The UK government has announced important changes in the language certificates accepted for visa and immigration purposes. Find the official list of British Universities and Colleges TIER 4 register of licensed sponsors.

Here are the frequently asked questions about these changes and how they affect test takers in Iran: 

Are IELTS tests from the test centres in Iran worthless?

No. The IELTS tests from the test centres in Iran are exactly the same quality and standard as IELTS tests taken around the world. They are still globally recognised and can be used for all other purposes except UK visa applications.

I live in Iran and want to apply for a UK visa that requires an IELTS score. Where can I sit my IELTS test?

You can find information about your nearest IELTS or IELTS for UKVI centre on the IELTS website.

Which IELTS test do I need if I am applying for a UK visa?

For many categories of visa, you must submit an English language qualification which is included on the UK Home Office’s list of Secure English Language Tests (often referred to as SELT tests). IELTS and IELTS Life Skills are on this list. To find out more about the type of test you will need visit our further guidance page.

 

Can I use any IELTS test result for UK visa application?

If you wish to use an IELTS or IELTS Life Skills test result as part of your application for UK visa purposes (apart from some types of student visa), you may need to take the test at an IELTS test centre which is specifically authorised by UK Visas and Immigration for this purpose, and the test must be taken under conditions specified by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

You will receive an IELTS – or IELTS Life Skills – Test Report Form which shows that you have taken your test to meet the UKVI requirements.

How is my IELTS test different if I take it for UK visa purposes?

The IELTS test for UK visa purposes is designed to meet certain administrative requirements that are only specified by UK Visas and Immigration. Test Report Forms will be slightly different, to show that test takers have taken the test at an IELTS UK visa session. The actual test taken is the same – same content, examiners, format, level of difficulty, scoring and so on. 

 

I’ve already taken IELTS. Can I still use my result to apply to UK Visas and Immigration?

If you take IELTS on or before 5 April 2015 you should be able to use it for your application up to 5 November 2015, but you must confirm this with UKVI. 

If I take an IELTS test for UK visa purposes, can I use my result in other countries / for other purposes?If I take an IELTS test for UK visa purposes, can I use my result in other countries / for other purposes?

Yes. IELTS test results are accepted by more than 9,000 organisations worldwide, including universities, colleges, governments and employers. 

Where can I take an IELTS or IELTS Life Skills test for a UK visa application?

The tests are available throughout the world, in locations specified by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI)

What is IELTS Life Skills? What is it for?

IELTS Life Skills is a test of Speaking and Listening, available at CEFR Level A1 and CEFR Level B1. It is designed to meet the requirements of UK Visas and Immigration for certain visa categories. 

 

When and where can I take an IELTS Life Skills test?

IELTS Life Skills tests are available throughout the world, in locations specified by UK Visas and Immigration. The IELTS Life Skills test centres will also be announced here shortly.

To find out whether you need to take an approved test, and what level you need to achieve, please visit https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration for more information.

What is the format of the IELTS Life Skills test?

You take the test with another test taker and one Examiner. Your own performance on both speaking and listening will be assessed during this one session.

Why does IELTS Life Skills only cover Speaking and Listening?

The new test has been designed to meet specific immigration requirements for which applicants only need to demonstrate speaking and listening skills.

How long does the IELTS Life Skills test take?

IELTS Life Skills at CEFR Level A1 takes 16-18 minutes and Level B1 is 22 minutes.

Is there any break between Speaking and Listening?

No. You will be assessed on your Speaking and Listening skills at the same time.

How is IELTS Life Skills assessed?

A certificated IELTS Examiner will assess your performance throughout the Listening and Speaking test based on the following criteria:

  • obtaining information
  • conveying information
  • speaking to communicate
  • engaging in discussion

How can I prepare for the IELTS Life Skills test?

Free test samples will be available on our Take IELTS website shortly.

How many copies of IELTS Life Skills Test Report Form will I get?

You will receive one copy of the IELTS Life Skills Test Report Form.

How soon will I get my IELTS Life Skills results?

Test results are normally available within 7 days of your test.

How often is an IELTS or IELTS Life Skills test available?

For IELTS and IELTS Life Skills, test dates will be available within 28 days of booking your test.

How often can I re-take IELTS or IELTS Life Skills?

There are no restrictions on retaking IELTS. You can register for a test as soon as you feel you are ready to do so.

Candidates who have previously taken the IELTS Life Skills test and have passed are not allowed to re-take the test at the same level within two years. E.g: a candidate who has taken an IELTS Life Skills A1 test and has passed cannot take another Life Skills A1 test within two years. Similarly a candidate who has taken an IELTS Life Skills B1 test and has passed cannot take another Life Skills B1 test within two years.

If you have a question that is not answered here please drop us an email onEnglishIran@britishcouncil.org and we will be happy to advise.