Comprehensive Ranking System explained

Canada’s Express Entry immigration selection system uses the CRS Score Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) to rank and select individuals who are eligible to immigrate to Canada under three federal economic immigration programs.

When Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) performs an Express Entry draw from this pool of candidates, the top-ranked candidates receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence. These draws occur regularly, approximately once every two weeks. The Comprehensive Ranking System is a dynamic, competitive system — the more points you accumulate, the more likely it is that you will be invited to apply.

Before being assigned a Comprehensive Ranking System score, individuals must first be eligible under one of the following programs:

Candidates in the pool are assigned a Comprehensive Ranking System score out of 1,200.

For single applicants without a spouse or common-law partner, there are:

  • Up to 500 points available for core human capital factors, including age, level of education, language ability, and Canadian work experience;
  • Up to 100 points available for skill transferability factors; and
  • Up to 600 points available for additional factors (including a provincial nomination, a valid job offer, Canadian study experience, a sibling in Canada, and/or French language ability).

For candidates with an accompanying spouse or common-law partner, there are:

  • Up to 460 points available for core human capital factors of the principal applicant;
  • Up to 40 points for the core human capital factors of the spouse or common-law partner;
  • Up to 100 points available for skill transferability factors; and
  • Up to 600 points available for additional factors.

Under the 2020-2022 Canada Immigration Levels Plan, the number of new permanent residents admitted through Express Entry over the coming years is set to increase.

Comprehensive Ranking System points factors

Human Capital Factors

Age

Single candidates may be awarded up to 110 points for age for their CRS Score (Comprehensive Ranking System score). Candidates with a spouse or partner may receive up to 100 points.

Age (in years)Single candidateWith an accompanying spouse/partner
under 180 points0 points
189990
1910595
20-29110100
3010595
319990
329485
338880
348375
357770
367265
376660
386155
395550
405045
413935
422825
431715
4465
45 or older00

Level of education

Up to 150 points are available for level of education.

Level of educationSingle candidateWith an accompanying spouse/partner 
Less than secondary (high) school credential0 points0 points
Secondary school credential3028 for PA; 2 for spouse
One-year post-secondary program9084 for PA; 6 for spouse
Two-year post-secondary program9891 for PA; 7 for spouse
Post-secondary program of 3 or more years120112 for PA; 8 for spouse
Two or more post-secondary programs, of which at least one was completed after a post-secondary program of three or more years128119 for PA; 9 for spouse
Master’s or entry-to-practice professional degree135126 for PA; 10 for spouse
Doctoral Degree (PhD)150140 for PA; 10 for spouse

First Language Ability (English or French)

Comprehensive Ranking System points in this chart are for each language ability: speaking, writing, reading and listening. Therefore, a single candidate may receive up to 136 points (34×4); a candidate with an accompanying spouse or partner may receive up to 148 points (32×4 plus 5×4).

Points for language are awarded only if a candidate completes an approved language test. The points are based on the Canadian Language Benchmark levels (CLBs).

CPRC readers can take advantage of a seven-day free trial of online language tutorials. Simply select to Learn English or Learn French and complete the online form.

Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB)Single candidateWith an accompanying spouse/partner
For each language ability34 points32 points for PA; 5 points for spouse
CLB 3 or lower00
CLB 466 for PA; 0 for spouse
CLB 566 for PA; 1 for spouse
CLB 698 for PA; 1 for spouse
CLB 71716 for PA; 3 for spouse
CLB 82322 for PA; 3 for spouse
CLB 93129 for PA; 5 for spouse
CLB 10 or higher3432 for PA; 5 for spouse

Second Language Ability (English or French)

Points in this chart are for each language ability: speaking, writing, reading and listening.

Up to 24 points are available for a single candidate’s second language ability. Candidates with a spouse/partner “max out” their points for second language ability at 22 points, even if they get results of CLB 9 or higher in all abilities. The spouse/partner is only assessed under his or her first language.

Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB)Single candidateWith an accompanying spouse/partner (up to 22 points only)
For each language ability66
CLB 4 or lower00
CLB 5 or 611
CLB 7 or 833
CLB 9 or higher66

Canadian Work Experience in the CRS Score (Comprehensive Ranking System)

Up to 100 points are available for Canadian work experience, making it a key part of the Comprehensive Ranking System for Express Entry. 

