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What Are My ELI Requirements?

Photo: Unsplash

Photo: Unsplash

All students who have English as their second language must clear the ELI. If you don’t, we have to place a hold on your registration, which means you won’t be able to register in future semesters.

There are two ways to clear the ELI:

1) See if you meet any of the exemption criteria below. If you do, you will be exempted from the ELI and you won’t need to take the ELI Placement Test. Check with the ELI Office (Moore 570) to see if you can be exempted.

2) If you do not meet any exemption criteria, you must take the ELI Placement Test. There are no exceptions to this. The ELI Placement Test includes two tests of listening, two tests of reading, and one writing test. Based on the scores of your test, you may be placed into intermediate or advanced courses, or you may be exempted in one or more of the three skill areas the test covers.

If you place into any ELI classes, the university requires that you complete those courses within your first year of study at UH-Manoa, following a specific schedule (see Course Completion Policies).

Exemption Criteria

Are you required to take the ELI Placement Test (ELIPT), or are you exempt? There three categories for exemption from the ELIPT. Click on a category to learn more about it. Please note that you may be required to submit documentation if you meet one of the criteria for exemption.

  • Native speaker of English
  • Standardized test scores (TOEFL, IELTS, GRE, SAT, ACT)
  • Educational experience in English
    • An AA or ASNS degree from the UH system
    • A Bachelor’s or graduate degree from a recognized English-medium university, earned within the past five years
    • At least 60 transferable credits, with a GPA of 2.0 or better, from an institution where English is the primary language of instruction
    • At least six years of full-time schooling in English

Native Speaker

You are exempt from the ELIPT if you speak English as a native language.

Standardized Test Scores

You are exempt from the ELIPT if you took one of the following standardized tests and scored at or above the scores listed below:

  • TOEFL: 100 (internet-based), or 600 (paper-based)
  • IELTS: 7.0
  • GRE (verbal section): 151 (or 460 if taken prior to August 2011).
  • SAT (critical reading or verbal section): 540
  • ACT (reading and English sections): 48 combined, and neither score is lower than 21.

Educational Experience in English

If you think you are exempt from the ELIPT based on educational experience in English, please read the following descriptions to ensure that your experience qualifies.

  • The student has an Associate in Arts (AA) degree or Associate in Sciences in Natural Sciences (ASNS) degree from a community college within the University of Hawai’i system.
  • The student has obtained the equivalent of 60 transferable semester credits with a GPA of 2.0 or better, all earned in classroom settings at regionally accredited colleges or universities in the United States, or from colleges or universities whose academic standing is recognized by the University of Hawai’i and where English is the primary language of instruction. (Note: back credits for native language, or other credits earned based on experience rather than in classroom situations, do not count as part of the 60 transferable credits.)
  • The student has completed 6 years of full-time schooling with English as the medium of instruction at a middle school, high school, college, or university in American Samoa (effective Spring 2017), Australia, Canada (except Quebec), Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, or the United States. Documentation of all six years is required.