CIOL RVC Scheme

CIOL’s Recognition, Validation and Certification (RVC) is designed to offer organisations who deliver language education, vocational learning or assessments for linguists a formal means to achieve recognition and validation of their programmes and activities, through alignment with the UK’s Chartered body for linguists. 

Granted its Royal Charter by HM Queen Elizabeth II, CIOL’s work with language communities around the world, as well as in the UK, promotes collaboration and partnership with other like societies and associations, Departments of State, universities, public services and businesses with whom we share an understanding of the value, importance and benefits of advanced language use and language learning.

Our Royal Charter supports us and you in this endeavour, in particular by committing CIOL to: 

  • Contribute towards international goodwill by encouraging the effective study and practice of languages;
  • Provide means of recognising linguists who are qualified in the professions, the arts, the sciences, industry, trade and commerce;
  • Provide linguistic assistance for and co-operating with any person or groups of persons interested in the use, teaching or study of languages.

About the scheme

Who is the scheme for?

The CIOL RVC Recognition scheme is open to any organisation, in the field of languages (learning, assessment or training) that meets the criteria required for each level of the scheme. 

  • The scheme is suitable for general language learning programmes at CEFR (Common European Framework) for adults at level B1/B2 and above, training for working professionals and learning or development programmes for specialist linguists e.g. interpreters, translators.  
  • Applicant organisations will receive a detailed and confidential validation report with free-to-use, non-confidential summary statement for public use.
  • Successful applicants will benefit from recognition and verification from the UK’s Chartered body for language professionals of your programme’s structure, content, linguistic level, delivery and learner outcomes.

What are the options?

There are three levels of recognition. Each level requires prior achievement and compliance with earlier levels i.e. to have a programme certified, it must already be recognised and validated.

How does it work?

The checks and inspection report for the Recognise and Validate stages are based on information about the organisation, their programme(s) and their pedagogy, content or assessment approach:

RVC Programmes

CIOL, the Chartered Institute of Linguists, is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on the University of Bristol’s MA in Translation.

CIOL is satisfied, based on the evidence provided, that the University is providing a programme embedded in both academic and professional contexts that delivers an excellent preparation for linguists seeking a career in translation. Drawing on current practice, emerging trends and future language specialisms, the programme anticipates developments in the translation industry which will affect the working lives of aspiring translators. The policy, quality, content and assessment documentation seen by CIOL is comprehensive and is evidence of excellent programme management. Students embarking on the programme can be confident that they will emerge equipped with the professional skills and knowledge they need to be work-ready to enter the translation industry.


CIOL is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on Path Examinations English Language Assessments for adults at the B1 level of CEFR and above.

CIOL recognises the ambition and intentions of Path Examinations to provide practical, applied language assessments focussed on language needs for every day contexts and real-life situations. The assessments are aligned to CEFR language levels and assured by a level a rigour applied to their provision offering reassurance and confidence to those taking the assessments.


The Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL) is satisfied that GroupHorse’s Professional Certificate in Conference Interpreting, UNCIC, meets the criteria to be recognised as a Validated Programme.

Working with the UN to provide specialist training and development for conference interpreters, Grouphorse plays a critical role in qualifying programme graduates to deliver professional levels of service within a much needed international conference interpreting market. CIOL recognises the quality of GroupHorse’s programme and the rigour with which it undertakes its teaching and assessment activities. Backed by the UN and the European Commission (EC) and with collaboration from the Association Internationale des Interprètes de Conférence (AIIC) the Professional Certificate in Conference Interpreting is standards driven and offers an excellent preparation for international interpreting work at the highest levels.


CIOL, the Chartered Institute of Linguists, is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on the ESOL Exams for adults at the B1 level of CEFR and above from ACE English Examinations.

CIOL recognises the aim of this suite of exams to support learners seeking proof of their English language skills by providing an opportunity to gain a qualification which is recognised internationally and will help them in pursuit of their studies, their work or their leisure activities. ACE’s ESOL Exams are aligned to relevant CEFR language levels and CIOL is satisfied that the assessments are robustly organised and rigorously delivered, such that learners and those to whom they may present their achievements can have complete confidence in and assurance of their validity.


CIOL, the Chartered Institute of Linguists, is pleased to confer Recognised Programme status on the Tomsk State University’s Global MA in ELT Leadership.

CIOL recognises the aim of the University to offer an online MA to a global audience of future language leaders seeking qualification, career development and recognition within the language learning sector. The programme combines academic theory and learning with professional practice and experience to serve those wishing to become experts in a specific ELT area or ELT manager. Graduates of the programme will have the knowledge and expertise to become leaders in educational management and the language learning sector.


The Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL), is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on the University of Nottingham Ningbo China’s Preliminary Year Programme delivered by the Centre for English Language Development.

CIOL recognises the important role the programme has in recruiting students and enabling access to undergraduate study in a British university setting and in the provision of English language and academic skills aligned to international standards (CEFR). CIOL is satisfied with the evidence provided by the University of Nottingham Ningbo China that the programme has established and comprehensive policies and processes to support students, teaching and learning in order that international expectations of quality standards are met and maintained. Students on the programme benefit from specialist teaching and valuable learning opportunities that can ultimately lead to enhanced employability, international careers and added value within a global world of work.


The Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL) is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on the University of Nottingham Ningbo China’s Post-graduate Pre-sessional Programme delivered by the Centre for English Language Development.

CIOL is satisfied, based on the evidence provided, that the University is providing a high-quality programme that encourages participation in post-graduate study and supports and develops successful applicants to achieve the academic language and study skills required to be successful in British-style higher education. Rigorous quality management is in place at all levels of the programme and teaching and assessment is focussed on the achievement of international language standards (CEFR). The programme offers post-graduates a robust preparation for the rigours of study in English at this level, a supportive student experience and a clear pathway ultimately to transition into a global world of work.


The Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL), is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on Xi’an Jiaotong Liverpool University’s Undergraduate English for Academic Purposes Programme delivered by the English Language Centre.

The Centre provides excellent support for students during the first two years of their degree whilst they are transitioning to study within English-medium higher education. The programme develops English language skills as well as delivering the specific English skills required for academic success. CIOL is satisfied, based on the information provided, that the programme targets relevant English language levels for degree study and welcomes the focus the Centre places on preparing students for their chosen subject-specific discipline. There are wide-ranging university structures, policies, guidance and effective quality management in place to ensure that standards are achieved and maintained and that students are well supported through their academic journey as an undergraduate student.


The Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL), is pleased to confer Validated Programme status on Xi’an Jiaotong Liverpool University’s Pre-sessional English Programme delivered by the English Language Centre.

The Centre provides excellent preparation for students in advance of starting their master’s degrees. The programme develops higher level English language skills as well as the discipline-specific language skills required for academic success at postgraduate level. CIOL is satisfied, based on the information provided, that the programme targets relevant English language levels for master’s level study and welcomes the focus the Centre places on preparing students for their chosen subject-specific discipline. There are wide-ranging university structures, policies, guidance and effective quality management in place to ensure that standards are achieved and maintained and that students are well supported through their academic journey as a postgraduate student.


For full details of the scheme and application forms, or to discuss whether your language qualification or training is suitable for consideration for the scheme, please contact Dom Hebblethwaite, Head of Ventures.