From November this year, English Test scores of TOEFL iBT and PTE Academic of skilled migrants coming to the country would be acceptable across several visa categories from November, according to an announcement by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.
The tests, say the department, will be alternatives to the currently accepted International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and Occupational English Test (OET).
The TOEFL iBT and PTE Academic tests have been accepted for the Student visa programme since 2011. “From November, the visa subclasses from the Temporary Graduate, Skilled and Work and Holiday visa programmes will also accept a TOEFL iBT or PTE Academic test score as evidence of English ability,” read the announcement.
Several education experts feel the move is good news. Melbourne-based education expert Intaj Khan believes said it will help migrants wishing to come to Australia save time as they now will more options for test centres of giving the English test. Other experts believe it will break the monopoly of IDP IELTS Test centres.
IELTS managed by the IDP is a test designed to assess the language ability of the visa applicants whose primary language is not English but who wish to study or work abroad, where English is the standard language of communication.
The Department has extended the new option to other visa categories including Employer Nomination Scheme, Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme, business Innovation & Investment (provisional), Skilled – Independent, skilled – Nominated, work and Holiday (temporary), skilled – Recognised Graduate and Temporary Graduate.
However, the new announcement does not include the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457). It also mentions that the subclass 457 visa programme is currently undergoing an independent review.
Published in The Indian Sun (Indian Magazine in Austraia)