CBC skilled worker quiz surprising readers

Many CBC readers are discovering that it wouldn't be so easy to come to Canada as a skilled worker, especially if one  imagines forfeiting some home court advantages.  

Expected changes to Canada's Federal Skilled Worker Program inspired us to create a quiz based on the proposed points grid. New weightings under the six selection factors - education, official languages, work experience, age, arranged employment, and adaptability - will give some applicants a boost while making it tougher for others to have their applications considered. 

For instance, the government plans to increase the number of points one can score for being young, as well as the number of points one can get for proficiency in Canada's official languages. 

For the sake of simplicity, the CBC test assumed that all quiz-takers met the minimum requirements for eligibility and work experience, and had a relevant occupation -- all deal breakers for real applicants who can't say the same. 

Still, despite that short cut, many readers were shocked to discover that Canada might not look at their application if they were on the outside looking in.

  • "Wow - three degrees, work experience and the highest level of English proficiency and I got barely enough points to apply. So now I really am mystified regarding how many people get here with those things. There are an awful lot without language skills and education." - Kathena
  • "73 and born/raised/educated in Canada. I failed." - ROZENCRANTZ_7
  • "Yikes, just in under the wire. 67 it is. And it was only my Canadian spouse that got me in. Hmmmm." - JohnMichaelKane 
  • "378 years our family has been in Canada, I failed too. Bring in my replacement! I guess my last employment task will be to train them. Where's the soup kitchen?" - dogleg
  • Does this mean I have to leave?" - HammerheadHirum

Others fared better, and their reactions ranged from delight and pride to bemusement.

  • "Why should bilingual people get priority? I'm an old fart and I would be welcome. 87 points." - NQuick
  • "We moved to Canada back in 1975 with my wife and 6 month old son, the requirements are the same as back then, my score now if I applied today: 97. I still needed a job that my employer could not fill with a Canadian, so what has changed since then: nothing. I've never been unemployed and have worked all my 64 years, retired for 4." - Kingstonrocks
  • "I Took the test twice, First time thinking as a Canadian, second time thinking like an immigrant, I got 78 both times, seems that the most important thing is having at least one year of University education under your belt." - JohnnyTempest

One user in particular stood out by posting two comments reflecting on the bigger picture and proposing a series of questions.

"Canadians generally do not realize how difficult it is to immigrate. We are not doing anyone any favours if we set the bar too low and cause people to waste huge amounts of time and money becoming failures in a foreign land ... It is emotionally and intellectually more difficult to be a foreigner working in Canada than to be a native born Canadian working in Canada. Immigration is also more expensive financially and emotionally than immigrants think it will be." - GoodN1GHT

"We need to examine why Canada is unable to produce enough of its own skilled trades people when other countries with fewer resources successfully do. Are employers failing to provide apprenticeships or on-the-job training? Do foreign governments fund training in more effective ways? Are we paying people in these trades and professions too little? Is there a social stigma with these jobs? Are these dead-end jobs in Canada where in other countries they are career paths?" - GoodN1GHT

Did you take the quiz and reach at least 67 points?

How did you do on the quiz? Do you think the grid seems fair?

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