English Proficiency Requirements

Teaching is a requirement in the Chemistry Graduate Program, and there are special requirements for applicants whose native language is not English. This requirement cannot be waived, because it is campus policy and state law. If your native language is not English, please read this entire section.

Any applicant whose native language is not English is required to provide Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-based test (TOEFL iBT) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores in order to receive full consideration for admission and financial aid. Exemption from the TOEFL through the Graduate College does not give exemption from the speaking section of the TOEFL iBT, or the speaking section of the IELTS. (There is one exception: Students who have continuously attended English speaking institutions since 7th Grade or before, will be considered exempt from taking the TOEFL or IELTS.)

The university requires a minimum score of 24 on the speaking section of the TOEFL iBT or a minimum score of 8 on the speaking section of the IELTS. Note: You must also score a minimum of 103 overall on the TOEFL or 7 overall (with no score on any sub-section less than 6, and the speaking sub-score must be at least 8) on the IELTS.

Our average departmental TOEFL score is above a 105 for the TOEFL iBT. The minimum departmental IELTS overall score is a 7.

TOEFL or IELTS scores must be less than 2 years old from the first day of class of the proposed term of entry.

If you have already submitted a TOEFL or IELTS score for another institution in the United States, you may need to retake those exams to make sure your scores are within two years of starting this program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Otherwise, your scores will no longer be valid.  

The requirement for submitting your Official English Language Proficiency test scores can be met one of two ways:

For English Proficiency Exams, the institution code for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is 1836 and the department code is 00. Please contact the Graduate Admissions Office if you have any further questions.