English Language Requirements for Real Estate License in Alberta

Raman Gakhal of Alberta Real Estate School explaining the English Language Requirements to get a Real Estate License in Alberta.

In order to be eligible to become a Real Estate Agent in Alberta, you need to have certain level of English language proficiency. The English Language Requirements for a Real Estate License are different from that of the educational eligibility requirements demanded by the Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA).

Also, the documents to prove English language proficiency are different for applicants with domestic and international education as the education documents among them can be different too.   

So, let’s look at the specified English Language Requirements to become a Realtor® in Alberta with Canadian as well as International Education.

Requirements for Real Estate License in Alberta – stated by RECA

While applying for a Real Estate License in Alberta with RECA, you must first meet the basic eligibility requirements to apply. They include:

  1. Should be at least 18 years of age.
  2. Must be able to lawfully study or work in Canada.
  3. Must be able to provide specific government-issued identification
  4. Have a minimum of Canadian High School Diploma or equivalent.
  5. Must be Proficient in English.

The basic eligibilities include Education and English language requirements categorized by RECA.

The Education requirements are again different for students with Canadian Education and students for International Education – which we have already discussed in our previous articles. Have a look up for those in the links provided if you haven’t already.

After that, comes the English language proficiency testing.

English Language Requirements for Real Estate License in Alberta

RECA has outlined adequate level of English language proficiency in order to practice Real Estate and Mortgage Brokerage in Alberta. It includes intermediate level of excellence for the language in:

  1. Reading
  2. Writing
  3. Listening
  4. Speaking

In order to prove your proficiency, sufficient documents have to be provided to RECA. The documents submitted along with your Licensing Application will be based on the place as well as the level of education you have achieved. It also evaluates the language in which you have obtained the education.

So, let’s break down the proof of English language proficiency required to get a real estate license in Alberta with Canadian Education.

A. Proof of English Proficiency with Canadian Education

  1. The transcripts submitted with the real estate license application should clearly indicate:
  2. The Course of Subject(s) where delivered completely in English (Canadian or US English)
  3. The Program must be delivered in Classroom. Programs conducted entirely or partially online are not accepted as one of the proofs for English language proficiency

B. Proof of English Proficiency with Non-Canadian / International Education

The international education documents submitted for the application should clearly state:

  1. Language of instruction was exclusively in English (Not English and Another language).
  2. Canadian Equivalent Grade 12 English Courses. For e.g., English 30-1 with a passing grade
  3. If any applicant has completed international education assessment by any of the provincial assessment service providers, it must show a minimum of 2 years of English courses at College/University level, for in class education, with a passing grade.

English Proficiency Assessment for International Education

In case of international education, it has to be assessed and approved by assessment centers appointed by the provincial government. These associations mainly assess the type and level of education applicants have achieved and check the education eligibility based on RECA guidelines.

IQAS (International Qualifications Assessment Service) is the one of the accredited service providers for international education in Alberta.

Non-English Education

When your education eligibility is appropriate, but your English language requirements are yet to be met, you need to take help of English Language Courses in Canada to be eligible for the real estate licensing courses in Alberta.

The following English Language Institutions are approved and accredited by RECA to fulfill their English language requirements:

  1. TOEFLiBT (Internet-based Test of English as a Foreign Language) by ETS (Educational Testing Services)
  2. IELTS (International English Language Testing System)
  3. CELPIP (Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program)
  4. CAEL (Canadian Academic English Language Assessment)

Each of these English language assessments are independent and require separate score levels to qualify for RECA Exams in Alberta. Let’s look at each of them in detail.


The iBT Test of TOEFL by ETS is one of the most well-known English language tests worldwide. In order to be eligible with RECA, you need to get an Overall Score of 92 with the following specifications –

  1. Listening: 21
  2. Speaking: 26
  3. Reading: 21
  4. Writing: 24


IELTS is the most popular English Language Test globally. In order to be eligible with RECA, you need to take the Academic Test of IELTS (and not the general test) and score a minimum of 6.5 points in each of the areas – listening, speaking, reading, writing. You need to take the for RECA approval.


CELPIP is the latest English Language Proficiency Program designed by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). It was specially designed for evaluating English language proficiency for applicants applying for Permanent Residency (PR) & Citizenship in Canada. It is now used as a benchmark for English Language proficiency institutions in developed by Canada.

CELPIP is an exception here as you can take the general test and score a minimum of 7.0 points in each of the areas of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.


CAEL is the leading Canadian Academic English test for Study in Canada. It was developed to measures the English language proficiency of students planning to study at Canadian universities and colleges. As per RECA requirements, you need to score a minimum of 60 points in all areas of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Assessments NOT Accepted by RECA as proof of English Proficiency

The following are not approved as English proficiency validations for real estate licenses in Alberta:

  1. Assessments given by organizations other than TOEFL, IELTS, CELPIP, CAEL
  2. ESL (English as a Second Language) Course
  3. Employment Experience

So, these are English Language Requirements enforced by RECA for applicants trying to be eligible for a Real Estate License in Alberta.

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