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As of August 10, 2023, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will expand the English language test options for the Student Direct Stream (SDS) applicants by accepting four more assessments.
The additional English language proficiency tests include:
- Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) General
- Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL)
- Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic
- Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based Test (TOEFL iBT)
For qualification under Canada’s Student Direct Stream (SDS), candidates must prove proficiency in Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking.
In-person test results from one of the approved language examinations are required, as online or remote test outcomes will be disregarded. Prior to this amendment, only IELTS and TEF were acknowledged by IRCC.
The accepted exams also encompass the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) General Training or Academic tests, with revisions to the IELTS requirements for the SDS taking effect simultaneously on August 10th.
From this date, a collective IELTS Academic band score of 6.0 is needed for applications. The score is derived from the mean of all individual skill section scores. Applications with IELTS Academic submitted before this date must exhibit a score of 6.0 in each section, such as Speaking, Listening, Reading, and Writing. IELTS General Training applications require a consistent score of 6.0 in each section, irrespective of the application date.
Student Direct Stream Eligibility Requirements:
Prospective SDS applicants must meet the following criteria:
- Hold lawful residency status within specific nations
- Produce a Canadian Designated Learning Institution (DLI) acceptance letter
- Supply proof of an introductory medical examination
- Possess or provide evidence of a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) amounting to $10,000
- Confirm payment of the tuition fees for the first year
- Present language test scores that meet the SDS standards, obtained within the last two years
- Lodge the application through a Visa Application Centre (VAC)
The Student Direct Stream (SDS) is designed to accelerate the processing of study permit applications for international scholars from eligible countries, aiming for a standard processing timeframe of 20 days. It includes nations such as Antigua and Barbuda, Brazil, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, India, Morocco, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Senegal, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and Vietnam.
Prospective students should thoroughly evaluate their eligibility for the Canada Study Visa to ascertain qualification for the SDS program, a key initiative in supporting international student admissions.
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