To obtain your Singapore Employment Pass, your qualification pedigree plays a significant role. Although IELTS is not required, applicants should portray an acceptable educational qualification.

No, to become an Employment Pass holder, one does not necessarily require IELTS to be eligible.

Is IELTS required for Singapore EP

What is IELTS?

IELTS is an English Language test and abbreviated from International English Language Testing System. It is an exam owned and conducted by The British Council around various parts of the world. IELTS is recognized by universities and employers in most of the countries mainly Australia, Canada, UK, and USA. It is also recognized by government agencies, professional bodies, and immigration authorities.

Purpose of IELTS

The IELTS exam is taken to gauge our proficiency with all the four language skills such as Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. It has been designed for any candidate applying study purpose, work, or immigration abroad.

You would need to take the IELTS exam if you are a citizen of a country where the native language is not English, to move to a country where the most common language is English. This exam is required so that you do not face any issues in conversation when you are in a foreign country.

As most immigration authorities do recognize IELTS as proof of English language skills of prospective immigrants, it is not a mandatory requirement to obtain employment pass in Singapore.

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Other Qualifications Required for Employment Pass

As IELTS is not a mandatory requirement in your qualification pedigree, your educational qualification still plays a major role and one of the major criteria for Employment Pass. The minimum qualification required is a recognised degree or higher.

MOM highly looks upon this, and certain universities will be looked down compared to a top-tier university from certain countries, and usually the top universities from western country are generally considered to be equal or better than the local universities (National University of Singapore, etc) and all others are generally viewed with scrutiny. The Government plays extra close attention especially to your tertiary education level and where your degree is from and will sift out applications from unknown universities unless you have exceptional experience in your field which is also decided on case to case to basis.

To get your Employment Pass, it has several key indicators such as educational background, working experience, salary and jobs skill demand in the market. So, if you have been offered a job and upon reviewing your application, if your education and experience do not align with your job requirements, most likely your application will be rejected. MOM prefer those who possess competency skills corresponding to the job they will be doing. Even though you carry years of experience, but your degrees are not directly related to the type of job, chances are MOM may reject your pass application. For instance, if the applicant is offered job as technician, but do not hold a technical degree, this is an instant shutdown. The authority rather prefers candidates who are specialized and hold experiences in the same field of work.

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Use the Self-Assessment Tool (SAT)

In any case you would want to know if you are eligible to apply for an Employment Pass, you may use the Self-Assessment Tool (SAT) which is an online tool offered by MOM.

This tool will help you check your eligibility and determine based on your nationality, education profile, working background/experience, and salary. From this, you will be able to know under which category you fall. Since MOM has enforced tight criterions on granting Employment Pass, this tool will give you a more definite and case by case answer according to your personal profile, position and condition. You may head to MOM’s site to use it.

If the tool indicates that you will not qualify, there is no point of applying for an Employment Pass as your application will be outright rejected.

Do note that this Self-Assessment Tool only serve as a system to check your eligibility and criteria prior to your application and NOT the approval of your application.