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Versant English Test

Demonstrating oral English proficiency through the Versant English Test

The Versant English Test is a test of spoken English distributed by Pearson Publishing, and administered on-site at Northwestern University.  It is offered at Northwestern as a placement test for incoming international PhD and MFA students who have not already fulfilled The Graduate School’s English Proficiency Requirement.  Students are required to re-take the Versant test approximately every 6 months until they fulfill this requirement.

Incoming international PhD and MFA students, including students who have transferred from Master’s to PhD programs, are required to take the Versant English Test during the first test period after they arrive on campus (typically September of the first year). The Graduate School only accepts Versant scores from tests administered by English Language Programs at Northwestern University. Based on their placement score, certain students may be required to participate in services offered by English Language Programs.

Continuing international PhD and MFA students are required to participate in proficiency testing, such as Versant or SPEAK, until they fulfill The Graduate School’s English Proficiency Requirement. Versant testing periods take place during early September and late Feb/early March of each academic year, giving students approximately 6 months between testing sessions to make significant improvements in their spoken English proficiency.

Please see Pearson’s Versant English Test website for details about the test format.

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