The language of instruction at Carleton is English. For admission into Carleton’s graduate programs, you will need to demonstrate that your knowledge and use of English are strong enough for graduate studies at an English-language university.

If your first language is not English, you can demonstrate your language proficiency by:

  • presenting one of the official Language Proficiency (ESL) test scores as defined in the table below;
  • showing that you have completed ESLA 1900 or ESLA 1905 at Carleton University with a final grade of B- or higher; or
  • presenting official certification (transcripts) that you have completed an undergraduate or graduate degree within the past three years at a university in any country in which the primary language is English, where the language of instruction in the relevant educational institution was English, and the language of instruction in their most recently completed undergraduate or graduate degree was English.

Applicants who present their most recent degree and transcripts from a Canadian institution are exempt from language proficiency requirements, unless otherwise required by an individual program.

Note: Letters from your universities stating the medium of instruction is English are not acceptable.

Minimum Language Proficiency (ESL) test score requirement:

Language Proficiency Test Score
Canadian Academic English Language Test (CAEL, CAEL-CE) 70 (minimum 60 in each band)
Duolingo English Test (DET) 125 (minimum 130 – Literacy; 135 – Comprehension; 115 Conversation; 110 Production)
IELTS, IELTS Online (Academic) 6.5 IELTS (minimum 6.0 in each band)
Pearson Test of English (PTE) including PTE Online (Academic) 60 overall (minimum 60 in each Communicative Skill)
TOEFL iBT (including iBT Home Edition) 86 (20 in reading and listening; 22 in speaking and writing)

Please note that some graduate programs may require a higher level of understanding of the English language and will have higher ESL requirements. It is your responsibility to review and meet the minimum requirements of the program to which you are applying. The Graduate Studies reserves the right to require further documentation or additional testing if they feel it necessary to demonstrate the required level of English language proficiency.

Carleton University is committed to ensuring that all students have fair access to English Language testing, including those students who require accommodations to complete the test. All tests accepted by Graduate Studies offer accommodations to students who require it, including but not limited to students with disabilities, and nursing mothers. Please note that arranging accommodations for an ESL test may take up to six weeks.