Course Outline

English for Academic Purposes (EAP)

This course is designed for students wanting to enter tertiary/university studies at the University of Divinity (UD), including ELSPM’s Yarra Theological Union (YTU).

EAP is tailored to prepare students for formal academic studies in Theology and other allied religious disciplines.


Students need an entry level of English equivalent to IELTS 5.5.

Skills Development:

  • understand and respond to a wide variety of academic listening texts such as lectures, short presentations, speeches
  • predict and make inferences from information in basic academic talks on a range of topics
  • ask and respond to questions based on listening to academic and biblical texts

  • participate fully in a wide range of academic and biblical discussions
  • participate in debates on academic topics
  • ask and answer questions on academic and biblical topics
  • communicate effectively in oral presentations responding appropriately to questions and comments.

  • identify main ideas, sub categories and examples in a range of texts
  • use the skills of skimming and scanning
  • paraphrase academic ideas with complex vocabulary and sentence structure
  • identify implicit meanings and inferences in academic texts

  • identify and use complex word forms, using an adequate range of vocabulary, including some theological terms
  • structure writing to demonstrate an understanding of academic components
  • show control over grammatical conventions including linking devices and appropriate verb tenses
  • plan; revise and refine writing to enhance its overall impact.

Students in EAP also complete an academic referenced essay of 2000 words and a 10-minute academic oral presentation as part of their overall assessment.

Entry Requirements

Our courses have different entry requirements. Placement in a course is offered through Confirmation of Enrolment, however you may be placed in a different course, depending on your Placement Test.

Placement Test

In addition to meeting the entry requirements, each student will sit a Placement Test before commencing the course.

Placement tests are based on the basic skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening.

A test score is comparable to standardised tests like the Cambridge Quick Placement test (PET) and IELTS scores.

English for Academic Purposes

Students must have a level of English equivalent to a Band 5.5 IELTS score in all skill areas.

Most academic courses in Australia require a minimum of 6.0 to 6.5 IELTS entry score. Yarra Theological Union and other Colleges of the University of Divinity require an equivalent of 6.5, which equates to a Credit in all four areas of English – Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking with no skill below 6.0.

ELSPM conducts its own assessments in all four skills and marks to an equivalent IELTS level. Students who achieve a Credit in all four skills are recommended to the University of Divinity for enrolment.

IELTS Preparation

ELSPM offers IELTS preparation courses. It is generally believed that students can increase their score by 0.5 each 10 weeks. Different visas require different IELTS scores. Students must be at or close to the required score before beginning IELTS. The IELTS preparation course usually runs for 10 weeks each semester.

Regular Assessment

ELSPM has a regular assessment program that gives students a progress report every 5 weeks. These should be taken into account when you are planning your next level of study.

If you have any questions about Course Placement please contact the Academic Manager at