Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Explained

Most new immigrants often confuse the Canadian Experience Class program for the Express Entry immigration program, when really, they are somewhat different.


That being said, the Canadian Experience (CEC) immigration program is one that’s available to foreigners with at least a year’s worth of work experience in Canada to give them access to a Canadian permanent residence or citizenship.

The CEC program is a part of Canada’s Express Entry program which makes it one of the fastest ways to move to Canada permanently.

Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Minimum Requirements

The minimum requirements to qualify for the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) immigration program include:

  • Language level test to see how good you are in writing, reading, listening and speaking. Basically, you must reach the exact CLB (Canadian Language Benchmark) level 7 on a certified English or French language test for the National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill level 0 or A jobs and a CLB 5 for NOC B job types. Thus, you’ll be required to show proof of these by taking any of the following language tests:
    • CELPIP-General (English)
    • IELTS-General (English)
    • TEF (French)
    • TCF (French)
  • At least a year of quality work experience in any organization within Canada in the last 3 years before applying for the program.
  • Your job responsibility in Canada must fall under the NOC (National Occupational Classification) code level 0, A or B.
  • You must be legally employed with a reasonably well-paid work experience.
  • You must be applying to live outside of the Quebec province.

According to Canada’s National Occupational Classification (NOC), skilled work experience with their respective skill level and type include:

  • Skill Level 0 – Managerial Jobs
  • Skill Type A – Professional Jobs
  • Skill Type B – Technical Jobs and Skilled Trades

When applying for a CEC, you have the liberty to be in more than one NOC 0, A, or B job, but you must be able to perform all duties set out in the designated lead statement of the respective occupational description in the NOC. This relates to all necessary duties listed in the occupational description.

You also stand a major advantage if you’re able to show proof of dual-language tendencies (the ability to speak both English and French fluently) under the CRS.

You won’t be eligible for the Canadian Experience Class if you fall under one of these categories:

  • A Canadian refugee claimant
  • You’re currently working without any form of authorization
  • You got your work experience while studying in Canada
  • Your work experience was gotten without an approved temporary Canadian resident status.

There are no educational requirements to qualify for the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) program.

That being said, once you’re able to show proof of your one-year work experience in Canada, then you are eligible to apply for the Canadian Experience Class program.

Benefits of the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Program for Foreign Immigrants

As discussed earlier, the CEC program is one of the best pathways to follow for easy access to Canada permanently as a citizen or for permanent residency in Canada. Thus, the following are some major benefits of the Canadian Experience Class program for foreign immigrants:

  • Extremely fast process for easy access to a Canadian permanent residency status. Basically, it takes as little as 3 to 4 months to complete the application process.
  • You do not need a lot of work experience to qualify for this program. This in turn gives you additional CRS points that will help to improve your chances of getting a permanent residency status in Canada with the Canadian Express Entry System program.
  • The application process is not complex nor complicated. Basically, it’s minimal and not lengthy, and won’t take up your time to complete.
  • You won’t be required to provide a proof of funds unlike other Canadian immigration programs like thr FSWC (Federal Skilled Workers) and the FSTC (Federal Skilled Trades Class).

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