'IELTS for UKVI' is a UK government approved Secure English Language Test (SELT). This means that IELTS can be used to prove your English language abilities in support of a UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) application. For many categories of visa, you must submit an English language qualification which is included on the UK Home Office’s list of Secure English Language Tests (SELT tests).
If you’re applying for Tier 1 and Tier 2 visas to the UK, this is the test for you.
IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training for UKVI are designed to meet certain administrative requirements that are specified by the UK Home Office. The actual test taken is the same as IELTS (for all other purposes), same content, examiners, format, level of difficulty, scoring and so on. The difference is in the customer journey on the test day. Test Report Forms will be slightly different, to show that you have taken the test at an IELTS UK visa session.
If you’re applying for a ‘family of a settled person’ visa, extension of a ‘family of a settled person’ visa or for indefinite leave to remain or citizenship, IELTS Life Skills is the test for you. IELTS Life Skills is a new test, approved by UKVI as a Secure English Language Test (SELT). It’s for people who need to show they have speaking and listening skills at Level A1, A2 or B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.