Study in Canada without IELTS 2024


9 mins read131.3K Views
Raj Vimal
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Feb 6, 2024 14:56 IST

If you want to study in Canada without IELTS exam 2024 then you can try other alternatives to achieve your goal. PTE and Duolingo English Test are famous English proficiency exams.  All these tests are based on similar patterns and consist of four sections; Listening, Speaking, Writing and Reading.

Study in Canada Without IELTS

Is it possible to study in Canada Without IELTS exam in 2024? What are the alternatives of IELTS to study in Canada? This is one of the most searched queries related to getting higher education Canada. The IRCC Canada asks IELTS score at the the time of offering a Canada Student Visa. The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is one of the most popular English Language Proficiency Tests in the world. It is not only costly but needs a lot more effort to pass the exam. Now the question arises how and where to study in Canada without IELTS?

You can do this strategically by choosing to study in universities that do not consider IELTS as a mandatory criterion. To evaluate your proficiency in the English language, popular Canadian universities adopt alternative measures. In some universities, you can get enrolled by producing a letter of recommendation from your previous faculties regarding your English proficiency. There is also an exemption for students of various nationalities regarding English language proficiency tests. In this article, we will cover various aspects of studying in Canada without IELTS, including the universities to study in Canada without IELTS.

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Is it Possible to Study in Canada without IELTS?

It is true that you can study in Canada without IELTS. Alternative English proficiency exams, like the TOEFL, PTE, or Duolingo English Test, might be accepted by some institutions or colleges. Additionally, if the applicant has achieved a specific level of English proficiency or has worked in an English-speaking nation for a predetermined period, some schools may waive the IELTS requirement for Canada. In addition to this, students who have scored low on the IELTS can also apply to IELTS 5.5 band universities in Canada.

IELTS Alternative for Canada

As mentioned above, it is possible to study in Canada without IELTS. There are other tests, besides IELTS, that prove your proficiency in the English language. IELTS alternative for Canada are given below:

  • You have qualified for other English Proficiency tests such as the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or Pearson Test of English (PTE)
  • Cambridge English C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency
  • Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL)
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) English
  • English Language Diagnosis and Assessment/Certificate of Proficiency in English (ELDA/COPE)
  • You have studied in an English-medium school for four or more four years
  • You are a native of an English-speaking nation
  • You have attended the university’s language school for a semester or for a year

If you meet one or more of these criteria, you are likely to be eligible to study in most universities in Canada without IELTS. 

Universities in Canada without IELTS

Here’s a list of five Canadian Universities where you can apply without an IELTS score:

Below we have explained the university-related information in detail

University of Winnipeg

University of Winnipeg

University of Winnipeg does not consider IELTS certification as an essential requirement. However, it is compulsory to produce proof of your proficiency in the English language. The University of Winnipeg comes with various cheaper choices such as ELP or the English Language Program. One can avail of this program at the university itself.

Brock University

Brock University

To get an enrolment at Brock University, IELTS is not necessary. However, it is good if you have it. This institution considers TOEFL or the university’s Intensive English Language Program (IELP) apart from IELTS. Moreover, if you have completed an International Baccalaureate Diploma where English has been the mode of instruction, then your probability of getting accepted is confirmed. Further, if you have carried out your studies for the past three years in English with decent grades, then those grades can be shown as a substitute for the IELTS.

University of Saskatchewan

University of Saskatchewan

With more and more international students applying to the University of Saskatchewan, the university’s English proficiency requirement is not that lenient. The University of Saskatchewan accepts both IELTS and TOEFL. Besides, it also accepts the CanTEST, which is the Canadian Test of English meant for scholars and trainees of different geographic locations. If you do not have any certification regarding English language proficiency, the university’s English Language Training program is a good option for you. Moreover, if you have three years of full-time study with a school with a Canadian curriculum in English, whether in Canada or not, you are still eligible to apply.

Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador

This is one of the top-ranked and reputed universities in Canada with approximately 18,000 students and a 66% acceptance rate. The Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador is well-known for offering excellent courses in business management, medicine, and engineering. This is the reason why many international students aspire to get enrolled in this university. If you are interested in studying at this university without IELTS. There is no need to worry as you can submit your TOEFL or CanTEST certification. Additionally, you can also undergo the Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) proficiency test. You can also avail of the university’s English as a Second Language (ESL) or English Language Program (ELP) classes.

Cambrian College

Cambrian College is known for its broad focus on research and after-school employment. This college warmly accepts students from different nooks and corners of the globe. There is an agreement between Cambrian College and other universities in Canada as to which international students can continue their studies with other educational institutions. For getting admission to this college, IELTS and TOEFL are not needed. According to the university’s official website, once an international student enters their campus, the college will gauge their English spoken and written skills.

Canada Student Visa without IELTS

Students wanting to study in Canada need to provide proof of their English language proficiency if they belong to a non-English speaking country. Generally speaking, the minimum IELTS score for Canada is 6.0 to 6.5 depending on the level of education. Even though IELTS is the preferred language test for Canada immigration, students may provide scores of other English language tests as well. Students may provide the scores of TOEFL, Duolingo, PTE, etc. in place of IELTS for Canada study visa. PTE Academic score is accepted in Canada for all Canada SDS applications.

