101 thoughts on “CELPIP versus IELTS: Which One Should You Take?

  1. Just took CELPIP, If you are short on time then choose CELPIP, with respect to scores IELTS is much better, my speaking score in CELPIP is much lower (8.5 in IELTS and 7 in CELPIP). Two reasons: noise cause by other people speaking makes it hard to focus and the fact you’re speaking to machine, not human.

  2. I have hard time bit understanding the british accent, which test is preferable ? what is validity for CELPIP? any free practice test materials?

    • Hi M Ahmmed,

      Both IELTS and CELPIP are valid tests to take as your English proficiency tests. These are currently the only two English language proficiency tests accepted for your Permanent Residency application.

      You can find more information about CELPIP practice materials on the CELPIP official website here: https://www.celpip.ca/

      When it comes to the accent, CELPIP uses Canadian speakers, while IELTS is more likely to use speakers from the UK, among other English-speaking countries.

      Hope this helps!

  3. I want to ask about the sister concern of celpip test. Canadian Academic English language test is used for admission into Canadian universities. Best alternative to ielts academics…. Is cael more difficult than ielts academics?What is the passing rate of cael exam? Computer based one?

  4. As it seems IELTS is more a growing business instead of being a language test system, I think CElPIP may be the future for those who are disappointed with IELTS, and I was wondering if someone do let me know the time it takes to achieve CLB9 in CELPIP for a person with these points(IELTS) ; L:9 R:7.5 W:6 S:7

    • Hi Mahdi,

      Since everyone studies and learns at their own pace, I wouldn’t be able to tell you the exact timeframe it would take you to improve your scores. However, based on your score breakdown, you have a very good chance to score higher with a little bit of extra preparation!

      I would recommend taking a prep course: it would make you more familiar with the test expectations, help you improve your vocabulary and give you enough sample questions and examples to practice for the test.
      You can check out our CELPIP Prep course here: https://www.ashtoncollege.ca/programs/celpip-preparation-program/

      I would also recommend putting extra effort to practice, especially for the writing section. If you have any native speaker friend, engage them in your preparation! You can learn great nuggets from them.

      Hope this helps!

  5. I think that in the listening part in the IELTS is more difficult than the CELPIP but I don’t know.

    I’ve taken the IELTS three times unfortunately, my band in the IELTS is 5 in the listening I haven’t been able to improve in this part yet. In my writing part I got 6. Also, Reading I believe that is more difficult in the IELTS.

    Do you think CELPIP could be an alternative? I am looking at applying for permanent residency.

    • Hi Daniel,

      Both CELPIP and IELTS are accepted tests for permanent residency applications. You can definitely try taking CELPIP, as you may find the format more suitable for you.

      I would recommend preparing for the modules you are struggling with by taking practice tests or enrolling in a prep program.

      Hope this helps!

  6. Hi, does anyone know if the Ielts score is counted on 1 seat only, or we can combine the scores of 2 test results and pick the highest scores of those to apply?

    • Hi Kate,

      Unfortunately, the score has to be counted based on one sitting, especially if you are using the test score for Canadian immigration or PR application. This is applicable for both IELTS and CELPIP.

      • Hi Alex,
        If i score CLB level 8 in my first attempt in CELPIP and thereby reaching the CRS score of 425. But i wish to take an another attempt to improve my score as the trend clearly shows that 425 is not sufficient enough to get the invitation for PR processing immediately. Hence i am taking an another attempt after 30 calendar days and end up in getting CLB score of 7 that might lead to reach even more low score of 405. In this case, can i use my first attempt result (CLB 8) instead of my most recent attempt result (CLB 7)? Please clarify, just curious.

        • Hi Prabhu,

          You are free to use the result of any acceptable exam (CELPIP, IELTS, etc.) as long as it was taken within the past two years. Hence, you can use the result of your first CELPIP attempt.

          Hope this helps!

  7. Hi, am planning to apply for PR in Canada (with my wife). Will CIC accept CELPIP result for me and IELTS for my wife?
    Expecting your reply.

    • Hello Olufemi,

      Yes, you can use different tests for yourself and your wife. Please remember that the scores of the primary applicant have to meet the requirements of the immigration category you are applying under.

      Also make sure that you have the correct tests done: CELPIP-General Training test or IELTS General Training test. Please remember that academic IELTS will not be accepted by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

      For more information and advice, please talk to an immigration consultant or lawyer, or contact CIC Client Support Centre services.

      Hope this helps!

    • Hello Amr,

      CELPIP General is a four-component test that includes Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. This test is accepted by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) when applying for permanent residency, including Express Entry applications. It is also accepted by the Real Estate Council of British Columbia and Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC).

      CELPIP General LS only has two components, Listening and Speaking, and is sufficient for Canadian citizenship applications.

      Hope this helps!

  8. Hi Alex,

    Can i undertake CELPIP test from india? I checked it in CELPIP.CA website, the test centers are given only for canada, USA and UAE.

    Please let me know.

    • Hi Muhammed,

      Unfortunately, India is currently not among the locations where you could take the CELPIP test. Current CELPIP test centres are only available in Canada, USA and UAE.

