How to apply
Follow these steps to apply for an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) for immigration purposes.
Step 1. Before you apply
Read about how IQAS works
- Once IQAS receives all required documents and payments, assessments take at least 12 weeks to process. This does not include mail delivery time.
- Processing time is not guaranteed. Times may vary based on the volume of applications and the amount of research needed to complete your assessment.
- We do not provide rush assessments.
For one applicant
The assessment cost stays the same, regardless of how many credentials you ask IQAS to assess. But, assessing multiple credentials will take longer than our average processing times.
- Application fee: $200
- Courier fees: $15 for a Canadian address; $75 for an international address
For more than one applicant
Each applicant must apply separately; for example, spouses cannot submit their credentials under one application. However, in case of family members IQAS will refund one applicant courier fee if the applicants indicate they want both assessments returned in one package. Please include a note asking for this with the application package you mail to IQAS.
An assessment does not guarantee:
- a job;
- a successful application for immigration;
- your credentials will be recognized for licensure in Canada.
Exceptions for certain professions
If you are applying to immigrate as a Physician / Specialist Physician and intend to get a licence to practice in Canada, your qualifications must be assessed by the Medical Council of Canada.
If you are applying to immigrate as a Pharmacist and intend to get a licence to practice in Canada, your qualifications must be assessed by the Pharmacy Examining Board of Canada.
Assessments for regulated professions
In Canada, some occupations are regulated. Regulated occupations have legal requirements or restrictions in place to protect the public. To work in these occupations, in addition to getting an ECA, later you will need to apply to and be assessed by the appropriate professional regulatory organization in the province or territory that you will settle in.
Step 2. Decide on credentials to be assessed
Credentials IQAS can assess
IQAS assesses completed/awarded formal academic and technical education credentials from recognized institutions. Find out about institution recognition.
IQAS does not assess:
- incomplete credentials
- anything below secondary/high school level (for example, primary/elementary level)
- non-academic credentials (for example, Excel training)
- professional qualifications (for example, chartered accountant designation)
- vocational or trades training (for example, diesel mechanics program)
- credentials obtained in Canada
In addition, IQAS does not let you know if your credentials/institution will be recognized, or the results of your assessment. This can only be determined after your application is received and the assessment is completed.
Credentials you need assessed
For an ECA, only your highest completed/awarded educational credential needs to be assessed. To understand how points are assigned for education and make an informed decision, visit the Government of Canada website. IQAS does not provide any further advice on which credentials you may want to assess.
Step 3. Gather your documents
Print and fill out the ECA Application Checklist (0.1 MB) to ensure your application is complete.
Your application package should include:
- Completed ECA Application Checklist:
- list only the credentials you need assessed
- IQAS Application Form:
- completed, printed and signed
- Payment receipt (if paying online) or payment (if using a bank draft or money order).
- Proof of name:
- photocopy of a government-issued identity document, such as passport.
- does not need to be a certified true or notarized copy
- Proof of name change (if applicable):
- this is needed only if your current name is different than the name on the educational documents
- can be a photocopy of a marriage certificate, record of landing, passport etc.
- does not need to be a certified true or notarized copy
- Photocopies of your diploma / degree certificates:
- this is the document issued after your degree / diploma was awarded (IQAS will not assess incomplete or unofficial provisional academic credentials)
- do not send your original certificates
- photocopies do not need to be certified true or notarized copies
- for Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees, send a photocopy of the PhD degree and of the cover page of the thesis
- Translations of all non-English educational documents:
- this includes translations of the transcripts being sent by the issuing institution
- translations need to be completed by a qualified professional translator who does not need to be certified in Canada
- translations do not need to be certified or notarized
Note: Academic transcripts / mark sheets will be mailed directly to IQAS by the issuing institution.
For more information on providing required academic documents, review Country-Specific Document Requirements (0.48 MB). If your country is not listed, refer to the general process posted on this page.
Step 4. Request your transcripts
The institution that issued your credentials must send your official transcripts / statement of marks (or attested/certified true copies) for all years of study directly to the IQAS office. This is necessary so IQAS can validate that your credentials are authentic.
Use the Request of Academic Records Form (0.8 MB) to ask the institution that issued your credential to send your transcripts / statement of marks directly to IQAS.
