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CELPIP vs IELTS: Which One Should You Take in 2023?

Published On: January 5, 2023


If you are planning to immigrate to Canada, you know that language proficiency in French or English is one of the immigration requirements. High results on the language proficiency test can, in fact, make a big difference in your Express Entry Comprehensive Ranking Score (CRS).

To prove your French language proficiency, you can take the test de connaissance du français for Canada or TCF Canada.

For the English language skills requirements, you have two options: the Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test. Both tests are accepted by Citizenship and Immigration Canada. In this blog, we will be focusing on the English proficiency tests and help you figure out which is the best test for you.

We broke down each test and its components below for your convenience.

About the IELTS and CELPIP Tests

Both IELTS and CELPIP are designed to measure the English language proficiency of test-takers. The tests include four categories that capture the main aspects of the language: Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.

  • CELPIP test was designed specifically to assess key language skills required for Canadian permanent residency and citizenship. The test uses Canadian English and accepts both British and American English spellings for its components. If you are taking CELPIP to apply through Express Entry, the CELPIP-General Training (four-skills tests) is required.
  • IELTS is used for study, work and immigration. It recognizes both British and American English for spelling, word choice and grammar, and uses a mix of accents from native speakers throughout the test. IELTS is available in more than 140 countries and is divided into IELTS Academic (used for education) and IELTS General Training (used for migration to an English-speaking country). If you are taking IELTS to apply through Express Entry, the IELTS General Training test is required.

CELPIP and IELTS are both approved and accepted by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). The final test score is compared to the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB), which demonstrates national language standards for recognizing a second language.

Below is the CLB comparison chart from the CIC website.

CELPIP vs IELTS Test Score Equivalency Chart

For more information about the specific language requirements and the CLB, please visit the CIC website.

CELPIP and IELTS Key Test Components

Below is a comparison table of the key components of the tests:



Score breakdown
  • A score of 1 to 12 for each section; calibrated against the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) levels
  • A score of 1 to 9 for each section; can score whole (e.g., 6.0, 7.0) or half (e.g., 6.5, 7.5) bands
  • 47-55 minutes; 7 components, a total of 40-46 questions (40 scored)
  • 30 minutes; 4 components, a total of 40 questions
  • 55-60 minutes; 4 components, 38-45 questions (38 scored)
  • 60 minutes; 3 components, 40 questions
  • 53-60 minutes; 2 components: Writing an Email and Responding to Survey Questions
  • 60 minutes; 2 components: Writing a Letter and Responding to a Point of View, Argument or Problem
  • 15-20 minutes; 8 components, a total of 8 short-answer questions
  • 11-14 minutes; 3 components: Introduction, Individual Speech and Two-Way Discussion
  • The test times include the transition times between the test components
  • Computer-based test
  • The test times exclude the transition times between the test components
  • Paper-based test

The interesting thing about the CELPIP test is the fact that the Listening and Reading sections contain a few unscored items that are used for test development and improvement. According to the CELPIP website, unscored items are indistinguishable from the regular scored questions and can be found anywhere within those two test sections.

Preparation Materials

Both tests have different preparation materials available for the students to both get ready for the test and to better understand the test style and format.

  • IELTS has different practice tests and sample test questions available on the IELTS website. You could also purchase IELTS materials to study on your own or take preparation classes. Vancouver residents also have access to IELTS workshops.
  • CELPIP is a younger test compared to IELTS, but it still has various options to prepare for the test. You can take sample tests or CELPIP preparation program to make sure that you are ready for the exam. Vancouver residents may also register for a pretest for the Listening and Reading sections of the test.

a woman studying for an English exam at her desk

Making Your Choice

There are several factors to consider when choosing which test to take. The table highlighting those factors is included below.

1. Location and Availability

Both CELPIP and IELTs are very accessible in Canada. CELPIP has 33 locations across Canada, in all provinces except Prince Edward Island (the test locations are currently unavailable in the three Canadian territories YT, NU, NT). IELTS has 119 locations, but only in five Canadian provinces (ON, QC, MB, AB and BC). It is important to remember that some locations only offer IELTs Academic, which is not accepted for Express Entry. On the other hand, only IELTS is available outside of Canada.

The availability for both tests is given months in advance, so it is easy to plan ahead. The frequency of the tests offered depends on the specific province and the city.

2. Price

CELPIP exam price is less than IELTS. The cost of CELPIP-General test is $265 plus tax. IELTS price in Canada is $309 (including tax); however, certain places in Canada have a higher fee (e.g. $319 in Niagara Region and Windsor). Outside of Canada, IELTS has different prices, depending on the country in which it is offered.

3. Test and Result Times

The time it takes to complete all the sections of the CELPIP and IELTS tests is approximately the same: around 3 hours. However, the duration of the actual tests differs.

  • CELPIP is conducted in one 3-hour sitting. Since it is done on the computer, it is easy to keep track of how much time is left for each of the tasks. When going by sections, CELPIP seems to have longer Listening and Speaking sections and a slightly shorter Writing section. However, keep in mind that the CELPIP time breakdowns include the question, answer and transition times.
  • IELTS test takers, on the other hand, do not necessarily complete all the test components on the same day. Although three of the test sections are completed in the same test room, the Speaking section is done separately at a different time, day and possibly location (it can be taken up to a week before or after the other sections). There is also no automatic computerized time tracking, and the times presented in the table above may not include the transition times between the test sections and components.

The results take 13 calendar days for IELTs and 10-12 calendar days for CELPIP. If you are short on time and money is not an issue, CELPIP also has an express rating system: the score is available in three (3) business days for an extra $100 fee (plus applicable taxes).

4. Difficulty

Both IELTS and CELPIP were designed to measuring English language proficiency; 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. Here are a few differences that can be noted:

  • IELTS is a paper-based exam, while CELPIP is completely computerized. It may be more comforting for some people to do the writing section on paper and to keep track of their own time. Others, on the other hand, feel less pressure by the computer and prefer typing and being able to see their timing and word count. Also, the CELPIP test includes spell check in the writing component, which could be found useful by some applicants.
  • CELPIP test uses Canadian speakers, while IELTS test includes native speakers from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and US in their Listening section. Some non-native speakers may find the CELPIP Listening section more understandable. Also, when taking CELPIP, one is able to adjust the volume in the headphones for the Listening section to suit their needs.
  • IELTS Speaking section includes a live conversation with an examiner, while during CELPIP you record your voice on the computer. Some non-native speakers prefer talking to an examiner, while others feel more comfortable without the face-to-face interaction.

5. Preparation

Both exams, offer online samples of their work and have prep courses across Canada. It may still be easier to find preparation materials for IELTS, since CELPIP is still relatively new. However, CELPIP prep courses seem to be more prevalent in Canada, and you can be sure of their quality when they are accredited by Paragon Testing Enterprises, the creators of the CELPIP Test.

  • 33 locations in 9 provinces
  • the frequency of the tests varies
  • Available in Canada and the UAE
  • 119 locations in 5 provinces
  • the frequency of the tests varies
  • Available in >140 countries
  • $265 (CAD) + tax
  • Express rating (3 business days) available for $100
  • $309 (CAD) (incl tax)
  • Can be more expensive in certain locations
  • 3-hour exam done in one sitting
  • Results in 10-12 calendar days; express rating available
  • ~3-hour exam; speaking is separate
  • Results in 13 calendar days
  • Computer-based: easy to type; word count and timing available
  • Using Canadian English accent; able to adjust the volume
  • Speaking: submitting voice recording
  • Paper-based: easier for non-frequent computer users
  • Using British, Australian and American English accents
  • Speaking: face-to-face interaction
  • More prep courses available
  • More preparation materials available


Both of the tests are equally appropriate to be used for your immigration application, and choosing one over the other can be a matter of personal preference. IELTS is a good choice for the test-takers who prefer paper-based exams and separate face-to-face speaking components, or those applying from outside of Canada. However, based on the analysis above, CELPIP is a better choice for those who prefer a computer-based exam and are looking for a faster and less stressful test experience. Whichever test you choose, consider your options for communication skills training and be sure to start your exam preparation well in advance.

The article was updated on February 15 to reflect the changes in the IELTS and CELPIP exams.

You can book your CELPIP exam with ATS test centre located in Vancouver.

Accredited CELPIP Preparation Program

Ashton College offers an Accredited CELPIP Preparation Program, designed to prepare students for individual components of the CELPIP-General and the CELPIP-General LS tests.


    View All Comments

  1. Ananya says:

    I talked with a lot of my friends and am highlighting two for both sides.

    Canadian raised (Female, 30s)
    CELPIP without a doubt. Easiest test if you have spent some time in the Canadian education system. The IELTS can be a bit challenging because the test has accents that I do not hear in day to day life. It is easier for me to hear Canadian accents of course. Being able to focus on what the message is, rather than trying to find out what is being said, made the CELPIP easier for me.

    Indian, moved to Canada for university (male, 20s)
    IELTS for me, especially now that many IELTS practice tests have speakers who use Indian accents. I am still not used to the Canadian way of things. The IELTS feels more like a test I can prepare for, just like entrance exams back home.

    Hope this helps! It looks like the longer the people stayed in Canada, the more likely they were to lean towards the CELPIP over IELTS.

  2. Unnati says:

    I want to know more about celpip

  3. icycoupons says:

    This page certainly has all of the info I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know
    who to ask.

