English language requirements for undergraduates

If you want to study at the University of Sheffield, you must be able to show that your English is good enough for you to successfully complete your course. For UK students, we normally ask for a minimum of a grade C in GCSE English Language. We also accept a range of alternative UK qualifications.

Please note that we will look at the English language qualification you completed most recently.

International students

For EU and International students, we accept qualifications from several countries, as well as a range of international qualifications and tests.

If you are taking a pre-sessional course at another institution, we will normally still ask you to demonstrate your English language proficiency by completing one of the qualifications listed below.

If you have successfully completed a degree or postgraduate diploma taught in English in a majority native English speaking country, you will not normally need to provide other evidence of English language ability. If your degree or diploma was completed more than five years before the start date of your Sheffield course, we may ask you to provide evidence of ongoing use of English, or to complete an acceptable English language qualification.

Acceptable English language qualifications

Details of all the English language qualifications, and minimum scores, that we accept for undergraduate study are provided below. Please note that, in assessing whether you have sufficient English language to successfully complete your course, we consider these qualifications alongside other evidence of English language ability included in your application, for example in the personal statement.

If your qualification is not included in the lists below, or if you require further information, please contact the Admissions Service. For details of English language teaching at the University of Sheffield, please visit the English Language Teaching Centre website.

You can find information about the University's policy on the Secure English Language Tests (SELTs), defined by the UK government for visa purposes, in our SELTs guidance:

UK government Secure English Language Tests

Acceptable qualifications with variable requirements

These are the qualifications most commonly presented by applicants. The minimum levels of achievement for undergraduate study are detailed below. However, different courses require different levels of achievement in these qualifications.

If you are presenting one of the qualifications listed in this table, it should have been completed no more than two years before the start date of your Sheffield course.

Acceptable qualifications with variable requirements

Qualification

Level

International English Language Testing Service (IELTS)

 

Please note that we only accept the IELTS Academic and IELTS for UKVI Academic versions of the test. We do not accept IELTS Life Skills or IELTS General Training.

Overall score of 6.0 or above, with at least 5.5 in each component

Cambridge C1 Advanced

Overall score of 169 or above, with at least 162 in each component

Cambridge C2 Proficiency

Overall score of 169 or above, with at least 162 in each component

Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic)

Overall score of 56 or above, with at least 51 in each component

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) internet-based test (IBT)

Overall score of 80 or above, with at least 17 in Listening, 17 in Writing, 18 in Reading and 20 in Speaking

You can find the IELTS requirements for individual courses in our online prospectus:

Online prospectus

The Pearson, C1 Advanced, C2 Proficiency, USEPT and TOEFL equivalent of IELTS requirements are set out in the second table on our ELTC's Comparison of English Language Test Scores webpage:

Comparison of English language test scores

Other acceptable qualifications

We also accept a range of other qualifications. The levels of achievement we normally require are detailed below. Please note that a few courses do not accept certain qualifications, or ask for higher levels of achievement. Where this is the case, it will be made clear on departmental webpages.

If you are presenting the NCUK English for Academic Purposes Module or the Trinity Integrated Skills in English, this should have been completed no more than two years before of the start date of your Sheffield course.

For the other qualifications listed below, if they were completed more than five years before the start date of your Sheffield course please include with your application any evidence of ongoing use of English; we may ask you to complete a new English language qualification.

Other international tests of English

Qualification

Level

International Baccalaureate (IB) Standard or Higher Level English Language Syllabus A

Grade 4 or above

International Baccalaureate (IB) Standard or Higher Level English Language Syllabus B

Grade 5 or above

International Baccalaureate (IB) Standard or Higher Level English Language and Literature combined

