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Are special accommodations available for test takers?

If you have a disability or special condition that might require special arrangements, please fill out the Special Accommodations Request Form to make a request for such arrangements.

What is the passing score?

Each component of the test is given a CAEL score and an overall band score. There is no pass or fail on the test. It is recommended that you contact the institution to which you are applying to see what their English language requirements are.

This is a topic-based test. What if I don’t know anything about the topic?

It is not necessary to know anything about the topic to be successful on the CAEL. Everything you need to know is contained in the information provided within the test itself.

When does online registration close?

Depending on the test centre, test registration closes approximately 2 to 3 days before the scheduled test date.

It is recommended that you register well in advance, because test centres have limited capacity and registration requests are processed in the order in which they are received.

How much does the test cost?

The fee for CAEL in Canada is CAD $225.00 + tax. Effective Tuesday, September 4th, 2018, the fee for the CAEL CE Test will increase from CAD $225.00 + tax to CAD $268.00 + tax for all test sittings scheduled on or after November 1st, 2018. Test fees may vary for CAEL outside of Canada.

How do I change or cancel my test?

For complete information on our transfer and cancellation policy, please click here.

Do I need to submit a photo of myself? What are the specifications?

Yes, at the time of registration, you must upload a photo of yourself. This photo must fit the following requirements:

  • Photos must be in a .jpeg file.
  • The photo file cannot be larger than 1 MB.
  • The photo must be an original. It cannot be a photo/scan of your identification.

Additional Photo Requirements:

  • Photo must be taken within the last 6 months.
  • Photo must be taken against a white or off-white background.
  • Photo must show a neutral facial expression (no smiling, mouth closed, looking straight at the camera).
  • Photo must show a full front view of the face and top of the shoulders squared to the camera. Face and shoulders must be centered.
  • Photo must be in focus
  • Full head must be shown without any head covering, unless it is worn for religious beliefs or medical reasons.
  • Eyes must be open and clearly visible.
  • Prescription eyeglasses may be worn as long as the eyes are clearly visible, with no reflection or glare on the eyeglasses.
  • Long hair should be tucked behind ears and shoulders.
  • Photos must be in color.

Unacceptable Photos:

  • Photos on coloured backgrounds
  • Photos that are part of a group shot or cut out of a group shot
  • Blurry photos or photos containing shadows
  • Photoshopped or filtered photos
  • Black and white photos
  • Use of hats, sunglasses, tinted glasses, or other accessory items that may impede identifying the individual, unless worn for religious beliefs or medical reasons
What is the transfer policy?

For full information on the transfer policy, please click here.

How do I register?
  1. Online (Recommended)
  2. By Mail
  3. In Person at the CAEL office in Vancouver, British Columbia

Please note that CAEL Test Centres do not process any registrations. All registrations must be completed through the CAEL office by one of the methods listed above.

Test registration closes 2 to 3 days before the scheduled test date. It is recommended that you register well in advance, because test centres have limited capacity and registration requests are processed in the order in which they are received.

Before starting the registration process, make sure to have the following ready:

Please Note:

  • If you have provided all the required information and we received your payment, your registration request will be processed within 3 business days. You will then receive a Test Confirmation Email. Review this email, print it out, and bring it with you on test day.
  • If you do not have a credit card for online payment, we recommend prepaid credit cards such as MasterCard® Prepaid Cards or Visa® Gift Cards that you can purchase at several stores across Canada. Full payment must be made with one card only. You can also purchase RBC Visa® Gift Cards at any RBC Royal Bank branch in Canada.
  • We do not accept personal cheques. If you are paying by money order, payment must be made in Canadian dollars (CAD$) and made payable to “Paragon Testing Enterprises Inc.“. The name of the person taking the test or ordering study materials must be on the front of the money order.
  • We do not accept Visa® Debit as payment.
  • If paying by credit card, your statement will show this transaction as “Paragon Testing Ent.” Please ensure that anyone who reviews the statement is aware of the transaction.
How often can I take CAEL?

You may register for more than one test session only if all test sessions are at least 30 calendar days apart. Test session registrations that violate this rule are subject to cancellation by Paragon.