  4. much needed differentiation thanks for sharing

  5. mohammed munawar ali says:

    I was willing to take this test and was wondering if someone can help me.

  6. Rohan Nikumbh says:

    Can we give the CELPIP-General test from home?

  7. Isaac Lin says:

    I’m applying for UNBC for graduate program, looks like they receive CELPIP described as below. However, not understand what is CELPIT and CELTOP. Can you reply?

    CELPIP (Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program) – CELPIT-A (Academic Reading and Writing): 4H – CELL (Listening): 4H – CELTOP (Speaking): 4H


    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi Isaac,
      Not quite sure what you mean. There are no such English tests as CELPIT and CELTOP. Please check with the university you’re applying to.
      Thank you!

  8. JASON says:

    What is the minimum score requirement in CELPIP PR from India?
    Are CELPIP Scores acceptable for Student visa too?

  9. David Volk says:

    If I take the celpip from you where do I go to write the exam. I live in British Columbia

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi David,
      If you live in the Metro Vancouver area, you’re welcome to take the CELPIP exam in one of the test centres of Ashton Testing Services. The test centres are located in Vancouver and Abbotsford, BC:

  10. Athan says:

    Which English test is easier, CELPIP or IELTS?

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi Athan,
      It is very individual and depends on a lot of factors. The major difference between the two tests is that CELPIP is taken on the computer and IELTS involves writing on paper and speaking with a real person. Depending on what you’re more comfortable with, you can score better in any of them.
      Try to practice both formats and choose the one that fits you best. Good luck!

  11. Neesha says:

    I am from Trinidad and would like to take the CELPIP exam for immigration to Canada throughout express entry..can you help me??

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi Neesha,
      If you’d like to take CELPIP preparation courses that can help you improve your language proficiency for the CELPIP test, please fill out the submit an enquiry form on this page and our admissions team will be in touch with you shortly with more details:
      Thank you!

  12. chinonso says:


    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi Chinonso,

      Unfortunately, as of now, the CELPIP test is only available in Canada, the USA, China, India, the Phillippines, the UAE. If you’re willing to take CELPIP you will need to give it in any of these countries. Alternatively, you can opt for a different test that is available in Nigeria.

      Thank you!

  13. Anil sarathchandran says:

    I would like to practice Celpip. How I can start practicing and then appear for the exam. Please guide me

  14. Baljinder Singh says:

    Hello sir/Madam,
    I am from India. Is Ashtoncollege provide classes of CELPIP.

  15. Kanwar Shahi says:

    What is the price for the preparatory pogram

  16. Mohammed Nazir Alam says:

    I am living in Bangladesh. I want to attend CELPIP test, how it is possible?

  17. Hi,
    Useful information for me.
    I want to go canada on permanent residence based. So i think it is a best way to migrate in Canada.
    Please let me know where is the courses available in India ??

  18. Darlene ricketts says:

    Are the scores of celpip compared against occupation of test taker? For example, if one is a nurse does the score need to be higher than someone who is a farmer?

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi Darlene,

      While you’re taking the CELPIP test, it doesn’t matter what your occupation is, as the test measures general English language proficiency.

      However, if you plan to use CELPIP test results for immigration purposes, there can be different language requirements for different immigration streams. For example, there will be separate language requirements for skilled workers and tradespersons.

  19. Pramod singh says:

    Hello i want to do immigration consultant course,but confused that how i can pass the english test,i scored 7clb but iccrc want 9 clb..i am confused that how can i reach that score…

  20. Maria Bychkova says:

    Hi Sushil,

    Unfortunately, we do not offer any IELTS preparation courses. Please visit their official website to get free study materials and sample tests.

    Thank you!

  21. Maria Bychkova says:

    Hi Seun,

    At Ashton College, we offer CELPIP prep program which helps you to prepare for the CELPIP test.

    Please find more details about the program here:

    If you have more questions about the program, please contact our admissions officer by email at [email protected]

  22. Sushil Thakur says:

    I want to prepare for ielts. Will you please suggest material and assigments for preparation..?

  23. SEUN OWODUNNI says:

    Dear sir/Ma,

    My name is Seun Owodunni, l am a Nigerian.l am planning to relocate to Canada with my family.
    Please l need information on how to prepare for CELPIP TEST.

    Thanks in anticipation.

    Yours Sincerely,

  24. Amit Thaper says:


    Firstly thanks for this website and comments which clearly describe the difference between CELPIP and IELTS.

    As per the experiences I read about the CELPIP speaking. All got less scores near to 6 or 7 that will not be sufficient for the Canada PR. There can be any reason for that like noise issue, accent issue and the person who listens the recorded voice not feeling good.

    How can I proceed with the CELPIP?