        • Have you appeared for CELPIP exam from India? If so, could you pls share your experience. I had recently scored L: 8, R: 9, W: 6.5, S: 6.5 in IELTS but need CLB 9 so now I am confused which exam I should appear for. Also, if possible kindly let me know where did you prepare it for.


        • Have you appeared for CELPIP exam from India? If so, could you pls share your experience. I had recently scored L: 8, R: 9, W: 6.5, S: 6.5 in IELTS but need CLB 9 so now I am confused which exam I should appear for. Also, if possible kindly let me know where did you prepare it for.


          • Hey.. I got the exact same score in IELTS.. I am also confused right now.. If some one could tell me what I can go for.. CELPIP or IELTS.. I got L-8.5 R- 8 S -7 W-6.5…

    • Hello Gurdeep,
      Both CELPIP General LS Test (for Canadian Citizenship) and CELPIP General Test (for PR status in Canada) are currently only available in Canada, Philippines, UAE, and US.

  9. Hello,

    I would be requiring L-8, R-7, S-7, W-7 in IELTS for my PR application. Can someone let me know, what should be the equivalent score in CELPIP?

      • Hi Alex,
        You said both IELTS & CELPIP ar equal in their difficulty level, Then Why there is a conversion factor in CLB for IELTS and not for CELPIP. I am able to get 8 in all modules in IELTS so my CLB score went 9+….when i attempt CELPIP, due to same difficulty level i get 8 in all modules and my CLB score is 8 only..why this discrimination in evaluation methodology between the two exams?

        • Hi Venkat,
          The scale of evaluation is different for each of these tests. An 8 band in IELTS isn’t equivalent to 8 band in CELPIP. That’s why you are seeing the discrepancy while comparing to CLB.

  10. I have taken IELTS test 5 times but i didn’t get more than 6 in writing.Except writing i got my required score for CLB level.Finally, i am preparing for CELPIP and hopefully i’ll achieve my required score.

    • Hello Kamal!

      We wish you the best of luck! Please talk to our Admissions Officer if you encounter problems or require some extra help in preparing for CELPIP!
      Email: admissions@ashtoncollege.ca (Vancouver inquiries)
      Phone: (604) 628-5784

    • Hi Khalil,

      I am also in the same situation. not getting more than 6.5 in writing in IELTS, in other modules I am getting more than 7 bands.

      So I am also starting preparation for CELPIP.

      Have you got the desired score in CELPIP now till date?

  11. If we take more than two CELPIP tests, then could we choose which results to be presented as immigration requirements?
    Thank you.

  12. Hi,its difficult to find training centres or trainers to practice for CELPIP -UAE ,what if i approach the ielts trainers for the celpip test.

    • Hello Abdul,

      CELPIP and IELTS are two different tests. If you wish to get an effective training for CELPIP, we highly recommend finding an instructor who has experience preparing students for this test and knows specifics of its format.

      Hope this helps!

  13. Good day. I am tired of Ielts due spelling. do CELPIP Has spell check for writing and reading? I scored 7 in speaking, in writing 6. I did badly in rest. Do u think the CELPIP has any advantage of people like me???

  14. I did three time IELTs exam to increase my score from 6 on each subject to 7 but I fail. Do you think CELPIP is easier for me to score 8

    • Hello Fahad,

      The level of difficulty is approximately the same in both tests. However, certain sections can be viewed as easier or more difficult by individual test-takers.
      Our experienced instructors will be happy to help you preparing for your exam if you take a decision to try taking CELPIP.
      Please do not hesitate to contact our Admissions Officer at admissions@ashtoncollege.ca OR (604) 628-5784.

      Hope this helps!

  15. Celpip is a scam. They make you retake the test again and again and market materials when you score low. Even though I got 12 and 12 in L and R. My speaking was deliberately scored low and speaking materials were immediately marketed. I recommend IELTS

  16. I am currently in India and i am planning to travel on a travel visa to Canada. Am i eligible to take this exam in Canada? Can these test scores be included in my express entry? Please guide me

    Assume i have a score of L-8, R-7,W-7, S-7 in IELTS. What is the equivalent score in CELPIP?

  17. I have taken CELPIP twice and I have problems with Speaking, I don’t get more than 6 and I’m desperate. I’m thinking to take IELTS but maybe I’ll lose points in the other parts, and waste of money again and again… On the other hand, I can’t understand how the rest of grades have changed in two weeks drastically when my English level is the same…I don’t think CELPIP measures English level properly…i think you have to learn the techniques.

    • Hello Shaz,

      CELPIP exam is currently offered in Canada, United States, United Arab Emirates, and Philippines.

      Hope this helps!

  18. I live in Detroit, USA. I am not able to get an immediate slot for IELTS. So, can I book CELPIP slot in Canada? (I can easily drive there). Will they mail the test score hard copy to my USA address ?

  19. Hi Would like to check if CELPIP General Exam is available in California? I can see the option but City is not being displayed.

  20. Thank you for the priceless information. please which site can i get to download some materials for IELTS for personal study. Moreso, how will one get to send the result to Canada when applying as an immigrant through Express Entry.

