Accepted Language Proficiency Tests

Applicants can meet the language proficiency requirement by achieving the minimum scores for one of the following tests. 

Applicants must achieve the test scores for all test components during one complete attempt of the test. If necessary, applicants can re-take tests to demonstrate language proficiency.

Visit the examination websites below to learn more about testing locations and times, fees and re-takes.

Canadian English Language Benchmark Assessment for Nurses (CELBAN)
Test Component CELBAN Scores
Writing 7
Speaking 8
Listening 10
Reading 8

These are the minimum benchmark scores that must be achieved and includes the standard error of measurement.

NOTE: CNO accepts scores from a CELBAN test at a CELBAN administration site as well as tests done virtually. CNO does not accept results from CELBAN tests administered by educational institutions for educational purposes.

Website: Canadian English Language Benchmarks Assessment for Nurses

International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
Test Component IELTS Scores
Writing 7
Speaking 7
Listening 7.5
Reading 6.5
Total 7

These are the minimum benchmark scores that must be achieved and includes the standard error of measurement of 0.5.

NOTE: CNO will only accept scores from the Academic format of the IELTS test.

Website: International English Language Testing System  

Test d'evaluation de francais (TEF)
Component Minimum benchmark scores Absolute minimum score
Writing 4 271 out of a possible 450
Speaking 5 349 out of a possible 450
Listening 5 280 out of a possible 360
Reading 4 181 out of a possible 300
Vocabulary and Grammar 4 145 out of a possible 240
Total Not applicable  

These scores are the minimum benchmark scores that must be achieved. This is the only French language proficiency test that applicants can use to meet the language proficiency requirement for registration.

Website: Test d’évaluation de français

Page last reviewed March 07, 2022