English language IELTS requirements for Australia General Skilled Migration Visas

Australian Department of Immigration and citizenship has fixed the English language norms keeping in mind a simple fact that Immigrants who are fluent in the English language will be able to find a job in the Australian economy soon. Not to mention, this will also help the new immigrants in social networking in a distant land. However, poor language skills can be devastating to the likelihood of their career success, even if they qualify through all the necessary requirements of the job.

Skill levels based on the IELTS score

Accordingly, Australia requires all prospective economic migrants to take an IELTS test. Speaking, reading, writing and listening are the four main components of this test, on the basis of which, the language skills of the applicants is evaluated. To be eligible to apply for one of the permanent General Skilled Migration (GSM) visa categories, the main applicant must have ‘competent’ English or ‘vocational’ English, if they nominate for a skilled trade occupation.

The Australian immigration regulations identify seven English skill levels after assessing the fluency and competence of the applicant in the Queen’s language under the General Skilled Migration (GSM) visas:

1. Proficient English – Applicants who score a minimum of 7 points in their IELTS test score in each of the 4 components of the test are honoured to be included in this skill level, which is the highest in the test score. The applicant of this level are awarded 25 points in the GSM points test.

2. Competent English – Applicant of this level are the ones who have an IELTS test score of at least 6 points on each of the 4 components of the test. They are granted 15 points in the GSM points test.

3. Concessional Competent English – This level comprise in the applicants with the average band score of 5.5 in their IELTS score. The applicant is given 15 points in the GSM points test, if they have applied for the Skilled – Regional Sponsored visa and has paid a fee to attend English language tuition in a participating State or Territory.

4. “Vocational” or “Better than functional” English – Applicants with an IELTS score of at least 5 points in each of the 4 components of the test are included in this level. The applicant gets 15 points in the GSM points test, if they nominate for a skilled trade occupation. This is the minimum English requirement for Skilled sponsored applicants and a requirement for the Employer nomination scheme.

5. Functional English – Applicants who obtain an IELTS average band score of at least 4.5 points is listed under this skill level. These applicants do not get any points in the GSM points test.

6. Limited English – An IELTS average band score of at least 4 based on the 4 test components causes the applicant to be included under this skill level and not get any points benefit in the GSM points test.

7. No English – Applicants listed in this level usually have very limited understanding of English language skills. These applicants are not given any points in the GSM points test.

An IELTS report is normally valid for two years only and the Australian Immigration regulations require that the applicants undergo a fresh test if his earlier test report has expired and is more than two years old.

It is important to note that some occupations have minimum prescribed IELTS score requirements and applicants must obtain that minimum score to be eligible to apply for visa for such a nominated occupation. Two of such most common occupations are Engineers and teachers.

While Engineers need to have a minimum band of 6 in each of the IELTS testing modules in general training test, the minimum requirement for teachers is a band of 7 in each of the IELTS testing modules in Academic training test. These two occupations also require the applicant to appear in and provide the IELTS result as a part of the immigration assessment process.

Visa Application Charge

Anyone who is 18 years or above and have less than ‘functional’ English and applied under the below mentioned visa classes, is required to pay a second instalment and any other charge due, before they are granted a visa. The visa officer will tell you when and how to pay.

  • – Skilled – Independent
  • – Skilled – Sponsored
  • – Skilled – Regional Sponsored
  • – Business skills
  • – Employer nomination (excluding religious workers)
  • – Labour agreement (excluding religious workers)
  • – Distinguished talent
  • – Former resident
  • – Former citizen
  • – Family of New Zealand citizen

It is thereby strongly recommended that the applicant take preparatory classes before appearing in an IELTS test.

Summary: IELTS test is an integral part of the Immigration process under the Australia General Skilled Migration Visa. This test is required for the principal applicant as well as spouse and adult dependents above 18 years of age, unless you are lucky to be included in the category of people who are exempted to appear for the IELTS test.


  • Komal

    My husband has given ielts exam twice.first time he scorded 6.5 overall nd in reading 7.second time he scored 7 overall but 6.5in speaking. Can we provide both results nd move for eoi?pls. Assist us. Thank u.

