English-Language Proficiency Testing

​​​​​As English is the primary language of instruction and communication at the University of Toronto, applicants must demonstrate an adequate level of proficiency in English, regardless of their citizenship status or country of origin. It is important that these students follow SGS’ policies on ELP testing requirements and take one of the required tests for admission to a graduate program. 

Applicants from universities outside Canada where English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of their application.


Please note that these scores reflect the School of Graduate Studies' minimum requirements. Some programs have higher minimum required scores. Please consult the web page of the graduate unit you are applying to in order to be sure you meet their minimum requirements.

Electronically reported test scores should be sent directly by the testing agency to the University of Toronto (Enrolment Services) The only test for which U of T will accept paper scores is MELAB (see below).​​

1. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

Educational Testing Service
PO Box 6151
Princeton, New Jersey
USA, 08541-6151

The TOEFL examination is offered in two formats: the traditional paper-based format (only offered on specific dates in a limited number of countries), and the Internet-based format (IBT). Applicants in countries where the Internet-based testing is not available must register for the paper-based TOEFL which includes the Test of Written English (TWE) component. The Internet-based tests automatically include an essay rating component which is similar to the TWE. All applicants must satisfy a minimum score requirement on the TOEFL and on the TWE/Essay Rating component to be considered for admission. The table below lists the minimum TOEFL score requirements set by each of the four SGS academic divisions.

Students must arrange for their score to be reported electronically to the University of Toronto (Enrolment Services) by the testing agency. The institution code for U of T is 0982. There is no need to specify a department.

​Academic Division​

​​Minimum Score Requirement
(Including TWE or Essay Rating Score Requirement*)​

​Paper-Based Test and TWE

Internet-Based Test (IBT)​​


Overall Score: 580​​​
TWE: 5
Overall Score: 93
Writing/Speaking: 22

Social Sciences

Overall Score: 580
TWE: 5
Overall Score: 93
Writing/Speaking: 22
Physical and Engineering Sciences
Overall Score: 580​
TWE: 4
Overall Score: 93
Writing/Speaking: 22

Life Sciences

Overall Score: 580​
TWE: 5
Overall Sc​ore​: 93
Writing/Speaking: 22​

*Consult the department to which you are applying to determine if a minimum higher score is required.

2. International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate
1 Hills Road
Cambridge, UK CB12EU

Minimum required score: 7.0 (Academic)with at least 6.5 for each component.

The IELTS test is available in two test formats: Academic or General Training. All candidates take the same Listening and Speaking modules. It is the Reading and Writing components that differ. The Academic version of IELTS measures English language proficiency needed for an academic, higher learning environment. This is the format that is required for an application to the University of Toronto.

Results must be sent to us electronically. You should select "University of Toronto (Undergraduate and Graduate programs)" from the list of options. The University of Toronto (Undergraduate and Graduate Programs) is an IELTS "STED RO". This means that we subscribe to the electronic score-sending service and do not accept paper results. You may wish to advise your test centre, specifically, that U of T is an STED RO when you make your request to have your scores sent to us. You do not need to notify U of T once you have ordered your test results. U of T receives IELTS results on an ongoing basis.​

3. The Certificate of Proficiency in English (COPE)

COPE Testing Limited
7B Pleasant Boulevard
PO Box 1164
Toronto, Ontario M4T 1K2

Required score: 76 (with at least 22 in each component and 32 in the writing component).

After you have taken the test, please arrange with COPE to send your score electronically to the University of Toronto, Enrolment Services. There is no need to send a paper score sheet.

International ESL Program
School of Continuing Studies, University of Toronto
252 Bloor Street, Suite 4-106
Toronto, Ontario M5S 1V5

Required score: a final grade of B in Level 60.

The English Language Program at the School of Continuing Studies, University of Toronto, offers a year-round 12-week intensive Academic English Course for individuals preparing for degree studies at the graduate level. For students who have already received a conditional offer of admission to the University of Toronto, the ELP offers an 8-week condensed version of the Academic English course in July - August (Level 60 only). Applicants must also have a minimum IELTS of 6 or TOEFL of 80 to qualify for this 8-week course.​

The Academic English Course is a certified, full-time intensive program focusing on the development of strategies for academic writing, reading, speaking and listening. Learning involves strategies for writing accurate, organized and well-developed reports, responses and essays. Students’ reading comprehension, oral communication skills, listening facility and not​e-taking skills are developed to be commensurate with the academic standards for which the University of Toronto is known.


Normally, if applicants meet any one of the following conditions, they are not required to submit proof of proficiency in English (please consult the graduate unit to determine whether proof of ELP will still be required):

  • Native language is English (language first learned and still used on a daily basis)

  • A Canadian citizen who studied at a Canadian university where the language of instruction is French

  • Has obtained an undergraduate or graduate degree from an institution recognized by the University of Toronto and where the language of instruction and examination is uniformly English

  • Completed a degree in one of the following countries/regions: Australia, the Bahamas, Barbados, Botswana, Ghana, Guyana, Hong Kong, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Malta, Namibia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States of America, Zambia, and Zimbabwe


Note: Some applicants from the above mentioned countries/regions may be required to provide proof of English proficiency as English is not the sole language of instruction at all universities.

The language of instruction and examination must be verified by the graduate unit and/or the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants should provide an official academic transcript with a note confirming the use of English as the language of instruction and examination. If the official academic transcript does not have this note, applicants should make arrangements for an official statement to be sent from their institution directly to the graduate unit confirming the use of English as the primary language of instruction and examination. Please consult the graduate unit to determine whether proof of English-language proficiency will still be required.