Study in Canada without IELTS

Do you know you can study in Canada without IELTS, TOEFL, and PTE from the 2021 session? These are proficiency tests, required by English-speaking countries, designed to test your knowledge of the English language, before approving a work or study application. Chief among these English proficiency tests is the IELTS score which is widely accepted by top English-speaking study destinations like Canada, the United States of America, the United Kingdom, etc.

Studying in Canada holds many attractions for international students. Canadian higher institutions consistently rank amongst the top schools for quality education, highly skilled educators, and a culturally diverse student population. However, the IELTS requirement has been a daunting factor for many prospective international students largely due to the cost of sitting for the test, or any other factor the student considers. The good news is there are alternatives to studying in Canada without the IELTS requirement.

Study in Canada without IELTS – ALTERNATIVES

No IELTS? No worries! You can still study in Canada provided you’ve checked one of these boxes:

  1. Provide proof you’ve studied for a minimum of four years at an English medium school. You can get this in the form of a letter from your previous institution, which can then serve as a replacement for an English proficiency assessment score.
  2. Be a citizen of an English-speaking country. In other words, the official language of your country of origin must be English. 
  3. Enroll in a one-year English language course offered by your preferred university.

If you don’t satisfy any of these requirements but still have your sights set to study in Canada, you can check below the list of universities in Canada offering admission to international students without IELTS.

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List of Universities and Colleges to Study in Canada without IELTS for International Students

UniversityAlternative to IELTS score
University of WinnipegIn place of a proficiency score, you can enroll in the university’s English Language Program (ELP). You’ll need to complete Academic level 5 for full-time students, and a minimum score of C+ in Academic Writing Part 1 and 2, for part-time study. Show proof of a three-year full time secondary/post-secondary education in an English-speaking country Other English proficiency tests such as Duolingo English Test, TOEFL, Cambridge Assessment English: C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency, CanTest, PTE, etc.
 University of Saskatchewan  Provide proof of a three-year full-time secondary/post-secondary education in an English-speaking country. You can also enroll in the University Preparation (U-Prep) program offered by the school, or successfully complete the English as a Second Language (ESL 050) program at the University of Regina, to get an English proficiency score waiver. Complete other standardized tests such as Duolingo English Test, TOEFL, CanTEST, etc.
  University of ReginaYou must be a citizen of an English-speaking country, that is, English must be your first language. Successfully complete the institutions’ English as a Second Language (ESL 050) program, or Provide proof of the successful completion of the ESL program at any other Canadian university. This must meet the University of Regina’s standard.
Brock UniversityYou must have completed a three-year full-time study at a secondary/post-secondary institution where the primary language of instruction is English. Complete and submit the school’s English Language Proficiency Exemption Request Form
Carleton UniversityShow proof of study in a secondary/post-secondary educational institution where the primary language of instruction and evaluation is English. Successfully complete an ESL program. Other English proficiency tests are also accepted.
List of Universities and alternatives to IELTS

You can also apply to these Canadian universities without IELTS

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It is important to note that forgoing IELTS or other English proficiency tests narrow the list of universities you can choose. Similarly, not all courses offered by these universities support the NO IELTS requirement. It is important you go through the university’s official websites to get more detailed information on language proficiency requirements. 


Why do international higher Institutions require IELTS

Foreign higher institutions require IELTS from international students to assess their ability to understand the English language and bridge the linguistic gap, to foster better learning and comprehension. 

Can I study in Canada without IELTS?

Yes, you can study in Canada without IELTS, but this limits the number of schools and courses you can choose from.

What are the other requirements to study in Canada?

Different schools have different requirements for international students to fulfill before admitting them. However, common requirements include an updated passport, proof of financial stability, and an English or French proficiency score.

Which other top study countries accept international students without IELTS

You can apply to selected universities and colleges in the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Norway, Australia, and Malaysia without IELTS.

We hope this guide can help start your study abroad journey in your preferred Canadian university. You can check here for scholarship opportunities to study or work in Canada. But if you’re not sure how to start your application process or you need help with proofreading your application, kindly reach out to us at

Find more resources for international students here.

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