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English for Otago (EFO)

The English for Otago (EFO) programme is a pathway option for students who meet the academic entry requirements but do not meet the English entry requirements for undergraduate or postgraduate study at the University of Otago. Specifically, this programme helps prospective students who are missing 0.5 IELTS (or equivalent) to meet Otago’s English language requirements.

Admission to English for Otago

Students with a conditional offer of place from the University of Otago for an undergraduate or postgraduate programme are eligible to study EFO. Upon successful completion of EFO, students progress into their planned university programme without needing to re-sit IELTS*.

* EFO is equivalent to an overall academic band of 6.0 for undergraduate programmes and an overall academic band of 6.5 for postgraduate programmes.

There are a few programmes that require a higher IELTS, for example Social Work and Teaching. Students who wish to apply for these programmes are not able to take EFO but can apply to the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) programme and sit an IELTS.

English for Academic Purposes

Students who do not have an offer of place at the University of Otago may enrol in either of the following programmes:

General English

English for Academic Purposes

English for Otago entry requirements

You are required to provide evidence that you meet the English proficiency level before the EFO programme starts. This can be done either with an accepted English proficiency test score listed in the table below, or by sitting the EFO entrance exam.

EFO Entrance Exam

If you do not have evidence of minimum English proficiency, you can sit the EFO entrance exam. The EFO entrance exam is free but is only open to students with an offer of place at Otago.

Required results from the EFO entrance exam are:

EFO Undergraduate Minimum 55/100
EFO Postgraduate Minimum 60/100

To apply for the EFO exam, please contact:

Email englishlanguage.groups@otago.ac.nz

Accepted English proficiency tests and scores for English for Otago

Undergraduate programme

Test Entrance requirement
IELTS 5.5 (no band below 5.0)
IELTS Online is also accepted.
TOEFL iBT 70 (writing 15)
TOEFL iBT Home Edition is currently accepted for applications for intakes commencing semester 2 2022 and 2023 intakes.
Paper-based TOEFL 525 (TWE 4.0)
Computer-based TOEFL 193 (essay rating 4.0)
GCE O-Level English Grade C6
HKDSE English Level 2
HK ALE Use of English Grade D7
LanguageCert B2
SPM Bahasa Inggris Grade 4
Pearson Test of English (Academic) PTE (Academic) score of 42 with no band score lower than 36.
Pearson Test of English Academic Online is currently accepted for applications for intakes commencing in semester 2 2022 and 2023 intakes.
English New Zealand Accredited Pathway Assessment Level 1
NZCEL NZCEL 3 Academic endorsement

Postgraduate programme

Test Entrance requirement
IELTS 6.0 (no band below 5.5)
IELTS Online is also accepted.
TOEFL iBT 80 (writing 20)
TOEFL iBT Home Edition is currently accepted for applications for intakes commencing semester 2 2022 and 2023 intakes.
Paper-based TOEFL 550 (TWE 4.5)
Computer-based TOEFL 213 (essay rating 4.5)
Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) Grade B
Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) Grade C
HKDSE Level 4
APIEL (Advanced Placement International English Language) Examination Grade 3
GCE A-Level General Paper (English) Grade C or higher
International Baccalaureate
LanguageCert C1
Pearson Test of English (Academic) PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score lower than 42.
Pearson Test of English Academic Online is currently accepted for applications for intakes commencing in semester 2 2022 and 2023 intakes.
English New Zealand Accredited Pathway Assessment Level 2
NZCEL NZCEL 4 Academic endorsement

Study load and assessment

EFO is a 12-week full-time course (23 hours per week). Assessment is continuous throughout the course.

English requirements for the University of Otago

Students who successfully complete the English for Otago programme with a minimum grade of ‘C’ meet the English language requirements for admission to most undergraduate or postgraduate programmes at the University of Otago.

English for Otago dates

2023

Intake 1: On-campus

8 March Entrance exam
13 March First day of classes
10–16 April Mid-term break
16 June Programme ends

Intake 2: Online only

5 July Entrance exam
10 July First day of classes
14–20 August Mid-term break
13 October Programme ends

Intake 3: On-campus

11 October Entrance exam
16 October First day of classes
18 December–2 January 2024 Mid-term break
26 January 2024 Programme ends

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