Prove your English language abilities with a Secure English language Test (SELT)

“The Home Office have recently issued guidance for visa or citizenship applications, where you may need to prove your knowledge of English by passing a secure English language test (SELT).”

Here’s what you need to know.

(Updated as of 11 December 2020)

What is SELT?

SELT refers to a Secured English Language Test. Used by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), SELT refers to the approved English Language tests used to confirm one’s aptitude when making a visa application.

Which applications require a SELT?

Dependent on the immigration you apply for, you are required to take one of two tests.

Application routes which asses reading, writing, speaking, and listening abilities are:

  • Student
  • Minister of Religion (T2)
  • Skilled Worker
  • Start-up
  • Innovator

Application routes which asses speaking and listening abilities are:

  • Citizenship
  • Settlement (aka indefinite leave to remain)
  • Parent
  • Partner
  • Representative of an Overseas Business
  • Sportsperson (T2)

The level of test, known as the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), is dependent on the route you are applying for.

Where can I find an approved SELT?

Tests must:

  • be on the list of approved English language tests
  • have been sat at an approved test location
  • have been awarded in the two years before the date of your application
  • Approved English Language Tests have been assessed to meet the necessary Home Office requirements
  • Immigration / Nationality applications must include an approved English Language Test

How do I book a SELT?

  • Use the approved provider’s website to book your test
  • Ensure the booked test is approved for SELT
  • Usually you can take the test within 28 days of booking
  • You may have to travel to another location as the tests are not usually in the closest location to you
  • Details used to book your test must match the information on your passport / other identity document

How do I prove my identity on the day of my SELT?

Your identity document must:

  • be current and valid
  • be an original, not a photocopy
  • include a photo of you
  • match the information you gave when you booked the test

Acceptable documents

  • passport
  • Biometric Residence Permit
  • Biometric Residence Card
  • convention travel document
  • stateless persons travel document
  • travel document issued by the United Nations
  • travel document issued by the International Red Cross

Please be advised that the above information is not exhaustive as there are more requirements and points to consider.

For more information provided by Bolton’s leading Immigration Solicitors on proving your English language abilities with a secure English language test (SELT), send an email to or contact us on 01204 531 535 to book a telephone/Skype consultation. The fee is £30.

Thank you for your cooperation and stay safe.

Compass Immigration Law LTD:

“The direct route to immigration expertise.”

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