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

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.

Certification for International Graduate Students Serving in Teaching Positions

International graduate students who wish to serve in teaching positions can certify for English proficiency before enrollment by achieving requisite scores on the oral component of the following standardized tests:  TOEFL, IELTS or PTE exams.  [See chart below.]

International graduate students who wish to serve in teaching positions and have not met certification requirements prior to enrollment can certify by passing the oral section of the English Language Proficiency Exam (ELPE) offered by Testing Services on the Texas A&M campus.

Eligibility levels for international graduate students serving in teaching positions:

Level 1:
Students eligible for teaching assignments

Level 2:
Students conditionally eligible for teaching assignments for one semester only, but must simultaneously participate in Center for Teaching Excellence English Language Proficiency (CTE-ELP) instruction and achieve a certifying score on the ELPE by the end of the semester.

Level 3:
Students not eligible for teaching assignment. Students should participate in spoken language training (such as those provided by CTE-ELP) to assist them in meeting English language proficiency requirements. 


Global Standardized Tests

Locally Administered (on Texas A&M campus) Exam

Level #

TOEFL Essentials (speaking) TOEFL iBT speaking section

IELTS speaking section

PTE speaking section

ELPE oral exam


≥11 26-30





9-10 23-25





≤ 8 <23





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