The CAEL Office recommends that you do additional studying before retaking the test. See our CAEL Test Preparation page for more details.

What is the cancellation policy?

For full details on Paragon Testing Enterprises’ cancellation policy, please click here.

What kind of identification is acceptable?

If the identification document that you bring with you on test day does not meet the following requirements, you will not be allowed to take the test, and you will not be able to transfer your test or receive a refund:

  • Your identification document must be the same one you used to register for the test. It must match the registration details you entered during registration, including full name and document number.
  • Your identification document must be original. Photocopies of identification are not acceptable.
  • Your identification document must be valid.
  • Your identification document must be unexpired.

Acceptable identification for the CAEL Test:

  • Passport booklet
  • Canadian permanent resident card
  • Canadian provincial driver’s license
  • Canadian provincial identification card
  • British Columbia Services Card
  • Refugee Protection Claimant Document*
  • Travel Document*

*Refugee Protection Claimant Documents and Travel Documents must be pre-approved by our office every time you register for a test. For approval, please send a scan or picture of your document by email to info@cael.ca. Refugee Protection Claimant Documents and Travel Documents that are not pre-approved by our office may not be accepted on test day. No refunds or transfers will be given for refused entries.

Unacceptable identification includes:

  • Any expired document
  • Any photocopied document
  • Passport card
  • Canadian health card
  • Social security card
  • Social insurance card
  • Employee identification card
  • Student identification card
  • Notary-prepared letter or document
  • Credit card of any type

IMPORTANT: Test takers who do not provide their valid identification during check-in at the test sitting will be refused entry to the test and will not be eligible for a refund or transfer.

If you registered for the CAEL Test with a passport booklet, we recommend that you do not send it away for any reason (i.e., extensions or visa renewals) before your scheduled test date. If you are required to do so, please send away your passport booklet after you have taken the test or before you register for the test. If you do not provide your passport booklet or the identification document that you registered with at the test sitting, you will be refused entry to the test and no refunds or transfers will be given.

If you have any questions about acceptable identification, please contact us or email us at info@cael.ca.

When should I arrive at the test centre?

You should arrive at the test centre at least 45 minutes before your scheduled start time. Latecomers will be denied entrance to the test and will NOT be eligible for a refund or transfer.

What if I haven’t received (or have lost) my Test Confirmation Email?

If you provided all the required information and we received your payment, your registration request will be processed within 3 business days. You will then receive a Test Confirmation Email.

If you have not received (or have lost) your Test Confirmation Email, please do the following:

  1. Check your email Junk Folder, or
  2. Contact us.
How can I prepare for the test?

For more information about preparing for CAEL CE (Computer Edition), click here.

 

How much time does the CAEL take?

For information on the format of CAEL CE (Computer Edition) and the time allowed, please click here.

Can I bring my own food and water?

We do not allow any food or drinks in our testing rooms. However, if you do need some water during the test, please raise your hand and a test supervisor will escort you to the water fountain.

What do my scores mean?

For information on CAEL CE (Computer Edition) scoring, please click here.

How do I apply for a re-evaluation of my test?

You can apply for a re-evaluation of some or all components of your CAEL, as long as the application is made within 6 weeks of the test date. You must pay a re-evaluation fee at the time of your application. If the score changes for any component that has been re-evaluated, the re-evaluation fee for that component will be refunded. Please note that there is a limit of one re-evaluation for any particular component of the test. Re-evaluation requests are final sale, and cannot be cancelled once the request has been submitted.

Test takers who apply for a re-evaluation of their test results will be notified of the re-evaluation results within 3 to 4 weeks of submission of their application and payment of the re-evaluation fee.

The re-evaluation fee is $65.00 per component.

To make a re-evaluation request, sign in to your CAEL Account.

How long are my CAEL results valid?

We will make your scores available to you and other institutions for 2 years from the date of the test. The length of time that your scores are valid for various institutions however, is determined by their individual policies. You can obtain this information from the specific institution.

How can I be sure that the institution to which I have applied receives my results?

If you are applying to an undergraduate program, your results will automatically be communicated to the Undergraduate Admissions Office at the post-secondary institution to which you are applying (as indicated at the time of your test registration).

