Canada Immigration Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) - AfriCanada Immigration Inc.
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Immigration and Citizenship

Canada Immigration Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS)

What is Canada Comprehensive Ranking system?

The Canada Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) is a points system used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to assess and score a candidate’s Express Entry profile, in order to rank the candidate against all other candidates in the Express Entry pool at the time of issuing Invitations to Apply (ITA) for permanent residency.


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NOTE: The information on this page is largely reproduced for your convenience and easy access from the IRCC website.

When a candidate creates a profile in their online account, the system automatically assigns the candidate a CRS score based on the information provided in their profile. Candidates can see their CRS score on the “Application/Profile Details” page of their account.

Only top-ranked candidates in the Express Entry pool are issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA) at the time of a round of invitations.

CRS points allocation

There are different Canada express entry minimum points for various programs. For instance, applicants must score 67 points or higher (out of 100) from six selection factors (details later on this page) to qualify to immigrate to Canada as a federal skilled worker.


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Candidates can score a maximum of 1200 points in the CRS, with points allocated as follows:

  • A core set of human capital factors that drive economic outcomes (maximum of 460-500 points):
    • Age
    • Level of education
    • Official language proficiency
    • Canadian work experience
  • Spousal factors (maximum of 40 points)
  • A set of skills transferability or interaction factors that amplify the core set (maximum of 100 points)
  • Additional factors (maximum 600 points):
    • A valid provincial/territorial nomination (maximum of 600 points)
    • A qualifying offer of arranged employment (maximum of 50 points for all occupations in NOC 0, A or B, except NOC 00 with a maximum of 200 points)
    • Canadian educational credential (maximum of 30 points)

The Express Entry Ministerial Instructions contain a full breakdown of the CRS. A summary of the CRS is available on the IRCC website.

Note: The CRS may be changed over time as outcomes data becomes available and refinements are undertaken.

Changes to a candidate’s CRS score

Candidates are responsible for ensuring that their Express Entry profile is accurate and up-to-date at all times. Candidates are warned that, if they submit an application for permanent residence (APR) and, at that time, cannot substantiate the information in their Express Entry profile or their APR, their application will be refused and they may be assessed for misrepresentation.

When a candidate goes into their account and updates the information in their profile (e.g., adds a new credential or deletes a job offer), the candidate’s CRS score will automatically change to reflect the new information. The candidate will be able to see their new CRS score in their account.


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In order for IRCC processing offices to assess Express Entry applications on section A11.2 and misrepresentation, an applicant’s CRS score is automatically recorded in the Global Case Management System (GCMS) in the following situations:

  • when the applicant is issued an ITA; and
  • when the applicant submits their APR.

Note: When a candidate is issued an ITA, their profile is “locked”. Candidates may have to manually recalculatetheir scores if there is a change in circumstance after the ITA is issued and before they apply for permanent residence, as it could impact their eligibility.

Express Entry Draw / Rounds of Invitations

IRCC controls how many Express Entry candidates are invited to apply for permanent residence through a system of “rounds of invitations”. Also popularly known as Canada Express Entry draws, these are done at a frequency and in numbers that align to IRCC’s processing capacity and annual levels targets.

IMPORTANT NOTE: At the time of a round of invitations, a candidate’s rank in the Express Entry pool is much more important than the candidate’s total number of CRS points. For example, if IRCC issues an ITA to 1000 candidates from the pool, only the top-ranking 1000 candidates will receive an ITA.

A candidate’s rank changes with every round of invitations, as their rank is relative to that of all other candidates in the pool at the time of the round.

