About the MTELP

The English Language Center administers the institutional Michigan Test of English Language Proficiency (MTELP), level 3 by Michigan Language Assessment. It is used as a general proficiency test for adult non-native speakers of English who need to use English for academic purposes. The MTELP is a paper-based test.

The test is accepted by the institution at which it is offered but may not be accepted at other universities and colleges. If you are interested in taking the MTELP at UNLV but want to use it at another university, you should make sure that the university of your choice will accept the UNLV MTELP. 

If you plan to attend UNLV, the MTELP may be used for admission instead of the TOEFL test. 

The MTELP is designed to measure your English proficiency in the six basic language skill areas:

  1. Writing
  2. Grammar
  3. Vocabulary
  4. Reading
  5. Listening
  6. Speaking

The entire test lasts approximately 6 hours (including check-in at the examination site). Testing is divided into the following areas: 

  1. Written Composition
  2. Grammar, Vocabulary, and Reading Comprehension
  3. Listening Comprehension
  4. Speaking


To register for the MTELP, you first have to complete a test application form. You may either pick up an application form at our office, request one via email. All test fees are non-refundable. Once you have completed the application form, you must pay for the test by following the instructions below. Then come through to our office with the completed application form, the receipt, and a government issued ID to register for an available test date.

UNLV students who are non-native English speakers and are U.S. citizens or green-card holders are not required to take the full MTELP.

  • If they have graduated from a U.S. high school, they are placed in ESL classes and in ENG 113 based on their MTELP Writing scores only, or ACT and SAT scores
  • If they have not graduated from a U.S. high school, they are placed in ESL and ENG 113 based on a valid language proficiency test score (TOEFL iBT, MTELP, IELTS, PTE, etc.)

The MTELP is administered on a monthly basis in Fall and Spring semesters. Effective July 1, 2019, there will be a $50 MTELP rescheduling fee

MTELP Exam Dates

Fall 2021
  • Friday, October 8th
  • Friday, November 12th
  • Friday, December 10th


Payment for the MTELP must be done in person at the Cashier’s Office located in SSC-A Room 131.


Many English language learning materials are available at bookstores and libraries.

Michigan Language Assessment, which offers the MTELP, has launched the following free online resources:

  1. Free Preparation Resource Library: Our new website launched earlier this month, and we are pleased to offer a free resource library that features sample tests, seminars, activities, and more in an easily searchable layout.
  2. New Test Preparation Resources: In response to the current circumstances, our team is working hard to create more free resources for you to use at home. We are creating new writing study packs, interactive activities, videos, webinars, and more. These new resources will be published as available throughout the coming months.
  3. Tuesday Facebook Quizzes: Our weekly Facebook quiz questions are a great way for learners to add in a quick moment of practice in the week. Encourage your students to follow us on Facebook and participate in the quizzes.

We recommend the Michigan Test Workbook, Practice Tests, Listening & Study Guide. The following study resources are available in the Language Resource Center (FDH, 240) free of charge. To review these materials please ask the Lab Monitor at the front desk for assistance.

MELAB Skills Practice

  • MELAB and Michigan Test Vocabulary Practice
  • A Student’s Guide to the MELAB 1 of 2
  • A Student’s Guide to the MELAB 2 of 2
  • A Student’s Guide to the MELAB 2nd Ed. 1 of 2
  • A Student’s Guide to the MELAB 2nd Ed. 2 of 2

What to Bring on the Day of the Test

  • Bring the same government issued ID that you provided us at the time of registration
  • No cell phone, smart watch, or translation device is allowed during the test. 

MTELP Scores

The MTELP scores are reported within one week following the examination and are valid for two years.

Scores on the pb MTELP range from 23 to 100. A score of 76 (61 iBT TOEFL) is required for undergraduate admission. An overall MTELP score of 81 and 40 Writing is required for Hospitality admission.

MTELP Content and Format

Part 1: Written Composition

You will be given 30 minutes to write on a random topic. Write only on the topic given to you. In the topic, you might be asked to explain, describe, or argue for a specific position. Be sure to include a thesis statement followed by specific examples.

Your compositions will be graded on:

  • How clearly you express yourself in English
  • Your grammar
  • Your vocabulary usage

This means that your composition should be organized, your arguments should be fully developed, and you should show a range of grammatical structures using broad vocabulary. 

Part 2: Grammar, Vocabulary, and Reading Comprehension

This part of the test is multiple choice and contains 100 questions: 40 grammar, 40 vocabulary, and 20 reading. The total time limit is 75 minutes, with each question having four answer choices.

You must choose the ONE BEST answer that applies. 

Grammar example: 
"Do you want another cup of coffee?" 
"It depends on how much time ________ is before we have to leave.” 

  • A.) it
  • B.) there
  • C.) which
  • D.) what

The correct answer is ‘B’, there.
Vocabulary example: 
There are two types of vocabulary questions. In the first type, you are given a sentence with an underlined word or phrase. You should choose the word or phrase that is a synonym for the underlined word or phrase. In the second type of vocabulary question, you will read a sentence with a word missing. You should choose the word that best fits the sentence in meaning. 

Jim tried to conceal the package. 

  • A.) hide
  • B.) remember
  • C.) tie up
  • D.) wrap

The correct choice is ‘A’, hide.
The floor was dirty, so she decided to _________ it. 

  • A.) scrub
  • B.) screw
  • C.) scurry
  • D.) inscribe

The correct choice is ‘A’, scrub.

Reading example: 
While l was getting ready to go to town one morning last week, my wife handed me a little piece of red cloth and asked if I would have time during the day to buy her two yards of cloth like that. I told her l would be glad to do it. Putting the piece of cloth into my pocket, I took the train to town. 

Question: The person telling the story is…. 

  • A.) a married lady
  • B.) an unmarried lady
  • C.) a married man
  • D.) an unmarried man

The correct answer is ‘C’, a married man.

Part 3: Listening Comprehension

This is a multiple-choice, audio test containing 45 questions. It lasts about 20 minutes.

You will be given a test booklet and an answer sheet. You will listen to the problem, read the answer choices in the test booklet, and mark your answers on the separate scantron sheet. For each problem in this part of the test, there are three answer choices. You must choose the ONE BEST answer. If you are unsure, you should make a reasonable guess.

There are two kinds of problems in this part of the test: questions and statements.
Question example: 
You hear:  When is she going for vacation? 
You read:

  • A.) last week          
  • B.) to England          
  • C.) tomorrow 

The correct answer is ‘C’, tomorrow.

Statement example: 
You hear: That movie was pretty bad. 
You read:

  • A.) It was good.
  • B.) It wasn't good.
  • C.) It wasn't beautiful.

The correct answer is ‘B’, it wasn’t good.

Part 4: Speaking

The spoken interaction is centered on five distinct tasks. The tasks are presented to the test taker both orally and textually on the prompt. The five tasks are:

  1. Describe a picture.
  2. Talk about a personal experience related to the theme of the picture in task 1.
  3. Give and support a personal opinion on a topic similar to task 2.
  4. Explain the advantages and disadvantages of a specific situation.
  5. Give an opinion on a specific issue and convince the examiner to agree with that opinion.