How International Students Can Study In Canada Without IELTS

study in canada without IELTS


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Many international students got demoralized on their aspirations to study in Canada over IELTS. Whereas, as an international student you can study in Canada without IELTS or other volatile and expensive language proficiency exams.  In this article, we have highlighted twenty universities in Canada that waived IELTS for international students and legitimate alternatives to IELTS.


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Why IELTS to Study in Canada

Canada is one of the top study destination for students across the world. International student desire to study in Canada for various reasons well known to them, but major among these reasons is the strong educational system the country has consistently maintain over the years. English is one of the two official languages of Canada, and the primary language of instruction at most university in the country. Strong English skills mean new students can settle quickly into their academic environment, and get to know their fellow students and faculty members who will be their colleagues during their study. Hence the need for every incoming student to proof their proficiency of the language. This is why most universities in Canada request for IELTS. See how to study in Europe for free

As a student, your ability to effective communicate in a particular language of study will aid knowledge transfer and efficiency of educational system. Hence, the need for every students seeking to study in Canada to meet a predetermined proficiency in English language (for those who are applying for English taught programs). Meanwhile, there are many ways to proof your language proficiency but the most commonly considered one being the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). The IELTS is a globally standardized language assessment exam used by universities to assess the language skills of potential international students. This test is divided into four sections: reading, writing, listening and speaking. After finishing the three-hour test, students will obtain an overall score for all of their fundamental English language abilities.

However, this test often serve as hindrance for most international students due to the high cost of writing the test and the short validity period. To therefore overcome this barrier, some universities in Canada have made available some alternative routes for international students to proof their English language proficiency.

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IELTS Alternatives for Universities in Canada

As a result of high cost of writing IELTS and the limited validity period of the test, many international students that want to study in Canada are looking for legitimate routes to bypass this hurdle. Also, most Canadian universities have come to the realization of this impediment for most international students and have therefore created different alternatives for international students to proof their language proficiency without using the IELTS or TOEFL test. In this section, we will be dissecting other cheap alternatives to IELTS.

  • Previous Study in English

Some universities in Canada will waive IELTS requirement for international students that have previously study in English Language. As an international student that meet this requirement, all you need do is to get a letter from your university to attest that your previous study either Bachelor or Masters was conducted in English Language.

  • High School or O’level Result

Another cheap and decent alternative to cross the IELTS hurdle is to proof your proficiency in English language through your high school diploma or O’level. For students from West African countries, you can demonstrate this with your West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) or your country’s local high school exam with a minimum of Credit (C6). Even most universities in the UK also consider this as a valid proof for language proficiency.


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  • Official Language in English

For students from countries where the official language is English, the need for IELTS may be waived a well. All such student need do is to go and check language proficiency options on the website of his/her choice university.

  • Oral Interview

Some Canadian universities also allow international students to proof their language proficiency by conducting interview before decision is made on the admission process. This option might be rear though, as a prospective student you therefore need to check your university’s language requirement to prepare for the options that you are eligible for.

  • School Based English Test

As an international student that want to study in Canada, you can also be allowed to proof your language proficiency by writing the school based English language test. This will come with a fee though but most time cheaper compare to IELTS and others.

The choice is therefore yours to decide among the options presented to you by your desired university.

List of Universities in Canada Without IELTS

Canada has about 97 universities offering various degree programs in English language and French. Majority of the French programs universities are in Quebec. So in this section, let us look those universities offering English taught programs without IELTS.

  1. Acadia University
  2. Algoma University
  3. Athabasca University (online university)
  4. Bishop’s University
  5. Brandon University 
  6. Brescia University College
  7. Brock University
  8. Dalhousie University
  9. Cape Breton University
  10. Carleton University
  11. Concordia University
  12. McGill University
  13. University of Alberta
  14. University of Toronto
  15. University of Victoria
  16. University of the Fraser Valley
  17. University of Guelph 
  18. University of Ottawa
  19. University of Winnipeg
  20. University of Saskatchewan


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