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15 Great Canadian Universities Without IELTS in 2022

Foreign students may wonder if they can study in Canadian universities without IELTS. Well, many would be pleased to find out that there are a couple of universities that accept applicants even without an IELTS exam score.

Studying in Canada

The quality of education in Canada is one of the best in the world. Many universities across the country are often included in international rankings

Students will learn from highly qualified instructors who will challenge and bring out the best in them. At the same time, they can build their network among a passionate, diverse, and competent community of learners. 

Obtaining a degree from a university in Canada will make the graduate more competitive in the labor market. It will open up numerous opportunities for career advancement. 

The culture in the country is also very welcoming to foreign students, making it one of the safest countries for them.

Apart from that, Canada has the highest quality of life in the world. It outperforms the rest of the countries in many aspects, such as the job market and political and economic stability, to name a few.

What is IELTS? 

IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System. It aims to assess the ability of the individual to listen, read, write, and speak English. 

The IELTS is often a prerequisite for foreign individuals who come from countries where English is not their native language. It will prove the level of their proficiency in English, which will allow them to work or study in countries such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, and the USA. 

Upon taking the test, individuals will receive a score ranging from 1 to 9, with 9 being the highest. It indicates that the level of skill of the test taker is that of an expert user. 

Each institution will have their own requirements regarding the IELTS score. But in general, having a higher score is more desirable. 

Taking this test comes with a cost, which might be hefty for some students. In the USA, the price is usually between $245 and $255. The exact price for each country may vary. Because of this, looking for Canadian universities without IELTS requirements would be a great option to save some money.

Not only that, some applicants find the IELTS more difficult than other tests taken for the same purpose. Whatever the reason may be, foreign students can expand their options to see what best suits their situation.

A List of Canadian Universities Without IELTS  

There are at least 15 Canadian universities without IELTS requirements. Nevertheless, this does not mean that applicants do not need to prove that they have a command of the English language.

Since the medium of instruction is in English, foreign students will need to learn the language so that they can adapt to the new environment. It would be nearly impossible to navigate through the country, let alone study at a university, without being proficient in English.

Alternatives to the IELTS Score in Canadian Universities

Instead of submitting an IELTS score, applicants can present alternatives that will similarly prove their proficiency in English. These include the following: 

  • Proof that the applicant studied for a minimum number of years in a secondary or post-secondary institution where English was the medium of instruction
  • Proof that the applicant belongs to an English-speaking country
  • Registration for the English language course at the university in Canada
  • Scores obtained from other English proficiency tests apart from IELTS

As stated, applicants can take other English proficiency tests that will prove their ability to communicate in the language just like IELTS. The following tests are: 

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
  • Pearson Tests of English (PTE)
  • Duolingo English Test (DET)
  • Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) and Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE)
  • Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL) Tests
  • Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP)
  • Academic English Program for University and College Entrance (AEPUCE)

Previously, the CanTEST, administered by the University of Ottawa, was an accepted alternative to the IELTS. However, they have stopped offering this test as of August 15, 2021.

Canadian Universities Without IELTS in Saskatchewan

University of Saskatchewan

The University of Saskatchewan (USak) is a public university located in the city of Saskatoon. It is one of the leading research-intensive medical doctoral universities in the country. 

Their student population consists of more than 3,000 international students who come from 130 different countries around the world.

They have existing partnerships with international institutions, making sure that students are well-connected with the global community. 

Different services for retail, culinary, and health are available to all of their students. They also have an extensive collection in their library. So, learners, teachers, and researchers have a multitude of resources at their fingertips. 

Instead of an IELTS score, applicants can submit any of the following:

  • Higher or secondary education certificate stating that English was the medium of instruction
  • Scores on the TOEFL iBT, CAEL, Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB), CAE, or Duolingo English Test
  • Completion of International Baccalaureate (IB) or Advanced Placement (AP) English
  • Completion of an English Language Proficiency (ELP) program in the University of Saskatchewan Language Centre and University of Regina

University of Regina

The University of Regina is included in the top 50 universities globally that were established less than 50 years ago. 

There are around 3,000 international students from almost 100 countries studying on the main campus of the university. The community is multicultural, welcoming students from different backgrounds. 

They offer over 120 undergraduate and 80 graduate programs. Each program prepares the students with the necessary skills so that they can succeed in their careers. If graduates do not get employed in an industry related to their field of study within six months, they have the option to return to the university. Free undergraduate classes for a duration of one year will be given to them.

Canadian Universities Without IELTS in Manitoba 

University of Winnipeg

The University of Winnipeg is a dynamic campus home to students from different cultures. They offer high-quality programs, both undergraduate and graduate, in the fields of science, arts, business and economics, kinesiology, and education, among many others.

It is required for all applicants to prove their proficiency in English. In some cases, the university allows applicants to sign a waiver of the English Language Requirement. However, this can only be done under certain conditions. At the same time, international students coming from specific countries are exempted from this requirement.

Brandon University

Brandon University offers programs in the fields of arts, education, health studies, music, and science. Local professionals can also take certificate courses so that they can further enrich their practical experience.

International students are provided with one-on-one interaction with professors, giving them the academic support they need to excel in their studies. They also provide research opportunities that cannot be found at larger universities.

Canadian Universities Without IELTS in Ontario 

Brock University

This is a public research university that offers over 120 different programs. With this, international students can most likely find a program that fits their interests and skills. 

