At Niagara College we administer a series of language proficiency tests for placement into the English for Academic Preparation (EAP) program. The goal of our placement testing is to ensure that all students are placed in a class level appropriate for their language proficiency.

If you have completed your studies from outside of Canada you may be required to provide proof of one or more of the following:
  • Niagara College Mature Student Test for English
  • Grade 12 English at the C or U level (Ontario High School Curriculum)
  • ACE English (Academic Upgrading)

Giulia Borghesi
Testing Coordinator
[email protected]
905-735-2211 ext. 7888

Language Proficiency Admission Requirements

If English is your second language, Niagara College will also accept the following language proficiency scores. The below chart represents general admission and may vary from country-specific admission requirements. Please CLICK HERE to view country specific requirements.

Undergraduate & Graduate Admission Requirements

Language Proficiency TestMinimum overall accepted score
for NC Diploma and Certificate (Undergraduate) programs
Minimum overall accepted score
for NC Graduate / Degree programs
Cambridge English Exams
(B2 First/FCE, C1 Advanced/CAE or C2 Proficiency/CPE)
169 with no skill below 162176 with no skill below 169
International English Language Testing System (IELTS)6
(No Individual band under 5.5)
(No Individual band under 5.5)
Internet-based (IBT) Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) 79 with 20 in Writing and 20 in Speaking79-80 with 22 in Writing and 22 in Speaking
Pearson Test of English (PTE)53-5758+
Canadian Academic English Language Test (CAEL) 60 with no individual band less than 5060 with no individual band less than 50
EAPCompletion of Level 5 English for Academic Preparation (EAP) program with 70% and no individual grade under 50%Completion of Level 5 English for Academic Preparation (EAP) program with 75% and no individual grade under 60%

** The language proficiency requirements outlined do not apply to a select number of programs, including but not limited to the Pharmacy Technician program and Teaching English as a Second Language. Graduate programs in Critical Care Nursing, Gerontology, Palliative Care and Community Mental Health, must meet the same requirements as “All post-secondary (undergraduate) programs” and are exempt from standard Graduate program English proficiency requirements.

*** Niagara College recognizes the IELTS Academic tests. The IELTS General tests are not accepted for admissions to academic programs or placement into English for Academic Purposes levels.

****Please note, meeting or exceeding the minimum score requirements does not guarantee admission to Niagara College.

If you applied for post-secondary or short term testing you can find more information on Placement Test Details.

EAP Level Placement and Common Equivalencies

The IELTS, TOEIC and TOEFL scores provided are for planning purposes only and provide students with an indication of EAP level placement in the Niagara College English for Academic Purposes Program. Applicants are placed into the appropriate EAP level in one of two ways (never both):

  1. By participating in the Niagara College placement test battery during orientation.
  2. By supplying their current (within 2 years) IELTS scores to be validated before arrival.

Note: Level placements are carefully reviewed and validated according to students’ evident language ability during the first week of classes.

10-2.510-225iBT 19-290-A10-14*
23-4.5230-395iBT 29-40A115-29*
34.5-5400-545iBT 41-52A230-42**
45-5.5550-695iBT 53-64B143-51***
55.5-6695-795iBT 65-82B252-58****

Please use the “What’s My Level?” calculator below to get an idea of what level you will likely be placed in according to your IELTS scores.

What's My Level?According to my IELTS scores

ESL Program Options

IELTS Test Venue

IELTS Language Testing