Transatlantic Tie Up to Boost Opportunities for English Language Learners Worldwide

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A collaboration announced today by departments of two of the world’s top universities will give learners around the world greater access to high-quality internationally recognized language qualifications.

There is enormous synergy between our two organizations. We are both university-based, not-for-profit exam boards, committed to high-quality assessment and to supporting research and learning, and we both have teams of highly qualified, committed and professional staff.

University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations and the University of Michigan English Language Institute Testing and Certification Division have joined forces in a new collaboration that will promote the Michigan English language exams around the world. It will also work with stakeholders in different commercial and educational sectors, especially in the USA, to develop testing solutions precisely tailored to their needs.

Cambridge and Michigan are teaming up at a time of rapid growth in the global market for English language tests, with enormous demand for high-quality assessment for education, business and migration. Both organizations emphasize the need for learners and institutions to be able to choose between a range of tests that exactly meet their needs, rather than generic ‘one-size-fits-all’ solutions.

Dr. Michael Milanovic, CEO of Cambridge ESOL says “There is enormous synergy between our two organizations. We are both university-based, not-for-profit exam boards, committed to high-quality assessment and to supporting research and learning, and we both have teams of highly qualified, committed and professional staff.”

“We are bringing together the highly talented and skilled testing divisions of two world-class universities with the global distribution network of Cambridge ESOL, opening up significant opportunities for growth,” says James Penner-Hahn, Associate Dean for Budget at the University of Michigan College of Literature, Science and the Arts. “We believe this will propel the use of University of Michigan tests to a much broader audience.”

A new entity -- Cambridge-Michigan Language Assessments (CAMLA) -- will deliver the collaboration, with a management board from both Michigan and Cambridge. Employees of the University of Michigan testing division will continue as University of Michigan employees under the new arrangements.

The scope of the collaboration will be to develop and promote the Michigan tests and new services. It will not affect the Cambridge ESOL exams or IELTS.

Information for editors

The University of Michigan, with campuses in Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint, Michigan, is one of the world’s leading research and teaching universities with 19 colleges and enrollment of more than 58,000 students. The university’s English Language Institute, established in 1941, was the first of its kind in the United States. Since its founding, the ELI has become a leader in language teaching, learning, and assessment, in applied linguistics research, and in teacher education at the University of Michigan and throughout the world.

Michigan’s English language tests include:

ECCE:  Examination for the Certificate of Competency in English
ECPE:  Examination for the Certificate of Proficiency in English
MET:  Michigan English Test
MELAB: Michigan English Language Assessment Battery

University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (Cambridge ESOL) is a department of the 800 year-old University of Cambridge, England - recently ranked the world’s number one university by the prestigious QS Topuniversity.com listings.

Cambridge ESOL exams are taken by over 3 million people every year in 130 countries and recognized by more than 11,000 universities, employers and government departments. They are backed by a world-leading program of academic and practical research and by quality management systems certified to international standards. Cambridge ESOL is a part of Cambridge Assessment, Europe’s largest assessment agency.

Cambridge ESOL’s assessments, known as the Cambridge English exams, include a wide range of general, academic and professional language qualifications such as the Cambridge English: Advanced exam, as well as qualifications for language teachers and special tests designed to motivate and encourage children who are learning English. Cambridge ESOL also produces the IELTS tests, which are widely used by US universities.

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Stuart Giblin
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