Express Entry: IRCC invites candidates in latest all-program draw

Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has issued invitations to apply (ITAs) in the latest Express Entry draw.

The department invited 1,490 candidates in a general, all-program draw.

Candidates required a minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 535.

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IRCC has held five draws so far in 2024. The first was on January 10 and invited 1,510 candidates with a minimum CRS of 546 in a general draw.

The next two draws were also general. On January 23, the department invited 1,040 candidates with a minimum CRS of 543 and 730 candidates with a minimum score of 541 on January 31.

The largest draw of the year so far took place on February 1 and invited 7,000 candidates in a category-based selection draw for Express Entry candidates with proficiency in French.

Summary of Express Entry draw results in 2024

New language test accepted for Express Entry programs

As of January 30, IRCC is now accepting the Pearson Test of English Core (PTE) for all immigration streams except the Student Direct Stream.

This means that Express Entry candidates have another option for English language testing when they upload their profile to the IRCC website.

Candidates must obtain a minimum Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) score that differs depending on the Express Entry managed program they are applying for. The CLB is how IRCC evaluates a candidate’s language ability in four categories: reading, speaking, listening, and writing.

For example, candidates applying through the Federal Skilled Worker Program must score a minimum CLB of 7 in all categories.

Candidates in the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) also require a score of 7 if their occupation falls under a National Occupation Classification TEER category of 0 or 1. CEC Candidates with an occupation that falls under NOC TEER category of 2 or 3 need to score a CLB 5.

Federal Skilled Trades Program candidates need a minimum CLB level of 5 for speaking and listening, and at least a level 4 for reading and writing.

The PTE is the third option for Express Entry candidates to submit their English language test results to IRCC. The department announced that it had been approved last year. Candidates can also take the CELPIP General or IELTS General Training to get their CLB score in English.

What is Express Entry?

Express Entry is an application management system that oversees three economic immigration programs for skilled workers: the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Canadian Experience Class and the Federal Skilled Trades Program.

These programs use the Comprehensive Ranking System to evaluate candidates based on their human capital factors such as language ability, work experience, occupation, education, and age. Each factor is assigned a score, the scores are added together, and the result is a candidate’s overall CRS score.

Once a candidate has a CRS score, they are entered into the Express Entry application pool and ranked against other candidates. The candidates with the highest CRS scores are the most likely to receive an invitation in an upcoming Express Entry draw.

In addition to the three Express Entry programs, in May 2023 IRCC introduced category-based selection rounds of invitations. The department created six new categories targeting specific human capital attributes. One category is for candidates who can demonstrate proficiency in the French language. The remaining five categories are occupation-based for:

  • Healthcare occupations
  • Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professions
  • Trades occupations, such as carpenters, plumbers, and contractors
  • Transport occupations
  • Agriculture and agri-food occupations

Candidates must be eligible for an Express Entry program and have an application in the pool through one of the three programs to be considered for category-based selection.

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