Grade 5 or above

International Baccalaureate (IB) Standard or Higher Level English Literature

Grade 5 or above

European Baccalaureate (EB) English

7.5 or 75%, or above

NCUK International Foundation Year: English for Academic Purposes Module

Grade C or above

Trinity Integrated Skills in English (ISE) II

Pass or above overall, with Distinctions in each component

Trinity Integrated Skills in English (ISE) III

Pass or above overall, with Passes or above in each component

UK qualifications

Qualification

Level

GCSE English Language

Grade C or Grade 4, or above

A Level or AS Level English Language

Grade C or above

A Level or AS Level English Language and Literature combined

Grade B or above

AQA Level 2 Certificate (IGCSE) in English Language

Grade C or above

CIE IGCSE English as a First Language (Syllabus 0500)

Grade C or above, with grade 2 in Speaking and Listening

CIE IGCSE English as a First Language (Syllabus 0522)

Grade C or above

CIE IGCSE English as a Second Language (Syllabus 0510)

Grade B or above, with grade 2 in Oral and Aural

CIE IGCSE English as a Second Language (Syllabus 0511)

Grade B or above

Edexcel IGCSE English Language A

Grade C or Grade 4, or above, including Speaking and Listening

Edexcel IGCSE English as a Second Language

Grade B or Grade 6, or above, including Speaking and Listening

SQA Intermediate 2 English or National 5 English

Grade B or above

SQA Higher or Advanced Higher English

Grade C or above

Scottish Higher, English for Speakers of Other Languages (Syllabus C222)

Grade B or above

Irish Leaving Certificate English

Grades O4/H4 or above (2017 onwards award) or grade C or above (pre-2017 award)

EU qualifications

Qualification

Level

French Baccalauréat l'Option Internationale, English

Grade 12 or above

German Abitur, English

Grade 12 or above

Maltese Matriculation Certificate English

Grade C or above

Netherlands VWO, English

Grade 7 or above

Norwegian Vitnemål, English

Grade 4 or above

Romanian Diploma de Bacalaureat

Grade B2 or above overall, with B2 or above in each component

Swedish Fullstandigt fran Gymnasieskolan, English

Grade C or above

International (non-EU) qualifications

Qualification

Level

Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) GCE O Level, English (for example Brunei O Level, Singapore O Level)

Please note that we only accept the Malaysian O Level alongside the required grade in the 1119 (see below)

Grade C or above

Botswana BGCSE, English

Grade C or above

Cameroon GCE O Level, English

Grade C or above

West Indies Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate, English

Grade I or II

HKDSE English Language

Grade 4 overall, with Grade 4 in each component

Indian Standard XII, English Language (certain examination boards)

70% or above

Kenyan Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE), English

Grade B or above

Please note that we do not accept Grade B- in the KCSE English

Malaysian 1119 syllabus (UCLES)

For courses with an IELTS requirement of 7.0 overall or higher: Grade A

For courses with an IELTS requirement of 6.5 overall: Grade B or above

For courses with an IELTS requirement of 6.0 overall: Grade C or above

You can find the IELTS requirements for individual courses online prospectus:

Online prospectus

Mauritius Cambridge Overseas School Certificate (COSC) English Language

Grade C or above

Namibian HIGCSE, English or Senior Secondary Certificate (NSSC), Higher English

Grade C or above

Singapore Integrated Programme (IP)

Students should go on to complete A Level or IB qualifications (in any subject taught in English)

South African National Senior Certificate (SANSC) Grade 4 or above

National Examinations Council of Tanzania – Certificate of Secondary Education Examination, English

Grade C or above

Ugandan Certificate of Education (UCE)

Grade 6 or above

WAEC West African Senior School Certificate (WASSCE), English

Grade C or above

Zambian General Certificate of Education, English

Grade 6/C or above

Qualifications not accepted

We are unable to accept some qualifications as meeting the English language entry requirements. Qualifications we are unable to accept include the following:

Qualifications not accepted
  • Anglia Examinations in English

  • Cambridge First Certificate in English (FCE)

  • Cambridge Preliminary English Test (PET)

  • City and Guilds (I)ESOL

  • Key English Test (KET)

  • London Chamber of Commerce: English for Business

  • Malaysian Certificate of Educational English Language

  • Michigan Test of English Language Proficiency

  • Nigerian National Examinations Council qualification (NECO)

  • Oxford International Business English Certificate

  • Pitman English for Business Communications

  • Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC)