Since November 2011, the Australian government has begun accepting three new English language tests for student visas in addition to the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
From November 5, the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship began accepting test scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the Pearson Test of English – PTE Academic and the Cambridge English – Advanced (CAE) from Cambridge ESOL test scores.
The department will continue to accept IELTS test scores. However, the introduction of the TOEFL iBT, Pearson and Cambridge tests to student visa applications offer new alternatives for international students applying for study visas in Australia and a wider range of English language test providers.
The PTE Academic test has been accepted in China for the past two years and claims to be recognized by more than 200 Australian institutions.
The alternative English language tests apply only to student visa applications.
The Australian government says it will review alternative tests for other visa programmes after 12 months of operation. ■