Australia Ends IELTS Student Visa Testing Monopoly

2011 has been quite a year so far in terms of changes in government English language testing policies. Following recent announcements by France and the United Kingdom about alterations to their policies, Australia has now announced that it is broadening the range of tests accepted for student visas.

In the past, Australia has only accepted IELTS results. As of November 5, they will accept more tests, including TOEFL, according to this ETS news release (which also provides the announced TOEFL minimums).

The country will also be looking at expanding test options for at least some work visa types in 2013 according to this article in The Australian.Hopefully Australia will expand its work visa options to include business English assessments such as TOEIC tests in the near future. This would be both appropriate and very wise considering the country's labor shortage in professions both skilled and unskilled (discussed in this Reuters special report), since TOEIC tests allow easy matching of needed English levels with specific job responsibilities.

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