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J-1 Exchange Visitors

English Proficiency Requirement

Effective Jan. 5, 2015, an “objective measurement” must be used to evaluate English proficiency and determine that J-1 applicants possess sufficient language skills to successfully participate in a program and to function on a day-to-day basis.

The objective measurements accepted include:

  • Recognized English test;
  • Signed documentation from an academic institution or English language school; or
  • A documented interview conducted by the sponsor either in-person or by videoconferencing, or by telephone if videoconferencing is not a viable option.

Sponsors must also retain evidence regarding how they determined English language proficiency so that it may be available to the Department of State upon request.