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Secure English language tests introduced for Tier 4 students


Mandatory for adult students studying below degree level

14th August 2010: From August 12, secure English language testing has been made mandatory for adult students studying below degree level, excluding those on foundation degrees or English language courses, under Tier 4 of the Points Based System.

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This test must be taken with a UK Border Agency-approved provider before the applicant applies for a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) from the education sponsor.

The UK Border Agency says: If a Tier 4 (General) student will be studying a course that is below NQF Level 6, except a foundation degree or an English language course, using a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) issued on or after 12 August 2010, their Tier 4 sponsor must ensure that they are competent in English language at a minimum of level B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) by showing that they are from a majority English-speaking country.

Or else, by showing they have successfully completed a course as a Tier 4 (child) student, or under the student rules that were in force before 31 March 2009, if they were granted permission to stay while they were under 18 years old) which lasted at least six months and ended no more than two years before the date when the CAS is assigned.

Or else, by showing they have passed an English language test with an approved test provider for Tier 4, and have achieved at least CEFR level B1 in all four components, reading, writing, speaking and listening.

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