Postgraduate English language requirements

If you are an international applicant whose first language is not English, you must provide evidence of your English proficiency.

English is considered the first language of citizens of Canada, Ireland, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.

If you are a domestic applicant and your first language is not English you may be asked to provide evidence of your competence in written and spoken English.

If you have an offer of place conditional on English, you may wish to consider applying for entry to a pathway English language course at the University’s English Language Academy (see below).

Minimum postgraduate English language requirements

Every programme page on our website (see Study options finder) specifies an IELTS score as the minimum English language requirement for that programme. 

If you have taken a different English language test or qualification, the table below lists what the University accepts as the equivalent to an IELTS overall score of 6.5 with no bands below 6.0. 

You must satisfy the requirements in one sitting and you must have taken the test within two years of commencing study at the University of Auckland. 

Please note that some Education and Social Work programmes require additional evidence of English competency due to professional registration requirements. 

IELTS Academic equivalencies

IELTS (Academic) Overall score of 6.5 and no bands below 6.0
Internet-based TOEFL (iBT) Overall score of 90 and a writing score of 21
Paper-based TOEFL Overall score of 90 and a writing score of 21
C1 Advanced (previously - Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE))
Overall score of 176 and no bands below 169
C2 Proficiency (previously - Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE)) Overall score of 176 and no bands below 169
University of Auckland Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP) Grade of B-
University of Auckland English Pathway for Postgraduate Studies (EPPS) Grade of B-
Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic*
Overall score of 58 and no PTE Communicative score below 50
Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB)
Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English (ISE) ISE III with a pass in all 4 components
LanguageCert - International ESOL C1 Expert (LRWS) with a high pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill OR C2 Mastery with a pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill
AEMG English for Academic Purposes Direct Entry Program (AEAP DEP) Final Exam Overall score of 70% with no section below 65%
English New Zealand Accredited Pathway Assessment Assessment Level 3 overall and no skill below Level 2

*You must authorise the University to view and verify your PTE scores. See  How can I submit verified PTE Academic results to the University of Auckland?

English Language Academy pathway programmes

You can meet postgraduate English language requirements by successfully completing:

The ELA grades shown below are deemed to be equivalent to the following IELTS bands for admissions purposes.

  • IELTS 7.0: A- in FCertEAP or EPPS
  • IELTS 6.5: B- in FCertEAP or EPPS

Equivalent qualifications

If you have successfully completed study in the English medium, you may not have to take a language test. Please see the documents below for approved alternatives to our IELTS requirements.


Phone: 09 923 5025 (within Auckland)
Phone: 0800 61 62 63 (outside Auckland)
Phone: +64 9 373 7513 (from overseas)
Email: (domestic applicants) (international applicants)