The Best IELTS Test Preparation Programs in Canada of 2024

Last updated May 22, 2024

Forget the marketing spin from apps, websites and books: when it comes to learning a language, there’s no fast track. The right track involves intensive learning from native speakers and following curriculum that respects cultural context. During your sojourn, you will have ample opportunity to practice the language you want to learn.

People chasing opportunities for study, work or migration to an English-speaking culture must often prove their proficiency in English before those opportunities become available. Proof comes in the form of a successfully completed proficiency test like the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

Why IELTS? Other such tests are available, but the IELTS, which tests for reading, writing, speaking and listening skills, is recognized by more than 9,000 organizations around the world. These include universities, immigration departments, government agencies and multinational companies.

The test takes 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete, but for many learners, preparation stretches over a minimum of several months. Here’s some good news for these aspiring students, workers and migrants: learners in Canada can speed up the process and improve their chances of success when they commit to one of the structured language learning programs found across the country. Many of these programs even prepare students for testing. If you’re coming to Canada, consider these programs to get you started.

Note: due to COVID-19, the institutions listed here have modified their offerings. Please refer to school websites or ask to speak with one of CourseCompare’s Learning Advisors for the latest information.


International Language Academy of Canada (ILAC) 5/5

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Concordia University 5/5

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George Brown College, School of English as a Second Language 5/5

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University of Calgary 5/5

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Centennial College 4.35/5

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ILSC 5/5

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University of Waterloo 5/5

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Languages Across Borders (LAB) 5/5

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Hansa 4.5/5

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Algonquin College 4.6/5

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Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) 3.4/5

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Langara College 4.65/5

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Kaplan International 4.65/5

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International Language Academy of Canada (ILAC)

$ $ $ $

ILAC (International Language Academy of Canada) is an award-winning language school with campuses in Toronto and Vancouver. ILAC welcomes students from more than 75 countries, offering a diverse learning environment as focused on well-structured curriculum as it is on cultural immersion and relationship-building.

What Students Are Saying

I'm studying at ILAC for 6 months. This school is amazing. They have the best teachers and also a good learning structure. They plan fun and activities after the classes and make sure you get all kinds of opportunities to learn. The building and classes are beautiful too. The best part is the people and all of the friendships I am making.

Natty Parra, Pathway to University

Why Study for The IELTS at ILAC?

ILAC is well-known for its University Pathway program, which enables language learners to prepare to apply to more than 90 Canadian colleges and universities, many without IELTS or TOEFL. The Pathway Program is ideal for anyone pursuing language training for academic purposes and looking for support with everything from applications to help with housing and accommodation.



Toronto, Vancouver


Concordia University

$ $ $ $

Every year, Concordia’s scholars, facilities and city inspire more than 50,000 students to engage with big questions head-on. Concordia is a comprehensive university where community members search for innovative solutions and make positive contributions to society. Concordia’s creativity powers Montreal and connects the university to the world.

What Students Are Saying

I've studied English at different institutes but this is by far the best one. If you want to prepare for studying abroad then this is the right place for you; the teachers are great and very helpful at anytime, there are students from different nationalities and a great chance to improve your speaking, even the topics and methods of learning are interesting and different from what you learn at other institutes. I totally recommend it.

Mateo Reyes, IELTS 6+ The Road to Success

Why Study For The IELTS At Concordia University?

Concordia Continuing Education offers the IELTS 6+ course to everyone from those who are seeking permanent residency status in Canada to those who want to track their progress in speaking English. Students spend 30 hours practicing their English language skills by doing assignments, exercises and simulated test questions.

Those who are taking other continuing education programs at Concordia, or who have already completed a course or workshop, may be eligible for a 10% discount.




George Brown College, School of English as a Second Language

$ $ $ $

George Brown College’s School of English as a Second Language offers innovative ESL instruction in the heart of downtown Toronto. Whether you’re interested in pursuing full-time studies or a part-time program, you’re still a George Brown College student and part of the college community. This means you get to take advantage of all the benefits the college has to offer, including access to all college facilities like computer labs, free wi-fi, student lounges, and Student Services.

Whether you’re looking to prepare for further study, a new career, or simply enjoy everyday life in Canada, George Brown offers a range of options to suit your specific English language needs. The English for Academic Purposes program is available in the morning or afternoon while part-time programs are offered in the evenings or on the weekends, allowing you the flexibility to find a course that fits your schedule.

George Brown also offers specialized training to internationally educated teachers through its College Teacher Training Program.

Why Study For The IELTS At George Brown?

George Brown offers IELTS preparation courses for both academic and general training streams at its bright modern downtown Toronto campus.

Take only one, or benefit from a discounted course fee when you take both. George Brown also facilitates computer-delivered test preparation.

Besides the basics, George Brown’s courses include opportunities for students to learn how to write short essays, create flow charts and graphs and advice on using the “help” function during the test.


