English Exit Test

Note Information relating to future Exit Tests will be forthcoming as the Ministry of Education updates the colleges. We do not have any future dates at the moment.

Due to the cancellation of the May 13 English Exit Test, the obligation to pass the English Exit Examination to obtain a D.E.C. is lifted for all graduating students of the Fall 2019, Winter 2020 and Summer 2020 semesters for whom that is the only missing requirement to obtain a D.E.C.

The requirement to pass the English Exit Test remains obligatory in all other situations.

For any other information, please email eet@dawsoncollege.qc.ca.

If you are requesting an extra hour because you were educated outside of Quebec in a language other than English, you can send your required documents (Transcript & Diploma from the last education institution you attended prior to coming to Dawson), electronically to eet@dawsoncollege.qc.ca.

If you went to a French cegep prior to coming to Dawson, you may be required to write the French Exit Test. Please contact the Exit Test Coordinator to advise her of your situation.

If you are registered to write an Exit Test and have not accessed your portal recently or do not remember your password, you will need to contact the Computer Help Desk for assistance. Your confirmation letter will be sent to your Omnivox portal and you must print this letter and bring it with you. SAAC students do NOT require a confirmation letter.

All students writing the test must arrive at the college by 8:00 am. The test starts at 8:30 am but you need to present yourself at the room you have been assigned to, pick up your answer sheet at the front of the room and find a seat. The instructions will be read at 8:25 am.

Dawson employees are not responsible for printing your confirmation letter.

SAAC students do NOT need a confirmation letter.

You must bring a blue or black pen, your confirmation letter, and the appropriate ID.

You must not bring a pencil case, coat, calculator, backpack or any food or drink aside from water.

You must not wear a hoodie, hat or earbuds.

Basic Information

All Dawson students must register themselves online to write the Exit Test once they are eligible. There are no automatic registrations.

The Exit Test is always held on a Wednesday and usually during Dawson’s exam period. It is the only exam held between 8:30 am – 1:30 pm of that day so there will never be an exam conflict.

They must bring a printed copy of their confirmation letter (except SAAC students) with them to gain entry to the test along with one of the following pieces of identification.

  • Dawson ID
  • Passport
  • Medicare Card
  • Driver’s License

Any student arriving to the test without one of these authorized pieces of identification WILL NOT be admitted to the test under any circumstances. Any student without a printed copy of their confirmation letter will not be admitted (except SAAC students).

The test starts at 8:30 am. We ask that you arrive at least half an hour early (8:00 am) to find your room, collect your test booklet and listen to the instructions. Any student arriving more than a half an hour late (after 9:00 am) will NOT be admitted under any circumstances.

Students should bring a blue or black pen. Do not use pens with erasable ink, they may fade and cause your writing to be illegible. Do not bring a pencil case.

Each student may bring only three (3) reference books on basic language from the following list:

  • a standard dictionary
  • a bilingual dictionary
  • a grammar book
  • a thesaurus

The College is not obliged to provide these reference materials for you. You can not share a dictionary with your neighbor. You may NOT bring an electronic dictionary, personal notes, course notes, tip sheets, handbooks and/or books on essay writing and presentation. These items are simply NOT ALLOWED. Please verify that the dictionary you intend to use does NOT contain additional material such as essay writing or dictionary of literary devices as you will not be allowed to use it.

Students educated outside Canada

Students that were educated outside of Canada in a language other than English or French prior to coming to Dawson, may be eligible for an extra hour (5 hours instead of 4). Students wishing to apply for the extra hour, must submit to the Exit Test Coordinator a copy of their diploma and transcript (with translation) from the last educational institution they attended prior to coming to Dawson. Please bring a copy to give to the coordinator. She will not make the copy for you. This must be done before the end of the Exit Test registration period. The MESRST (Ministry of Education) will determine the eligibility of each student. If you attended high school in Quebec, you will not be eligible. If you were educated in English or French in another country, you will not be eligible.

Assistance preparing for the Exit Test

If you would like extra help preparing for the English Exit Test, please check out the services offered by the Academic Skills Center using the links below, or drop by to visit them on the second floor of the library.

