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Overseas Students: Scholarships

Question for Home Office

UIN HL3191, tabled on 21 April 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that candidates in receipt of offers for Chevening and Commonwealth scholarships can take English language tests in their country of origin.

Answered on

6 May 2020

Higher Education Providers (HEP) with a track record of compliance are able to decide how they assess the English language ability of their students studying at degree level or above. They can make this assessment however they choose and the Government does not impose any requirement for prospective students to travel to another country.

Due to Covid-19, the ability for Higher Education Providers to self-assess the English ability of their prospective students has been exceptionally extended to some students studying below degree level.

Where sponsors are not HEPs, students are required to demonstrate English ability to B1 level. These students must demonstrate their English language ability by undertaking a Secure English Language Test (SELT), or meet one of the exceptions.

There is currently a procurement project underway for SELT. Following mobilisation of new concessions there will be four overseas SELT Providers, which will increase customers choice of location for taking a test.

Both the Chevening and Commonwealth scholarships programmes have poli-cies in place to ensure maximum flexibility and opportunity for scholarship awardees from countries where English language testing facilities are limited or unavailable.

The Chevening Scholarship provides assistance to Chevening scholars who are required to travel internationally to take English Language Testing (ELTs), or if necessary, bring invigilators to posts.

Answered by

Home Office