Rounds can be general and include all programs subject to Express Entry (see Express Entry programs), or be program-specific (e.g., top-ranked CEC candidates only). For example:


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  • general round of invitations would mean that all candidates in the list below would be issued an ITA. If CIC invited 500 candidates to apply, and the following list represented the top 10 candidates in the pool, CIC would invite 5 FSWC, 3 CEC and 2 FSTC candidates, all the way down until the 500th ranked candidate in the pool is invited, regardless of the program(s) to which they appear eligible.
    1. FSWC – 1000 CRS points (has job offer)
    2. CEC – 980 (has job offer)
    3. FSWC – 878 (has job offer)
    4. FSTC – 820 (has job offer)
    5. FSTC – 818 (has job offer)
    6. CEC – 540
    7. CEC – 538
    8. FSWC – 532
    9. FSWC – 531
    10. FSWC – 480
    11. etc.
  • program-specific round of invitations would mean that only candidates in the list above who are tagged (i.e., found eligible) for a specific program would be issued an ITA. For example, if IRCC were to invite the top 500 FSWC candidates, in the example above, only candidates ranked 1, 3, 8, 9, and 10 would be invited, with additional top-ranked FSWC-tagged candidates invited to apply, up to and including the 500th ranked FSWC candidate in the pool.

Express Entry rounds of invitations are governed through Ministerial Instructions, which specify the date of the round, the number invitations to be issued, and whether the round of invitations is general or program-specific. The Ministerial Instructions are published when a round is held, but not before.

After a round of invitations is held, IRCC publishes the score of the lowest ranked candidate to be issued an ITA in that round. Candidates who are not issued an ITA can use this information to see where their CRS score stands relative to the lowest score from their round and, therefore, have a general sense of whether they may be invited to apply in future rounds and what to do to improve their scores.

Candidates who have been issued an ITA but whose circumstances have changed can also use this information to determine if they should decline the ITA or submit an APR.

Each invitation round has a set of instructions that are:

  • posted online at the time of the invitation round
  • used by the Express Entry system to invite candidates from the pool

The instructions include:

  • the date and time of the invitation round
  • the number of candidates that will get an invitation to apply
  • which immigration program(s) are included in the round (some invitation rounds may only invite candidates for 1 program, for example only from Federal Skilled Trades)

Check your score and then use this information to see how likely you are to get an invitation in the next round.

Express Entry reports

Example: January 30, 2019 Round of Invitations

Ministerial Instructions respecting invitations to apply for permanent residence under the Express Entry system – January 30, 2019

Programs specified

See full text of Ministerial Instruction

Number of invitations issued: 3,350*

Rank required to be invited to apply: 3,350th or above

Date and time of round: January 30, 2019 at 12:09:10 UTC

CRS score of lowest-ranked candidate invited: 438

Tie-breaking rule: April 26, 2018 at 05:00:46 UTC

  • If more than one candidate has the lowest score, the cut-off is based on the date and time they submitted their Express Entry profiles.

*Candidates eligible for this round of invitations were those in:

See previous Express Entry draws

CRS Score RangeNumber of Candidates
601-120086
451-600305
401-45031,142
441-450660
431-4409,522
421-4306,596
411-4206,914
401-4107,450
351-40038,578
391-4007,061
381-3908,118
371-3808,037
361-3707,867
351-3607,495
301-35022,274
0-3003,321
Total95,706

The numbers in this table reflect the total number of people in the pool overall, a few days before an invitation round. The score distribution may change as people submit new profiles and other profiles expire.

The table numbers in italics are a detailed breakdown of the bold number immediately above.

Summary of CRS maximum points per factor for Express Entry candidates

FactorsPoints per factor – With a spouse or common-law partnerPoints per factor – Without a spouse or common-law partner
Age 100110
Level of education 140150
Official languages proficiency 150160
Canadian work experience 7080
FactorsPoints per factor
(Maximum 40 points)
Level of education 10
Official language proficiency 20
Canadian Work Experience 10

A. Core/human capital + B. Spouse or common-law partner factors = Maximum 500 points (with OR without a spouse or common-law partner)

EducationPoints per factor
(Maximum 50 points)
With good/strong official languages proficiency and a post-secondary degree50
With Canadian work experience and a post-secondary degree50
Foreign work experiencePoints per factor
(Maximum 50 points)
With good/strong official languages proficiency (Canadian Language Benchmark [CLB] level 7 or higher) and foreign work experience50
With Canadian work experience and foreign work experience50
Certificate of qualification (for people in trade occupations)Points per factor
(Maximum 50 points)
With good/strong official languages proficiency and a certificate of qualification50