    Thank You!

    • Hi Ismaeel,
      There are various resources available online for free and for a fee as well. You can look through them at your own pace via a quick search on Google. A lot of instructional videos are available on YouTube as well. For express entry, you will be getting an option to upload your documents to your online profile.

  21. Very informational and useful for students who are still in confusion which test to take. After reading the post they can make their mind which one to choose.

    • Hi Nikhil,
      Thanks for your comment. I have personally appeared for both tests and the only thing I can say with reasonable certainty is that the difficulty level will really depend on an individual’s strengths and weaknesses. From my personal example, I can tell you that I found writing part in CELPIP easier to attempt because I am used to typing on keyboard and my handwriting is barely legible. Having said that, in my case, attempting the writing section was a matter of skill of execution rather than the actual skill in using English as a language. Likewise, someone may prefer attempting handwritten answers over typing them on a keyboard. I would strongly encourage you to go through the format of both exams and see how do you feel about attempting each one of the sections. Wishing you all the very best.
      PS: On a side note here’s the link to a blog I wrote after my CELPIP attempt – https://www.ashtoncollege.ca/prepare-celpip-tips-first-hand-experience/


    • Hi Laveen,
      It’s really up to you to make this choice. Please refer to the article above for the list of differences between the two exams.

  23. Hi and thanks for your useful information
    I’m wondering if the difficulty of both tests are equal, how in CELPIP for listening section we need 9 out of 12, versus in Ielts we need 8 out of 9 which seems much more difficult
    Thank you in advance

  24. Hi,

    Thanks for sharing the useful details. I definitely go for CELPiP .. but my question is that is there any negative marking if we select wrong answers?

  25. It’s very clear and understandable. Appreciate the effort behind this article.
    I am from India so obviously I have to go with IELTS.

    Thank you very much..😊👍

  26. Hi, I am 19 years old and from India. I am currently pursuing B.A in English Honors and plan to go to Canada for my Masters. Can I Give CELPIP instead of IELTS?

  27. I have a very clear input for anyone comparing CELPIP vs IELTS and a strong suggestion that if you need the maximum points for language then taking the CELPIP test is a wrong move! I have taken IELTS twice in the past and both have expired so I took the CELPIP test now and got a truly shocking result. In the past my IELTS scores were all in the 8,5 to 9 area for all 4 disciplines . The Celpip results were 11 or 12 for all except the written which was an 8!!! Now there is a statistically valid correlation between the 4 elements and this was way out. So I asked some of my also English speaking professional colleagues who had taken the Celpip test and they all had a similar experience. I asked for a re-mark but that delivered no change.
    Now as the Canadian system awards points based on the LOWEST mark obtained, my advice is stay away from CELPIP, there is a definite issue with their written marking system part of which is related to the stupid subjects presented – typically how can you show your command of English writing an email to t Restaurant Manager complaining about the service ?????

    So if you need maximum points – go IELTS (and i am not affiliated to either of the systems in any way)

  28. Hi – Ales or Some other friend,

    some one can clear my doubt about CELPIP writing test . is there option for check the spelling mistake in writing task ?

    • Hi Dilip,

      The CELPIP Writing Test does include an automatic spelling checker, but keep in mind that it is sometimes difficult to choose the right word when the spelling checker offers you a choice.

      Thank you!

  29. Hi
    I wanted to ask if I couldn’t be able to achieve required score in any one module oF CELPIP so should i have to give the complete test again or only the required module?

  30. In IELTS Reading test, one can skip the question when not sure and require more time to read the article again and come back later when time is remaining. Does CELPIP offers similar feature to User to skip a particular question or section and respond later before submitting?

    • Hi Sudhir,

      According to the official information on CELPIP website, on many parts of the Reading Test, there is no opportunity to go back and change your answer.

      So, to make sure you complete the whole test, you’d better answer all the questions in their sequence.

      Thank you!

  31. Speaking is the most difficult part in CELPIP. If you are an average speaker then go for IELTS. I gave CELPIP twice scoring 9-9-9-6. I gave IELTS as well and scored 7.5-6.5-6.5-6.5.

  32. Hi ! I am MARK
    my question is IS the CELPIP counted for the academic purpose too ? or is it just for Citizenship?
    Is it easier than the IELTS exam?
    Which category of all Is the toughest?
    I want to try giving the celpip rather than Iels i wanna se the difference and Can you please give some guidance because im trying to study by myself at home and book the exam as early i dnt have enough time to go to classes ..
    I would appreciate for your help ..!

    • Hi Mark,

      If you need an English exam for academic purposes, the better choice for you might be CAEL exam. It is offered by the same testing company as CELPIP.

      As for the toughest part, it’s very subjective and hard to say what exactly you might find hard. Usually, people find that writing and speaking modules require more time to prepare.

      Good luck with your test!

  33. Hi everyone,

    I am living in Australia ( Indian citizenship), I want to appear in CELPIP in this August.

    I have to go to India for giving the CELPIP exam because there is no any exam center in Australia.

    Will I be able to book two tests of 27 July and 28 July once, or I will not be allowed to do so.

    Your help will be appreciated.

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