Though IELTS is a preferred English language test for Canadian Universities, there are IELTS alternatives for Canada. These include the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), Pearson Test of English (PTE), and Duolingo English Test (DET). All these tests are based on similar patterns and consist of four sections; viz. Listening, Speaking, Writing, and Reading. Moreover, in order to prepare for these tests, students usually require 2-4 months.

Related Reads:

Study Abroad Without IELTS

Studying in New Zealand without IELTS

Student Guide to Canada

SPP and non-SPP visa requirements to study in Canada

Study in Canada - Colleges, Eligibility & Scholarships

Options to study in Canada after XII

Study in Canada without IELTS FAQs

Q. Is IELTS compulsory for studying in Canada?

A. For studying in Canada, including getting permanent residency, language testing is necessary; however, the requirement changes for study visas. IELTS or another language test may be required by some universities and colleges as part of their application criteria, but not all of them. In place of IELTS, students may also appear for other exams such as TOEFL, PTE, etc. To confirm their criteria for language testing, you should contact the specific university or college you are interested in attending. Additionally, keep in mind that getting a visa or study permit in Canada can require a good enough score on an authorised language test.

Q. Can I study in Canada without IELTS score?

A. Yes, you can pursue a degree in Canada without submitting an IELTS score. There are certain programmes that do not indicate an IELTS minimum requirement, despite the fact that IELTS scores are normally required as part of the admissions process for overseas students in Canada. Some college programmes admit international students based on their high school transcripts and do not require IELTS. Some programmes that serve as stepping stones to Canadian universities also don't require IELTS results. University-based foundational and bridging programmes are examples of these. IELTS scores are typically required for direct admission to undergraduate and graduate programmes in Canada, but certain college and route programmes do not. Also available to students are IELTS alternatives for Canada like the TOEFL, PTE, etc.

Q. What are the IELTS alternatives for studying in Canada?

A. Some of the IELTS alternatives for studying in Canada are:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), Pearson Test of English (PTE), Duolingo English Test (DET)
  • Cambridge English C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency
  • Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL)
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) English
  • English Language Diagnosis and Assessment/Certificate of Proficiency in English (ELDA/COPE)

Q. What is the minimum IELTS score required to study in Canada?

A. Depending on the institution and the programme you are applying to, a minimum IELTS score may be needed to study in Canada. In general, programmes demand a minimum overall score of 6.5 and a minimum of 6.0 in each of the four IELTS sections (Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening). Higher scores may be needed by some schools, especially for graduate programmes. It is best to clarify the minimal IELTS score criteria with the individual university you are interested in. Additionally, keep in mind that getting a visa or study permit in Canada can require a good enough score on an authorised language test.

Q. Which are the top MBA colleges in Canada?

A. Some of the top MBA colleges in Canada based on rankings and reputation include:

  1. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto
  2. Schulich School of Business, York University;
  3. Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University
  4. Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia
  5. Ivey Business School, Western University

Rankings and reputation should not be the only things taken into account while selecting an MBA programme. Programme structure, faculty, location, networking possibilities, and pricing are further crucial considerations.

Q. What is 8777 on the IELTS?

A. You will obtain IELTS band scores for each of the four portions of your exam after it is over, with scores ranging from 1 to 9. A candidate receives an 8 Band Score in the Listening Section and a 7 Band Score in each of the other sections (Reading, Writing, and Speaking), collectively known as an 8777. The 8777 band score is mostly important for skilled immigrants who want to apply through Express Entry and settle permanently in Canada.

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Raj Vimal
Study Abroad Expert

Raj Vimal has experience of 7+ years in SEO Content Writing, which includes 5+ years in the Ed-Tech industry. He has written articles about studying abroad, especially in the USA, UK, and other English-speaking coun... Read Full Bio

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Snevam Goud

2 years ago

Sir,I'm question is I completed diploma in 2017im Diploma student not inter(10+2).can I use medium of instruction instead of English proficiency test.i got 328 in GRE

Reply to Snevam Goud


Piyush Kohli

2 years ago

Hi Snevam, please check the entry requirements of the university where you are planning to take admission, if they have asked for the English language proficiency test scores then you need to give the exam else you can apply without it.



2 years ago

I have completed my undergraduate entirely in English. My GMAT score is 750 with 96 percentile in verbal section. Schulich business school gave me an Ielts waiver. Do i need to write Ielts for my Canadian student visa .



Piyush Kohli

2 years ago

Hi Arpit, if you have secured admission then you can apply for a student visa.


Vacha Patel

2 years ago

Hello I have applied for Canada college and i will be joining my college from january 2022 intake it is a 1 year post graduate diploma course and my ielts score is expiring in january 2022 so will i need ielts score for the 2 nd year course too??

Reply to Vacha Patel


Aprant Agarwal

a year ago

Hello Vacha. Please note that an IELTS score is valid for a period of 2 years.


Kumar Himmat

3 years ago

I'm bachelor of civil engineer with more than 6 experience. now I'm planning to pursue master degree from Canadian University in winter season, but i have not give ITLES or any other language test. Please advise for which Universities can i apply without ITLES and what is the process.

Reply to Kumar Himmat


Piyush Kohli

2 years ago

Hi Kumar, we have mentioned few universities in the above article. Also, refer to the below link and learn about the application process in Canada:

I passed 12th in 2012. 2012 to 2014 gap. Then i started and completed in 2017. Is it chance to get student visa without ielts??

Reply to Nilesh Chaudhary

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