English Language Requirements

We require all non-native English speakers to take and pass one of several available proficiency exams. Scores are valid for two years from the date of the exam.  All test results must be received as official documentation in a sealed envelope from the testing institution.

*Please note – For students applying to our Canadian campuses who are eligible for and wish to apply for a Study Permit via Student Direct Stream (SDS), the IELTS is the only English Language test accepted with the SDS application. Students not applying via SDS are welcome to apply with TOEFL or IELTS. For more information about SDS, please visit https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/study-canada/study-permit/student-direct-stream.html.


 

TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL Code for CPS: 4999)

Internet-based and measures four areas of English language skills: speaking, listening, writing, and reading. 

The College of Professional Studies only accepts TOEFL results from the ETS database. Please use institution code 4999.

Program Minimum Score Required 
Doctor of Education  100
All other graduate programs 79 and a writing portion of 20
Bachelor's Completion  79 

IELTS: International English Language Testing System

Measures ability to communicate in English across listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills.

The College of Professional Studies only accepts IELTS results delivered to our Electronic Download account by the IELTS test center. An institution code for IELTS is NOT required. Please contact the test center where you took the IELTS test directly, and request that your test scores be sent to the account name: Northeastern University College of Professional Studies.

Program Minimum Score Required

Graduate

6.5

no band lower than 6

Doctor of Education 

7

no band lower than a 6.5

Bachelor's Completion  6.5

Pearson

PTE Academic measures your English ability by testing your level of English through tasks which reflect real-life settings.

Program  Minimum Score Required 
All graduate programs  53 
All bachelor's completion programs  53 

Duolingo English Test

Duolingo English Test is a modern English-proficiency assessment available online, on demand. The exam can be taken from home via a computer and webcam and is administered using computer adaptive technology, meaning that the question difficulty adapts to each test taker. The test also integrates a video interview and writing sample, all of which are sent to the institution for final assessment. The entire test experience takes just under an hour and test results are certified within 48 hours.

Program  Minimum Score Required
(on 160-point scale) 
Minimum Score Required
(on 100-point scale)
Graduate 105 48
Doctor of Education 120  68
Bachelor's Completion 105  48

NU Global English Exam: English Language Proficiency Testing at the College 

We offer English proficiency tests to those located in or around the Boston area. For more information, see our test dates, or to register for the exam, please call 1.877.668.7727 or email cpsadmissions@northeastern.edu.

Program  Minimum Score Required 
All programs (exam taken prior to 9/11/2014)  100
All programs (exam taken on or after 9/11/2014)  84 

Please note: Applicants to the College of Professional Studies are only permitted to take the NU Global English Exam twice and use the test results for admission. If a successful score is not met after taking the exam twice, applicants are required to submit another form of English Language Proficiency. 

ESL Pathways

ELS

All graduate programs (excluding Doctoral programs)  Level 112 (*Only for SACM sponsored students)
Bachelor’s Completion  Level 112

Kaplan

Bachelor’s Completion  Advanced level certificate

EF

Bachelor’s Completion  EF Level 5 certificate

 


Conditional Acceptance to the College of Professional Studies 

Applicants who may need to improve English proficiency, but otherwise meet the admissions criteria may be offered conditional acceptance into their program pending successful English language proficiency test results. In order for applicants to be considered for conditional acceptance, applicants must submit results from at least one English proficiency language test.


English Language Waiver 

For CPS undergraduate program:

If a student is in their last term of their associate degree program or holds a conferred associate degree from a U.S. institution OR an English-speaking international institution in an English-speaking country, we will waive the requirement to submit an English language proficiency score.

For CPS graduate programs:

If a student is in their last term of their bachelor’s degree program or holds a conferred bachelor’s degree from a U.S. institution OR an English-speaking international institution in an English-speaking country, we will waive the requirement to submit an English language proficiency score.