What IELTS entry scores do you need?
Although UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand accept IELTS as their only English language proficiency test, for IELTS entry scores setting, each country has their own set of rules.
For university admissions, things are different due to the demands of each program or university ranking. For example, the University of Oxford in the UK has an IELTS entry score of 7.0 for undergraduate study but 7.5 for postgraduate degrees. In comparison, the University of Cambridge accepts band scores of 7.0 for both undergraduate and doctoral programs. London School of Economics applies the same rules as Oxford, but University College London and the University of Edinburgh take an easier stand by accepting 6.5 for both UG and PG studies. However, the University of Manchester widens the gap between UG and PG by accepting 6.0 and 7.5, respectively.
Canada has chosen a different approach by setting a 6.5 score for most universities such as the University of Toronto, the University of British Columbia and Université de Montréal.
For Australian National University, the score is 6.5, as is in the University of Sydney and Queensland University of Technology. At the same time, the University of Canberra and the University of Wollongong have a minimum of 6.0.
New Zealand sets more conditions for entry to educational institutes such as the University of Auckland, requiring an overall score of 6.0 for undergraduate programs with no band score of less than 5.5. For postgraduate programs, it has a minimum of 6.5 overall and 6.0 per section. However, the University of Otago sets 6.0 for both overall and per band of undergraduate programs, but for postgraduate programs, applicants should have a minimum of 6.5 overall scores and 6.0 per band.
The United States also accepts IELTS as proof of English proficiency in over 3,400 institutions. Top universities ask for above 7 band scores, and lower-ranking schools accept 6.5 as the entry scores.
Regarding immigration, the rules of IELTS entry scores are different since you usually get points based on your overall band score. The higher your score, the more points you get. You might even get bonus points at specific scores. For example, Canada gives you 4 bonus points if English is your second language and your overall is higher than 5, with reading and writing being no less than 4. But Australia doesn’t allocate points to scores of 6 and lower! New Zealand has a minimum of 6.5 while the UK has a range of 4-7 for immigration points.
Generally speaking, the IELTS entry score you need is different for each university and specific visa category, but the expectation is high anyway!