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Testing Requirements

Graduate School

The Graduate School requires that all non-U.S. citizens or non-U.S. permanent residents demonstrate English proficiency to ensure they enter the university with sufficient English skills necessary to function in a graduate program. A TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) test score is the most common way international applicants demonstrate English proficiency.

For admission, we expect a minimum TOEFL score of 90 (IBT) or IELTS score of 6.5 for admission. Further, TOEFL scores of 20 or greater in Listening, Writing, Speaking, and Reading subsections are required. Some departments may require higher minimum scores.

English proficiency can also be demonstrated through a conferred bachelor’s degree from an accredited university where English is the medium of instruction. If this applies to you, we will code a waiver of the English proficiency requirement into your application once we receive and review your transcript showing degree conferral and medium of instruction as English.

If you meet all the admission requirements, but do not meet the English proficiency requirements you may opt to apply to the Virginia Tech Language and Culture Institute’s (VTLCI) AdvantageVT-Master’s Program. This program provides students in select departments the opportunity to earn credits towards their master’s degrees while gaining academic, research, and cultural skills needed to be successful in graduate studies.

Students who anticipate appointment as Graduate Teaching Assistants are expected to have scored 25 or greater on the TOEFL Speaking subtest. GTA appointment of a student scoring 20-24 on the Speaking subtest should be justified explicitly within the particular academic unit; appointment of a student scoring below 20 on the Speaking subtest requires justification with the Graduate School.

Academic Programs

The GRE (Graduate Record Examination) or GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) may be required by the program to which you are applying. See the academic program listing in our Graduate Catalog for specific information on this requirement. Any waiver of the GRE or GMAT test score requirement would be granted by your academic department.

ETS provides a GRE Fee Reduction Program for individuals with demonstrated financial need and for national programs supporting underrepresented groups. Those who receive a fee voucher also receive free access to some test preparation materials.

Current programs waiving the GRE or GMAT test score requirement for 2021-2022 are listed here.           

Score Submission Process

Test scores should be sent to us using ETS institution code 5859. No department code is required, as the Graduate School will receive your official scores from ETS regardless of the department code entered. Please allow four weeks for us to receive your scores after you have sent the scores through ETS.