Since I plan to immigrate legally through the permanent residency application there are about 10,000 steps that have to be completed in order to do so. In order to create my Express Entry profile on the CIC website I have to first gather some documentation. The first thing I need is my Educational Credential Assessment results. If you want to gain educational points for your degree(s) you have to have all of them assessed to make sure they are equivalent to Canadian standards. So if you graduated college a long time ago this may take a few weeks so the earlier you start the process the better. If you don’t have transcripts you need to get them and if you no longer have a physical copy of your diploma you’ll need to get that as well. Again this is needed if you plan to apply for permanent residency through the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) under Express Entry.
So OK fine, most schools allow you to get your transcripts digitally so that shouldn’t be too much of a hassle. You can check with The National Student Clearing House to see if your school lets your purchase your transcripts through them. You will then have to choose a designated organization who will process your assessment. That will depend on if you are in regulated or licensed field such as medicine or pharmacy or if you have a standard bachelor’s/master’s degree. There are about 7 organizations to choose from with the most popular being World Education Service (WES). The cost is about $200 for all of them but still check them all out to see which one best fits your situation.
I then find out I have to take a test to asses my English since I will get points based on that as well. My immediate thought is: “But I am coming from America! Of course I speak English!” but then I check myself and realize my Ameri-centric views and understand that it’s just part of the process. But it’s still a test and I HATE taking tests! Is it like the SAT?? I mean I have a pretty good grasp of the English language (or so I think) but I still get nervous when taking tests. I will be going through The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) because they have locations all throughout the US. The tests in my city only happen about once a month and can be sold out up to 2 months in advance. The cost for this test is $240, so including the education credential assessment that is almost $500 I have to spend and 2 months I have to wait JUST TO CREATE THE PROFILE.
But again….it’s all a part of the process….