Tuesday 15 September 2020
  • The UK’s international organisation for educational and cultural opportunities announces the East Asian winners of its prestigious IELTS Prize
  • 29 talented students from across East Asia will receive a share of nearly 6 billion dong prize fund helping them to realise their education dreams
  • The Prize winners from East Asia will use their winnings to fund their education from medicine and life sciences to economics and finance. 

(Vietnam, 15 September 2020) The British Council, the UK’s international organisation for educational and cultural opportunities has announced the winners of the 2019/20 IELTS Prize. In its ninth year, the IELTS Prize has supported more than 270 students in East Asia to date; helping them pursue their dreams of university education. This year, 29 prize winners in East Asia are added to the list, including three outstanding IELTS test-takers in Vietnam who have been awarded the IELTS Prize 2019/20 local prizes. 

The British Council received over 1,400 applications and interviewed over 100 high flying individuals, who not only excelled at their IELTS test but explained their intentions to contribute to the society locally or abroad after study. Amongst that, three outstanding IELTS test-takers in Vietnam have won the local prizes with the values of 180 million dong, 150 million dong and 120 million dong for the First, Second and Third Prize respectively. These individuals will also become British Council IELTS Ambassadors.

East Asia is one of the largest markets for students wishing to study in the United Kingdom, North America and Australia. IELTS, the world’s most popular high-stakes English proficiency test, has been a crucial part of students’ entry requirements. In Vietnam, IELTS has also become a widely accepted certification to enter prestigious local universities, which used to accept students with entry exam only. Steve Adams, Director Examinations, for the British Council in East Asia said, 'The IELTS Prize recognises those high performing students that demonstrate the academic excellence and commitment to excel in the education pathway. More importantly, they show the determination to take what they learnt and use it to benefit their communities when they graduate. It is our privilege to help these talented individuals mark their mark in the world that is rapidly changing, where university education is one way that they can prepare themselves to thrive in the future.'

Commenting on his award, First Prize winner Dang Tran Tung said, 'I am extremely honoured. The IELTS has been my life in the last 4 years. I’ve spent a prodigious amount of time studying it, teaching it and taking it, and to receive this esteemed accolade from the British Council is just a tremendous sense of validation for what I am doing.' Dang Tran Tung has taken several IELTS tests with the British Council and also was the first test taker in Vietnam who got 9.0 overall score for both paper-based IELTS and computer-delivered IELTS with the British Council in Vietnam. He is the founder of an English teaching centre and will study at Curtin University (Australia) next year. 

'The IELTS Prize struck me as straightforward and no-nonsense: the application requirements were minimal, the portal was easy to navigate and I was surprised at how efficient things were. Compared to scholarships offered by universities and governments, the IELTS Prize asks very little for what it gives in return. The first time I read about the IELTS Prize, I immediately knew I had to take my chances given its prestige. Although I had a lot of stress and anxiety during the application process, the staff at the British Council were always there to support me by giving clear instructions and organising everything smoothly, which in fact helped me stay calm during nerve-racking moments like the interview. Personally, I think those who take the IELTS should really consider applying for the IELTS Prize', Huynh Anh Tuan, the Third Prize winner has shared.

Second Prize winner Pham Hoang Yen also highly praised IELTS Prize, 'Overall, the application process was a pleasant experience, especially during the interview where I had the most open and exciting conversation ever with a board of selection. However, the fun did not end with just a prize but also the opportunity to be a part of the IELTS Ambassador programme - which allows us to reach out to the community and use our story to inspire others. Such giving spirit served as a crucial indication of the resemblance between the scholarship mission and my passion, as well as what makes the IELTS Prize truly outstanding and meaningful.'

Due to Covid-19, for the first time ever, the British Council decides to host a virtual ceremony award for IELTS Prize's winners this year. The award will be occurred on Friday, 25th September 2020 and live-streamed on Fanpage IELTS British Council Vietnam. The live event is not only to honour the young talented IELTS test takers across East Asia but also offer interesting gifts to the audience.

For more information about IELTS prize, visit https://www.ieltsasia.org/ieltsprize.

About IELTS Prize

Since 2011, the British Council IELTS Prize (East Asia) has enabled more than 270 IELTS test-takers to pursue their studies around the world, including the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, and more.

The IELTS Prize is awarded to high-calibre individuals with the motivation to develop their career, to pursue an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in any chosen discipline in a higher education institution that accepts IELTS as part of its admission requirements around the world. While the IELTS Prize is not aimed at students in any one particular discipline, the British Council is eager to support test takers who demonstrate the potential to contribute to society with what they have gained from their undergraduate or postgraduate study experience. 

This year, due to the Covid-19 situation, in order to cater for students’ changing plans and to better support their study dreams, the British Council had extended the IELTS Prize eligibility to those deferring their studies into the next academic year 2021–22. More information can be found at https://www.ieltsasia.org/ieltsprize.

2019/20 IELTS Prize winner list

IELTS Prize winner 2019/20 Name University Subject/programme
First Prize (180 million dong) Dang Tran Tung Curtin University, Australia Master of Teaching
Second Prize (150 million dong) Pham Hoang Yen Aalto University, Finland MSc. in International Design Business Management
Third Prize (120 million dong) Huynh Anh Tuan University of Sydney, Australia Bachelor of Commerce in Business Information Systems

International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

IELTS is the International English Language Testing System, the world’s most popular English language proficiency test for higher education and global migration with over 3.5 million tests taken in the last year. Over 10,000 organisations trust and accept IELTS as a secure, valid and reliable indicator of true to life ability to communicate in English for education, immigration and professional accreditation. IELTS is jointly owned by the British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment.

About the test

Test takers are measured in listening, reading, writing and speaking. All tests are scored on a banded system from 1 (the lowest) through to 9 (the highest band).

IELTS offers a choice of two test versions, to serve both academic and non-academic purposes. IELTS Academic measures English language proficiency needed for an academic, higher learning environment. The tasks and texts are accessible to all test-takers, irrespective of their subject focus. IELTS General Training measures English language proficiency in a practical, everyday context. The tasks and texts reflect both workplace and social situations. IELTS General Training is suitable for immigration purposes to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom and Ireland.

A sample of government and professional associations who recognise or require applicants to hold an IELTS test result include:

  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada 
  • Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection 
  • UK Visas and Immigration 
  • Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools and National Council of State Boards of Nursing, USA
  • International Monetary Fund

Notes to Editor

Hanh Le 
Communications Manager
British Council 
20 Thuy Khue
Tay Ho
T +84 (0)4 38436780 (ext.1957)
F +84 (0)4 38434962

Ngoc Anh Nguyen 
Exams Marketing Manager
British Council 
1F Viettel Building
285 Cach Mang Thang Tam
District 10
T +84 1800 1299 ext 2407

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Last year we reached over 80 million people directly and 791 million people overall including online, through broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government. www.britishcouncil.org