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English Proficiency

Because of the importance we place on students' ability to communicate effectively in both the classroom and field education setting, applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate English proficiency. Applicants are required to provide an official score report from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing Systems (IELTS), Michigan Language Assessment: Michigan English Test (MET), or Michigan Language Assessment: Examination for the Certificate of Proficiency in English (ECPE). Photocopies and/or faxes of English proficiency scores or certificates will not be accepted.

Applicants who have earned a degree from an institution where the language of instruction is exclusively English regardless of country are exempt from submitting an English language proficiency test score if their degree was received within two years of applying to the MSW program. Other applicants with at least two years of non-degree study from an institution where the language of instruction is exclusively English are exempt from submitting a score if their non-degree study was within two years of applying to the MSW program. The TOEFL, IELTS, MET, or ECPEB should be taken no later, preferably earlier, than January of the year in which the applicant wishes to be admitted. Test scores are valid for two years. TOEFL scores are sent via tape directly to the University of Michigan (institution code: 1839). Official IELTS, MET, and ECPE scores must be sent directly to the School of Social Work.

English Proficiency Test Scores

The recommended minimum score for each test is as follows:

Test Score
TOEFL 600 (PBT); 250 (CBT); 100 (iBT)
ECPE Certificate of Proficiency
MET 59

Applicants meeting the minimum criteria for admission but scoring below the recommended English proficiency scores listed above will be required to complete an interview virtually via Zoom, by telephone or in person. Students admitted with a test score of less than our recommended minimum are required to attend the Summer English for Academic Purposes Program (see below) language program prior to enrollment.

Admitted applicants with the following test scores should schedule an appointment and meet with an English Language Institute (ELI) advisor when they arrive on campus prior to enrollment:

Test Score
TOEFL < 620 (PBT) or any part score < 62
< 260 (CBT) or any part score < 26
< 106 (iBT) or Listening < 26 or Speaking < 27 or Reading < 26 or Writing < 27
IELTS < 7 or any part score < 7
ECPE Certificate of Proficiency
MET < 59

Additional instruction in English and/or a reduced course load may be recommended based on the ELI assessment.

Information and applications for English proficiency tests may be obtained by contacting the following:

Summer English for Academic Purposes Program

The English Language Institute at the University of Michigan offers a summer English for Academic Purposes program. The program is designed for non-native speakers of English who are proficient in English and have been accepted to an English-speaking university for the following fall term. It is a six and one-half week, non-credit program aimed at helping students make their transition into a U.S. university community. All non-native, English-speaking international students are encouraged to consider enrolling in the EAP Program in the summer prior to enrollment. Involvement in an intensive English language study program can help admitted social work students develop the language skills they need to be successful in the social work classroom and their MSW field education placement.

Please note that enrollment in the summer EAP Program will increase the dollar amount required to show adequate financial resources.

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