Guiding principles for alternate methods to second language evaluation tests: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)


On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. In this context, organizations are seeking flexibility in assessing language qualifications for appointment purposes.

To permit flexibility in assessing second language proficiency, pursuant to its authority under ss. 29(3) of the Public Service Employment Act, the Public Service Commission (PSC) of Canada is granting a temporary exception to requirement 12 of the Appointment Policy. Requirement 12 states that proficiency in the second official language must be assessed using second language evaluation tests approved by the PSC.


The method of assessing proficiency in a candidate’s second official language must respect the PSC’s Appointment Policy, except requirement 12, as noted above. The method needs to ensure that:


The assessor(s) must:

Assessment method

Assessment result(s)


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