English Language Training

It is important to be able to communicate in order to integrate well into your new community, school, workplace and society in general. Learning a new language will be less challenging if you enrol in a language training program.

Assessing English Language Ability

  • School-aged children will have their English or French language skills assessed during their school registration process.
  • The first CLBPT is free for all permanent residents. A fee of $50 applies if the test has to be taken a second time, and applies to all assessments for people without permanent resident status.

Upon arrival in NL, if English is not their first language or they are not fluent in English, all adult immigrants with permanent resident status should have their English skills assessed at the ANC.

The ANC administers the official English language test called the Canadian Language Benchmark Placement Test (CLBPT). The test measures your skills in four areas: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. It is required in order to get enrolled in an English training program.

The test results are only valid for 12 months. After that period, another assessment may be required.

Placement in all language levels is based on the Canadian Language Benchmarks Placement Test (CLBPT). The Adult Training Centre is the only certified CLB assessment centre in the province and provides English language assessment for eligible clients on-site in St. John’s (permanent residents only) and through remote assessment at its Corner Brook and Grand Falls-Windsor regional offices (for permanent residents, international students, temporary foreign workers, and their spouses).

English Language Training Programs

Based on your CLBPT results, you will be referred to an English language training class at an institution of your choice.

You are not eligible for free language training classes for new immigrants if you are a Canadian citizen, a temporary resident (international student, visitor, or foreign worker), under 18 years of age, or if your level of English is higher than the levels offered by the training. Basic English language training is free for all permanent residents in NL.

Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC)

The ANC offers English as a Second Language (ESL) training based on the federal Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) curriculum guidelines and the national standard Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB). All instruction is provided by qualified instructors. On-site classes are offered at the ANC’s Adult ESL Training Centre in St. John’s and the ANC’s regional office in Corner Brook. Part-time instruction is also offered in the St. John’s area through the Itinerant Teacher Program and throughout the province via the Outreach ESL Tutor Program.

The ESL Training Centre is a designated site for the Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) and the Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) assessments.

The ANC’s Community Connections Program runs English as a Second Language (ESL) cafes. Volunteer tutors from the local community are matched with newcomers who wish to learn English with the help of a tutor. Volunteers must undergo training before they are matched with a newcomer. Any newcomer can apply for this program, regardless of immigration status. However, there is a waiting list, and usually, a wait time which varies.

Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) also offers ESL language programs at its Grenfell Campus.

In addition to the English training at a recognized training facility, immigrants can request an online option, called LINC Home Study Canada. There is usually a waitlist for a spot in this program. This can be a good alternative for people who are not able to attend school for a number of reasons such as work, accessibility or childcare. The minimum level of English to enrol in this program is 2 (based on the CLBPT score).

Other Ways to Study English

If you cannot study English on a full-time basis, if you are not eligible for language training classes, or while waiting for your spot at the free language training, there are many ways you can enhance your English skills on your own. Here are some ideas:

  • ask for access to English language training resources at the Confederation Centre Public Library
  • obtain a dictionary, textbooks and/or computer software programs for learning English and study at home
  • read newspapers, listen to the radio, and watch television programs in English
  • read children’s books or stories in English — it is easier to start learning with simple texts
  • be active in the community and use every opportunity to communicate in English with neighbours and friends
  • get enrolled in a group or a club that shares your interests (sports, hobbies or ideas)

Related Resources

Related Topic in this Guide

Information for Parents, Children, and Youth: Schools