Listening IELTS Life Skills B1 - Pass
IELTS for UKVI - 4.0 in Speaking and Listening

Please note that both General and Academic Training modules are accepted. The CEFR requirement for each skill must be met.

IELTS for UKVI can be used where IELTS Life Skills is used; test takers would need to get 4.0 or above in Speaking and Listening (scores for Reading and Writing will be ignored).

If you are applying for a Tier 4 Student Visa at a Higher Education Institution (HEI) to enter directly onto a bachelor or postgraduate degree at a university that is a Tier 4 Sponsor, you must meet the English language level set by the institution.

To find out whether you need to take IELTS for UKVI, and what level you need to achieve, please use the visa checking service supplied by the UK Home Office