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CRS Points Hacks!


Do you know where to find all the hidden points and how to increase your score if you are a little bit short? If not then you should read ahead to find the hidden points but also to understand just where all the points come from. Just because you don't have an LMIA based job offer, doesn't mean there aren't other ways of obtaining the points you need. Find the points!


Express Entry is a points-based system for immigration to Canada. Your score is called a Comprehensive Ranking Score, or CRS score, and this score is measured against a cutoff score to determine if you get an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residency.

The four major categories for which you obtain points towards your final score are: age, language ability (French and/or English), education and work experience. Approximately twice a month there are draws, and anyone with an eligible profile in the Express Entry pool, with a score higher than the designated cutoff, will be provided with an Invitation to Apply for permanent residency. Anyone below will remain in the pool for up to one year. After 1 year you will need to re-

enter your profile.

Although the traditional points come from language, education, work experience and age there are more points available, some for these categories, and some for other categories, and even more for skills transferability points which are derived by combining various high scores in other areas. The key is knowing where these points are and how you can achieve them!


The number 1 way to improve your score is to improve your language score. The difference in points from one band to the next is considerable because you receive separate points for each area of language ability. So for example, if you can increase from a band 6 to a band 7 in your IELTS score you can increase your points by two, from 4 to 6 for each area. That's an increase of 8 points for one band. However, high language scores may also help you gain skills transferability points.


The difference between a Bachelor's and a Master's, or two or more certificates, degrees or diplomas is a lot of points. If you think you have this designation then have your education assessed and get the points.

If you are short a course for a Master's get it done and get the points. A Master's is the highest number of points, even higher than 2 or more degrees, diplomas or certificates.


For some individuals, Canadian experience is the difference between immigration or not. This may be obtained by working in Canada, studying in Canada or having family in Canada. A diploma completed at a Canadian Designated Learning Institute (DLI) can obtain an additional 15 points. Keep in mind that you will also obtain points for the education period.

On top of that, you may be eligible for a Post-Graduate Work Permit and you can use this to gain more points, working in a NOC with a skill type 0, A or B.

If you have an immediate family member in Canada you may be eligible to obtain a further 15 points.


Ideally you would immigrate together with your spouse.However, if your spouse has poor education or language abilities, you are unable to increase your score by adding them and you may in fact lose points. Some couples have to make the choice to travel to Canada separately, with one becoming a permanent resident and then doing a sponsorship application for their spouse.

In some cases, this is worth it in terms of the long-term goal of immigration. If you leave your spouse behind initially, you are assessed as a single application which could just make the difference between getting an ITA and not. Though not the easiest decision, this is something you should think about if you need a few more points.



There are 3 areas to gain points through Skill Transferability factors. These factors come with a Maximum 100 points.

1. Education Points per factor This section has a maximum of 50 points and there are two ways to get them.

a. With good/strong official languages proficiency and a post-secondary degree - 50 points b. With Canadian work experience and a post-secondary degree - 50 points

2. Foreign work experience This section has a maximum of 50 points and there are two ways to get them.

a. With good/strong official languages proficiency (Canadian Language Benchmark, CLB) level 7 or higher) and foreign work experience - 50 points

b. With Canadian work experience and foreign work experience - 50 points

3. Certificate of qualification (for people in trade occupations) This section has a maximum of 50 points

a. With good/strong official languages proficiency and a certificate of qualification - 50 points


Points are awarded for :

  • Brother or sister living in Canada who is a citizen or permanent resident of Canada -15 points

  • Scored NCLC 7 or higher on all four French language skills and scored CLB 4 or lower in English (or didn’t take an English test) - 5 points

  • Scored NCLC 7 or higher on all four French language skills and scored CLB 5 or higher on all four English skills - 30 points

  • Post-secondary education in Canada – credential of one or two years - 15 points

  • Post-secondary education in Canada – credential three years or longer - 30 points

  • Arranged employment – National Occupation Code (NOC) 00 - 200 points

  • Arranged employment – any other NOC 0, A or B - 50 points

  • Provincial or territorial nomination - 600 points

When you calculate your CRS points, don't leave any on the table

Make sure you have the maximum language score you can achieve, complete your education, determine if you should include your spouse or not, contact family in Canada, gain work experience and ensure you have the correct work experience documentation.

When you do this you are giving yourself the best possible chance of achieving your goal of permanent residency in Canada.

For more information please check out our blog "Ask Annie" at or contact us via our site to book a consultation.


About Us

Immigration Station Canada is a dedicated, professional Canadian Immigration firm practicing out of Northumberland County, just east of Toronto, in Canada. We serve clients from Kingston, Belleville, Brighton, Cobourg, Oshawa, the GTA, Guelph, Milton, Stratford and St. Catharines and around the world. Our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant, Anne C. McCaughey (Annie) is an experienced immigration services provider and a fifth-generation Canadian who values the immigration process and the unique individuals who immigrate to Canada to become part of the fabric of this wonderful country. If you would like to submit a question to Ask Annie, use the link located at the top right of the page.

How Can We Help?

We do work permits, study permits, visitor visas, Express Entry, spousal sponsorship, family class sponsorship, and Canadian citizenship with an expertise in Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) applications and Global Talent Stream applications.

Please contact us if you would like assistance with your immigration application or to book an appointment.

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