CELPIP vs IELTS, which exam is better to prove English language proficiency? This is the toughest question for those who want to take the English language exam for PR purposes or citizenship programs. Celpip and IELTS are the most popular exams for these purposes.

Both exams measure the test taker’s ability to listen, speak, read, and write in English. So now the question arises is that which exam will be the best option if the purpose of both exams is the same.

In this blog, we will provide the differences between IELTS and CELPIP to make it easy for you to choose between both exams.

Read the complete blog to get detailed information about both exams. Don’t worry; read the complete blog.


Key Differences

Let’s start with the basic differences between CELPIP and IELTS. 

Conducted BYParagon Testing EnterprisesJointly owned by the British Council, IDP (International Development Program)
TypesThere are two types of exams in CELPIP: General LS and General TestThere are two types of exams in the IELTS: IELTS General Training and IELTS Academic.
Duration of the Test3 hours long (This exam is done in one sitting)2 hours 45 minutes (Listening, reading, and writing)
11 – 14 Speaking takes place before or after the exam.
(This exam is done in two sittings)
Test Delivery FormatComputer-Based TestBoth Computer and pen-paper based tests are available.
SectionsIn General Test: Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking.In General LS Test: Listening and Speaking.Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking.
AcceptanceThis Test is exclusively available for Canada.Globally Accepted
Average Minimum Score To Get Admission in Top Universities. 7 Celpip Level.6.5 Bands
Score RangeM and 3 to 12 Celpip Levels.0 to 9 Bands
Speaking TestComputer-based speaking test.Face to Face Interview test.
ResultsYou can check your CELPIP result after 4 to 5 calendar days of attempting the test.If you have attempted IELTS on Computer, then It will take around 3 to 5 days, and if you have attempted a pen-paper test, then the result will be issued after 13 days of the test.
BreaksYou can take a break between the exam, but the time limit of the exam will not stop for you, and you have to go through security checks again after the break.You can’t take any breaks between the exam.
Registration FeesCELPIP – General Test $280 + Taxes
CELPIP – General LS Test $195 + Taxes
IELTS pen-paper and computer-based INR 16,250

From these basic differences, you will get an idea about both tests.

But to get the proper detailed information about CELPIP vs IELTS, read the complete blog.


What is IELTS?

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) is the most popular test to prove English language proficiency for study programs abroad.

This checks students’ English language proficiency in the following four modules:

  • Reading
  • Speaking
  • Listening
  • Writing

There are two types of exams in IELTS: 

IELTS AcademicsStudents who want to prove their English language proficiency to study abroad take the IELTS Academic test.
IELTS GeneralThose who want to prove their English language proficiency for work or PR purposes take the IELTS General exam.

If you want to learn more about the IELTS exam, you can read our other blog on, “what is IELTS.”

What is CELPIP?

The Celpip is also an English proficiency test; this is a general proficiency test.

Like IELTS, this test also checks the candidate’s proficiency in the English language.

This test checks whether the candidate has that much English language knowledge that they can speak and communicate with other native English speakers in their day-to-day life.

There are two types of tests in CELPIP: 

CELPIP GeneralIt measures a student’s ability to speak, read, write, and listen in the English language.
This test is IRCC Approved test for PR Status.
CELPIP General LS It measures a student’s ability to speak and listen in the English language. 
This test is IRCC Approved test for Citizenship Status.

CELPIP General has four types of sections:

  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking

CELPIP General LS has two types of sections:

  • Listening
  • Speaking

If you want to learn more about the CELPIP test read our other blog on, “what is CELPIP.”

CELPIP vs IELTS: Exam Format

Both exams have the same four sections: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking.

But that does not mean that these exams’ format is also the same, here are the differences between each section of these exams.

CELPIP Test Format

ModuleDurationNo of questionsType of questions
Listening47–55 minutes39Practice Task
Part 1: Listening to Problem-Solving
Part 2: Listening to a Daily Life Conversation
Part 3: Listening for Information
Part 4: Listening to a News Item
Part 5: Listening to a Discussion
Part 6: Listening to Viewpoints
Reading55-60 minutes39Practice Task
Part 1: Reading Correspondence
Part 2: Reading to Apply a Diagram
Part 3: Reading for Information
Part 4: Reading for Viewpoints
Writing53-60 minutes2Task 1: Writing an Email
Task 2: Responding to Survey Questions
Speaking15-20 minutes9Practice Task
Task 1: Giving Advice
Task 2: Talking about a Personal Experience
Task 3: Describing a Scene
Task 4: Making Predictions
Task 5: Comparing and Persuading
Task 6: Dealing with a Difficult Situation
Task 7: Expressing Opinions
Task 8: Describing an Unusual Situation

Note: The pattern for CELPIP – General LS (speaking and listening) is same as CELPIP – General.

