If you're coming to Scotland to live, work or study you'll need a good command of the English language.
Having good English language skills will help you to integrate and is essential for work and study.
Improving your English needn't be a huge hurdle if you're willing to put in some time for studying and you'll find plenty of Scottish people keen to help you.
Language requirements for a UK visa
If you're planning a move to Scotland you'll need to know about the Points Based System which the UK Border Agency use to decide if you're eligible to live here.
Part of the criteria they use to assess each case is the ability to speak English.
Visit the UK Border Agency website for a self-assessment points calculator and detailed information on language requirements
Getting started with English
Support is available if you arrive with limited English language skills.
The Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) offers a course in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), designed for dealing with work, study, community and social situations.
ESOL also introduces you to a range of aspects of everyday life in Scotland.
All refugees and asylum seekers are eligible for free ESOL provision to improve their English language skills.
Visit the ESOL Scotland website for details of their courses
Other organisations that provide help with English language include
- The Refugee Council
- World University's Refugee Education and Training Advisory Service
- Refugee Advice and Guidance Unit
Visit the My World of Work website for a list of English language course providers across Scotland, a mix of tools, features and up-to-the minute job information.
One great way to improve your English is a language exchange, where you give help to someone studying your own language, in return for them help you with English.
Many students of English use this to boost their studies.
It works well because you can get specific help from a native speaker with things you find particularly difficult.