English Proficiency Policy

Why the Policy Exists:

English is the language used to teach classes at Northwood University and, therefore, students need to be proficient in English to be successful. The policy exists to support the success of students whose first language is not English by providing them with clear English proficiency expectations.

For international students to be admitted to study at Northwood University, they must demonstrate sufficient English. This may be done in one of two ways.

  1. The proficiency exam requirement is waived for students meeting one of the following requirements.

    • Students who are native citizens of an English speaking country listed below:

      United States territories (excluding Puerto Rico), United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada (excluding Quebec), South Africa and Jamaica.

    • Proof of successful completion (e.g. high school or baccalaureate degree for minimum of 3 years) at a foreign institution or American school where the language of instruction was completed entirely in English. The school can provide a signed letter or official transcript verifying courses were taught in English.

      • English as a Foreign Language (EFL), English as a Second Language (ESL) coursework, or blended models do not qualify

    • Graduate school applicants who completed their undergraduate coursework entirely in English.

  2. Achieving the required test score on at least one approved language proficiency exams/tests. The scores must from within the past 24 months at time of application to the University. The approved exams/tests and minimum required scores are as follows.

  3. Northwood University reserves the right to administer English Proficiency examinations upon arrival if there is a perceived gap between student’s performance and English Proficiency submitted to the University.

Minimum test scores to show English proficiency
Exam Minimum Score
Undergraduate Programs Graduate Programs
Exam: TOEFL Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs:
61 (iBT)
500 (iTP)
Minimum Score for Graduate Programs:
80 (iBT)
550 (iTP)
Exam: IELTS Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: 6.0 overall band score Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: 6.5 overall band score
Exam: EIKEN Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: Grade 2A Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: Grade Pre-1
Exam: IB Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: 5 on English A1 or A2 exam Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: N/A (not accepted for Graduate admission)
Exam: Cambridge English Tests Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: FCE or CAE (minimum score of B2) Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: CAE or CPE (minumum score of C1)
Exam: ELS Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: Level 112 Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: Level 112
Exam: ACT/SAT Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs:
ACT - 18 for both composite and English sub-score
SAT - 940 Overall; 460 for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing
Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: N/A (not accepted for Graduate admission)
Exam: PTE Academic Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: 50 Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: 58
Exam: GTEC Minimum Score for Undergraduate Programs: 1126 Minimum Score for Graduate Programs: 1201
 

Applicants who cannot demonstrate sufficient English proficiency may be admitted conditionally (at the discretion of the University), in which case, students will be issued I-20 for Intensive English Program.


Proficiency exams accepted by Northwood University

TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language
IELTS: International English Language Testing System
STEP EIKEN: Test in Practical English Proficiency (Japan)
Cambridge English Tests
IB: International Baccalaureate exams (undergraduate admission only)
ELS: The ESL Language School Exam
ACT and SAT exams: U.S. nationally used college (undergraduate) admissions examination
PTE Academic: Pearson Test of English Academic
GTEC: Global Test of English Communication