How to Increase Your CRS Score – Express Entry to Canada
Updated: Apr 20, 2020
What is Express Entry?
Immigration Canada uses a federal system, referred to as Express Entry, to manage applications for permanent residency from individuals in these programs: Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, or the Canadian Experience Class.
How does Express Entry work?
Candidates must create an Express Entry profile online where they enter information about their skills, education, language ability, work experience, and more. Candidates are then assigned a CRS score out of 1200 points. Every two to three weeks, the Canadian government will conduct an Express Entry draw where applicants with the highest CRS score receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residency. Those who are extended an ITA have 90 days to complete an application.
What is a CRS Score?
Prospective immigrants are ranked in a point system called the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). Points are given for each piece of information in your Express Entry profile. Some different factors that play into your CRS score include your age, level of education, English and French language proficiency, work experience, and connections to Canada (e.g. education, work experience, siblings, etc.). The number of points allotted for each factor differs if you have a spouse or common-law partner or not.
Here are some examples of factors and the points allotted for them: With a spouse or common-law partner / without:
Secondary school diploma = 28 points / 30 points
One year degree, diploma, or certificate from a university, college, trade/technical school, or another institute = 84 points / 90 points
Two-year program at university, college, trade/technical school, or another institute = 91 points / 98 points
Bachelor’s degree OR 3+ year program at a university, college, trade/technical school, or another institute = 112 points / 120 points
Canadian work experience – none/less than 1 year = 0 / 0
Canadian work experience – five years or more = 70 points / 80 points
How can I increase my CRS score?
If you have a spouse/common-law partner, brother, or sister living as a citizen or permanent resident in Canada, be sure to prove your relationship. This will increase your CRS score by 15 points. Further, your spouse may be able to earn you more points by taking an educational credential assessment and/or taking a language test.
Improve your English language skills (speaking, listening, reading, and writing) and retake your IELTS to achieve a higher score. The higher your Canadian Language Benchmark level, the more CRS points you can acquire.
Gain transferable skills by working before coming to Canada.
Improve your education. Programs as short as one year in length can increase your CRS score by 84-90 points.
Determine if you are eligible to participate in a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). This can increase your CRS score by 600 points.