Toronto, Online


University of Calgary

$ $ $ $

The University of Calgary offers students a high-quality educational experience that prepares them for success in life, as well as research that addresses society’s most persistent challenges. UCalgary’s creation and transfer of knowledge makes the world a better place every day.

This happens in Calgary, Canada’s most enterprising and caring city, where the Western can-do spirit, sense of family, and youthful energy permeate everything UCalgary does. Pioneers at heart, innovators by necessity and desire, community-builders because it’s in UCalgary’s DNA. UCalgary sees potential where others balk at challenge and know how to cooperate to “git’er done.”

Why Study For The IELTS at UCalgary?

The English Language Program at the University of Calgary offers an 8-week IELTS Preparation Course. Depending on the term, the course occurs either in-class or online. Optional trips to some of Western Canada’s most spectacular travel destinations round out the University’s offering.

Courses may be offered in person and/or online, depending on the semester, the school says. Its admission requirements include completion of level 3 of UCalgary English Language Program Semester Program (ESL 100) with a minimum final grade of B+ in each course. It also recognizes the use of apps like Duolingo, admitting those who achieve a score of 70.




Centennial College

$ $ $ $

Over the past 50 years, Centennial College has transformed itself from a local community college to a worldly institution, with a presence in countries like China, India, South Korea and Brazil.

Centennial’s focus has always been on preparing graduates to enter the workforce, while teaching students to be leaders. Centennial has worked to build lasting partnerships with local communities, while preparing graduates to succeed globally.

Locally, Centennial continues to offer industry-recognized full- and part-time programs at four Toronto campuses. Whether in the classroom, state-of-the-art labs or the community, Centennial students experience the real world before they even graduate. They’re job-ready, and that’s a fact employers have told the college, as more than 94 per cent of those hiring Centennial grads are satisfied or very satisfied with their hires.

Why Study For The IELTS At Centennial?

Centennial’s IELTS Preparation Course (Academic and General Training) welcomes learners to classes that are capped at 12 students maximum in order to offer more one-on-one mentoring.

The course description says students will learn to apply “skimming and scanning strategies” to better prepare for the test, as well as a “process rather than product-oriented view” of writing a well-organized written response. The emphasis is on building confidence along with competency.

Held at the Progress Campus in Scarborough (Toronto), prospective learners can also attend a free 2-hour IELTS Workshop.



Scarborough, Ont.



$ $ $ $

Whether you’re in Vancouver, Toronto, or Montreal (ILSC also has locations outside Canada), you can learn at an institution that has worked with students from more than 100 countries since 1991.

ILSC’s certified instructors help these students improve language skills according to their needs and interests while helping them orient, adapt and integrate themselves in Canadian culture.

Why Study For The IELTS At ILSC?

The IELTS Mastery Program is a full-time intensive program (minimum 4 weeks) that is open to learners at multiple language levels.

The school offers students to enrol with one of two targets in mind. Those who wish to score between 5.0 and 5.5, for instance, will be focusing primarily on the exam. Those who want a score of 6.0 or higher, however, will learn additional skills to become more competent communicators, according to the course description.


Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal


University of Waterloo

$ $ $ $

The best and brightest are drawn to the University of Waterloo for renowned academic programs, world-leading co-operative education, and teaching and research excellence.

Consistently ranked Canada’s most innovative university, Waterloo champions a culture of curiosity, exploration, risk-taking, entrepreneurship, global stewardship and leadership. Waterloo brings bold ideas and brilliant minds together – inspiring innovations with global impact today and in the future.

Why Study For The IELTS At Renison University College?

The English Language Institute, based at Waterloo’s Renison University College, offers the IELTS preparation course consisting of both blended and online learning. The in-class component consists of 50 hours with a certified instructor (twice a week for 10 weeks) plus 50 hours of online preparation.

Besides the four traditional areas of IELTS prep (reading, writing, listening and speaking), students will also be given selected grammar lessons and vocabulary training, according to the course description.


Waterloo, Online


Languages Across Borders (LAB)

$ $ $ $

Languages Across Borders (LAB) is a premium, boutique-style language school with dedicated and highly skilled teaching staff. Your experience goes beyond learning a second language in Melbourne, Montreal and Vancouver.

It’s about exploring a new culture in a relaxed and fun environment, meeting friends from around the globe, and having the chance to study and travel in the world’s most livable countries. With campuses in three major cities, LAB ambassadors speak more than 10 languages and are here to ensure your comfort and success. At LAB, you’ll Find Your New Voice while making connections and memories to last a lifetime.

Why Study For The IELTS At LAB?

This four-week program is designed to help you learn techniques and strategies to maximize your exam-taking ability.

Your experienced LAB IELTS teacher guides you through each aspect of the exam.

You will do several mock exams during  your classes. LAB is also an official IELTS Test Center and offers both General and Academic exams at LaSalle College Vancouver.


