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Registry

English Language Requirements

Students admitted from the 2017-18 to 2020-21 academic year, including students admitted to first year or directly to second year or above

I. Diagnostic English Language Tracking Assessment (DELTA)/Password Test

Effective from Term 2, 2020-21, students will take the Password Test in place of DELTA. No specific threshold score is stipulated as a requirement. The DELTA/Password Test requirement is waived for those who have achieved the minimum IELTS threshold for their Majors or an equivalent qualification before or during their studies. To use an equivalent qualification for waiving the test requirement, students should submit an application to CEAL. An administrative system for booking of test sessions is accessible on CEAL’s website https://www.ln.edu.hk/ceal. Students are fully subsidised for their required attempt(s) for taking the Password Test in place of DELTA. If students would like to take the Test voluntarily, it would be at students’ own cost. A limited quota of remedial support would be offered to those who score 5.5 or less in Password or those who have taken DELTA and have obtained Grade C+ or below in one of CEAL’s courses on a first-come-first-served basis.

1. Undergraduate students who are admitted to Year 1 or directly to Year 2 are required to take DELTA twice respectively in their first year and second year of studies at Lingnan. 
2. Undergraduate students who are directly admitted to year 3 are required to take DELTA in their first year of study at Lingnan.
3. Native English speakers who are exempted from taking the following courses are exempted from this requirement:
  • For students admitted in 2018-19 or before: required LCE courses, viz. English for Communication I, II & III.
  • For students admitted in 2019-20 and 2020-21: University English I, University English II, English Language Enhancement elective(s) and Discipline-related professional communication course.
II. English Language Graduation Requirement: International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
(Note: Not be applied to students admitted to Year 3 in 2017-18)
1. An overall band score of 6.5 in International English Language Testing System (IELTS) (Academic) is set as the University-wide English language minimum graduation requirement while students of the following programmes shall attain different minimum threshold scores:
Major Programme Minimum overall band score in IELTS (Academic)
Bachelor of Arts in Chinese; and
Bachelor of Arts in Chinese Literature, History and Philosophy
6.0
Bachelor of Arts in Contemporary English Studies; and
Bachelor of Arts in Translation
7.0
2. Students shall meet the English language requirement prescribed in 1) above or obtain an equivalent qualification before they can graduate. To use an equivalent qualification for fulfilling the requirement, students should submit an application to CEAL.
3. Students may meet the requirement anytime before graduation but it is strongly recommended that students take IELTS after completion of the four English Language Enhancement (ELE) courses.
4. Students whose IELTS score is below the required threshold may retake IELTS. There is no limit on the number of retakes.
5. Students are given one year longer than their normal study periods to meet the English language graduation requirement prescribed in 1) above. It means that for those admitted to Year 1, they have to fulfil the requirement within 5 years; those admitted to Year 2 within 4 years; and those admitted to Year 3 within 3 years. Nevertheless, exceptional approval for fulfilling the requirement in a longer period can be granted on a case-by-case basis under exceptional circumstances. The student concerned has to apply in writing three months before the end of the period prescribed above providing reasons for the extension, the requested period of extension and a plan to attain the requirement, e.g. planned time line to retake the IELTS, with results of IELTS in previous attempt(s) attached. The application has to be submitted to the Programme Director/Head of Department concerned who will make a recommendation to the Dean concerned for approval. The extra period approved will be specified if an approval is granted. Please submit your application for extension via the University portal. A user guide for the system is available here.
6. The status of having attained or not attained the English language graduation requirement will be stated in the student transcripts, without showing the IELTS results.
7. For a student who has reached the minimum IELTS threshold for his/her Major or obtained an equivalent qualification during his/her studies at Lingnan but subsequently obtains another IELTS score that is lower than the threshold for his/her Major, he/she is not required to retake IELTS to attain the minimum threshold before he/she can graduate.
8. Native English speakers who are exempted from taking the following courses are exempted from the English language graduation requirement:
  • For students admitted in 2018-19 or before: required LCE courses, viz. English for Communication I, II & III.
  • For students admitted in 2019-20 and 2020-21: University English I, University English II, English Language Enhancement elective(s) and Discipline-related professional communication course.
However, if a student takes IELTS during his/her study period at Lingnan and obtains an IELTS score lower than the threshold for his/her Major, he/she may retake IELTS at his/her own cost and attain the minimum threshold, or obtain an equivalent qualification, before he/she can graduate.
9. Generally, undergraduate students who have attained the minimum IELTS threshold for their Majors or obtained an equivalent qualification upon admission should be recognised as having fulfilled the English language graduation requirement. However, in case a student takes IELTS during his/her study period at Lingnan for such purposes as going on exchange and obtains an IELTS score lower than the threshold for his/her Major, he/she may retake IELTS at his/her own cost and attain the minimum threshold, or obtain an equivalent qualification, before he/she can graduate.
10. The University provides financial support to students in their first attempt for IELTS. For details of obtaining financial support for taking the IELTS test, please refer to https://ln.edu.hk/co/ielts.
11. For students who sit the IELTS test on LU campus, the IELTS results concerned are transferred directly to the University (i.e. no online submission of IELTS results is needed). For IELTS taken in a test centre outside LU, if the student has attained the minimum overall band score in IELTS (Academic) required for his/her major programme, he/she can upload the IELTS results via the online system for “Submission of IELTS Results from Test Centres outside Lingnan University” in the intranet portal. A user guide for the system is available here.
12. The University has established the Best Award Scheme to give a prize to each of the top ten students with the best overall IELTS scores each year.
For resources on IELTS preparation, please refer to https://www.ln.edu.hk/ceal/IELTSinformation.php.