IELTS test format

ModuleDurationNo. of questionsType of questions
Listening40 minutes (30 minutes for listening recording and 10 minutes to transfer answers to an answer sheet)40Multiple choice
Matching information
Plan, map, diagram labeling
Form, note, table, flow-chart, summary completion
Sentence completion
Short-answer questions
Reading1 hour40Multiple choice
Identifying information
Identifying the writer’s views/claims
Matching headings
Matching features
Matching sentence endings
Sentence completion
Summary, note, table, flow-chart completion
Diagram label completion
Short-answer questions
Speaking1 hour 10 to 15Part 1 – Introductive question
Part 2 – Cue card
Part 3 – Follow-up
Writing11 – 14 minutes2IELTS Academic Task 1
Bar Chart
Multiple Graphs
Pie Chart
Process Diagram
Line Graph
Task 2
IELTS General Task 1
Formal letter
Informal letter
Semi-formal letter
IELTS Academic & General Task 2
Agree or disagree
Advantages and disadvantages
Direct essay
Cause/solution essay
Positive/negative essay
Discussion essay

CELPIP vs IELTS: Score Breakdown

There are the levels that students can get in CELPIP: M,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11, and 12.

CELPIP levelsDescription
M“Minimal Proficiency.”
3“Some Proficiency in Limited Contexts.”
4“Adequate Proficiency for daily life activities.”
5“Acquiring proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
6“Developing proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
7“Adequate proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
8“Good proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
9“Effective proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
10“Highly effective proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
11“Advanced proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”
12“Advanced proficiency in workplace and community contexts.”

The range of the Ielts bands is 1 to 9:

IELTS BandsUser Description
1Non User
2Intermittent User
3Extremely Limited User
4Limited User
5Modest User
6Competent User
7Good User
8Very Good User
9Expert User

How to choose between CELPIP vs IELTS?

Now we are just at the end of this blog, so now let me answer your biggest questions: what do you choose between the CELPIP vs IELTS?

I can’t give just one answer to this question because different kinds of people are reading this blog, and it can’t happen that one answer given by me will work for everyone.

That’s why I am sharing some points, you can think of it as a checklist; it will help you to choose one between these tests.

These are the six points you should consider before choosing any one of these.


First, you have to know your purpose for taking the exam. Like are you applying for immigration, academic studies, or employment? Different countries have different requirements. Such as, the Celpip exam is only valid in Canada, so if you are planning to migrate to another country, you must take the IELTS exam.


This is not a big factor, because the price of both the tests is nearly the same, and no one will risk their future for 2 or 3 thousand rupees, but if you have some financial issues, you can consider this point.

$280 + Taxes$195 + TaxesINR 16,250


You should check whether the test that you want to attempt is available in your country or not.  

And if it is available, then whether the test center is not that far from you, where you can’t even think of going.

IELTS is a very famous test, and there is a very rare chance that it will not be available near you. 

On the other hand, if you are thinking of choosing CELPIP, then you surely should check this point.


After making an opinion about choosing any of these tests, you should think about how you will prepare for that test.

There is no way to get good scores in a test without preparing for it; preparation is very important.

So, while choosing a test for you, you should think about how you will prepare for it.

Are you going to prepare for this test by yourself, like using Ielts books or Celpip books, or will you join a coaching center?


The last point to choose between CELPIP vs IELTS is that you should check the difficulty of both tests. 

There is not much difference in both tests’ difficulties. 

But everyone can have a personal opinion about this.

Some people will say that CELPIP is easy; on the other hand, some will say that IELTS is easy.

But you should check the exam pattern of both tests and should get some more information about it and then you should make an opinion about the difficulties of these tasks.

Advice from Others

Take advice from others who have taken either Celpip or IELTS exams. You can ask them about their experience from the exams and take their advice that which exam they must choose out of Celpip vs IELTS.

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Similarities Between CELPIP And IELTS

After learning about the differences between CELPIP vs IELTS you must also learn about some similarities between both exams.


The purpose of both exams is to measure the English language proficiency of students. 

Both exams measure proficiency through four components.

  • Reading : Assessing the ability to understand written English.
  • Listening : Assessing the ability to understand spoken English
  • Writing : Ability to write error-free English.
  • Speaking : Ability to speak error-free English.

Score Validity

The result for both exams is valid for 2 years. If you take the exams on 2nd march,2023 then the results will be valid till 1st March 2023.


So, this is the end of this “CELPIP vs IELTS”. I hope you got all the information that you want to know.

In the end, I want to say that if you are still confused about both options, then, in my opinion, you should go with the IELTS.

But if you have already made up your mind about choosing CELPIP (Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program), then you don’t have to change your mind; you still can go with your decision.

So, this is all that I have to say about CELPIP vs IELTS in this blog. I hope you liked it; stay connected to the course mentor for more knowledgeable content.


Is CELPIP easier than IELTS?

There is no one answer for this question, both the tests have their own difficulties, but most of the people say that IELTS is better and easier to CELPIP, but it mostly depends on personal preferences.

Is CELPIP valid for PR?

Yes. CELPIP is valid for pr. This evaluates test taker’s English Reading, Learning, Writing and Speaking skills. CELPIP is officially accepted for permanent residence applications by Immigrations, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and this is also accepted for professional destinations like doctor etc.

What is a good score for CELPIP?

The score of a Proficiency test is good or not, generally depends on the country for which you are attempting the exam. But the score of 8 is generally considered as a good score in the CELPIP exam.