Integrity concerns with respect to language test results
This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.
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If you have concerns about the integrity of the language test results, the following options are available:
Option 1: accept
If the officer has verified the test scores with the respective designated language-testing organization that administered the test and is satisfied that there is no fraud or malfeasance with respect to the test results, and the test scores provided belong to the appropriate applicant, the officer may accept the test scores.
Option 2: refuse
If the officer has verified the test scores with the respective designated language-testing organization that administered the test, and is satisfied that there is sufficient evidence to establish fraud or malfeasance with respect to the test results, or the test scores provided do not belong to the appropriate applicant, the officer may refuse the application for misrepresentation following the rules of procedural fairness.
Note: Refer to IL 3 – Designation of Officers and Delegation of Authority to determine the delegated authority to make a determination under paragraph A40(1)(a) of the IRPA.
An interview cannot be used as a means of evaluating language proficiency. You cannot change language point awards or make new language pass/fail assessments based on what you have discovered in an interview. However, if an applicant is interviewed for any other reason and significant discrepancies become evident between claimed and actual language proficiency, there may be an integrity issue.
If you are not satisfied as to the applicant’s language proficiency, but there is insufficient evidence to establish fraud or malfeasance in the testing procedures for the case in question and to substantiate a refusal for misrepresentation, inform the applicant of your concerns and, in coordination with the testing agency, provide an opportunity for the applicant to take a second test at the testing agency’s expense and with visa office supervision. If the applicant refuses the third-party language testing option, refuse the application for misrepresentation, given the discrepancy between the test scores and the actual language abilities.
If you have reason to suspect the integrity of the designated language test results, you are responsible for expressing your concerns to the Integrity Risk Management (IRM) branch.
IRM is in regular communication with the designated testing organizations’ head offices, and will follow up on concerns raised by officers that indicate the possibility of widespread or systemic abuse or fraud in the context of language testing.
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