A. Core/human capital + B. Spouse or common-law partner + C. Transferability factors = Maximum 600 points

FactorMaximum points per factor
Brother or sister living in Canada (citizen or permanent resident)15
French language skills30
Post-secondary education in Canada30
Arranged employment200
PN nomination600

A. Core/human capital + B. Spouse or common-law partner factors + C. Transferability factors + D. Additional points = Grand total – Maximum 1,200 points

Points breakdown, section by section

CRS – A. Core / human capital factors

  • With a spouse or common-law partner: Maximum 460 points total for all factors.
  • Without a spouse or common-law partner: Maximum 500 points total for all factors.
AgeWith a spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 100 points)
Without a spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 110 points)
17 years of age or less00
18 years of age9099
19 years of age95105
20 to 29 years of age100110
30 years of age95105
31 years of age9099
32 years of age8594
33 years of age8088
34 years of age7583
35 years of age7077
36 years of age6572
37 years of age6066
38 years of age5561
39 years of age5055
40 years of age4550
41 years of age3539
42 years of age2528
43 years of age1517
44 years of age56
45 years of age or more00
Level of EducationWith a spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 140 points)
Without a spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 150 points)
Less than secondary school (high school)00
Secondary diploma (high school graduation)2830
One-year degree, diploma or certificate from  a university, college, trade or technical school, or other institute8490
Two-year program at a university, college, trade or technical school, or other institute9198
Bachelor’s degree OR  a three or more year program at a university, college, trade or technical school, or other institute112120
Two or more certificates, diplomas, or degrees. One must be for a program of three or more years119128
Master’s degree, OR professional degree needed to practice in a licensed profession (For “professional degree,” the degree program must have been in: medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, optometry, law, chiropractic medicine, or pharmacy.)126135
Doctoral level university degree (Ph.D.)140150

Official languages proficiency – first official language

Maximum points for each ability (reading, writing, speaking and listening):

  • 32 with a spouse or common-law partner
  • 34 without a spouse or common-law partner
Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level per abilityWith a spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 128 points)
Without a spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 136 points)
Less than CLB 400
CLB 4 or 566
CLB 689
CLB 71617
CLB 82223
CLB 92931
CLB 10 or more3234

Official languages proficiency – second official language

Maximum points for each ability (reading, writing, speaking and listening):

  • 6 with a spouse or common-law partner (up to a combined maximum of 22 points)
  • 6 without a spouse or common-law partner (up to a combined maximum of 24 points)
Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level per abilityWith a spouse or common-law partner 
(Maximum 22 points)
Without a spouse or common-law partner 
(Maximum 24 points)
CLB 4 or less00
CLB 5 or 611
CLB 7 or 833
CLB 9 or more66
Canadian work experienceWith a spouse or common-law partner 
(Maximum 70 points)
Without a spouse or common-law partner 
(Maximum 80 points)
None or less than a year00
1 year3540
2 years4653
3 years5664
4 years6372
5 years or more7080

Subtotal: A. Core / human capital factors

  • With a spouse or common-law partner – Maximum 460 points
  • Without a spouse or common-law partner – Maximum 500 points

CRS – B. Spouse or common-law partner factors (if applicable)

Spouse’s or common-law partner’s level of educationWith spouse or common-law partner
(Maximum 10 points)
Without spouse or common-law partner
(Does not apply)
Less than secondary school (high school)0n/a
Secondary school (high school graduation)2n/a
One-year program at a university, college, trade or technical school, or other institute6n/a
Two-year program at a university, college, trade or technical in school, or other institute7n/a
Bachelor’s degree OR  a three or more year program at a university, college, trade or technical school, or other institute8n/a
Two or more certificates, diplomas, or degrees. One must be for a program of three or more years9n/a
Master’s degree, or professional degree needed to practice in a licensed profession (For “professional degree”, the degree program must have been in: medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, optometry, law, chiropractic medicine, or pharmacy.)10n/a
Doctoral level university degree (PhD)10n/a

Note: (n/a) means that this factor does not apply in this case.

