​​​Meet the language requirements​​

Submit proof of your English Language Skills

You need to meet the English Language Proficiency (ELP) standard to be registered as a nurse in Canada. The requirements are the same for the RN and LPN professions but different for the HCA profession.

The easiest way to prove your English language proficiency for any profession is by taking an ELP exam. NCAS accepts ELP test scores from either CELBAN or IELTS. ​​

RN/LPN test score requirements:

Name of language proficiency examComponentMinimum score



Speaking 8

​​​IELTS (academic)



​ ​
​ ​

HCA test score requirements:

Name of language proficiency examComponentMinimum score



​ ​

​​​IELTS (academic)



​ ​ ​ ​

​NCAS will only accept language test scores directly from the testing agency. When you sign up for your language proficiency exam, please select the Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS) to have your report sent directly to NCAS. The language testing agency will send you a copy of your test scores as well as a copy directly to NCAS.​

For CELBAN, please use the below information for your online form to designate NCAS as the test result report recipient:


For IELTS, choose "Nursing Community Assessment Service" as the recognizing organization in Step #5 of your application and account set up.

If you have already taken your ELP test, and your scores are still valid, you can contact the testing agency to request that a copy be sent to NCAS.

  • CELBAN results are valid for three years from the date the report was issued
  • IELTS test results are valid for two years from your test date

If you have already taken your ELP test, you'll need to request additional copies of your scores to be sent directly to NCAS. To order copies, please fill out the request, by visiting the link below, as well as pay a fee:

  • CELBAN - Complete the request form. There is a fee, and this process takes about two business days to complete your request
  • IELTS - Complete the request form. There is a fee. Once you complete and submit the form, you will receive an invoice two days later. Once IELTS receives your payment, your order will be completed in about five days

*There may be other ways to show your English language proficiency. For instance, if you completed all your primary, secondary and nursing education in English (and can give proof of that) or have considerable experience working in an English health care environment and can provide employer documentation, you may not need to take the ELP test. But the ELP is often the fastest way to determine proficiency. Please contact us​ if you feel you need to pursue the alternative pathway​.  ​

If you would like to submit an Employer Reference Form as documentation for English language proficiency, please download this form for you and your employer to fill out. When completed,  your employer will need to email the form directly to NCAS at ienp.info@ncasbc.ca.

Once the Credential Service Team receives your completed form, they will review and assess whether the informatio​n provided by your employer fulfills NCAS' English language proficiency requirements.