Study in the UK Without IELTS

By Mrunmayai Bobade Updated On - Jun 14, 2022 12:57 PM

Planning to study in top UK universities without IELTS? Scroll through the article to know UK admission criteria without IELTS, eligibility for Indian students to study in the UK without IELTS, alternative exams for IELTS, top UK universities to study without IELTS, and top MBA universities in the UK to study without IELTS.

Exams are an unavoidable part of a student's academic experience. It's pretty hard for international students to avoid these competitive exams. IELTS is one of many English proficiency tests required to fulfil English language requirements for universities abroad. 

Similarly, top universities in the UK also require proof of English proficiency. To fulfil this, students can either submit an IELTS score or its equivalent. However, some UK universities accept students without an IELTS score. 

The number of international students coming to the UK has decreased since the UK imposed post-study work visa limitations in 2012. However, the UK government has reinstated the two-year post-study work visa for international students in 2020. Following this, the United Kingdom has resurfaced on the map as a place to study abroad with a two-year stay after graduation. 

To continue attracting more international students, UK universities are abandoning the mandatory requirement of standardised exams and English proficiency test scores. So let us tackle the question: "Is IELTS necessary to study in the UK?". Continue reading to know how to study in the UK without taking the IELTS exam.

Our well-versed study abroad consultants have assisted numerous Indian students to study in the UK without taking the IELTS exam. Our team is delighted to know that many of our counselee students are attending prestigious universities in the UK.

Get Expert Guidance on Studying in the UK Without IELTS! 

Can You Get a UK Student Visa without IELTS? 

It is possible to get a UK student visa without IELTS only if a student can produce relevant documents to the embassy during the visa process. The immigration authorities usually require a letter from the school or university stating that the candidate has studied in English in their institution or that the medium of instruction of the institution is primarily English. In short, a student can apply for a UK study visa without taking the IELTS exam if they meet the following requirements:

  • A letter of acceptance from a university in the UK

  • A document issued by the educational institution stated that the medium of instruction of the course was English

  • A letter stating that the student has studied in an institution whose primary language is English

  • The student has studied core English as a subject in school and scored 90%-95%.

  • Sit for the Secure English Language Test (SELT), which is required by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) as valid proof of English proficiency.

Note: The ability to communicate in English is one of the prerequisites for obtaining a Tier 4 visa. Even if the university waives off IELTS requirements, students are still required to show English proficiency for a UK student visa.

Eligibility Criteria to Study in the UK without IELTS 

Acceptance of international students in top UK universities without IELTS is mainly based on the following four criteria:

English as Medium of Instruction at School Level

Occasionally, institutions request the medium of the student's past education. If a student's medium of instruction for all subjects was English, the university may use this evidence to accept them without IELTS. To study for a master's degree in the UK without IELTS, a student must demonstrate graduation in the English language.

An Interview Conducted by University

Some institutions may require candidates to participate in a video interview. This will let the university assess a student's level of English comprehension and make an appropriate judgement. Students must do well in this interview to gain admission to UK universities that do not require IELTS.

Class 10 and 12 English Scores

Universities may examine a student's high school or senior year grades at times. For example, if a student has achieved more than 75% in English in Classes 10th and 12th, universities may consider this proof of English competency.

Alternative Language Assessment Exams

Aside from the IELTS, students can also take the TOEFL, the Duolingo English test, Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE), and PTE Academic. Various universities in the UK may require students to complete a language assessment test. As a result, students should read university guidelines and language requirements thoroughly.

IELTS Alternatives to Study in the UK

The purpose of the IELTS is to demonstrate a student's ability to communicate in English effectively. If a student does not match the requirements, they may be denied admission to their preferred university. Pre-sessional courses are one of the greatest boons for international students who either have no or low IELTS scores. Many universities in the UK provide pre-sessional courses that do not require IELTS as an entry requirement for international students.

These pre-sessional courses are an excellent way for international students to strengthen their English language abilities as well as classroom skills. Pre-sessional courses help international students adjust to the educational system in the UK and be ready for a rigorous college curriculum. Students must, however, check the website of their preferred university to confirm whether it offers any foundation or pre-sessional courses.

Avail of Our Test-Prep Services to Prepare for Exams to Study in the UK! 

Study in the UK without IELTS for Indian Students

Most of the universities in the UK enable students to study without taking the IELTS provided they have already completed their education using English as a medium of instruction and can demonstrate it. Here are a few universities where Indian students can apply without having to take the IELTS test:

UK Universities Accepting 60% or Above in English

UK Universities Accepting 65% or Above in English

UK Universities Accepting 70% or Above in English

Bedfordshire University

Cardiff Metropolitan University

Bangor University

University of Law 

Chester University

Coventry University 

London Metropolitan University

Middlesex University 

Oxford Brookes University 

Teesside University

Bath Spa University (CBSE only)

Anglia Ruskin University

Bolton University


De Montfort University

University of Greenwich (CBSE & ICSE)

Hertfordshire University (CBSE & ICSE)

Sunderland University, London Campus

Sheffield Hallam University

Solent University

Birmingham City University (CBSE)

Wolverhampton University

The University of West of England

University of West London (CBSE)

University of South Wales

Top Universities to Study in the UK Without IELTS

Let us take a closer look at some of the leading universities in the UK that accept students without having to take the IELTS exam.

University Name

IELTS Alternative

London Southbank University

Grade 12 English score

Pre-sessional English classes 

Sheffield Hallam University


University of Warwick

Pre-sessional English courses

University of Essex

Pre-sessional English courses

University of Bristol

Pre-sessional English courses

Robert Gordon University

Pre-sessional English courses

Study MBA in the UK without IELTS

Many international students prefer the UK as a place for their MBA education. However, the prospect of taking IELTS puts them off. The good news is that students can study for an MBA in UK without having to take IELTS, provided they must meet other eligibility requirements set by individual universities. Here is a list of UK institutions that offer MBA programs without IELTS:

University Name

MBA Programme Offered

De Montfort University

MBA Global

Middlesex University

With Placement

Teesside University

Business & Marketing

University of Bedfordshire

Executive MBA With Placement

University of East London

Business & Marketing

University of Greenwich

International Business 

University of Sunderland

MBA Finance, MBA Marketing, and MBA Human Resource Management with Placement

Note: Students must check the eligibility criteria and prerequisites before applying to any MBA institutions in the UK without IELTS.

Can International Students Work in the UK Without IELTS?

Yes, international students can work in the UK without IELTS. Students will be eligible to work legally in the UK after finishing the degree. 

If a student wants to apply for a UK post-study work visa without taking the IELTS, they can do so by submitting their bachelor's or master's level academic records. They are required to show that they received a grade of at least 70% in English high school. 

The UK is one of the few countries that permits overseas students to work off-campus. During the semester, students can work up to 20 hours per week and full-time during holidays. Students should be aware, however, that an MBA is an extremely demanding programme, and there will be several tasks and projects at any one time. Taking time out during the semester to do any extra work is difficult.

The majority of occupations are low wage ones, such as those in fast-food restaurants and department stores. Working at call centres is one of the better-paying jobs.  Part-time wages are estimated to be between GBP 4 to GBP 5 per hour.

Students need to check each university's website to determine what language requirements they need to meet as it differs from university to university. Even without taking the IELTS exam, students can study in UK universities and pursue the top courses of their choice.

Our experts have an impeccable track record of helping Indian students to make it to top universities in the UK. For more information, drop us a line at

Get Expert Advice on Preparing for IELTS Alternatives to Study Abroad! 

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