  25. p patel says:

    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.

  26. SUDHIR says:

    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?

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      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!

  27. Ashraf says:

    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?

  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 ?

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      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. Colin Louw says:

    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)

  30. Lakshpreet Kaur says:

    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?

    • Maria Bychkova says:

      Hi Lakshpreet Kaur,
      Both tests are accepted by Citizenship and Immigration Canada for the visa and immigration purposes.

  31. Jithin John says:

    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..??

  32. Mirza says:

    Can i use IELTS for Speaking and Listening & CELPIP for reading and writing?

  33. Nikks says:


    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?

  34. Krishna says:

    Is CELPIP now available in India?

  35. Tarun says:

    Is celpip test available in India if yes then could you please give me location.

  36. Marziye says:

    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

  37. LAVLEEN says:


    • Maria Bychkova says:

      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.

  38. Nikhil says:

    I am lookin for some one who has given both the exams and can explain which one was easy for them and why

    • Mandeep Bedi says:

      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 –

  39. Afshin Derakhshan says:

    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.


    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!

    • Mandeep Bedi says:

      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.

  41. Vidya says:

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

  42. Abhishek Gujar says:

    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 ?

  43. Shaz says:

    From which country this CELPIP can be taken.

    • Ekaterina Grishko says:

      Hello Shaz,

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

      Hope this helps!

  44. Mike says:

    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.

  45. Clive says:

    What countries are required to take the test?

    I am from South Africa.

  46. Jag says:

    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?

  47. ioshar says:

    Can I do CEPLIP exam to work in Canada as a Doctor?
    I already have my PR card.

  48. pinecones says:

    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

  49. Fahad says:

    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

    • Ekaterina Grishko says:

      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 [email protected] OR (604) 628-5784.

      Hope this helps!

  50. sakthi says:

    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???

  51. Arsalan says:

    would like to apply for PR can I go for CELPIP General LS ,,, I am living in Dubai

  52. abdul says:

    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.

    • Ekaterina Grishko says:

      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!

  53. Saleh says:

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

  54. Khalil kamal says:

    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.

    • p patel says:

      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?

    • Tayyaba says:

      I am also planning for CELPIP test . Kindly share your experience and guide me as well.

    • Ekaterina Grishko says:

      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: [email protected] (Vancouver inquiries)
      Phone: (604) 628-5784

  55. Jixon Paul says:


    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?

    • Daniya Grover says:

      that’s CLB 9 so you need to score a minimum of 9 in each module of CELPIP exam

    • Ekaterina Grishko says:

      Hello Jixon,

      Absolutely! You are required to score 9+ in each module of CELPIP.

      Hope this helps!

      • Venkat says:

        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?

        • Mandeep Bedi says:

          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.

  56. Gurdeep Kaur says:

    Is there any place in UK where I can sit for CELPIP test?
    I live in London.

    • Ekaterina Grishko says:

      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.

  57. […] In order to achieve the language proficiency requirements established by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) you must pass one of the two officially accepted language proficiency tests – either the CELPIP test or the IELTS test. You can learn more about each test in our blog post called CELPIP versus IELTS: Which One Should You Take? […]

  58. Keerthi says:

    This article is very useful for me to know the difference between celpip and ielts…Tq very much

  59. Muhammed Ali says:

    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.

    • Alex says:

      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.

      • Pradeep Kumar Maringanti says:

        Now India also has test location in Chandigarh.

        • Daniya Grover says:

          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.


          • Krishna Umat says:

            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…

      • Vatandeep says:

        But now, we have a CELPIP test center in India as well in Chandigarh, this is the only one location where CELPIP started.

        • Daniya Grover says:

          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.


  60. Amr says:

    This is very helpful, What is the difference between CELPIP-General test and the CELPIP-General LS test

    • Alex says:

      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!

  61. OLUFEMI says:

    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.

    • Alex says:

      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!

  62. Dennis says:

    Hi, are there test locations available in the US for CELPIP? I intend to take this test for the express entry application.

  63. Kate says:

    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?

    • Alex says:

      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.

      • Prabhu says:

        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.

        • Ekaterina Grishko says:

          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!

  64. 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.

    • Alex says:

      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!

  65. Mahdi says:

    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

    • Alex says:

      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:

      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!

  66. Bhargav says:

    Extremely informative, I am gonna take CELPIP because of the spell check advantage ;)

  67. Faisal khan says:

    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?

  68. M Ahmmed says:

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

    • Alex says:

      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:

      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!

  69. Sergey says:

    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.

  70. Julian says:

    Does any one have any Celpip practice test book?

  71. rahul porandla says:


  72. Liza says:

    Very good post. I will have to make a choice as well..

  73. Maria Bychkova says:

    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!

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