Not all international students are informed that they may study in Canada IELTS free, which is a pleasant surprise for those who are learning about this for the first time. In reality, even the Canadian Embassy is now allowing overseas students to study in Canada without having to take IELTS.
There are a few optional roads that an international student can follow so as to study in Canadian universities without taking or passing the IELTS test. The first and the easiest landing step is to research universities that do not make the IELTS mandatory. Another option includes the completion of an online English language course and then providing the certificate to those universities that find it acceptable. The last option might be obvious but it is worth mentioning it. To study in Canada one must get an English proficiency certificate, such as TOEFL – Test of English as a Foreign Language, CAEL – Canadian Academic English Language, CanTEST – Canadian Test of English for Scholars and Trainees.
Where Can I Study in Canada Without IELTS?
Since we told you that it is possible to study in Canada without IELTS, now we will show you in which higher education universities you can get accepted. Since Canada is continuously attracting students from overseas, the option to study without IELTS makes it even more compelling. Before jumping into some specific information regarding which universities in Canada make IELTS discretionary, you still need to check the international student entry requirements of the university you want to attend. Overall, each tertiary education institution has some specific admission requirements.
While some elite institutions favour IELTS, others will accept alternative types of English language evaluation, like the new Duolingo English Test. As a matter of fact, in case you have studied in an English-medium school for a four-year period or more, higher education institutions in Canada will accept you without the proof of IELTS. We have compiled a list of Canadian universities that accept international students without IELTS.
1. University of Winnipeg
The University of Winnipeg does not require IELTS certification credentials. Proof of English proficiency, on the other hand, is a required criterion. In order to study in this university you need to simply submit the English language proficiency certificate (including even Duolingo). University of Winnipeg has its own proprietary ELP or English Language Program that you may attend before applying to or beginning your degree. In the website of the University of Winnipeg you will find the official manual which gives full details of the language program exemptions and requirements. A great source to help you learn ways of escaping IELTS.
2. University of Saskatchewan
Located at the heart of Saskatoon, the University of Saskatchewan gives international students the opportunity to enroll into its courses by showing an overall score of 86 with minimum scores of 19 in each area from the TOEFL. The Test of English as a Foreign Language is a great substitute for the IELTS. Besides the acceptance of this test, students wishing to enroll in the University of Saskatchewan are able to take the CanTEST – Canadian English test for scholars and trainees, not to leave aside the aside alternative of participating in the university’s English Language Training program. CanTEST can be compared to IELTS since both of them assess four sub-skills, which are listening, reading, writing, and speaking. In addition, it is not a computerised examination, and it includes a face-to-face speaking exam.
3. Brock University
The International English Language Testing System or as it is known with the acronym IELTS, is acceptable in the Brock University, but not mandatory. Brock University will undoubtedly approve the TOEFL, the preferred scores include 88 iBT points, with a minimum of 21 on Speaking and on Writing 580 PBT 237 CBT (TSE 4.5) (TWE 4.5). Furthermore, students are able to prepare themselves linguistically by taking the Brock Intensive English Language Program which is intended to assist overseas students in improving their English language proficiency. You are qualified to apply for admission to any of the UG and PG programs they offer if you have completed an International Baccalaureate diploma or its equivalent using English as the medium of instruction.
4. Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador
International students wishing to enroll in Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador will be required to demonstrate their proficiency in English by submitting grades from the last four years of their academic experience. This exemption happens rarely, for this reason students should properly verify the exemptions by contacting the university straightaway and inform the adequate personnel that your previous degree program was taught in English. Moreover, the Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador accepts TOEFL scores, which requires a minimum score of 90, with at least 20 in each of Reading and Listening and no less than 25 in Speaking and Writing. As well as the CanTEST scores – a minimum band score of 4.5 in the hearing comprehension and reading comprehension subtests, as well as a score of 4 in writing. Not to forget the Cannadian Academic English Language (CAEL) requires an overall score of 70, with at least 60 in each band and no less than 70 in Writing and Speaking.
5. Carleton University
In order to study in Carleton University without IELTS, official transcripts for the past three years of high school, college, or university study in English will be required. There are some papers which are essential in demonstrating your proficiency in English language. These include:
- Canadian Academic English Language Test, in total 70 points
- TOEFL iBT, 86 average score
- Pearson Test of English, 60 points overall
6. University of Regina
International students wanting to enter the Advanced English for Academic Purposes must have at least one of these English proficiency tests:
- TOEFL Paper score of 525 or a TOEFL iBT score of 70
- Duolingo score of 95 – 105
- CAEL score of 50
- IELTS (Academic) Band score of 6.0
Keep in mind: Students can submit their IELTS scores but they also have other options beside IELTS.
7. Cambrian College
By not making the IELTS compulsory, Cambrian College will evaluate students’ English abilities, and those who do not satisfy the English language requirement will be required to attend extra English courses before beginning their normal program of study.
8. Concordia University
Concordia University’s primary language of teaching is English, so all the students who aim to study in this institution will have to meet one of the three requirements listed below in order to be excused from taking the English language competency test:
- Completion of at least three full years of undergraduate or graduate studies at an approved university.
- Candidates applying to the professional programs at the John Molson School of Business must have a minimum of five years of full-time work experience in an English environment, as well as a successful personal interview.
- Completion of a Quebec Diploma of Collegiate Studies (DEC) and a university degree from a Quebec university (evidence of DEC necessary).
Why Students Do Not Prefer to Take the IELTS Exam
Overall, many individuals do not want to take the IELTS exam because they believe it would jeopardise their prospects of admission to a Canadian university. But to be more specific, there are four reasons that typically prevent students from taking the IELTS exam:
- The IELTS exam framework requires students to write short and long essays, which might be challenging for those who aren’t confident in their writing talents.
- The application fee for the IELTS exam is 223.42 CA$, which might be intimidating for some students.
- Because the speaking component with the teacher is different from other sections of the exam, IELTS may take more than one day to complete.
- The IELTS speaking part test is given face-to-face, which may be intimidating for certain students who may become anxious while responding to questions in person.