Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP)

The Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) is a test designed to assess the proficiency in the domain of English language. It is managed by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

The CELPIP is given to individuals applying for the Canadian citizenship, to prove their ability to function in English.  If you are taking the Canadian Citizenship test – see our Citizenship Study Guide and Practice Questions

The test is designed to measure your knowledge of English, and abilities in everyday situations that involve communicating and interacting with others.

The CELPIP Test is meaning to assess your capability to develop in the Canadian society and to determine if you will be able to communicate effectively and correctly, so the questions are designed to assess your knowledge of English according to the normative of the Canadian English, including its accent. It’s important that you take this into account when preparing for it.

About the Test

There are two versions of the CELPIP Test: the CELPIP-General Test and the CELPIP-General LS Test.

CELPIP-General Test
This test assesses your functionality in 4 aspects of English:

  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking

The CELPIP-General Test is for those applying for permanent residence status in Canada. The time estimated to take this test is 3 hours.

CELPIP-General LS Test

This test assesses your functionality only in Listening and Speaking, and is for those applying for the Canadian citizenship. The estimated time for this version of the test is 1 hour and 10 minutes.

The CELPIP can be taken in 4 countries: Canada, Philippines, United Arab Emirates and United States.

Both tests are computerized tests, taken on a digital platform; the Reading and Writing section using the mouse and keyboard, and the Listening and Speaking sections using headphones and a microphone.
Tips on taking a Computerized Test

CELPIP General Test Contents

4 components

  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking


The time limit is 47-55 minutes, and there are 7 subsections with specific types of questions assigned for each:

  • 1 question of practice task
  • 8 questions regarding Listening to Problem Solving
  • 5 questions regarding Listening to a Daily Life Conversation
  • 6 questions about Listening for Information
  • 5 questions regarding Listening to a News Item
  • 8 questions referring Listening to a Discussion
  • 6 questions about Listening to Viewpoints


5 subsections to be completed in 55-60 minutes;

  • 1 Practice Task
  • 11 questions about Reading Correspondence
  • 8 questions regarding Reading to Apply a Diagram
  • 9 questions to assess Reading for Information
  • 10 questions about Reading for Viewpoints


Two subsections that must be completed in 53-60 minutes:

  • The first task is to write an Email
  • The second task is to respond to Survey Questions


9 tasks to be completed in 15-20 minutes;

  • 1 Practice Task
  • Give Advice
  • Talk about a Personal Experience
  • Describe a Scene
  • Make Predictions
  • Compare and Persuade
  • Deal with a Difficult Situation
  • Expressing Opinions
  • Describe an Unusual Situation

CELPIP-General LS Test Contents

This test has 2 sections, where you demonstrate your ability to listen and speak in English.


8 sections, with specific question types in each, to be completed in 47 minutes;

  • 2 questions which assess your skills to Identify Similar Meanings
  • 8 questions about how to Answer Questions
  • 5 questions regarding Listening to Problem Solving
  • 6 questions about Listening to a Daily Life Conversation
  • 5 questions regarding Listening for Information
  • 8 questions about Listening to a News Item
  • 6 questions about Listening to a Discussion
  • 5-8 concerning Listening to Viewpoints


Nine tasks, to be completed in 20 minutes;

  • The first task is a Practice Task
  • Giving Advice
  • Talking about a Personal Experience
  • Describing a Scene
  • Making Predictions
  • Comparing and Persuading
  • Dealing with a Difficult Situation
  • Expressing Opinions
  • Describing an Unusual Situation

Test Development Questions

The Listening section (in both tests) and Reading sections (in the CELPIP General) have unscored questions that are used for test development. You won’t be told which one are the unscored control questions, so in order to pass the test you must do your best on all questions.

How to register

The CELPIP offers online registration and mail registration, but they recommend for the candidates register online.

The first step is to download a CELPIP Registration Form from the website, then fill it and submit it with every other documentation that’s required by mail.

The fees must be made in Canadian dollars (CAD$) and the amounts vary according to the country you are in and the region. Online payments are done through credit cards (VISA, MasterCard, American Express) as well as PayPal. If you are registering by mail you must pay the fees by money order.


There is no minimum pass score, instead CELPI assigns you a level according to your score. There are 12 levels, being 1 the lowest and 12 the highest.

CELPIP Test scores are available in 8 business days after your test date, and are available in the account on CELPIP’s website that you opened when register. There is a Express Rating that has your tests results ready in 3 business days after your test date, but requires an extra fee.

Your CELPIP Official Score Report will also be delivered by mail to your registered address, via Canada Post.

Retaking the test

If you failed the test you have the chance to retake it, but you must wait at least 30 days before re-applying.

Your score report will specify areas where you failed.  Use this information to create a study schedule that focuses on those areas where you have difficulties.  Tips on what to do if you fail a test



CELPIP Test Strategy


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September 14th, 2018

Page Updated: September 14th, 2018

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Modified: September 14th, 2018 September 14th, 2018
Published: July 3rd, 2018