English as a Second Language (ESL)

NAIT offers conditional admission into credit programs for English as a Second Language (ESL) students enrolled in ESL Level 6 prior to the start of the program.

Admissions pathway for ESL students

This pathway supports ESL students whose English Language Proficiency (ELP) is just below the ELP requirement for NAIT’s credit programs.  By completing NAIT’s Level 6 ESL course to meet eligibility requirements, instead of taking another external ELP exam, you can complete your ESL while saving a spot in your future credit program of choice.

How do I qualify?

To be eligible for conditional admission using this pathway, applicants must:​

  1. Meet all the program’s entrance requirements, other than the higher English Language Proficiency (ELP), and pay all fees and deposits by the deadlines.
  2. Enrol and complete ESL Level 6 prior to the start of the program. For example, a student who is scheduled to complete their ESL program in the winter term would be eligible for conditional admission in the spring, summer, or fall term.
  3. Currently have one of the following lower English Language Proficiency  requirements listed below:
  • Successful completion of NESL511, NESL521 and NESL531 
    Minimum grade of 60%  Successful completion of NESL511, NESL521 and NESL531
  • IELTS (Academic Format)
    6.0 overall band score, with no band less than 5.5
  • Pearson Test of English - Academic
    50, with no less than 40 in each communicative skill
  • TOEFL iBT (Internet Based) or TOEFL IBT Special Home Edition Test
    Overall score of minimum 74
  • Duolingo English Test
    Minimum test score of 100

How to apply

  • Make sure you meet the minimum eligibility requirements for conditional admission listed above. You will need to submit two applications in total: an application to ESL, and an application to the credit program of your choice.
  • Apply to one of NAIT’s degree, diploma, or certificate programs. Learn more about applying to NAIT.
  • Apply to ESL at least one term before the start date your credit program . This is a separate application. ESL applications are submitted through NAIT Continuing Education. Please note that if you have one of the ELP requirements for conditional admission, you do not have to complete an ESL placement exam. So please do not register for a placement test.
  • If you meet the requirements and seats are available, you will be offered conditional admission into your credit program of choice pending successful completion of ESL level 6 before the start of the program.
  • Check your MyNAIT portal frequently to be informed on your application status and deadlines (enrolment, tuition, etc.)


If you are unable to meet the condition of completing ESL level 6, you may request your conditional admission be deferred to a future term of the same program. Ensure you read the deferral criteria to understand how this impacts any future applications.


School of Health programs with an admissions interview component are not eligible for this pathway. We encourage you to review your program page to see if your program has an interview as a part of the application process. You can check by reviewing the entrance requirements under the How to Apply tab.

Business Administration program applicants are eligible for provisional admission, rather than conditional admission. This means you can complete your ESL requirements while completing your first year of the Business Administration program.

Learn more about the ESL program at NAIT

English as a Second Language (ESL)

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

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