If you are applying to a graduate program (Master’s or Doctorate), your results will be forwarded to the appropriate department at each post-secondary institution (as indicated at the time of your test registration).

How can I obtain my CAEL results?

For information on obtaining you CAEL (Computer Edition) test scores, please click here.

How do I forward my results to an institution?

We will send your CAEL Official Score Report to five institutions at no cost. Please provide institution details when registering online, or up to 4 days before your test date.

If you need to request additional score reports after your test date, they can be ordered through your CAEL Account at a cost of $20.00 each.

Official score reports will only be mailed to academic and professional institutions.

What is prohibited in the test room?

For CAEL CE (Computer Edition), please review the Test Day Information page for details about prohibited behaviours and items.

What should I do if I arrive late for my test?

Late entry to CAEL is not permitted. Latecomers will be denied entrance to the test and will not be eligible for a refund or transfer.

How is the overall result calculated?

For CAEL Tests administered on or after May 15, 2017, the CAEL Overall Band Score will be calculated as an equally weighted average of the four component (Writing, Reading, Listening, and Speaking) scores rounded to the nearest ten-point interval.

Previously, CAEL Overall Band Scores were calculated using a weighted average in which the Writing component was the most heavily weighted. Based on an internal review by Paragon Test Research and Development staff and a careful review of current industry practices, Paragon Testing Enterprises has revised the overall band score calculation to equally weight each component score.

Examples of the new overall band score calculation:

  • A test taker achieving 70 for the Writing component, 70 for the Reading component, 60 for the Listening component, and 60 for the Speaking component will be awarded a CAEL Overall Band Score of 70 (260 ÷ 4 = 65, rounded to the nearest ten-point interval of 70).
  • A test taker achieving 70 for the Writing component, 70 for the Reading component, 60 for the Listening component, and 50 for the Speaking component will be awarded a CAEL Overall Band Score of 60 (250 ÷ 4 = 62.5, rounded to the nearest ten-point interval of 60).
What do I do if I need to go to the washroom during the test?

To learn about washroom breaks for CAEL CE (Computer Edition), see Test Day Information.

I want to report a test security issue. Where can I do this?

To report a test security issue, please visit our Test Security page.

Does spelling count?

Yes, you should write responses in standard academic English using correct spelling. Whether you are writing an extended, short, or one-word response, pay attention to the accuracy of your writing.

For CAEL CE (Computer Edition), How are my Reading and Listening scores calculated?

The listening and reading sections for CAEL CE are scored by computer. Each correct answer contributes proportionally to your test score in each section. There are no points deducted for wrong answers. Your CAEL CE Reading and Listening test score will be reported as a band score on a scale from 10 to 90.

For CAEL CE (Computer Edition), How are my Speaking and Writing scores calculated?

Your speaking and writing responses are scored by trained and experienced CAEL CE Raters according to scales established by Paragon Testing Enterprises. The rating scales guide CAEL CE Raters to pay attention to the following features of your responses:

  • Completing the task: Whether you fulfilled the requirements of the task.
  • Content of the response: How well you communicate your ideas or argument.
  • Vocabulary use: How well your chosen words, idioms, and collocations convey your intended meaning.
  • Grammatical accuracy: Your degree of mastery over linguistic patterns of English to clearly and precisely communicate your intended message.
  • Delivery: Your ability to produce clear, intelligible, and fluent speech.
  • Use of source materials: How well you use the information from the passage or mini-lecture in your response (if applicable).
  • Audience awareness and tone: Your ability to set and maintain an appropriate academic tone throughout your response.

All your speaking and writing responses contribute towards your test score in each section. Your CAEL CE Speaking and Writing test score will be reported as a band score on a scale from 10 to 90.

What are the browser requirements for purchasing test registrations and study materials?

To see if your browser is compatible with our online transaction system, click here.

If you are having difficulty completing a purchase in our online store, please refer to the TLS compatibility chart, and make sure that your browser is supported.

When is the CAEL (Paper Edition) Test being retired?

The CAEL (Paper Edition) test will be retiring as of August 31, 2018. Read more.