Applicants applying for an ECA should only provide documents related to their highest level of education to claim points on their immigration application.
Earlier this month, World Education Services (WES), a popular service to obtain Educational Credential Assessments (ECAs), announced new requirements for ECA applications. The company now advises candidates to only submit documents pertaining to their highest level of education — with some exceptions for holders of Indian educational credentials.
In their Dec. 1 blog post, WES went even further, suggesting that candidates who submit additional documents will only serve to slow the credential evaluation process.
To put this in context, if you have a master’s degree, you do not need to provide documentation for your bachelor’s degree. Or if you have a bachelor’s degree, you do not need to provide any secondary school documentation.
Exceptions for education obtained in India
In most cases, candidates with master’s degrees or post-graduate diplomas from India must provide documents pertaining to their bachelor’s degree.
The Indian diplomas with special exemptions from this rule are:
- Master of Education
- Master of Engineering
- Master of Philosophy
- Master of Technology degree
What is an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA)?
An ECA is a report done by an accredited institution that evaluates your foreign education and compares it to Canadian standards. The ECA report will evaluate your diploma and determine what level of education it meets with respect to Canadian standards.
Since the purpose of the ECA is to compare education against Canadian standards, if your highest level of education was obtained from a Canadian institution, an ECA report is not necessary.
Who needs an ECA?
Most Canadian immigration programs require an ECA. Express Entry, the most popular Canadian immigration category will request this document. Provincial nominee programs also usually ask for an ECA.
As mentioned above, you only need to provide an ECA for your highest level of education. But if you are claiming points for two or more degrees at the same level, you should provide separate ECA reports.
You can also earn points for your spouse or common-law partner’s education if they are coming with you to Canada. But to claim these points, an ECA report for your spouse’s education will be required.