When filling out the form, you will need to use the IQAS reference number. The reference number is generated when you complete the online IQAS application (see Step 5). It can be found at the bottom left corner of the application form.
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees
In most cases transcripts are not issued for a PhD, so the issuing institution must send a letter confirming the awarding of the PhD.
Assessments of Chinese credentials
If your credentials are from the People’s Republic of China, you must get the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Center (CDGDC) to send validated credentials directly to the IQAS office.
For non-university credentials, you can arrange for the China Higher Education Student Information and Career Center (CHESICC) to send the credential authenticity reports directly to IQAS.
Step 5. Complete the online application
- Complete and submit the online part of your application.
- While filling in the online form, you will be asked to pay the application fees.
- Payment options include:
- Visa, MasterCard
- American Express
- You can also mail in a bank draft or money order with your application, but this will delay processing by about 6 weeks.
- Payment options include:
- Do not to use an international P.O. Box number as part of your mailing address, because couriers will not deliver to that type of address. Please provide IQAS with an address where a P.O. Box number is not used.
- After you submit your online application, you will receive:
- an email from IQAS containing a final PDF version of your application, which will include a reference number at the bottom left corner (you need this for your Request of Academic Records form), and
- an email containing your payment receipt (only if you paid online).
- Print and sign the application form that was emailed to you and include it in your mail-in application package [see next step]
- Print the payment receipt.
Step 6. Mail your application package
For more information on document requirements, see Step 3.
- Make sure your application is complete; it should include:
- ECA Application Checklist
- Signed IQAS Application Form
- Photocopies of academic documents
- Translations of all non-English educational documents
- Proof of name
- Proof of name change (if applicable)
- Mail your application to the address below:
- use tracked mail or a courier so that you can keep track of your application
- there will be a delay between when your courier confirms delivery, and when you receive an email confirming that we have received your documents
IQAS mailing address:
International Qualifications Assessment Service
9th floor, 9942-108 Street
Edmonton, AB T5K 2J5
Step 7. After you apply
- An assessment currently takes 12 weeks to process after all required documents and payments are received.
- Assessment of some applications may take longer if extensive research is needed.
- Times are not guaranteed and may vary based on the number of applications.
- IQAS does not provide rush assessments; applications are processed in the order they are received.
- Mail delivery time is not calculated in the processing time.
IQAS will only provide the following status updates:
- When your application package is received. This email will confirm your file number. You will need this number to submit with your immigration application to the Government of Canada, and in any communications with IQAS about your application. There may be a delay of up to 4 weeks between when your courier confirms delivery, and when you receive this confirmation email.
- When IQAS receives the transcripts sent by the issuing institution. If multiple institutions are sending transcripts, IQAS will only confirm once all documents are received.
- When your assessment is completed. This email will include an electronic copy of your ECA.
If your mailing address is in Canada, IQAS will mail your documents to a Canada Post Office near you. You will receive a Delivery Notice Card from Canada Post letting you know that your package is available for pick up. Canada Post keeps packages for 15 business days. You will need to collect your package on time and show proper identification.
If your mailing address is outside of Canada, your package will be delivered directly to your address.
Returning documents after the assessment
- IQAS will return any original certificates sent by the applicant.
- We will not return notarized copies of documents or transcripts sent by your school.
Making changes to or cancelling your application
Visit the Change or cancel your application page to:
- update your address
- change the type of assessment you applied for
- cancel your application
If IQAS needs more information
If IQAS needs any additional documents or information, you will be contacted by email, phone or mail.
If IQAS cannot complete your assessment
If IQAS cannot complete the assessment due to insufficient documentation or an unrecognized institution, you will be contacted and a partial refund will be provided.
Refunds will not be provided if documents appear to be:
- tampered with
- falsely translated
Request a duplicate certificate
- Duplicate certificates cost $15 per copy, plus a $5 courier fee per mailing address.
- Your ECA is valid for Express Entry purposes for five years from the date it was issued.
- Go to Order additional copies of certificate
Reassessment / appeal process
If you are not satisfied with your assessment, you may send a request for reassessment in writing to the IQAS office.
If you are not satisfied with the outcome of reassessment, you can appeal in writing. You will need to pay a $75 appeal fee.
Written requests for reassessment and appeal must be submitted within 1 year of the original date of assessment.