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Immigration to Canada: IELTS vs CELPIP

This week i taught a course in CELPIP Exam Preparation, and it was intense !! - 14 hours over 2 days with 4 students - 7 hours per day on one skill - SPEAKING.

I had a great time and learned a lot. Lucky for me, I had some fantastic students -

All of them were really friendly, polite, funny, intelligent and full of positive energy.

My specialty is IELTS, so i needed to do some research on the CELPIP Exam. I spent lots of time studying and becoming familiar with each part of the exam. If you don't know, CELPIP is the exam you need to take if you want to immigrate to Canada, or apply for Permanent Residence. Well, in fact, candidates who want to become permanent residents or citizens in Canada can choose between the IELTS and the CELPIP. Most students agree that there are pros and cons to each one.

Apparently, Canadian immigration regulations seem to have different requirements for different kinds of immigrants. Basically, it is like this:

The more skilled you are in your professional field, the higher the score you need on the CELPIP or the IELTS. In fact, my students need an overall score of 9 on the CELPIP and about 7.5 on the IELTS.

This can be difficult, even for people who are already living and working in Canada. Sometimes people who are living here, in an English speaking country, may be a little over confident of their speaking ability. And... Why not?? They usually speak English every day at home, at work, on the streets, and socially. They have totally functional English for their daily lives. However, exams can require students to complete tasks and use language in a high pressure environment, which can sometimes lead to a low mark, if students have not completed some training and done enough practice.

Three of my students were from Venezuela and one from Russia and none of them want to go back to their countries right now, so they really need to get a good mark on this exam. These students are strong professionals in their fields - engineering, marketing, etc and are working hard to stay in Canada. It is very clear to see that they will contribute a lot to Canadian society, once they are accepted as permanent residents. It is also clear that this exam - in particular the speaking exam - will be tough.

One thing they all learned is that they need to practice and prepare even MORE than they thought. As getting permanent residence in Canada is an important goal for these students, they need to put a lot of energy into preparing for this exam.

This also shows the importance of understanding which exam is more suitable for each person. I will talk about the differences between the CELPIP and the IELTS in more detail in an upcoming blog.

Have a great day!

Always remember that I am available for questions at any time. Just write me or send me a question in the contact box.

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