International students whose native language is not English must document proficiency in the English language by submitting either an IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE.
- Students taking the IELTS must obtain a score of at least 6.5, with no subscore below 6.5 to be considered for admission to Virginia Tech.
- Students taking the PTE must obtain a score of at least 53.
- Depending on the type of TOEFL used, Virginia Tech expects students to have scores of:
- Internet-based test: at least 80, with no section sub-score less than 16
- Computer-based test: at least 233
- Paper-based test: at least 550
If a student does not have the required TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE score, but meets other admission requirements, the student is encouraged to enroll in Virginia Tech’s Language and Culture Institute (VTLCI) program until he/she reaches the required score. Once the score is achieved, the student is offered admission as a regular degree-seeking student.
To have your IELTS/TOEFL/PTE score automatically sent to Virginia Tech, please specify Virginia Tech’s CEEB code (5859) on the test form. We recommend the English language proficiency tests be taken by January 15 and scores must be received on or before March 1.
TOEFL Waiver: Students that have completed 6 credit hours of transferrable English will receive a TOEFL waiver. Classes must be equivalent to our Freshmen English courses: ENGL 1105 & ENG 1106. Transfer equivalencies can be found here: http://www.tranguide.registrar.vt.edu/
Writing a narrative, anecdotal account of an important experience can be an effective method for showing the admissions committee who you are as a person and what kind of Hokie you would be on campus. It’s an open-ended prompt — the story can be about something good or bad, seemingly insignificant or monumental, a failure or a triumph, as long as you can convey why and how the experience made you who you are today.
The most common mistake applicants will make on this essay is falling into the trap of “telling” rather than “showing.” Don’t just say what happened, set the scene and appeal to the senses of the reader. You want to give the reader a deeper understanding of the situation by making them feel a personal connection to the scene — this will help them understand better its impact on you.
For an essay about navigating your parents’ divorce, you’d want to avoid general “telling” statements like, “I had to calm down my little sister, who was upset about having to split time between our parents’ new houses.” Instead, you could “show,” saying, “As the blue-grey facade of my mom’s house faded out the car window, I distracted my sister with a game of tic-tac-toe. By the time we approached dad’s apartment, her tears had dried and she happily pressed her face against the glass to get a glimpse of dad.”
Remember that the focus of the essay is on how the experience changed your character. It may be helpful to use parallel examples from before and after the experience. For example, you could recount the ease with which you wrote, ate, and ran before an accident, and then detail the struggle of relearning these previously taken-for-granted abilities afterward.
If you choose to write about an experience that demonstrated your character rather than shaping it, choose one of your defining character traits and think of a situation or experience that was emblematic of that value.
For example, if you’re hardworking, you may want to write about a project that you gave your all and poured your heart into. No matter what topic you choose, “showing” by appealing to the senses rather than “telling” objectively will help you to write an effective narrative supplement.