Study in the US – Without IELTS!


Why should I study in the US?

The USA has long been Indian students’ favoured destination for Overseas Education.

If you need some convincing that it could be perfect for you too – here’s our top 5 reasons!

  1. Cutting-edge programmes

A huge number of the worlds’ foremost institutions for higher education are located in the US – each competing to offer the most advanced and demanding programmes, and attract talented students from across the globe. With teachers who are top researchers and practitioners in their fields, and curricula devised to keep up with ever-changing trends – you are guaranteed an excellent educational experience.

  1. Flexible education

The programmes at undergraduate and graduate levels offer a great degree of flexibility – allowing you to tailor your education according to your interests and career goals. Whether you are studying for an MBA or for a Masters in Data Science, you would be offered a range of specializations and plenty of opportunities to explore the path that is meant for you!

  1. Career prospects

With an education from a top US institution, you can rest assured that your dream job is within reach! Your diploma, coupled with the learning and experience that is a given in a US university program, will make you an asset to any employer.

  1. Global environment

The US is probably the most popular Study Abroad destination, for students the world-over, You will thus gain the experience of sharing academic and extra-curricular spaces and activities with a vast cohort of international students – building friendships and networks cross-cutting the globe, for life! 

  1. Life beyond academics

From a variety of on-campus activities and events, opportunities to travel and experience the vast landscapes and varied cultures of the country, to the chance to work or intern alongside your studies – with any or all of these, you are guaranteed a well-rounded ‘education’, in every sense of the word! 

How do I Study in the US without IELTS? – Duolingo English Test

If you were aiming to Study in USA in 2020 or 2021, your plans have almost certainly been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic – a global phenomenon that has affected every aspect of life on a global scale!

One major problem in this regard – the cancelation and suspension of testing for major English proficiency tests, including IELTS and several others… without which, your application cannot be processed. 

However, you’ll be happy to hear – with the Duolingo English Test, you can stay on track, toward your overseas education goals!

Duolingo, best known for its app that teaches a range of foreign languages, recently launched an English proficiency test – like all other major language tests, it tests your major language skills or LSRW i.e. Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing.

How does this help me?

While at the start, universities were accepting the Duolingo test only as a supplement to the major tests – several universities are now accepting the Duolingo English Test as fulfilling English language requirements for international applicants.

Take the English Test at Home during Lockdown

The biggest advantage of the Duolingo English Test is that it can be taken at home.

Testing centres for IELTS and other exams are now closed – but with the Duolingo English Test, you do not need to attend a testing centre.

How do I take the test at home?

The process is as easy as it can get!

Step One: Register

Make a free account on the Duolingo site

You will have access to a 15-minute practice test, which you can take as many times as you like.

When you’re ready, pay the fee and unlock the test. 

Step Two: Make sure you have all the requirements

You will need:

  • Identity documentation, such as your passport, driver's license or government ID

  • A quiet, well-lit room

  • A computer with a reliable internet connection, a supported browser, a front facing camera, speakers and a microphone

  • To be seated alone – there can be no other person in the room. Your test will be recorded and checked by proctors to ensure that there is no malpractice.

Step Three: Take the test, anytime!

Once you pay the fee, you can then take the test any time that you want – no fixed appointment required!

How do I prepare for the Duolingo English Test?

So, the good news is, you do not need to wait long to take your test.

And it is totally possible for you to prepare for the Duolingo test during lockdown!

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Practice!

You can take the official practice test an unlimited number of times. Each time you do the test you’ll have a different set of questions – which means you will be able to get plenty of useful practice in.

Practising this way is highly recommended. It is the best way to help you get used to the structure of the exam, including the nature of the question types, the time limit given for each question, the shifts between different skill categories (e.g. a listening task may be followed by a reading task), and so on.

  1. Hone your vocabulary and grammar skills

Vocabulary and grammar skills are the building blocks of effective communication. Vocabulary involves knowing a large repertoire of words, their meaning and appropriate usage. Grammar skills involves the correct usage of the various functional elements of language, including punctuation, sentence construction rules, tense formation and so on. You will require these skills for tasks across the major skill sets you will be tested on.

  • Read: We recommend selecting good publications, well-known for their quality and with a wide variety of content – Time, The New Yorker, and National Geographic are a few examples.

  • Listen: to audio-based programmes, including television programmes, radio programmes, recorded lectures and podcasts. Ensure that you select good quality programmes – preferably of American/British origin, so that you can get used to the accents and pronunciation as well. BBC news and programmes, the National Geographic and Discovery channels, as well as a few movies, would be excellent starting points.

  1. Get Feedback

For the speaking and writing tests, getting feedback is an extremely valuable tool – something that, unfortunately, you will not get from the practice test. 

Here’s what you can do: take a note of some of the topics given for both speaking and writing, and practice on your own. Submit your work to someone you trust, preferably a teacher or a trainer, for feedback regarding the quality of your language use as well as areas where you require improvement. The more feedback you get, the better – it helps you to remember your problem areas and to watch out for them during the test.

Where will my Duolingo scores be accepted?

The US has the highest number of institutions now accepting Duolingo – ranging from the big public universities to small private colleges. So the odds of your target universities accepting your Duolingo scores are pretty good!

The following are just the tip of the iceberg!

Arizona State University

For students affected by test centre closures, this top public university is accepting Duolingo scores of tests taken between Feb 3-July 31 2020 – the minimum score is 95 in general, with scores from 100-120 required for specific programmes.

Florida Institute of Technology

This top technical university in Florida requires a minimum score of 100 for eligibility. 

Northeastern University

As one of the USA’s premier private universities, your Duolingo overall score will be evaluated for admission purposes – an overall score between 120-130 is typically your best bet for making the cut.

State University of New York – Albany 

SUNY Albany is accepting Duolingo test scores, as per their equivalence to TOEFL/IELTS – the minimum score will be set accordingly.

University of Pittsburgh

For admission to this public university, a Duolingo score of 120 or higher would be required – applications are reviewed holistically, and your scores will be weighed against other acceptance criteria for admission.

P.S. Duolingo permits you to send your scores to an unlimited number of universities – at no added cost!
If you are looking for some tips on how to prepare for Duolingo English Test check out our latest blog on 
Top Tips On The Duolingo English Test Preparation

Find your University in the US with Hurray

Our Overseas Education counselling team has all the experience and expertise required to help you find the right university in the US – based on your interests and strengths, your background and your goals.

Our services cover everything from the English proficiency test, to your application and SOP, and finally to settling you into your new home abroad.

With Hurray, your dream of studying in the US can come true!

Reach out to us to book your FREE one-on-one session, at: or 8971357938 / 9900426501.

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