Admissions  

English Language Proficiency

Official language

The official language of instruction at NAIT is English. As such, you will need to meet certain English Language Proficiency (ELP) requirements for admission and to be successful in your studies. The Office of the Registrar may require applicants to provide additional documentation during the admissions process to prove English Language Proficiency.

The following details the ways through which you can prove your English proficiency meets NAIT requirements.

Previous academic study

Official transcripts showing previous academic studies in English must be submitted along with your application.

If you have completed 3 years of full-time consecutive academic studies where the language of instruction was in English - excluding English as a Second Language (ESL) courses - from a country not included on the Exempt Country list, then additional information is required.

Download the list of exempted countries for the 2020-21 admissions cycle (pdf)

Full-time study for English Language Proficiency purposes is defined as successfully completing 3 courses per term for 6 terms over a span of 3 years.

Current students

Current Alberta high school students can request official transcripts and detailed academic reports to use as a proof of enrolment, or a myPass Letter through myPass. These documents can be used to prove ELP.

High school students who submit a proof of enrolment for English 30-1 or 30-2 can receive conditional acceptance based on completion of English 20-1 (or provincial equivalent) with a minimum grade of 70% or English 20-2 (or provincial equivalent) with a minimum grade of 75%.

Letter submission

For the September 2019, January 2020, and May 2020 intakes ONLY, ELP can be granted through a letter submission if:

  • The letter shows the actual start and end dates of study and indicate completion of study for 3 or more consecutive years
  • The letter is on official educational institution letterhead
  • The letter is be signed and dated by an official at the educational institute

If you completed three years of full-time consecutive academic studies (excluding ESL courses) where the language of instruction was in English from a country included on the Exempt Country list above, you may choose to submit a letter from your educational institute (with the same requirements as above) in lieu of submitting transcripts to meet the English Language Proficiency guidelines.

Effective October 1, 2019, for the Fall 2020 intake onward: for education completed outside of Canada, NAIT will no longer accept letters indicating that English is the language of instruction in order to meet English Language Proficiency requirements.

English Language Arts completion

Certain English Language Arts courses completed within Canada can satisfy NAIT’s English Language Proficiency (ELP) requirements.

If you are applying to a NAIT credit program with a start date of Winter 2020 and/or Spring 2020, the following courses can be used to prove ELP:

  • English Language Arts 30-1 (or equivalent) with a minimum grade of 75%
  • One university-level English Course (3 credits) with a minimum grade of 75%
  • One Grade 12 AP English course with a minimum grade of 65%

If you are applying to a NAIT credit program with a start date of Fall 2020 or later, the following courses can be used to prove ELP:

  • English Language Arts 30-1 (or equivalent) with a minimum grade of 65%
  • One university-level English Course (3 credits) with a minimum grade of 65%
  • One Grade 12 AP English course with a minimum grade of 65%
  • English Language Arts 30-2 (or equivalent) with a minimum grade of 70%
  • 2 CEGEP English 603/604 courses with a minimum grade of 65% (Quebec Students)

Read more about provincial equivalences to English Language Arts Requirements 

Please note: The Office of the Registrar reserves the right to request additional proof of English Language Proficiency through your MyNAIT Portal.

ELP Exams and other assessments

For applicants without 3 years of consecutive, full-time academic study in English, a formal assessment (such as an ELP exam) is required.

  • Exam results are valid for 2 years after the test date. Applicants will be assessed on the basis of their most recent English Language Proficiency results.
  • ESL Placement Exams are intended for students entering a NAIT ESL program. They cannot be used to prove English Language Proficiency when applying to most NAIT programs.
    • If your ESL Placement Exam is your most recent ELP assessment, it may still impact your application to other NAIT programs.
    • If you already meet the ELP requirements for your program, please speak to an advisor before taking an ESL Placement Exam at NAIT.
  • Accepted exams and scores vary by program. Find your program under the tabs below to see what tests are accepted and what scores are required.
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Programs

  • Advanced Care Paramedic
  • Animal Health Technology
  • Laboratory & X-ray Combined
  • Dental Assisting Technology
  • Dental Technology
  • Denturist Technology
  • Diagnostic Medical Sonography
  • Magnetic Resonance
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Medical Laboratory Assisting
  • Medical Laboratory Technology
  • Medical Radiologic Technology
  • Veterinary Medical Assistant

English Language Proficiency

For the programs listed above, ELP can be met with ONE of the following exams:

  1. NAIT English Language Proficiency Exam
    Minimum 75% or higher in each of the four components
  2. NAIT’s Level 6 Courses NEAP611, NEAP621 and NEAP631
    Successful completion of all 3 courses with 60% or higher in each course
  3. Completion of the Canadian Language Benchmarks Assessment (CLB)
    with minimum test scores for each component
    • 8 in the Speaking component
    • 8 in the Reading component
    • 8 in the Listening component
    • 8 in the Writing component
  4. IELTS (Academic Format)
    with minimum band scores for each component
    A minimum overall band score of 6.5 will be required for the Fall 2021 intake onwards
    • 6.5 in the Speaking component
    • 6.0 in the Reading component
    • 6.0 in the Listening component
    • 6.0 in the Writing component
  5. TOEFL IBT (Internet Based)
    • 23 in the Speaking component
    • 20 in the Reading component
    • 20 in the Listening component
    • 20 in the Writing component

English Language Proficiency

For the Respiratory Therapy program, ELP can be met with ONE of the following exams:

  1. Completion of the Canadian Language Benchmarks Assessment (CLB)
    with minimum test scores for each component
    • 9 in the Speaking component
    • 9 in the Reading component
    • 9 in the Listening component
    • 9 in the Writing component
  2. Completion of IELTS (Academic Format)
    with minimum band scores for each component
    • 8.0 in the Listening component
    • 7.0 in the Reading component
    • 7.0 in the Speaking component
    • 7.0 in the Writing component
  3. Completion of TOEFL IBT (Internet Based)
    • 23 in the Speaking component
    • 24 in the Reading component
    • 28 in the Listening component
    • 27 in the Writing component

English Language Proficiency

For the Bachelor of Applied Information Systems Technology program, ELP can be met with ONE of the following exams:

  1. NAIT’s Level 6 Courses NEAP611, NEAP621 and NEAP631
    Successful completion of all 3 courses with 60% or higher in each course
  2. Completion of the Canadian Language Benchmarks Assessment (CLB)
    with minimum test scores for each component
    • 8 in the Speaking component
    • 8 in the Reading component
    • 8 in the Listening component
    • 8 in the Writing component
  3. IELTS (Academic Format)
    with the minimum band scores for each component
    • 6.5 in the Speaking component
    • 6.0 in the Reading component
    • 6.0 in the Listening component
    • 6.0 in the Writing component
  4. TOEFL IBT (Internet Based)
    • 23 in the Speaking component
    • 20 in the Reading component
    • 20 in the Listening component
    • 20 in the Writing component

English Language Proficiency

For  Business Administration , ELP can be met with ONE of the following:

  1. NAIT English Language Proficiency Exam
    Minimum 73% or “B” in each of the four components
  2. NAIT’s Level 6 Courses NEAP611, NEAP621 and NEAP631
    Successful completion of all 3 courses with 60% or higher in each course
  3. IELTS (Academic Format)
    Minimum overall band score of 6.5 with no band less than 5.0
  4. Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL)
    • Minimum score of 70
  5. Completion of the Canadian Language Benchmarks Assessment (CLB)
    with minimum test scores for each component
    • 8 in the Speaking component
    • 8 in the Reading component
    • 8 in the Listening component
    • 8 in the Writing component
  6. Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB)
    Minimum score of 85
  7. Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic)
    Minimum overall score of 55
  8. TOEFL
    • TOEFL IBT (Internet Based)
      Minimum total score of 80 with no individual component below 20
    • TOEFL Paper Based
      Minimum Score of 550
  9. University of Alberta
    Successful Completion of ESL140 and ESL145, which is now equivalent to EAP140 and EAP145

Students who do not meet regular ELP listed above for Business Administration but meet the other academic requirements may qualify for provisional admission with ONE of the lower English Language Proficiency requirements listed below. Provisional admissions allows students to complete their NAIT ESL Level 6 courses within the first 12 months of starting the program.

  1. Successful completion of NESL511, NESL521 and NESL531
    • Minimum grade of 60%
  2. IELTS (Academic Format)
    • 6.0 Overall Band Score, with no band less than 5.5
  3. Pearson Test of English- Academic
    • ​​50, with no less than 40 in each communicative skill
  4. TOEFL iBT (Internet Based)
    • Overall score of minimum 74

Learn more about NAIT’s Flexible Learning Options for Business Administration

English Language Proficiency

For all other programs, ELP can be met with ONE of the following exams:

  1. NAIT English Language Proficiency Exam
    Minimum 73% or “B” in each of the four components
  2. NAIT’s Level 6 Courses NEAP611, NEAP621 and NEAP631
    Successful completion of all 3 courses with 60% or higher in each course
  3. IELTS (Academic Format)
    with minimum overall band score of 6.5 with no band less than 5.0
  4. Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL)
    • Minimum score of 70
  5. Completion of the Canadian Language Benchmarks Assessment (CLB)
    with minimum test scores for each component
    • 8 in the Speaking component
    • 8 in the Reading component
    • 8 in the Listening component
    • 8 in the Writing component
  6. Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB)
    Minimum score of 85
  7. Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic)
    Minimum overall score of 55
  8. TOEFL
    • TOEFL IBT (Internet Based)
      Minimum total score of 80 with no individual component below 20
    • TOEFL Paper Based
      Minimum Score of 550
  9. University of Alberta
    Successful Completion of ESL140 and ESL145, which is now equivalent to EAP140 and EAP145

Learn more about NAIT's English Language Proficiency test

Additional English Tests During COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, resulting in closures of schools and English Language Testing Centres, we recognize the need to provide applicants an alternate way to provide proof of English Language Proficiency. During this time, NAIT continues to offer the NAIT English Language Proficiency Exam online. We will temporarily accept the Duolingo English Test, the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test, or the CAEL Online Test to meet English Language Proficiency Requirements for the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 academic years. Accepting these tests for future intakes is under review. Applicants must request their results be sent directly to NAIT.

Acceptable Minimum Duolingo English Test score required for Business Administration with Provisional Admission: 100

Acceptable Minimum Duolingo English Test score required for all other NAIT programs: 115

TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition and CAEL Online test scores vary by program, and require the same score as the TOEFL IBT or CAEL test scores below.

We recognize our need to review and adjust our response as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve. To stay informed of NAIT’s response to COVID-19 please visit nait.ca/coronavirus.

English as a Second Language learning options

Need to brush up on your English language skills before you apply to NAIT? Explore our English as a Second Language (ESL) programs and courses.

English as a Second Language (ESL)

Take your first step to academic success with NAIT's ESL classes. NAIT will grant conditional admission into select programs for students who begin their studies through NAIT ESL classes.