Kyle T

Would you recommend using WES or ICAS for Express entry ECA?

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Kyle T

Hi all, 

I am busy reading up on reviews of both the services of WES and of ICAS and there seem to be warnings and complaints about both of them. From a South Africans perspective, which of the two would you guys recommend? 

Would like to know some pros and cons of both organisations that South Africans have experienced first hand. 

Am I correct that with WES, the institution can send off your results OR I can do it myself, but with ICAS, this needs to be done by the institution?  I would rather do it myself to ensure that there are no mistakes. Yup, I'm a stress ball..

 

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Ross
22 minutes ago, Kyle T said:

Hi all, 

I am busy reading up on reviews of both the services of WES and of ICAS and there seem to be warnings and complaints about both of them. From a South Africans perspective, which of the two would you guys recommend? 

Would like to know some pros and cons of both organisations that South Africans have experienced first hand. 

Am I correct that with WES, the institution can send off your results OR I can do it myself, but with ICAS, this needs to be done by the institution?  I would rather do it myself to ensure that there are no mistakes. Yup, I'm a stress ball..

 

Hi @Kyle T

I used WES and did not have any issues, used it once for my wife's degrees as well. Took around 20 business days from when they received everything from me to when we received our ECA.

WES required photocopies of our degrees and transcripts to be sent by us (the applicants) and our institutions had to send the transcripts directly to them.

It appears that ICAS requires the same: https://www.icascanada.ca/new/immigration-to-canada.aspx/documents.aspx

I also wanted more control and do everything myself, but unfortunately your institution has to send something as well (i.e your transcripts). I got hold of my university to find out if they can courier my transcripts and how much it cost. I printed the necessary forms, filled them in signed them and took them personally to my university to explain what they needed to do. 

My wife's university is too far from us, so she had to call/e-mail them, but also managed to get it done. The best thing to do is to get the name of someone (via e-mail or a phone call) and then make sure they understand what's required. I do think this is more common than we think however :) 

If you don't mind paying extra. I'd recommend paying the necessary courier fees to send your documents. It's easier to track and less likely to go missing.

I've only used WES so can only recommend them. I did request they post my ECA report as did my wife. Her physical report we did get eventually, mine got lost in the post. However you still get access to an electronic copy. I applied with my electronic copy without any problem (it is identical to the physical copy).

Regards

Ross

 

 

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Kyle T

Hi @Ross 

Thanks so much for the info. Will most likely go with WES, have just been slightly put off as we still havn't received Reference numbers for our application procedure. I am going to try delete my WES account and start from scratch so hopefully that solves the issue. 

Should my WES accounted be created/completed before or after I visit my university? Or does not really matter? Am planning on going through on Monday morning

Edited by Kyle T
Added extra info

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MaryJane

@Kyle T

I think you have to create your WES profile prior to going to your university. There’s a WES form you bring with that the university has to fill, if I remember correctly.

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chayne

We used WES for both my husband and I and posted it ourselves. 

We went to our institutions (UCT and UNISA) and asked for the transcripts to be sealed in an envelope, stamped and signed on the outside. They seemed to know what to do as I’m sure they have had this request several times before.  Then we took those and put them into a larger envelope together with the WES form and copy our transcripts, sealed and marked each envelope with the reference number, so one envelope per person. Couriered the whole lot together to WES.

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Kyle T

Thanks @chayne and @MaryJane for your help. 

Still having issues with WES as I can't get a WES reference number. When completing my profile, it hangs on "Processing " at the step seen in the attached image. 

I can't even use the 'Contact Us' link on the WES website as it requires a reference number, and an email I sent to an alternative address I found bounced back saying that I must use the 'contact us' link on the website.. Rather frustrating..

Any Ideas..?

WES issues.jpg

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chayne

Try a different browser 

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Luis Dos Santos

@Kyle T if you don't mind me asking what degree are you having evaluated?

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Kyle T

@Luis Dos Santos its my Btech: Industrial Design 

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Luis Dos Santos

@Kyle T ok no worries, just asking because LLB's are evaluated differently by WES and IQAS. WES assesses it as a 4 year Bachelors Degree and IQAS assesses it as a first degree needed for professional practice. That simple difference in assessment equates to a difference of around 35 points on you CRS score.

