The Graduate School Advance to a Higher Degree

English Proficiency Requirements

Who is required to provide proof of English proficiency?

International applicants whose native language is not English are required to provide proof of English proficiency for admission to degree, certificate, non-degree, and teacher license graduate programs in one of the following ways.

Option A: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

The Graduate School accepts valid* TOEFL scores earned through the paper-delivered test and Internet-based test.

The minimum Internet-Based Test (iBT) scores required for admission are the following:

  • Writing 18
  • Speaking 18
  • Listening 14
  • Reading 19
  • Total 80

The minimum paper-delivered section requirements are the following (overall score is no longer reported):

  • Reading 19
  • Listening 14
  • Writing 18

Note that in addition to required iBT minimum scores for writing, speaking, listening, and reading, the Graduate School also requires a minimum overall iBT score that is higher than the minimums for the four area tests combined. Applicants must meet or exceed each of the five scores (listed above) for admission to the Graduate School.

Some graduate programs require higher minimum scores. Please check the Graduate Program Requirements Web page for additional requirements. Only official TOEFL scores received directly from Educational Testing Service are acceptable. For further information, visit

  • Purdue University West Lafayette's code for the TOEFL application is 1631.
  • Purdue University Northwest's code for the TOEFL application is 1638.
  • Purdue University Fort Wayne's code for the TOEFL application is 1336.
  • IUPUI's code for the TOEFL application is 1325.

Option B: International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

The Graduate School also accepts valid* International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores (Academic Module).

An overall band score of 6.5 is required for admission with the following minimum section requirements:

  • Reading 6.5
  • Listening 6.0
  • Speaking 6.0
  • Writing 5.5

For more information, visit The official test score report can be uploaded to the online application under IELTS Score Report, sent electronically to the Office of International Students and Scholars, or the hard copy score report can be mailed directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions.

*To be valid for admission, English proficiency test scores (TOEFL and IELTS) must be no more than two years old at the time the recommendation for admission is received at the Graduate School.

Option C: Enroll in an intensive English program and satisfy the exit requirements established for the program

These results must be certified, in writing, by the intensive English program faculty to the Office of Graduate Admissions at West Lafayette or the equivalent office at the regional campuses before applicants using this method of establishing English proficiency may be admitted to the Graduate School.

The certificate may be uploaded to the online application status portal (after submission) under Miscellaneous Supporting Documents, sent electronically to the Office of International Education, or the hard copy certificate can be mailed directly to the Purdue Fort Wayne Office of Graduate Studies.

Purdue University Northwest English Language Program (ELP)

Exit Requirement: achieve a minimum of 80% (Level 4 examination) and pass an Exit Test (consisting of speaking and writing components) For more information, visit

Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) Program for Intensive English (PIE)

Exit Requirement: pass all classes with grades of at least B (82%), and pass the PIE Proficiency Exit Test at the Level 7 level. For more information, visit

ELS Level 112 Certification (Fort Wayne Campus applicants ONLY)

The Graduate School will consider applicants who have enrolled in ELS Language Center’s English for Academic Purposes program and who have passed ELS Level 112 as having met the Graduate School’s English proficiency requirement. Successful completion of ELS Level 112 includes the following components: Completion of 12 weeks of intensive study using curricular materials written at the native speaker level (approximately 360 hours of classroom instruction in speaking, listening, reading, writing); completion of an extensive research paper using standard research protocols in a monitored setting; Passing of the Michigan English Language Institute College English Test (MELICET) and Listening Comprehension Test (LCT) standards; passing of speaking evaluations; passing of writing evaluation. These results must be certified, in writing, by ELS Language Center to the Fort Wayne graduate office before applicants using this method of establishing English proficiency may be admitted to the Graduate School. For more information, visit

Option D:  English Speaking Country Waiver

The Graduate School will routinely waive the English Proficiency testing requirements for applicants who have received a baccalaureate degree or graduate or professional degree, within the last 36 months at the time of recommendation for admission, from a school where English is the primary language of instruction in a country/location where English is the native language. Some graduate programs may still require a test of English proficiency for admission; please confirm with your department whether they will also grant this waiver.

If you are admitted under this waiver and are still finishing your degree, you must satisfactorily complete your degree and submit a final official transcript showing that this degree has been awarded BEFORE the Office of International Students and Scholars (ISS) can produce your US immigration document (I-20 or DS-2019) or before you can enroll in courses at Purdue University.

Official English-speaking countries/locations, in addition to the U.S., include:

  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Bermuda
  • Botswana
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Christmas Island
  • Cook Islands
  • Dominica
  • Fiji
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • Isle of Man
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Malawi
  • Micronesia
  • Montserrat
  • New Zealand
  • Nigeria
  • Norfolk Island
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Philippines
  • Pitcairn Islands
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • South Sudan
  • St. Helena
  • St. Kitts and Nevis
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Vincent and Grenadines
  • Swaziland
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • The Gambia
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Uganda
  • United Kingdom
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Option E:  Current Purdue University Student Waiver

Routine waivers of the English proficiency requirement are granted to current Purdue University graduate degree, certificate, non-degree, and teacher license graduate students. This is with the condition that students have previously met English proficiency requirements (via one of the ways listed in this section) and are being recommended for admission, within three consecutive sessions of their last registration, to a graduate degree-seeking,  non-degree, teacher’s license, or graduate certificate program.
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