Immigration: English Language

Home Department written question – answered on 14th January 2009.

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Photo of David Willetts David Willetts Shadow Minister (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment her Department made of ETS's performance before approving its test of English as a foreign language for use within the immigration system; and whether any references provided were taken up.

Photo of Phil Woolas Phil Woolas Minister of State (also in the Home Office), Home Office, Minister of State (also in the Home Office), HM Treasury

The UK Border Agency undertook an assessment exercise to ensure that all the tests included on the list of approved English language tests for Tier 1 satisfied our required standards of assessment and test security. In support of their application, ETS provided information on:

Award security features

Test methodologies

Test security

Test verification procedures

How ETS Mapped their test to the Common European Framework Reference for Languages: Learning, Training, assessment (CEFR)

How ETS train their test markers and how marking standards are set

The bona fides of their organisation

The results of ETS's English language tests are recognised by employers and institutions the world wide. However, the actual procurement of testing services is between ETS and the individual applicant taking their test.

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