  • pinky rani

    Hello mam , I had taken my ielts general exam my band score is speaking 6.0, list 5.5, writing 5, read 4.5, overall 5.5 . Can I apply to australia

  • sajal

    hi, i have given ielts 2 time .. but in both result i got 5.5 …
    in first exam i got – r 5.5 w 5 s 4.5 l 6.5
    in second exam i got – r 5.5 w 5 s 5 l 5.5

    so, which one is best to apply visa in australia?

  • amna

    As second applicant I got ” 5.5″” in ielts. These points are enough for spouse. plz help

    • Immigration Experts

      Hello Amma,
      Thanks for your comment. Amma min score for IELTS is 5 in all for second applicant. For further details please send us detailed resume of self and spouse( if married )at monika@abhinav.com for further guidance.

      • amna

        My husband have 7.5 bands and I have 5.5 I just want to know about myself that these bands are enough for visa. Thanks in advance

  • nisha

    hello mam i had got 5.5 ovrall r-5.5,l-6,s-6,w-5 can i apply for spouse in australia

    • Immigration Experts

      Hello Nisha,

      Thanks for your comment. Surely your points will be counted. For further details please send us detailed resume of self and spouse at monika@abhinav.com for further guidance.

  • Rabih al Ashkar

    Hello I have 5 in overall IELTS
    My spouse 4.5
    I have bachelor in IT plus 4 years experience
    Thanks for ur clarification

    • Immigration Experts

      Hello Ashkar,

      With mentioned IELTS score you’ll not be able to claim points for English Language.6 is the min score you need to get.

  • saif

    I got overall. 5.5 in ielts gt. (listening 6. Writinng 6 spk 5.5 reading 4.5 is this band oky for Australian immigration

    • Immigration Experts

      Hello Saif,

      With mentioned IELTS score you’ll not be able to claim points for English Language.6 is the min score you need to get.

  • navneet kaur

    i have completed M.com and i got overall 6 band in ilets ii can apply for spouse visa in australia it is possible or nt plzz tell mee ????

    • Immigration Experts

      Hello Navneet, Thanks for your comment. I need your other details also like age ,qualification and experience. So kindly forward detailed resume of self and spouse(if married) at monika@abhinav.com and we shall guide you further.

  • kawal

    Sir I have each 5 band and I passed my 12th class in 2013 can I apply for Australia

    • Immigration Experts

      Hello Kawal, With mentioned IELTS score you’ll not be able to claim points for English Language.6 is the min score you need to get.

  • mohammed waseem mohiuddin

    I got 5 band in ielts general L : 4.5 , sp : 5 , r : 4 , w : 5.5 can i apply for cityzenship of australia

  • kanna

    I got 5.5 overall band score
    Can I apply for skilled regonised visa ..
    I am automobile engg…

  • Amit Gupta

    Hi..I have cleared my IELTS with L-7.5, W-5.5, R-6.5, S- 6.5, OVERALL – 6.5, In which countries can I claim a stake for Immigration or Job..??..My total experience is 8.0 years in Pharma Sales Sector & I am associated with a Global MNC as a First Line Sales Manager…Plz respond soon.

  • Poonam chauhan

    Hi my ielts over all score is 6.5 (L-6 ,W -6,R -6.5, S-8) will I be able to apply for Australia immigration visa.Request you to kindly guide me.

    • sanam

      Dear Poonam,

      With mentioned IELTS score you’ll not be able to claim points for English Language. However, we advise you to kindly send us your detailed resume at sanam@abhinav.com and we shall guide you further.


    Sir i had cleared my ielts exam with overall band 6.0. My individual scores are L-6, R-5.5, W-6, S-6.5 . In which countries can i apply for immigration.

  • priti

    Hi. I am 26 year old. I am having master degree in commerce (M.COM)
    As well as beachlor degree in education (b.ed). I have 1 year teaching experiance. I got 6 band in acadamic
    Ielts. So please advice me that can I apply for immigration for canada?

  • Umesh Gaikwad

    I have got below bands in IELTS in May 14.

