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The Canadian Experience Class (CEC) is a popular immigration program under the Express Entry system that offers a pathway to permanent residency in Canada. Unlike other programs, CEC is designed for applicants with skilled work experience acquired in Canada, making it a convenient option for international full-time students and temporary foreign workers to start obtaining permanent residency. This program is tailored to individuals who have already lived and worked in Canada and understand Canadian society and culture well.

The program offers those with Canadian work experience the advantage of earning additional points under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score, which contributes to their selection as applicants who are invited to apply for permanent residency. You can get better acquainted with your CRS scores using our advanced CRS Calculator. Our team of dedicated Express Entry consultants is here to help you navigate the Canadian Express Entry system. 

The Canadian Experience Class of the Express Entry system offers several benefits to candidates with the wish of Canadian immigration. After completing their post-secondary education in Canada, international students eligible for the CEC can harness their Canadian qualifications to gain valuable Canadian work experience. Temporary foreign workers who become eligible for the Canadian Experience Class can also leverage their Canadian work experience to eventually transition to permanent residency.

Overall, the program benefits Canada and its economy significantly. It allows the country to retain and benefit from the skills and previous employment of applicants already in Canada, contributing to the growth and development of the nation. You can also explore the other two programs managed under the Express Entry system: the Federal Skilled Worker Program and the Federal Skilled Trades ProgramAdditionally, you can learn more about the Express Entry programs managed by the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) and the various streams it offers, including the Human Capital Priorities Stream, the French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream, and the  Skilled Trades Stream

The Canadian Experience Class is an essential immigration program under the Express Entry system in Canada. It is a valuable stream for those who have already lived and worked in Canada and are looking for a quick and straightforward pathway to obtain permanent residency. As Canada aims to attract and retain skilled professionals, the Canadian Experience Class Program is vital in making it a popular destination for skilled workers worldwide.

Program-specific Express Entry draws are conducted regularly, so it’s important to keep up with the latest Express Entry updates and eligibility requirementsIf you have questions regarding your particular case and the application process, you can always book an initial consultation. Our expert immigration consultants will guide you through the whole Express Entry system alongside the permanent residence application. You can also learn more about our professional fees.


To qualify for the CEC through Express Entry, you must have:

  • At least 12 months of skilled work experience gained in Canada in the last three years (before you apply). The work was: full-time OR an equal amount of part time work experience
  • gained your work experience in Canada with the proper authorization
  • take an approved language test and meet the minimum requirements
  • planned to live outside the province of Quebec

Work Experience

To be eligible for the CEC, you need to have Canadian skilled work experience within three years of applying. According to the  Canadian National Occupational Classification (NOC), skilled work experience means:

  • Managerial jobs (NOC skill level 0)
  • Professional jobs (NOC skill type A)
  • Technical jobs and skilled trades (NOC skill type B)

Your experience must be at least

  • 12 months of full-time work: 30 hours/week for 12 months = 1-year full-time (1,560 hours), OR
  • equal amount in part-time hours, such as:
    • 15 hours/week for 24 months = 1 year full-time (1,560 hours)
    • 30 hours/week for 12 months at more than one job = 1 year full-time (1,560 hours)
  • If your experience doesn’t meet the duty and job description requirements set in the NOC, IRCC may not accept your application.

Language Requirement

Applicants wishing to be eligible for the Canadian Experience Class program must meet the English language requirement of CLB level 7 for TEER 0 and 1 categories, and CLB level 5 for TEER 2 and 3 categories. For French, applicants must meet NCLC level 7 for TEER 0 and 1 categories, and NCLC level 5 for TEER 2 and 3 categories.

The full Canadian Experience Class CEC program eligibility requirements, along with the program timeline, document checklist, and processing times, help applicants understand IRCC’s expectations and minimum prerequisites for smoother immigration to Canada and Canadian permanent residence.

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