Vancouver, Montreal



$ $ $ $

Founded in 1969, Hansa Language Centre is one of the largest and most established language schools in Canada. Hansa offers a variety of English classes, a flexible schedule, and a variety of trips, excursions, sports and social activities. English programs are based on the principle that students learn best in a language program that can be customized to their unique linguistic needs and goals.

Hansa uses a “Flexible Learning System” and offers over 300 classes daily. Students have the freedom to choose the classes they want and the time they want to take them. Hansa students benefit from the advice of experienced.

Why Study For The IELTS At Hansa?

The 120-hour Hansa IELTS Preparation Program gets students ready for either the Academic or General IELTS exam. The program goes beyond familiarizing students with exam questions and test-taking strategies.

Hansa breaks the exam down into simple steps; students start with the basics of the English language and build on this knowledge each day. All students who successfully complete Hansa’s IELTS Preparation Program should be able to obtain a score of 6.5 or greater in all four skills of the official exam. If they are unable to achieve this score, they are welcome to take the course again for half the price. For best results, students ought to take their official IELTS exam immediately after completing the course.




Algonquin College

$ $ $ $

Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology was established in 1967 and was named after the First Nations people who lived in the area. Algonquin was formed from the merger of the Eastern Ontario Institute of Technology, established 1957, and the Ontario Vocational Centre, established 1965.

The College has spent more than 51 years as a leader in post-secondary education, and has undergone significant growth since its establishment and continues to grow today. All three Algonquin College Campuses have recently completed major expansion projects. The Perth and Pembroke Campuses have built all-new facilities, and the Ottawa Campus now features a new and innovative DARE District and Library.

Why Study For The IELTS At Algonquin?

Algonquin College offers the IELTS Preparation program to ensure students understand the test format, the types of questions found on the test, and the qualities they will need to succeed, not only on the IELTS but with academic English at the post-secondary level.





Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT)

$ $ $ $

Established in 1916, SAIT in Calgary, Canada is a global leader in applied education and offers 100+ career programs, 1,300+ continuing education courses and corporate training courses to more than 200 companies annually.

SAIT students study within eight academic schools — Business, Construction, Energy, Health and Public Safety, Hospitality and Tourism, Information and Communications Technologies, Manufacturing and Automation and Transportation.

Hands-on learning in unique labs and classrooms, solution-focused research and enterprising collaborations with industry partners ensure SAIT students are career-ready when they graduate.

Why Prep For The IELTS At SAIT?

SAIT’s IELTS Preparation course are offered in either full-time (5 weeks, 75 hours) or part-time (8 weeks, 48 hours) formats. Both choices enable students to immerse themselves in a community full of people expanding knowledge in all sorts of important technologies, the keys to booming economic sectors and lucrative jobs in those sectors.

Perhaps recognizing that students may have different levels of comfort in how they take the IELTS, SAIT offers a paper-based approach as well as a test that can be done on a computer. In both cases, however, the spoken element is done face-to-face with an examiner.




Langara College

$ $ $ $

Located in beautiful Vancouver, BC, Canada, Langara College started in 1965 as part of Vancouver Community College and in 1970, it opened its West 49th Avenue campus. On April 1, 1994, Langara College was established as an independent public college under the Provincial College and Institute Act. The College is also known as house of teachings, a name given by the Musqueam First Nation, on whose unceded traditional territory Langara is located.

Today, Langara is one of BC’s leading undergraduate institutions providing University Studies, Career Studies, and Continuing Studies programs and courses to more than 21,000 students annually.

Why Study For The IELTS At Langara?

The Langara English Proficiency Program (LEPP) enables students to improve their English language skills during the first 4 courses, and prepare for both the Langara English Test (LET) and the IELTS in the final 2 courses. The program runs from 6 to 10 weeks.

Course breakdowns include not only IELTS prep but “speaking professionally” to help those who need to use English on the job, as well as business writing to prepare letters, documents and other reports. There are Upper and Intermediate levels for courses, and the first day includes an informal assessment to ensure students are in the right one.




Kaplan International

$ $ $ $

The power of language education helps Kaplan students build connections, forge opportunities and enrich lives. Schools in Vancouver and Toronto, two of Canada’s most dynamic cities, offer excellent immersion opportunities to complement eerie student’s preparation for the IELTS.

Why Study For The IELTS At Kaplan?

Kaplan offers IELTS Intensive Exam Preparation courses that last from 1 to 16 weeks, consisting of 45-minute lessons in classes that average 12 students (with a maximum of 15).

Learners who want more instruction can add supplementary courses to the base intensive course.

Kaplan said it has invested in additional training for its instructors at its Edinburgh, Oxford, and Dublin Exam Academies, which means they are intended to help students reach more personal goals along with the IELTS prep.


Vancouver, Toronto

Luigi Benetton

Based in Toronto, Canada, Luigi Benetton is a certified translator and technical writer specializing in French, Spanish and Italian. For nearly twenty years, Luigi has been helping organizations bridge the gap between subject matter experts and the global audiences they need to reach.

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