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Admission Regulations for Certificate Programs

Admission Regulations for Certificate Programs

To be admitted to one of the 30-credit certificate programs offered by the Career and Professional Development unit, applicants must hold a CEGEP diploma (Diploma of Collegial Studies in Quebec (DEC)) or equivalent, and meet the English Language Proficiency requirements. Applicants who are 21 years of age and over but do not have the normal academic background for admission may be admitted as mature students provided that they meet the English Language Proficiency requirements. Applicants between 18 and 21 years of age who do not have a CEGEP diploma but have at least a high school leaving certificate may be accepted into a qualifying program, determined by the department. Formal admission to a certificate program will normally follow upon satisfactory completion of the qualifying program provided that all other admission criteria are met. Students below 18 years of age without a CEGEP diploma will not be admitted to a certificate program nor will they be permitted to take courses.

Admission Requirements for Certificate Programs

Admission Requirements for Certificate Programs

To be admitted to a certificate program:

  1. Students must hold a CEGEP diploma (Diploma of Collegial Studies in Quebec (DEC) or equivalent); or
  2. Students 21 years of age and over who do not have the normal academic background for admission may be admitted as mature students.
  3. Students between 18 and 21 who do not have a CEGEP diploma but have at least a high school leaving certificate may be accepted into a qualifying program to be determined by Career and Professional Development. Formal admission to the certificate program will normally follow upon satisfactory completion of the qualifying program.

Students below 18 years of age without a CEGEP diploma (DEC) will not be admitted to a certificate program, nor will they be permitted to take courses.

Proof of Proficiency in English

Proof of Proficiency in English

The language of instruction for most courses and programs at McGill is English; however, students may submit any written work that is to be graded in English or French, except in cases where knowledge of the language is one of the objectives of the course. Applicants must demonstrate the required level of proficiency in English prior to admission to McGill University, regardless of citizenship status or country of origin. McGill University has this language requirement in place to ensure that all students are provided with the opportunity to succeed in their chosen program. In all cases, the University reserves the right to require proof of English proficiency if it is deemed necessary at any point during the review process. Below, you will find information on when proof of proficiency is required.

If you answer “yes” to any of the following seven statements, you do not necessarily need to provide proof of English proficiency, but must provide documentation to support your answer.

  • Have you lived and attended school, for at least four consecutive years, in a country where English is the acknowledged primary language?
  • Have you completed both Secondary V (Quebec High School Transcript issued by the Ministère de l'Éducation) and a DEC at a French CEGEP in Quebec?
  • Have you completed a DEC at an English CEGEP in Quebec, during or later than 2003?
  • Have you or will you complete a French Baccalaureate – Option Internationale (British or American section)?
  • Have you or will you complete an International Baccalaureate (IB) Group 1 English (Language A: Literature, Language A: Language and Literature, or Literature and Performance) with a result of 5 or better?
  • Have you or will you complete the British Curriculum A-Level English with a final grade of C or better?
  • Have you completed the British Curriculum GCSE/IGCSE/GCE O-Level English, English Language, English First Language, or English as a Second Language with a final grade of B or better?
  • Have you completed or will you complete English as Language 1 or Language 2 in the European Baccalaureate curriculum (in the Schola Europaea system)?

If you answered "no" to all of the above, but answer "yes" to any of the following questions, you will be asked to provide supporting documentation to this effect in order to provide proof of English language proficiency.

  • Do you consider English to be your mother tongue?
  • Have you been attending school, for at least four consecutive years, at an accredited educational institution (in a non-English speaking country) where English is the language of instruction?
  • Have you obtained an undergraduate degree from an accredited educational institution where the language of instruction in your program of study was English (minimum three years)?
  • Have you obtained a graduate degree from an accredited educational institution where the language of instruction in your program of study was English (minimum two years)?

Applicants to Career and Professional Development who do not meet any of the above-listed conditions must demonstrate proficiency in English using one of the following options:

  1. TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language):

    iBT (internet-based test): minimum acceptable score of 90 overall (with a minimum individual component score of 21 in each of the four components, i.e., reading, writing, listening, and speaking).

