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Effective January 2015, there is a new system called Express Entry to manage how skilled workers can apply to immigrate to Canada. Under Express Entry, skilled workers can create their online profiles that include their language test scores, educational credential assessment, and work experience. Based on their profiles, candidates will be ranked against others in a pool. Canadian immigration authorities will draw top candidates from the pool on a regular basis and send them an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence.

The applicants must still meet the minimum language threshold (at least 6.0 on the IELTS General Training test in each of the four skills; or at least 206 in reading, 248 in listening, and 309 in both speaking and writing on the TEF) and obtain an educational credential assessment (ECA). The following organizations have been designated by the Minister to provide ECA reports under the FSWP (applicants who have Canadian educational credentials do not need to get an ECA):

To be eligible for Express Entry pool, skilled workers must have at least one year of continuous full-time, or full-time equivalent (minimum 30 working hours per week, or 1560 hours per year) paid work experience within the last 10 years. This work experience must be in an occupation in Skill Type 0 (managerial) or Skill level A (professional) or B (skilled trade or technical occupations) of the Canadian National Occupational Classification (NOC).

To qualify as a skilled worker, you will be assessed against a point system consisting of six selection factors. The current pass mark is 67 points for all factors combined.

1: Education: You can be awarded a maximum of 25 points for a PhD degree. 23 points are awarded for a Master's degree, or University level entry-to-practice professional degree in one of these fields of study: Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Dentistry, Podiatry, Optometry, Law, Chiropractic Medicine, or Pharmacy. 22 points are awarded for two or more university degrees at the Bachelor's level. Once Bachelor's degree, or a three-year professional diploma will give you 21 points. You can get 19 points if you hold a two-year professional diploma, and 15 points for one-year professional diploma. A high school diploma can give you only 5 points. All foreign education credentials have to be assessed by an agency approved by CIC.

2. Ability in English or/and French: You will be awarded points based on your abilities to listen, speak, read and write. High proficiency in the first language can give you a maximum of 24points, high proficiency in the second language can give you additional 4points. You will have to establish your language proficiency levels through submitting language test results from a designated testing agency.** International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and Test d'évaluation de français (TEF) are currently the tests that assess your proficiency in the languages. Test descriptions and locations of the testing agencies can be found at and

3. Work experience: A maximum of 15 points can be awarded for 6 or more years of work experience; 13 points – for 4-5 years; 11 points – for 2-3 years, and 9 points for 1 year. 1 year of continuous full-time (or full-time equivalent) work experience is the minimum you need to have to be eligible for processing. You must have gained this experience during the 10 years before the date of your application. If you have an arranged employment offer, your work experience must be in an occupation in Skill Type 0 (managerial) or Skill level A (professional) or B (skilled trade or technical occupations) of the Canadian National Occupational Classification (NOC).

4. Age: Applicants aged 18 to 35 receive a maximum of 12 points. Subtract 1 point for each year outside this range. If you are younger than 18 or older than 47, you will receive 0 points for this category.

5. Arranged employment: Award yourself 10 points if you have a permanent full-time employment offer that has been confirmed by HRSDC. Note that HRSDC will confirm only those employment offers that correspond to the occupations listed in Skill Type 0 (managerial) or Skill Level A (professional) or B (skilled trade or technical occupations) of the Canadian National Occupational Classification (NOC).

6. Adaptability: Additional points can be awarded for relatives in Canada, spouse's language level, previous study or work in Canada of at least 2 years (for either you, or your spouse). If you have an arranged employment offer, you automatically receive 5 points under this selection factor. Even if you qualify under several criteria, you can be awarded a maximum of 10 points.

If you meet the above requirements and score 67 points or higher, you can build your electronic profile in Express Entry which will remain in the system for 12 months and participate in regular draws.

The Government of Canada does not provide financial support to new skilled worker immigrants. That is why you must show that you have enough money to support yourself and your family members after you arrive in Canada. The amount of money you need to support your family is determined by the size of your family. For example, one applicant must be in possession of CDN$11,824. A family of two will need to prove the availability of at least CDN$14,720. This minimum funds requirement does not apply to applicants with an employment offer confirmed by HRSDC.



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