English Placement Test

21 July 2017

What is EPT?

The EPT is an English Language placement test set by NUS Centre for English Language Communication for students entering the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music.
YST freshmen who have taken G.C.E./Cambridge 'O' level English or 'A' level General Paper are exempted from this test. All international freshmen must take the test, unless exempted by the Conservatory. Please contact the Conservatory Student Affairs Office if you are unsure if you need to take the test.

The purposes of the EPT are to:

1.   Determine the appropriate placement of students into the following modules:

  • Foundations of English (Music) I (EM1001)

  • Foundations of English (Music) II (EM1002)

  • English for Academic Purposes (Music) I (EM1201) or

  • English for Academic Purposes II (EM1202)

2.   Identify students who may be exempted from taking any of the above courses.

The test is administered in two parts: EPT - Writing Test and EPT - Speaking Test. There is no specific preparation for the EPT beyond making use of good English language learning courses.


Format of Test


EPT Writing Test Format

Students will be required to read a text and write a response to a question prompt within 90 minutes.  Responses are evaluated on content of the response, organization of ideas, and language use.


EPT Speaking Test Format

Students will be tested in pairs and will be given topics to think about and discuss with their partners. 

The speaking test will be documented by video recording for university purposes only. Evaluation is based on:

  • Fluency and pronunciation,

  • Genuineness and effectiveness of communication,

  • Fullness, completeness and accuracy of language use



The EPT results will place students into the bands listed below.  Band placement will determine the English language modules required for graduation.


-  No English class required


-  EM1202 in Semester 1, Year 1


-  EM1201 in Semester 1, Year 1, EM1202 in Semester 2, Year 1


-  EM1002 in Semester 1, Year 1, EM1201 in Semester 2, Year 1, EM1202 in Semester 1, Year 2


-  EM1001 and EM 1002 in Semester 1, Year 1, EM1201 in Semester 2, Year 1, EM1202 in Semester 1, Year 2