Canada SDS program officially accepts PTE, TOEFL, CAEL exam

IRCC approves 4 new English language tests for Student Direct Stream.

Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has just announced that it will accept language test results from four new tests for Student Direct Stream (SDS) applicants.

IRCC will begin to accept test results from these four new tests effective August 10, 2023.

The newly eligible tests are;

CELPIP General
PTE Academic

All test results must demonstrate abilities in speaking, listening, reading, and writing.

CELPIP general tests must show a score that is equivalent to a Canadian Language Benchmark of at least 7 in each of the four language-speaking abilities

CAEL and Pearson PTE Academic test results must show a minimum score of 60.

Educational Testing Service (ETS) TOEFL iBT Test needs a minimum score of 83.

Students must take these tests in person. Online, remotely proctored tests will not be accepted for applicants in the SDS.

Before this change, IELTS General and IELTS Academic were the only tests approved by IRCC for SDS applicants.

What is the SDS?
The SDS offers expedited processing of study permits for students from specific countries. Eligible students are legal residents of Antigua and Barbuda, Brazil, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, India, Morocco, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Senegal, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad, and Tobago, or Vietnam.

There is a service standard of 20 days for all study permit applications eligible for SDS.
The SDS launched in 2018 and is particularly popular among Indian international students.

Who is eligible for the SDS?
In addition to being legal residents of specific countries, students who meet these criteria must also;

Provide a copy of a letter of acceptance from a Canadian Designated Learning Institution (DLI)

Present a confirmation document for the applicant’s upfront medical exam

Prove that they have obtained a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) of $10,000

Prove that tuition fees for the first year of study are paid

Show proof of language test results completed within two years of the SDS application being received demonstrating an IELTS score of 6 in English or NCLC 7 for French, and apply at a Visa Application Centre (VAC).

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