Number of yearsSingle candidateWith an accompanying spouse/partner
Less than 10 points0 points
1 year4035 for PA; 5 for spouse
2 years5346 for PA; 7 for spouse
3 years6456 for PA; 8 for spouse
4 years7263 for PA; 9 for spouse
5 years or more8070 for PA; 10 for spouse

Skill Transferability Factors

Also known as combination factors, these points are awarded when a candidate performs well in two areas. Up to 50 points are available for each combination of two factors, with an overall cap of 100 points from among the five combinations. No points are available for the skill transferability of a candidate’s spouse or common-law partner, if applicable.

Education and Canadian Work Experience

Education1 year of Canadian work experience2 or more years of Canadian work experience
No post-secondary education00
Post-secondary education of 1 year or longer1325
Two or more post-secondary credentials, the first of which was 3 or more years in duration2550

Education and Language Ability

EducationCLB 7 or higher on all language abilities, with at least one of these CLB 8CLB 9 or higher for all language abilities
No post-secondary education00
Post-secondary education of 1 year or longer1325
Two or more post-secondary credentials,2550
the first of which was 3 or more years in duration 

Language Ability and non-Canadian work Experience

Non-Canadian Work ExperienceCLB 7 or higher on all language abilities, with at least one of these CLB 8CLB 9 or higher for all language abilities
No non-Canadian work experience00
1 or 2 years of non-Canadian work experience1325
3 or more years of non-Canadian work experience2550

 

Canadian and non-Canadian Work Experience

Experience1 year of Canadian work experience2 or more years of Canadian work experience
No non-Canadian work experience00
1 or 2 years of non-Canadian work experience1325
3 or more years of non-Canadian work experience2550

 

Certificate of Qualification in a Trade and Language Ability

Certificate of QualificationCLB 5 or higher on all language abilities, with at least one CLB 5 or 6CLB 7 or higher on all language abilities
Certificate of qualification in a trade occupation issued by a province2550

Additional Factors

The maximum available number of points for these additional factors for any one
candidate is 600 points

FactorPoints
Provincial nomination obtained under an Express Entry-aligned Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) stream/category600
Qualifying job offer in Senior Management occupation under Major Group 00 of the National Occupational Classification (NOC)*200
Qualifying job offer in any other skilled occupation (NOC 0, A or B level)*50
Completed one-year or two-year study program in Canada15
Completed three-year/Master’s/entry to practice professional degree or Doctorate (PhD) in Canada30
French ability of CLB 7 or better AND English ability of CLB 4 or worse (or no English test result at all)25
French ability of CLB 7 or better AND English ability of CLB 5 or better50
Sibling in Canada**15

*Until November, 2016 it was the case that a positive LMIA had to accompany this job offer in order for Comprehensive Ranking System points to be awarded. However, in addition to LMIA-based offers, it is now possible for certain foreign workers in Canada to obtain Comprehensive Ranking System points without a LMIA.

The following table shows which foreign workers in Canada may be able to obtain points for a job offer without a LMIA.

May receive pointsMust also obtain a LMIA
NAFTAInternational Experience Canada (IEC)
Intra-Company TransferPost-Graduation Work Permits
LMIA-based Work PermitsWork Permits issued to Spouses/Common-Law Partners of foreign workers and international students in Canada
Canada-Provincial/Territorial issued Work PermitsAll other Open Work Permits
Other Work Permits issued under the significant benefit to Canada initiative

* Candidates with a sibling in Canada may be awarded 15 points if the sibling is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and at least 18 years of age. Up to 15 points only may be awarded for this factor; candidates with more than one sibling in Canada will be awarded 15 points in total, not 15 points per sibling. These points may also be awarded if the candidate’s spouse or common-law partner has a sibling in Canada. The candidate or his or her spouse/common-law partner must share a mother and/or father with the sibling in Canada. This relationship can be through blood, adoption, marriage, or common-law partnership.

How can I boost my CRS score?

We’ve created a resource that explains this in detail. Visit our How to Improve Your CRS Score page for more.