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Kyle T
31 minutes ago, chayne said:

Try a different browser 

Thanks @chayne but have now tried Explorer, Chrome, Firefox and Opera and can't seem to load past the stage indicated in the above image...

Thanks for the info @Luis Dos Santos

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poorguy

I have had good experiences with WES although they initially assessed my honours as 1 year Graduate study! I contested this and they changed it to 1 year post-graduate diploma within 20 days:)

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SunshineGirl
3 hours ago, Kyle T said:

Still having issues with WES as I can't get a WES reference number.

@Kyle T, yep, welcome to WES.  Very happy that the others had great experiences with WES, but from our side, we were quite frustrated with them.  They sat on our docs for a while before loading them as received on their system, are extremely difficult to contact telephonically, take a number of days / weeks to answer email queries (about the our documents that they received & didn't load onto their system) & took longer than the 20 working days to rubber stamp our qualifications.  Truthfully, we were very frustrated.  All this being said, however, am not sure that the alternative is any better.  Sincerely hope that they've pulled up their socks since our experience with them earlier this year.

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LidiaS77

It seems like WES tends to evaluate a Bachelors degree and an Honours degree as two separate degrees in some cases (one 3-year and one 4-year degree) whereas some of the other places might see them both as one 4-year degree only. This will probably cause a significant difference in CRS points. There was some discussion about this if you do a search on the forum.

The manner in which WES receives your transcripts from the institution depends a lot on where you studied as from what I read the processes are quite different. The University of Pretoria for example uses a third-party company called MIE for this specific purpose and contacting and dealing with them was a very easy and efficient process. We didn't need to appear anywhere in person or call anyone, I simply emailed them, said what we needed, paid and they sent the correct documents to WES without any problems. We also received feedback from WES within a reasonable amount of time and they were helpful in answering my queries via email (this was last year, more than a year ago though).

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FaithFUL
18 hours ago, Kyle T said:

Still having issues with WES as I can't get a WES reference number. When completing my profile, it hangs on "Processing " at the step seen in the attached image.

 

I recall only receiving the reference number after I made payment. If you have made payment & still haven't received you reference number then try a difference browser or a different computer to log into your WES account.

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LaraDK

@Kyle T I found WES responded almost immediately when contacted via their Facebook page.

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Kyle T
55 minutes ago, FaithFUL said:

I recall only receiving the reference number after I made payment. If you have made payment & still haven't received you reference number then try a difference browser or a different computer to log into your WES account.

Thanks @FaithFUL, I don't get to the page that tells me the amount to pay or anything like that. I've tried different browsers and different computers with no success. I have tried to contact WES with regards to possibly deleting my account and starting over and am waiting for a response. I am slightly worried that messing with my account by trying to change my email address etc. in order to open a new account, might cause unnecessary issues further down the line. Was unable to get anyone on the phone either..

So.... I've decided to rather just use ICAS for my ECA to play it 'safe'. Planning on registering and paying this evening after a discussion with my partner. Fingers crossed 

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Kyle T

Thanks @LaraDK I don't have Facebook anymore so that's a bit of an issue. I am more than happy to forget about them though and make use of ICAS 

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IamA

I submitted all my docs to WES on 22/09/2017 still have not received my report back. My application has been on hold for like two weeks .Managed to get through to them on the phone last Friday. Status only changed to in progress last night only and that was because i kept on pestering them on Twitter. I would not recommend WES my experience hasnt been great unfortunately.

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Gerhard SaNamCan
20 hours ago, poorguy said:

I have had good experiences with WES although they initially assessed my honours as 1 year Graduate study! I contested this and they changed it to 1 year post-graduate diploma within 20 days:)

FYI  @LiezelJ 

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QueenOfHeartsZA

@kyle I may be wrong but I'm sure they take about 3 months or more. Wes is a month. Rather use wes!!!! 

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Kyle T

@QueenOfHeartsZA thank you so much for this info.. I just checked ICAS website now and they state a 20 week processing period... that is nuts... I have finally managed to sort our WES profiles out and have received both our reference numbers now:D  Sorting out all our documents on Monday morning.  Thanks to everyone for all the help and suggestions 

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