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How to Meet the English Language Requirements to Study in Australia

This article is sponsored by Curtin University

Are you an international student planning to study at an Australian university? Well, let us be the first to say: you’re in for an incredible adventure. Of course, before starting this new chapter, you’ll have to meet certain entry requirements.

One of the most important entry requirements to study in Australia? Strong English language skills.

However, if you don’t yet meet the English language requirements for your course, you may be wondering what your options are and if you can still start your studies in Australia at the time you originally planned.

Fortunately, with the help of English language pathway programs, you can! 

Read on to learn more about English language pathway programs and how they can help you meet the requirements to study in Australia. 

What are English language pathway programs?

While learning English is not easy, it’s an exciting challenge that will open countless doors in your future. Plus, with English language pathway programs, the process is made much easier. 

English language pathway programs are courses designed to help non-native speakers improve their proficiency to meet academic requirements. These courses are tailored to different levels of English proficiency, such as beginner, intermediate and advanced.

For example, Curtin English offers future students several language pathway options, including General English, Gateway English, and English Language Bridging (ELB). Some of the courses especially ELB courses also develop wider academic communication skills which are critical for success in an Australian University such as critical thinking, research skills and referencing, giving students a huge advantage over other students who meet entry directly with IELTS/PTE.

As an added bonus, Curtin even offers the Curtin English Scholarship, which could get you a tuition discount of up to A$6,780!

How English language pathway programs can benefit you

There are many ways that an English language pathway program can benefit you during your studies and beyond.

Boost your confidence

One of the advantages of learning English through a pathway program is that it can help boost your confidence in preparation for your tertiary course. 

The more you develop your language skills, the more comfortable you’ll feel in various situations. For example, you’ll be better able to participate in class discussions or debates and express your own ideas politely but assertively. With extra confidence, you’ll also be able to read and listen critically in academic settings and make inferences about the content you learn. In turn, you’ll have the ability to plan, organise and structure a strong argument in academic writing.

Explore your new home 

One of the best things about Curtin English is that you study face-to-face, meaning you can still come to Australia and won’t need to delay your international study journey. As a result, while developing your language skills, you’ll have plenty of time to explore your new home, get to know the campus and library and get used to using the University Learning Management System. These will give you an edge and make your transition to Curtin University more comfortable.

Improve your employability

If you’re hoping to work in Australia during or after your studies, you’ll need to have a high level of English, as it will help you perform better in job interviews and increase your chances of employment. Given that English is one of the most commonly spoken languages in the world, English proficiency is also a highly transferable skill to have. By boosting your skills through a pathway program, you’ll become a stand-out candidate to employers in Australia and across the globe. 

Make new friends

Many international students take English language pathway programs, so it’s a fantastic opportunity to make new friends from different cultures. You’ll also have plenty of people to practise English with, as you’ll meet other students who are at a similar level of proficiency.

Types of English language pathway programs

General English 

General English is designed for lower-level students who wish to improve their language skills for personal, academic or professional purposes. It covers essential aspects of English across the four core skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing), with a particular focus on:

  • Improving pronunciation and developing fluency
  • Expanding your vocabulary
  • Understanding English speakers (native and non-native)
  • Building confidence

General English is a full-time course (20 hours per week for 20 weeks). At Curtin English, the General English course is divided into two segments: one for those with IELTS scores of 3.0 and above (or equivalent) and the other for those with IELTS scores of 4.0 and above (or equivalent). Upon completion, students can then move on to the Gateway English course.  

Read more: How Are English Language Tests Graded? Understanding English Proficiency Scores

Gateway English 

The Gateway English course teaches you important language skills for university and how to apply these skills at higher levels. Some of these skills include:

  • Critical thinking
  • Effective listening
  • Essay writing
  • Oral presentation
  • Pronunciation and making yourself understood
  • Report writing

You’ll need an IELTS score of at least 5.0, a Pearson score of at least 36 or a TOEFL score of at least 40 to enrol in this course.

English Language Bridging

The final course in the Curtin English program is English Language Bridging (ELB). This course is designed to prepare students for diploma, undergraduate and/or postgraduate university studies. It covers:

  • Curtin University processes and systems
  • Extended academic writing
  • Listening to lectures and taking notes
  • Reading complex texts
  • Research skills
  • Seminar discussion skills

In ELB, you’ll learn the skills to succeed in academic writing, research, critical thinking, referencing, seminar discussions and presentations. To qualify for ELB, you will need a score of at least 5.5 in IELTS, 42 in Pearson or 52 in TOEFL.

Whether you need to improve your English language score to begin your studies or you simply want to feel more confident in your abilities, Curtin English is the perfect place to refine your skills. Curtin English offers three pathways to improve your language proficiency to meet the English pre-requisites for entry to university, and can even package your university course with your English language course.

You can use your current English language proficiency test score to calculate the Curtin English pathway to your university study. If you are unsure of your English skill level, Curtin English can help provide a free online placement test to assess your current level of English and then to plan your pathway.

Study in the heart of Perth, Western Australia, while gaining the English language skills you need to take the next step in your study journey.