Language Requirements

The language of instruction at Carleton University is English. If English is not your first language, you must demonstrate that you can cope with the language demands of an English language university.

You can demonstrate your English language proficiency by:

  • Presenting official transcripts that indicate that you have studied for the last three years (full-time) in a high school, college or university in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom or any other country in which English is the primary language, and where English was the exclusive language of instruction in the relevant educational institution.

If you choose this option, please note:

  • Time spent in ESL courses will not be counted towards meeting these requirements.
  • Language requirements will not be waived based on letters written by students or as a result of completing senior-level, high school English courses.
  • If, in addition to evidence of 3 years of study, you also provide a failing English language test score, the university reserves the right to review the admission decision.
  • The university reserves the right to request an English Language Proficiency test from any applicant regardless of their academic background.

If you cannot demonstrate three full-time years in an English medium school, as outlined above, you must submit a language test result.

Score Notes
Minimum TOEFL Score 86 iBT (with a minimum of 22 on Speaking and Writing, and 20 on Listening and Reading)
Minimum MELAB Score 85 overall with no section below 80
Minimum IELTS Score 6.5 with no band below 6
Minimum CAEL Score 70
PTE (Pearson Test of English) 60 (min. 60 in each Communicative Skill)
Other Test Scores If your language test score is below those listed, you may still be eligible for an offer of admission, but with an English-language requirement. Note: Students beginning their studies with an English language requirement are not eligible for admission to the following programs: Architectural Studies, Health Sciences, Humanities, Information Technology, Industrial Design, International Business, Journalism, Journalism and Humanities, Public Affairs and Policy Management. If you are admitted with an English language requirement, you will begin your studies in our Foundation Program. For more information on the language test score needed for an offer of admission with an English language requirement, visit: https://admissions.carleton.ca/esl/. For other information, visit: https://admissions.carleton.ca/applicant-type/international-applicants/.