If you’re planning to immigrate to Canada, one of the most common documents you must have come across while going through application forms must have been the ECA, an abbreviation for Educational Credentials Assessment. This document is an essential requirement for most of the immigration streams approved federally, including Express Entry.
The ECA verifies that foreign degrees, qualification certificates, and diplomas, have a genuine Canadian equivalent. This important document facilitates the assessment of individual capabilities, by immigration officials, and prospective employers in Canada. Once submitted, the evaluation process can take place over a few weeks, to a few months.
In order to expedite this process, WES or World Education Services, an ECA provider certified by the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Canada), recently announced some revised guidelines.
Revised Guidelines by WES or World Education Services
As of November 2020, most immigration applicants are only required to submit their highest completed credential. Submitting any additional credentials, that are not specifically requested by WES, will be discouraged as it will lengthen the assessment process.
To put the guidelines into further perspective, they mean that if an applicant has obtained a doctorate degree, he needn’t submit his bachelor’s or master’s degree for assessment. However, there are two exceptions to these guidelines – Indian and Francophone Credentials.
For applicants who completed their education in Francophone countries, the guidelines are as follows:
- If the highest qualification is DEUG, DUT, or Licence, the Diplôme du Bac or BEP, is not required.
- Submission of DEUG, DUT, or Licence is not required, for applicants with degrees in Maîtrise, Master, Diplôme d’Ingénieur, Diplôme de Grandes Ecoles, DEA, Diplôme d’Etat de Docteur en Médecine, or Diplôme d’Etat de Docteur en Pharmacie.
- If the applicant has a Diplôme de Docteur, no other credential is required.
For applicants who completed their education in India, the guidelines are as follows:
- A Master’s degree or post-graduate diploma has to be supported with documents related to their bachelor’s degree. This rule is exempted for those holding the following degrees: Master of Education, Master of Engineering, Master of Philosophy, or Master of Technology degree.
- If the applicant holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree, no other supporting credentials are needed.
Previously, all documents submitted in languages other than French and English had to be translated before acceptance. Now, some other languages are also accepted, depending on the documents required. Records obtained before secondary school, online credentials, and professional training qualifications are not accepted.