Apart from that, the campus is situated in Niagara. This means that students are always surrounded by nature and can participate in many exciting activities during their free time.

Students who have English as their secondary language can enroll in any of the programs available at the university. These include the Intensive English Language Program (IELP), Accelerated English Language Program (AELP), Academic Transitions (AcT), and Summer English Language Program (SELP). Taking these courses will grant full admission to the program and help students cope with the new learning environment.

Cambrian College

Cambrian College was established in 1967. Since then, it has been the top post-secondary institution in Northern Ontario.

Their class sizes remain small, providing students with a hands-on learning experience from well-experienced faculty members. There are more than 1,600 foreign students coming from 40 different countries. 

Applicants who prefer not to take language proficiency tests can enroll in their English for Academic Purposes Program (EAPP). It usually lasts for four to ten months, but fast-track options are also available. 

University of Guelph

The University of Guelph (U of G)  is a public university that was established in 1964. 

It is one of the top comprehensive universities in the country. They offer different English Language Programs so that students can confidently and competently communicate with their professors, classmates, and even in settings outside of the campus. 

Results from a standardized language test are required for applicants who do not have English as their primary language. They accept the CAEL, PTE-A, TOEFL, TOEFL iBT, and an English Language Certificate from the University of Guelph. Applicants must obtain a specific minimum score for their results to be considered. 

Duolingo is currently not recognized by the university.

University of Ottawa

The University of Ottawa is well-equipped with the necessary space, expertise, tools, and technologies so that students can become the best versions of themselves. It is often found on the list of top universities in Canada, even making its way to the top 10. Not only that, it is also competitive in the international sphere. The university is among the top 200 universities across the globe.

Almost all of the courses at the university are taught in English or French. Because of this, applicants applying to any of the programs should have undergone at least 3 years of full-time study in an institution that only teaches in English or French. If this is not the case, scores on the TOEFL iBT, PTE, CAE, Duolingo, or CAEL must be submitted. 

Under certain circumstances, students can be admitted to the university with language conditions. They must enroll in an English-as-a-second-language course or the English Intensive Program (EIP). 

The University of Ottawa is one of the Canadian universities without IELTS requirements.

Algoma University

Algoma University provides students with opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom. A cross-cultural learning experience can be expected when studying at the university. 

Individuals who prefer smaller class sizes can consider Algoma University since a maximum of 75 students per class is implemented. Because of this, the transition to a university becomes easier and less stressful. At the same time, discussions between students and professors can be done more comfortably and exhaustively. 

Only undergraduate programs are available at Algoma University. 

They have two programs for applicants who have English as their second language, specifically, the English for Academic Purposes Program (EAPP) and the Short-Term ESL Program (STEP). 

Carleton University

Carleton University is a research and teaching institution located in Ottawa. They offer both undergraduate and graduate programs in a wide range of fields.

Applicants without an IELTS score can submit results from other proficiency tests such as the CAEL, CAEL-CE, TOEFL iBT, or PTE-A. 

Apart from that, students can also choose to complete the ESLA 1900 or ESLA 1905 offered by the university itself. They should obtain a final grade of B- or higher in the said courses. 

Official transcripts obtained from a university in a country where English is the primary language are also accepted. This includes the USA and the UK, among others. However, they should have been issued within the past three years.

Seneca College 

Seneca College offers a wide variety of programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. They even have short courses that can help students build new skills that are in line with the ever-changing global landscape.

For interested students, they can present scores on the CAEL, Cambridge English Exams, Duolingo, PTE-A, or TOEFL iBT. 

However, they have other options as well. Applicants can provide proof that they have completed at least two years of full-time study in an institution where the primary language is English. This goes down to one year if a postsecondary course was completed.

Those who want to further their skills can complete an intensive English program instead. The English Language Institute, located at the university itself, offers relevant programs for this purpose.  

Canadian Universities Without IELTS in Newfoundland and Labrador

Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador

It is the only university located in Newfoundland and Labrador. They have five campuses that are home to over 19,000 students who come from more than 115 countries. 

Nearly half of their research projects, or 40%, are on topics related to the ocean. Because of this, students who want to pursue a career in this field should include the university on their radar. 

They offer an English as a Second Language program at the Grenfell Campus. Applicants can choose to take this course should they be unable to meet the English language requirements of the university.

Canadian Universities Without IELTS in Quebec

McGill University

McGill University is one of the top universities not just in Canada but also in the world. They have programs for undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate students.

Certain applicants are exempted from providing proof of English proficiency, as long as they meet the conditions of the university. If that is not the case, they can submit results of the CPE, CAE, CAEL, DET, PTE-A, or TOEFL tests.  

A McGill Certificate of Proficiency in English can also be obtained after completion of their English Language Programs. 

Concordia University

Concordia University prepares its students to tackle societal issues armed with the necessary competence to contribute positively to the world. 

Similarly, some applicants are exempted from providing proof of English proficiency. Apart from IELTS, they accept test results from TOEFL, CAEL, DET, PTE, CPE, and CAE. However, there may be differences in the specific tests accepted by the programs. 

Canadian Universities Without IELTS in British Columbia

Okanagan College

Their programs range from the arts, commercial aviation, food, wine, and tourism, as well as health and social development. However, there are many more unique courses offered by Okanagan College. International students will surely get to explore their interests, no matter how seemingly uncommon they may be.

Applicants must prove their proficiency in the English language to be granted admission. Each program has its own requirements. Nevertheless, they are not just limited to the IELTS.



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