    Note: An institutional version of the TOEFL is not acceptable.
  2. IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Academic Versions: A band score of 6.5 or better; individual component scores must be 6.0 or better. Regular Academic and UKVI Academic versions are both accepted.
  3. MELAB (Michigan English Language Assessment Battery): a minimum mark of 85%.
  4. McGill SCS TELP (McGill School of Continuing Studies Test of English Language Proficiency): a Category A result.
  5. McGill Certificate of Proficiency in English or McGill Certificate of Proficiency – English for Professional Communication: Certificate of Proficiency awarded.
  6. University of Cambridge: Cambridge C1 Advanced. Certificate awarded with a grade of B or higher (formerly Certificate in Advanced English (CAE)).
  7. University of Cambridge: Cambridge C2 Proficiency. Certificate awarded with a grade of C or higher (formerly Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE)).
  8. Pearson Test of English - Academic: Overall score of 65 or better; individual component scores of 60 or better.
  9. Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL): Overall bandscore of 70 or better; individual component scores of 60 or better. Both paper (CAEL-Paper edition) and the computer (CAEL-CE) tests are accepted.
Note: Your test results must be reported directly to the University by the test centre; consequently, candidates' copies of results will not be accepted as proof of English language proficiency. It is your responsibility to ensure that the official test results in an official format are forwarded directly by the testing service to the Client Services Office (Admissions) of the School of Continuing Studies, 688 Sherbrooke St. West, 11th Floor, Montreal, Quebec, H3A 3R1. For TOEFL, the institutional code at McGill University is 0935-00.

Admission Procedures for Certificate Programs

Admission Procedures for Certificate Programs

See School of Continuing Studies > Getting Started > Admission Requirements for more information.

Independent Studies (Special Student Status)

Independent Studies (Special Student Status)

Please consult School of Continuing Studies > Getting Started > Admission Requirements > Special Student Status > Undergraduate Courses for information pertaining to Special Students.

Exemption by Examination

Exemption by Examination

In general, certificates offered by Career and Professional Development are composed of 10 courses. Some programs, however, have corequisite and prerequisite courses that must be completed by the student in order for them to obtain their certificate or diploma.

Students who believe that they have taken the equivalent of one or more of the corequisites to the program, or one or more of the prerequisite courses that are not part of the program to which they have applied, may take an Exemption by Examination test for eligible programs as deemed by the Department. Students who have failed any of the corequisite courses to the program, or any of the prerequisite courses that are not part of the program to which they have applied, are not eligible to take the Exemption by Examination test for the course(s) that they have failed.

The Exemption by Examination test is intended for students who do not have the requisite academic background required, but who believe that they have the requisite level of knowledge needed. Students who successfully pass the Exemption by Examination test(s) with a minimum grade of 55%, with the exception of CMSC 000 which requires a minimum passing grade of 65%, will not have to take the course(s) for which the test(s) was taken. Those who fail the Exemption by Examination test(s) will not be permitted to repeat the test(s); instead, they must enrol in the course(s) for which the particular test was taken. Students will be notified in writing of their test results. Test results are valid for one academic year.

Students may register for the Exemption by Examination test on the following website: www.mcgill.ca/continuingstudies/recognition-prior-learning. There is a CAD$114.37 (non-refundable) application fee (payable by credit card) due at the time of registration. Students interested in a list of courses for which the Exemption by Examination test applies should refer to the website.

For further details on the Exemption by Examination test, students should contact Career and Professional Development. Exemption by Examination tests will be held on the following dates:

Exemption by Examination
Thursday April 16, 2020
Saturday April 25, 2020
Wednesday August 19, 2020
Thursday August 20, 2020
Wednesday November 25, 2020
Thursday November 26, 2020
Saturday December 12, 2020
Wednesday April 21, 2021
Thursday April 22, 2021
Note: The School of Continuing Studies reserves the right to reschedule test dates and to revise the application fee without prior notice.
Programs, Courses and University Regulations—2020-2021 (last updated Jun. 11, 2020) (disclaimer)
School of Continuing Studies—2020-2021 (last updated Jun. 11, 2020) (disclaimer)
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