If you are applying for a UK visa to work, study or live in the UK, you might need to take IELTS for UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) Academic or General Training test, or the IELTS Life Skills test, to prove your English proficiency.
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.
Types of test
|Name of test||Type of test||Visa type*|
|IELTS for UKVI (Academic)||
For test takers wishing to study at undergraduate or postgraduate level or seeking professional registration in the UK.
Both IELTS Academic and IELTS for UKVI (Academic) are accepted by all British universities and colleges. Check which test is required by the organisation you are applying to.
Health and Care Worker
High Potential Individual
Skilled worker (formerly known as Tier 2 General work visa)
Minister of Religion (T2)
Student (formerly known as the Tier 4 General student)
|IELTS for UKVI (General Training)||
For test takers wishing to migrate to the UK and for those wishing to train or study below degree level.
*Please check the UK government website before booking
IELTS Life Skills can prove your Speaking and Listening skills for the family visa, indefinite leave to remain or citizenship visas. Find out more here.
What is IELTS for UKVI?
IELTS for UKVI and IELTS Life Skills are secure English language tests (SELT) approved by the UK Home Office for visa applications to the UK and are taken at a UKVI approved test centre.
IELTS for UKVI tests are the same as IELTS tests but are taken at a UKVI approved test centre. IELTS for UKVI tests have the same content, format, scoring and level of difficulty as the IELTS tests, but are taken at a UKVI approved test centre. This is reflected on the Test Report Forms.
Book with the British Council
Pick from multiple test locations and dates to suit your needs when you book with us. Our booking process is easy, and you have the choice to book online or in person. You will also receive access to our free preparation tools when you book directly with the British Council including:
- GEL IELTS – personalised preparation support including familiarisation materials, mock tests, and practice resources for all four skills.
- Road to IELTS – a last minute preparation course including videos giving advice and tutorials, activities, and practice tests.
- IELTS Practice book – sample tests for IELTS Academic and General Training.
You will also receive five extra Test Report Forms for free sent to the institution you’re applying to i.e. immigration offices, universities etc.
If you have any questions about IELTS for UKVI or IELTS Life Skills tests in the UK, contact us using this form.
If you are outside of the UK
If you are planning on taking your IELTS for UKVI or IELTS Life Skills test outside the UK, you may wish to contact your overseas test centre directly or select the country/territory where you plan to take your test on the drop-down menu here.