English Proficiency Requirements

The university reserves the right to require English testing and/or support classes if your application materials and interviews indicate that your level of English proficiency may not be sufficient for university studies. In addition, faculty at APU may require students to take English support classes if students appear to be having difficulty in their studies.

If English is NOT your native language, you will need to demonstrate or gain English proficiency in order to study at Azusa Pacific University (applicants for the Korean- or Spanish-language theology programs are NOT required to submit proof of English proficiency). There are a few ways to demonstrate and fulfill the English proficiency requirements:

1. Prior studies in English

You can demonstrate English proficiency by verifying that your prior studies (secondary school or postsecondary) were conducted in English. You must verify all of the following:

  • You completed at least two years of full-time study without ESL/EFL support/classes.
  • Your studies in English ended no more than two years before applying to APU.
  • The language of instruction was English.

To verify these points, you must provide academic transcripts, along with an official letter from the institution where you studied stating that the language of instruction was English.

– OR –

2. English testing by one of the following two options:

A. English placement test

You can also demonstrate English proficiency by taking a placement test through APU’s Academic Success Center. Contact the center at testingcenter@apu.edu or +1-626-815-3849 for schedules, fees, and locations for the English placement test. This test is available for those who intend to apply for degree or certificate programs at APU.

B. International standardized English tests (TOEFL and IELTS)

You can demonstrate English proficiency by submitting a TOEFL or IELTS score report that meets or exceeds the requirements listed below. The university considers the component scores for admissions.

Total 120 Reading Listening Speaking Writing
Conditional for ALCI 46-49
Conditional with ALCI 50
Undergraduate 80 20 20 18 22
Graduate** 90 22 22 22 24
Doctoral 100 25 25 25 25
Overall 9
Conditional for ALCI
Conditional with ALCI 5.0
Undergraduate 6.0
Graduate 7
Doctoral 8

Please note that even with a high enough total score, students may be required to take ALCI or TESL 100 depending on subset scores, any other indicators in your applications, and/or IES Director’s discretion. (TESL 100 is a university-level course that provides additional support to meet English proficiency; this class will be counted towards graduation.) The following chart is the guideline for the undergraduate TESL 100 requirement range:

TOEFL subset
TOEFL subset Reading Listening Speaking Writing
Conditional with TESL100 16-19 16-19 15-17 18-21

All graduate-level students proving English proficiency through the TOEFL or IELTS tests must enroll in the TESL 500 English course, regardless of their test score. However, students may later waive this course if they pass an additional English test on the first day of classes. This test is available for those who intend to apply for degree programs at APU.

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