English Language Proficiency

All international graduate students whose native language is not English must meet minimum English proficiency standards.

To achieve admission, international graduate students must attain English proficiency verification.

To become eligible to teach in positions such as Graduate Assistant-Teaching, Instructor, Lecturer, etc., the State of Texas requires that international graduate students attain English proficiency certification.

Citizens of certain English speaking countries are exempt from the verification requirement. Refer to the list on the Office of Admissions website. 

Individual colleges or departments may choose to establish test standards that exceed the University minimums listed below. Scores from TOEFL, IELTS and PTE examinations administered more than two years before submission of the admissions application are not eligible for use in attaining English proficiency verification.

English Proficiency Verification can be attained using the following:

  • a TOEFL Essentials score of at least 8.5, or
  • a TOEFL iBT score of at least 80 (550 paper-based), or
  • an IELTS score of at least 6.0, or
  • a GRE Verbal Reasoning score of at least 146 (400 on the old scale), or
  • a GMAT Verbal score of at least 22, or
  • a PTE Academic score of at least 53, or
  • acquiring alternative verification during the admission process from the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies via a departmental request.  An international graduate student holding a master’s degree, or completing all years of a bachelor's degree or higher, from an accredited institution located in the U.S. qualifies for alternative verification.


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