Skip to main content


Demonstrating oral English proficiency through the SPEAK Test

The SPEAK test is a test of spoken English that was developed by Educational Testing Services and is administered on-site at Northwestern University.

The SPEAK test is offered to international PhD and MFA students who have not already fulfilled The Graduate School’s English Proficiency Requirement and who are nominated by their departments for the test.

Departments must nominate students to participate in SPEAK testing. Students who must fulfill The Graduate School's English Proficiency Requirement in the near future due to funding concerns will be given priority.  Departments will be contacted about nominating students for the SPEAK test several weeks before the test is administered.

SPEAK testing periods take place during November and May of each academic year, giving students approximately 6 months between testing sessions to make significant improvements in their spoken English proficiency.

Have more questions about SPEAK testing at Northwestern? Contact our staff at