Spouse’s or common-law partner’s official languages proficiency – first official language

Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level per ability (reading, writing, speaking and listening )Maximum 20 points for section
Maximum 5 points per ability
Without spouse or common-law partner 
(Does not apply)
CLB 4 or less0n/a
CLB 5 or 61n/a
CLB 7 or 83n/a
CLB 9 or more5n/a

Note: (n/a) means that this factor does not apply in this case.

Spouse’s Canadian work experienceMaximum 10 pointsWithout spouse or common-law partner 
(Does not apply)
None or less than a year0n/a
1 year5n/a
2 years7n/a
3 years8n/a
4 years9n/a
5 years or more10n/a

Note: (n/a) means that this factor does not apply in this case.

Subtotal : A. Core / human capital + B. Spouse or common-law partner factors = Maximum 500 points

CRS – C. Skill transferability factors (Maximum 100 points for this section)

Education

With good official language proficiency (Canadian Language Benchmark Level [CLB] 7 or higher) and a post-secondary degreePoints for CLB 7 or more on all first official language abilities, with one or more under CLB 9
(Maximum 25 points)
Points for CLB 9 or more on all four first official language abilities
(Maximum 50 points)
Secondary school (high school) credential or less00
Post-secondary program credential of one year or longer1325
Two or more post-secondary program credentials AND at least one of these credentials was issued on completion of a post-secondary program of three years or longer2550
With Canadian work experience and a post-secondary degreePoints for education + 1 year of Canadian work experience
(Maximum 25 points)
Points for education + 2 years or more of Canadian work experience
(Maximum 50 points)
Secondary school (high school) credential or less00
Post-secondary program credential of one year or longer1325
Two or more post-secondary program credentials AND at least one of these credentials was issued on completion of a post-secondary program of three years or longer2550

Foreign work experience – With good official language proficiency (Canadian Language Benchmark Level [CLB] 7 or higher)

Years of experiencePoints for foreign work experience + CLB 7 or more on all first official language abilities, one or more under 9
(Maximum 25 points)
Points for foreign work experience + CLB 9 or more on all four first official language abilities
(Maximum 50 points)
No foreign work experience00
1 or 2 years of foreign work experience1325
3 years or more of foreign work experience2550

Foreign work experience – With Canadian work experience

Years of experiencePoints for foreign work experience + 1 year of Canadian work experience
(Maximum 25 points)
Points for foreign work experience + 2 years or more of Canadian work experience
(Maximum 50 points)
No foreign work experience00
1 or 2 years of foreign work experience1325
3 years or more of foreign work experience2550
Certificate of qualification (trade occupations) – With good official language proficiency (Canadian Language Benchmark Level [CLB] 5 or higher)Points for certificate of qualification + CLB 5 or more on all first official language abilities, one or more under 7
(Maximum 25 points)
Points for certificate of qualification + CLB 7 or more on all four first official language abilities
(Maximum 50 points)
With a certificate of qualification2550

Subtotal: A. Core / human capital + B. Spouse or common-law partner + C. Skill transferability factors – Maximum 600 points

CRS – D. Additional points (Maximum 600 points)

Additional pointsMaximum 600 points
Brother or sister living in Canada who is a citizen or permanent resident of Canada15
Scored NCLC 7 or higher on all four French language skills and scored CLB 4 or lower in English (or didn’t take an English test)15
Scored NCLC 7 or higher on all four French language skills and scored CLB 5 or higher on all four English skills30
Post-secondary education in  Canada – credential of one or two years15
Post-secondary education in  Canada – credential three years or longer30
Arranged employment – NOC 00200
Arranged employment – any other NOC 0, A or B50
Provincial or territorial nomination600

Subtotal: D. Additional points – Maximum 600 points

Grand total: A. Core / human capital + B. Spouse or common-law partner + C. Skill transferability factors + D. Additional points = Maximum 1,200 points

Tips for Improving Express Entry CRS Scores

Canada Express Entry Immigration Draw

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