    Listening – 6.0
    Reading – 4.5
    Writing 5.5
    Speaking – 4.5
    Overall – 5.0 Bands

    I have total 12+ years professional experience. Out of that 8+ years experience is in HR filed. Also i have completed my MBA in HR.

    Please suggest me, Should i apply for Australian PR Visa?

    Thank you in advance

  • amit madan

    Greeting of the day sir,

    I have completed the ielts and got 5 band overall.
    L 5.5
    S 5.5
    W 4
    R 4.5

    Presently working as a Indian master chef.
    Can I apply for Australia.
    Please let me know, if any requirements.


  • Gurpreet kaur

    i got ielts band 5,How can i apply Australia with / without spouse

  • ajay

    which type of ielts is required for engineers, general or academic ielts please suggest me regrading..

    • sanam

      Dear Ajay,

      Applicants are required to score minimum 6 in each of the component in either General or Academic modules of the IELTS.

  • Simranjeet

    I got 5 band can i apply for master in Australia with spouse

    • sanam

      Dear Simranjeet,

      Please note that “We are an Immigration Consultant and does not offer services for student visas, work permits or job placements for any country.”

  • vipin

    IELTS SCORE 5.5 how I can apply AUS visa

    • Immigration Experts

      Dear Vipin,
      Thanks for the comment. Can you send me updated CV (gourav@abhinav.com) After that our counselor will guide you.

  • nishant majmudar

    I got overall 5.5 band In ielts general module but not less than 5 in individual. So can I go to canada/australia for any diploma course based on this result?
    I have done Mechanical Diploma from vadodara,india.
    Please revert.

    • Immigration Experts

      Dear Nishant,
      Thanks for the comment. Can you send me updated CV (gourav@abhinav.com) After that our counselor will guide you.

  • Gurpreet Singh

    I got 5 band in ielts
    L 5.5
    R 4.0
    S 5.0
    W 6.0
    can i apply for australia

    • Immigration Experts

      Dear Gurpreet,
      Thanks for the comment. Can you send me updated CV (gourav@abhinav.com) After that our counselor will guide you.

  • Veera


    I did my Btech in computer science and Engineering and since 4 years am working in one of the Top MNC company as software engineer .

    Am planning to write general IELTS to migrate to Australia . May i know maximum band score to aim in IELTS and also with in how many days i will be getting PA upon submitting my IELTS score.

    Thanks in advance.

  • Mohamed

    Ielts 6.5
    Reading 8 listening 6 speaking 6 but writing 5.5
    Is there any exceptions for visa 190????

  • Prince

    I got 6.5band in general .and did bsc nursing.and I have 2years works experience in govt sector and 2 years in private sector.so tell me please can I apply for Australian PR with spouse

  • Soujanya

    I got ielts overall score 7 with 7,6.5,6.5,7 respectively.i am planning to apply for pr or some work visa in Australia.can you guide us how to proceed further.i have 4 yrs of IT experience on MNC.

  • Bony

    Listening =7.0,
    Reading =7.5,
    Writing =6.0,
    Speaking =6.5,

    I am a BSC IT holder with more than 16 years experience and my IELTS results are given above. …
    is there any options for me to any countries

  • sheema

    I have 5.5 in ielts. Can I apply for pr.

  • paramjit kaur

    I want to about any age limit for applying for staff nurse PR fir Australia.
    Paramjit kaur

  • I got 6bands in general ielts. Can I apply for australia pr visa with spouse

  • I got 6 band can i apply for master in australia with spouse

  • Bhavesh Patel

    I have Graduate Mechanical engineer and have got 5.5bands IELTS score,can i qualify for any permenant residency in Australia.Please reply

  • kulwinder kaur

    staff nurse with ielts 5.5 band in general do i qualifie for any course in austrila

  • Yashika Arora

    I had given my ielts exam in november , but i didnt get that much marks, which i needed or as my agent guide me which was 7 in each. But recently, i heared, that some rules has been changed frm 5th january 2015. So may i knw how much band i required for PR in Australia. Plz guide me

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *