Best ECA for Canada Immigration: WES vs IQAS vs ICES vs CES

Best ECA for Canada Immigration: WES vs IQAS vs ICES vs CES

Let’s compare the ECA organizations to find the best ECA for Canada immigration.

But why it is needed?

If you are planning for Canada PR then it is very important that you need to get all your education certificates assessed by an authorized organization. There are four organizations primarily which people get confused between CES, WES, ICES, and IQAS.

You are interested in an express entry or other kinds of Canadian skill immigration. And you have a non-Canadian education.

You are required to obtain the equivalence of your non-Canadian education. And this document is called ECA or Educational credential assessment. You have to get it done by certain authorized bodies.

  • ECAs are done for other purposes as well but you have to get an ECA for immigration purposes.
  • An ECA is valid for a period of five years. If you update your education in between you can always have that added into your ECA.

How many points you can get with ECA for Canadian immigration?

ECA report is important because you cannot create your profile without it. And you will also be able to get points for your education based on your ECA report.

You can use the comparison table by the Government of Canada. It shows how many points you can earn under the:

  • Comprehensive Ranking System
  • Federal Skilled Worker Program factor points

How?

Online_Educational_credential_assessment_ECA_for_Express_Entry_What_your_report_mean

A federal skilled worker program factor points

With a 100 point grid, you can get a maximum of 25 points for your education.

For example, if the organization evaluated your education. And reported it to be equivalent to a Master of Business Administration. You get 23 points.

Recommended: Federal skilled worker program: Step by step process

Educational_credential_assessment_ECA_for_Express_Entry_What_your_report_mean

Comprehensive ranking system

Based on the CRS point system, you can earn a maximum of 140 points with your spouse and 150 without the spouse’s level of education.

For example, you will earn 126-135  points with a Master of Business Administration.

Online_Educational_credential_assessment_ECA_for_Express_Entry_What_your_report_mean

World Education Services (WES)

Here is the general information about WES.

  • Name: World Education Services
  • Website: http://www.wes.org/fswp
  • Official processing time: 35 business days ( Can take up to 3 months)
  • WES Fees: CA$ 220 for any number of credentials and 100 CAD for upgrade + Courier Charges
  • Application process: Transcripts must be posted only by universities.

Minimum Required documents:

  • Final or provisional award
  • Official academic records (Marksheet/Transcript)
  • Request form
Note that document requirements vary from country to country. Check the details on their website: https://applications.wes.org/required-documents

Possible ECA outcomes

  • Bachelors (3 years) Usually evaluated as Bachelors only
  • MBA: all Indian Universities MBA are assessed as a Post Graduate Diploma of one year
  • M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.ED- Evaluated as Masters
  • M.SC/M.Com/M.A- Evaluated as either a postgraduate diploma or Bachelors
  • BDS/MDS- Evaluated as a professional degree
  • B.Pharm/M.Pharm- Evaluated as Bachelors and PGD/Bachelors respectively
  • B.Com/B.A followed by LLB- Evaluated as Professional degree

Benefits

  • Fastest ECA organization
  • Most reliable ECA organization
  • Most popular ECA organization

Drawback

  • The transcript should be sent by the university
  • Recognize only selected universities
  • Very strict evaluation

International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS)

Here is the general information about IQAS:

  • Name: International Qualifications Assessment Service
  • Website: https://www.alberta.ca/iqas-immigration.aspx
  • Processing time: 23 weeks from the day all documents are received
  • Application process: Transcript can be posted either by universities or applicants themselves
  • IQAS Fess: 200 CAD for any number of credentials + Courier charges

Minimum Required documents:

  • Passport(Scanned)
  • Final award
  • Official academic records(Marksheet/Transcript)
  • Request form

Note that document requirements vary from country to country. Check the details on their website: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/iqas/eca-required-documents.pdf

Possible ECA outcomes

  • Bachelors – Usually evaluated as Bachelors only
  • MBA- All Indian universities MBA are assessed as Masters
  • M.A/M.SC/M.Com – Evaluated as Masters
  • M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.Ed- Evaluated as Masters
  • BDS/MDS- Evaluated as a professional degree
  • B.Pharm/M.Pharm – Evaluated as Bachelors and PGD/Bachelors respectively
  • B.Com/B.A followed by LLB- Evaluated as Professional degree

Benefits

  • Recognize many universities
  • Lenient Education evaluation
  • The transcript can be sent by the applicant

Drawbacks

  • Longest processing time compared to other ECA organizations

International Credential Evaluation Service (ICES)

Here is the general information about ICES:

  • Name: International Credential Evaluation Service
  • Website: https://www.bcit.ca/ices/eca/
  • Processing time: 20 weeks from the day all the documents are received
  • Application process: Transcript must be posted or emailed to [email protected] only by universities
  • ICES Fees: 200 CAD for each credential

Minimum Required documents:

  • Passport(Scanned)
  • Final award
  • Official academic records(Marksheet/Transcript)
  • Request form

Note that document requirements vary from country to country. Check the details on their website: https://www.bcit.ca/ices/country-specific-information/

Possible ECA outcomes

  • Bachelors – Usually evaluated as Bachelors only
  • MBA- All Indian universities MBA are assessed as Masters
  • M.A/M.SC/M.Com – Evaluated as Masters
  • M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.Ed- Evaluated as Masters
  • BDS/MDS- Evaluated as a professional degree
  • B.Pharm/M.Pharm – Evaluated as Bachelors and PGD/Bachelors respectively

Benefits

  • Recognize many universities
  • Lenient Education evaluation
  • High Chances of getting Master’s equivalent

Drawbacks

  • Longer processing time
  • The transcript can be sent only by university
  • Pay fee for each credential

Comparative Education Service (CES)

Here is the general information about CES:

  • Name: Comparative Education Service
  • Website: http://www.learn.utoronto.ca/ces
  • Processing time: 90 days from the day all the documents are received
  • Application process: Transcript can be posted by the applicants
  • CES Fees: 210 CAD for each credential + Courier charges/ Order for softcopy or free of cost for pickup at university of Toronto office option

Minimum Required documents:

  • Passport(Scanned)
  • Final award
  • Official academic records(Marksheet/Transcript)
  • Request form

Note that document requirements vary from country to country. Check the details on their website: https://learn.utoronto.ca/comparative-education-service/apply-now/new-applicants/country-document-requirements#academic-document-tool

Possible ECA outcomes

  • Bachelors – Usually evaluated as Bachelors only
  • MBA- All Indian universities MBA are assessed as Masters
  • M.A/M.SC/M.Com – Evaluated as Masters
  • M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.Ed- Evaluated as either a postgraduate diploma or Bachelors
  • BDS/MDS- Evaluated as a professional degree
  • B.Pharm/M.Pharm – Evaluated as Bachelors and PGD/Bachelors respectively

Benefits

  • Accept many universities
  • Lenient Education evaluation
  • Transcript can be posted by the applicants

Drawbacks

  • M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.Ed- Evaluated as either post graduate diploma or Bachelors
  • Pay fee for each credential

Best ECA for Canada Immigration

Well, if you’re applying for skilled immigration, more specifically for express entry you are allocated points for your education. The points you get are going to be based on your ECA report.

Higher your ECA = More points you get

Check how much points you can get with for your education here

Based on the application process

Before 2020, all of these organizations were following the same process.

A candidate was supposed to collect all the transcripts from their respective universities. Put all the transcripts collectively in an envelope. And sent to the respective ECA organization.

But now the process has changed specifically for WES.

According to WES, a candidate cannot send their own transcripts instead they will have to ask their universities. And the university will only send the transcript to the WES organization. The same goes for ICES.

WES and ICES will not accept your transcripts if you send them by yourself. This is the change in the process and this is only for WES.

For the IQAS or CES, the process to remain the same you can collect all your transcripts and send them to the organization.

If you know that your university is not really entertaining in sending these transcripts directly to WES or ICES then I think you should go ahead with the other organizations.

Based on the processing time

As stated earlier, WES has the shortest processing time, making it the fastest ECA organization. On the other hand, IQAS has the longest processing time.

But the processing time of any ECA organization is not fixed. There can be delays for various reasons.

  • WES: 1-3 months
  • ICES: 5-8 months
  • IQAS: 5-10 months
  • CES: 3-5 months

Based on processing Fee

The processing fee won’t affect your decision if you only have one degree for evaluation. But the case will be different with two or more degrees.

For example

  • With WES and IQAS, you have to pay a one-time fee for any number of credentials.
  • But with ICES and CES, you need to pay separately for each credential.

Based on your degree or university

The fourth important point is how will you know that if your university is recognized by this particular organization.

None of these organizations have mentioned a list of universities that they recognize when they do your credential assessment. If you ask them they will not give you a direct answer.

As per my knowledge, WES is quite strict in giving credentials to your degrees.

Which ECA organization you should choose?

As you know ECA plays an important role when you are applying for Canada. It is because the credentials will determine your points for PR. And if you get recognition as a master’s degree that is the more point you get.

Pro tip: get in touch with your alumni group. They will let you know what are the credentials for your university and your particular degree.

ECA for Bachelors degree

If you have only a bachelor’s degree for credential assessment then go ahead with the WES organization. It is because WES recognize all bachelor’s degree. And you will get the credentials accordingly. The processing time is also less.

ECA for the MBA

  • It is a well-known fact the WES, recognizes only high ranking universities around the world. If you have done MBA from a less ranking university, WES will evaluate you as a Post Graduate Diploma of one year.
  • In most cases, IQAS, CES, and ICES will recognize MBA and evaluate it as a Master’s degree.

ECA for M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.ED

  • M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.ED will be evaluated as a Master’s degree by WES, ICES, and IQAS.
  • Here is the exception, CES will evaluate M.Tech/MCA/M.E/M.Ed as either a postgraduate diploma or Bachelors

ECA for M.SC/M.Com/M.A

  • WES will recognize M.SC/M.Com/M.A as either a postgraduate diploma or bachelor’s degree.
  • On the other IQAS, ICES and CES will recognize M.SC/M.Com/M.A as a Master’s degree.

ECA for the Master's degree (3 years or more)

  • If you have done your masters which is more than three years. It is a good thing. Canada considers a master’s degree which is more than three years of education.
  • If you have done a master’s which is more than three years then WES will surely recognize your university. And give you credentials for that.

Conslusion

Most of the people who are about to start their immigration journey to Canada ask this question

Which is the best ECA organization for Canada immigration?

There is no straight answer for this because each of the organizations has got its own specifications like their fees, their time, and their procedure.

And the answer also depends on your educational qualification. You can go through every detail and compare WES vs IQAS vs ICES vs CES. With that, you will be able to decide the best ECA organization for your immigration.

9 thoughts on “Best ECA for Canada Immigration: WES vs IQAS vs ICES vs CES

  1. Very nicely summarized, Only one point more to be added – For any number of credentials: Candidate should do bachelor and master credentials to be on safe side. As WES mandates it for india but is optional with IQAS if you are confident about your masters.
    What about CES and ICES? Do they do ECA only for master degree without seeing bachelor degree as they take payment for each credentials?

    1. WES is generally the fastest and most commonly used but it is widely known for its strict evaluation. If you have done a dual degree from a reputed university then go for WES. You can create an account in WES and fill in the details. You can check your university name while filling the form for degree evaluation. If it shows your university/college name, then it considers your transcripts, otherwise do not send your transcript to WES.

  2. I have done two years masters of arts from India from which eca body I can gets my masters approved either through ices or wes

    1. Thank you for your comment. It depends on your university. Of course, WES is on top of the list but beware of its strict evaluation. If you have done a master’s from a reputed university then go for WES. Suggested action: Create an account on WES and fill in the details. Check your university name while filling the form for degree evaluation. If it shows your university/college name, then it considers your transcripts, otherwise do not send your transcript to WES.

  3. I have done GNM nurshing diploma 3 years course ..i sent it to wes but unfortunately its rejected … Can you please provide second agency which i can apply for assessment nd give a possible result.

  4. WES is best because it is giving importance to the quality of education and the institutions…There are so many universities giving.masters education.which are not worthy to say

  5. Hi, I have done my 3 year Bachelor degree transcripts from WES and it was evaluated as Bachelor degree for canada pr, but now I have also completed my MBA in HRM which is of two years from GITAM University, should i do my ECA from WES or IQAS please advise,

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