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Minimum IELTS Score for UK: Minimum Requirement for Top Universities, Courses, and PR

July 7, 2023
Minimum IELTS Score for UK Minimum Requirement for Top Universities, Courses, and PR

The United Kingdom is one of the students’ most sought-after study-abroad destinations worldwide. Home to the prestigious Russel Group Universities, the United Kingdom has consistently been setting standards for quality education for other nations to follow. What’s more, the country firmly believes in cultivating a diverse and inclusive environment that has only aided students in aiming for excellent academic credentials. Given the country’s English-speaking majority, the IELTS test is of significant importance when it comes to planning your education in the U.K. Therefore, this article explores how vital IELTS is, the different requirements of universities, and how you can achieve your dream score.

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As a foreign student, it is imperative to establish proficiency in the English language in order to strengthen your application. This is where IELTS (International English Language Testing System) becomes extremely important. It is one of the world’s most revered English proficiency tests that is recognized by both universities and the government.

Since the UK is home to some of the finest universities and colleges, the IELTS requirement typically varies on the basis of institution and course. In order to facilitate your studies in the United Kingdom, you must obtain a tier 4 Visa for which an English proficiency test like IELTS is essential.

In order to envision your future goals, you must have a minimum IELTS score of 6.0 bands for UK to secure a seat in a mid-ranking university. If you attain a score between 5.5-6.0, you will have few options, in which case you might be required to take the test again. Moreover, a low IELTS score generally means that the university might ask for additional documents, like internships, grades, and extracurriculars, that have the potential to strengthen your profile.

Minimum IELTS Score for UK Top Universities

The minimum IELTS requirement for undergraduate courses is around 6.0, whereas for postgraduate courses, it is 6.5. The United Kingdom offers a distinctive advantage for students that helps it stand out- it offers postgraduate programs with a duration of just 12 months. Thus, students looking to make meaningful progress in their careers can choose to study in the United Kingdom because of how time-effective it is.

DegreeMinimum IELTS Score for UKMinimum IELTS score per section
Bachelor’s6.05.5 each section
Master’s6.56.0 each section

However, if you have attained a score of 5.5 and still wish to explore your options in the United Kingdom, here is a list of universities that you can apply to:

  • University of East Anglia
  • Swansea University
  • Newcastle University
  • Staffordshire University
  • University of Gloucestershire

In case you want a list of universities with their respective IELTS requirements, feel free to book a counselling session with one of our professional counsellors.

Minimum IELTS Score for UK Requirement according to University Rankings 2023

The Complete University Guide ranks the finest institutions in the United Kingdom across a variety of metrics.

RankUniversityIELTS minimum requirement (undergraduate programmes)IELTS minimum requirement (postgraduate programmes)
1University of Oxford7.07.5
2University of Cambridge7.57.0
3London School of Economics and Political Science7.07.0
4University of St Andrews6.56.5
5Imperial College London6.56.5
6Durham University6.56.5
7Loughborough University6.56.5
8UCL (University College London)6.56.5
9University of Warwick6.06.5
10University of Bath7.06.5
11Lancaster University6.56.5
12University of Edinburgh6.5
13University of Manchester6.06.0
14University of Exeter6.56.5
15University of SouthamptonConsult institution Consult Institution 
16University of Glasgow6.5 6.5
17University of Bristol6.56.5
18University of York6.56.5
19University of Birmingham6.0 6.0
20University of Leeds6.0 6.0

Studying in the UK without IELTS

With the kind of diversity that the country offers, it is now possible to realize your potential in a vibrant country like the United Kingdom without having an IELTS score. While it is recommended that you appear for IELTS given its importance, applying to universities in the UK without an IELTS score is possible in a plethora of circumstances. However, you must meet certain criteria as determined by your preferred university. In such cases, the university might ask you to show proof that your previous formal education was taught entirely in English.

If you have already given the test and lack in a specific band, fret not. IELTS is in the process of providing an IELTS one-skill retake, which will let you re-appear for one section of the exam. Apart from this, the UK has a myriad of universities that will accept a score of 5.5. What’s more, some universities also accept TOEFL, PTE, and Duolingo Tests as proof of your English proficiency.


How much IELTS score is required for UK PR?

The specific IELTS score for UK Permanent Residency (PR) may vary depending on the immigration category you are applying under. Generally, a higher IELTS score, such as a band score of 7 or above, is preferred for PR applications.

What is the minimum IELTS band for PR?

There is no fixed minimum IELTS band requirement for UK PR. However, a higher IELTS band score, typically 7 or above, increases your chances of a successful PR application.

What IELTS score is required for UK universities?

The IELTS score required for admission to UK universities varies depending on the institution and the specific program you are applying to. Generally, undergraduate programs may require an IELTS band score of 6.0 or 6.5, while postgraduate programs often require a score of 6.5 or 7.0. However, it’s essential to check with individual universities for their specific language requirements.

How many bands are required for England after the 12th?

The number of IELTS bands required for studying in England after completing 12th grade depends on the university and program you are applying to. While some universities may require a minimum of 6.0 bands, others may have higher requirements. It’s advisable to check the specific entry requirements of the university and program you are interested in.

Which university accepts 5 bands in the UK?

Generally, most universities in the UK require a minimum of 6.0 or 6.5 bands in the IELTS exam. However, a few universities may consider applicants with an IELTS band score of 5.5 or 5.0 for certain programs or under specific circumstances. It’s important to note that meeting the minimum IELTS requirement does not guarantee admission, as universities also consider other factors during the application process.

Is it difficult to get PR in the UK?

The process of obtaining a Permanent Residency (PR) in the UK can be challenging and competitive. It involves meeting specific eligibility criteria, including but not limited to work experience, education, language proficiency, and financial requirements. The difficulty level may vary depending on individual circumstances and the immigration category you are applying under.

Can I get PR in the UK without IELTS?

The UK immigration system generally requires applicants to demonstrate English language proficiency. While IELTS is a commonly accepted language test, there are alternative English language tests, such as the TOEFL or Cambridge English exams, that may be accepted by certain immigration categories. However, it is advisable to check the specific language requirements of the immigration category you are applying under.

Article Categories:
IELTS Coaching · Study Abroad

Avinash Singh is a study abroad consultant with over 10 years of experience helping students achieve their academic goals. He is an expert in the US, Australian, German, and Canadian education systems and has helped hundreds of students secure admission to top universities around the world. In his spare time, Avinash enjoys traveling, hiking, and spending time with his family. He is also an avid reader and loves to learn new things.

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