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Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) for Canada

What is ECA for Canada immigration?

An Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) is used to verify that your foreign degree, diploma, or certificate (or other proof of your credential) is valid and equal to a Canadian one.

Is ECA required for Express Entry?

If you are applying to the federal Express Entry program as a skilled worked, only the principal applicant needs an ECA. Accompanying family members do not need to have an ECA, but if your wife or husband has a post-secondary degree, you may be able to claim additional Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points  if they get an ECA.

Where can I get ECA for Canada immigration?

You can get an ECA for Canada immigration at any of the designated organizations listed below. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) only accepts assessments from these organizations. When they assess your education, they will give you a report that tells you what your education is equal to in Canada.

IRCC only accepts assessments issued on or after the date the organizations were designated to do ECA for Canada immigration purposes. If you got a report before that date, contact the organization to see if they’ll re-issue it.

Assessment of most foreign education

To obtain a valid ECA for Canada immigration, you must use an organization on the following IRCC-approved list. If an organization isn’t on this list, IRCC will not accept assessments from them.

If you aren’t sure which organization to choose, contact them.

ECA assessment for specialist and family physicians

You must get your report from the Medical Council of Canada (designated April 17, 2013) if your primary occupation is:

  • specialist physician
    • 2016 NOC code 3111
  • general practitioner/family physician
    • 2016 NOC code 3112

ECA assessment for pharmacists

If you are a pharmacist (NOC code 3131), where you need to get your report depends on your job.

If you need a license to practice you must get your report from the Pharmacy Examining Board of Canada (designated January 6, 2014). This applies to you if you care for patients in a:

  • hospital pharmacy
  • long term care facility
  • community pharmacy

If you do not need a license for your job, you can get your assessment from any other designated ECA organization. This includes jobs where you may need a pharmacy degree but may not need to have a licence to practice, such as:

  • government
  • the pharmaceutical industry

Contact the regulatory body in the province where you plan to live to find out if you need a licence to practice.

How long is an ECA report valid for?

IRCC will accept ECA reports for five years from the date they are issued, so long as they were issued on or after April 17, 2013. If you got an ECA report before that date, you should contact the organization to see if they will re-issue it.

What documents required for ECA for Canada immigration?

You must submit a Document Evaluation Application Form along with a CAD$530 fee as well as the following documents:

  • Birth Certificate.
  • Marriage Certificate.
  • Statutory Supporting Documents if required.
  • University Degree or Diploma Certificate.
  • Transcripts.
  • Licencing Statement.

Is ECA required for a Canadian provincial immigrant nominee program (PNP)?

ECA is a mandatory requirement in all the PNPs and the federal Express Entry system to check whether your education is in accordance with Canadian educational standards or not. Getting an ECA is the primary requirement for applying for Canada permanent residency especially through skilled worker categories. Before you receive an invitation to apply for Provincial Nominee Program, you must have completed your ECA for Canada immigration test and language proficiency test, and the reports included when you submit PNP profile.

Is ECA required for Quebec immigration?

The province of Quebec has its own unique immigration requirements and programs which are different from the federal programs and the PNPs. You dont need ECA for Quebec, instead you need to certify from your University registrar to claim points towards Education requirements. You can also submit your credentials to the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration for the Évaluation comparative des études effectuées hors du Québec (Comparative evaluation for studies done outside Québec). This is an expert opinion issued for reference purposes only. It is neither a diploma nor an equivalency diploma.

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