Step 4: Skills Tests

If your application is provisionally selected you will then proceed with skills testing. You will be notified by email in September; please check your email daily. The EHLS Program typically invites between 40 to 80 individuals to skills testing, and up to 18 of those candidates will be selected for admission to the program (see selection criteria).

Testing typically occurs in late September and early October. If you are provisionally selected for the 2022 program year, you must be present at only one of the following test dates in Washington, DC at the Center for Applied Linguistics: Saturday, September 25, 2021 or Saturday, October 2, 2021. Your English abilities in listening, reading, and writing plus basic computer skills will be tested. There will be no alternative date or location for these tests. You will need to pay for your own travel to Washington, DC and there is no reimbursement.

Your native language speaking test will take place remotely via webcam, during the weeks surrounding the test dates. The EHLS Program will schedule these for you and will make every effort to accommodate your needs.

Description of the Tests

All provisionally selected applicants will take 4 language tests.

  1. English listening: This test is multiple-choice and takes 65 minutes.
  2. English reading: This test is multiple-choice and takes 2 hours and 15 minutes.
  3. English writing: This is an essay test; it takes 1 hour.
  4. Native language speaking: This test (called an OPI) is taken over the telephone and takes approximately 30-45 minutes.

Basic computer skills: Your technology skills will be tested as part of the writing test. You should be prepared to utilize the following skills: file management, word processing (including accurate keyboarding), presentation software, internet navigation, and emailing.

To qualify for the EHLS Program, you must receive a score of at least 2 on the ILR scale on all four English language skills tests and receive a score of 3 on the native language test.

Preparing for the Tests

English and native language assessments: These tests evaluate your general proficiency in the language being tested. Test questions cover general interest topics and common social and professional situations. There are no sample test materials available for review. To prepare for the tests, we recommend reading the newspaper, listening to the news on the radio, and using English and your native language in discussions of current events and in professional contexts.

Basic computer skills: Because you will type your English writing test and compose an email, you should be comfortable with standard office technology skills: file management, word processing (including accurate keyboarding), presentation software, and internet navigation. To learn more about what skills are required, review the Computer Skills Self-Assessment.

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