On-line materials and advice on preparing for the English Exit Test

Information on writing workshops, drop-in sessions, and other services

Results & Post Tests Options

Results are available online at the bottom of your omnivox transcript. The May test results are usually available by the third week of June, the August test results by early-September and the December test results by the third week of January. “RE” means pass (réussi) and “EC” means fail (échec).

Students are informed of the detailed results in a grade report which will indicates the grades earned on each of the three criteria, as well as the outcome, Pass or Fail. You may expect to receive this report in mid-July (May test); mid-September (August Test) and mid-February (December test).

For additional information about the English Exit Test, please visit the Ministry of Education website. If you have written the Exit Test within the last year and would like to obtain a copy of your exam, you can make that request directly to the Ministry online.

The procedures for appealing the grade are explained on the back of the grade report. There is $11.20 fee for a grade review that must be paid with a certified cheque or money order. Print and fill out the following attached form and send it with the fee. Demande_document_service_VA

If you are a graduate and have been accepted to university but did not pass the Exit Test, you must contact the university to advise them of the situation. Dawson can only register you for the next upcoming Exit Test. The universities make their own decisions in respect to your not receiving a DEC due to a missing ministerial requirement.


The Ministerial Examination of College English, commonly referred to as the English Exit Test, is a four-hour examination that takes place twice a year, in May and December, with a make-up test in August. All students completing a program of studies are required to pass the examination in order to obtain a D.E.C. (AEC programs are exempt from this examination).


Students who have successfully completed the three Block A English courses (603-101, 603-102, and 603-103) are eligible to write the examination. However, a student may register if he/she has only 603-103 left, and he/she is currently taking it. Students who have been granted Substitutions (SU) or Equivalencies (EQ) for English 603-101, 603-102, and/or 603-103, based on courses previously taken at college or university, are also eligible to write.

Students are encouraged to write this exam as soon as they are eligible to do so.

603-101, 603-102 and 603-103 completed and passed Eligible
603-101, 603-102 completed and passed, currently taking 603-103 Eligible
603-101, 603-103 completed and passed, currently taking 603-102 Eligible
603-101, 603-102 completed and passed, currently taking 603-BXE Not Eligible
603-101, 603-103 completed and passed, currently taking 603-BXE Not Eligible

You can write the English Exit Test as many times as it takes to pass without fees. You do not have to be registered for courses to register to write the Exit Test. You must be receiving your DEC from Dawson to register for the Exit Test at Dawson. If you are receiving your DEC from another college, you must contact them to be registered to write the test with them.

Exit Test Format

The examination is designed to determine how well students can apply what they have been taught in their English courses. It is based on the Ministerial Objectives and Standards that apply to English courses given in the province. Students have four hours in which to complete the exam. In that time, each student must:

  • read three selections of fiction and non-fiction,
  • choose one of the three selections to write about,
  • organize and draft an essay of at least 750 words in response,
  • revise and edit the essay, and
  • transcribe the final draft of the essay into the exam booklet.

No cell phones, coats or bags of any kind are permitted in the exam room and students are encouraged to leave all such items in their lockers before entering the examination area. While it is possible, with permission, to make necessary washroom visits (a monitor will be stationed in the hallway), it is important to note that any student who leaves the examination area for any other reason will NOT be re-admitted. This means that a student cannot leave the exam room to get food, to make a phone call, to put money into a parking meter, etc.

Evaluation Criteria

The essays are graded by a team of teachers from English departments and by external examiners from across the province. They are graded, on each of the three criteria explained below, on a scale from A (very good) to F (unacceptable). Students pass the exam if they have grades of C or better on each of the three criteria; the grade D is a failing grade.

Comprehension & Insight

  • recognition of a main idea from the selected reading
  • identification of techniques and/or devices employed by the author
  • evidence of critical or analytical interpretation of the selection
  • references that demonstrate understanding of the reading

Organization of Response

  • statement of a thesis about the text
  • structured development of the essay
  • use of detail to support the thesis
  • unified paragraph structure


  • appropriate use of words
  • varied and correct sentence structures
  • correct grammar
  • conventional spelling, punctuation, and usage

The following document can be studied to understand how the Test is graded:

Should the student fail, the exam must be rewritten, and passed, before a DEC can be issued. There is no limit to the number of times a failed exam may be rewritten, but students can only write on the authorized test dates. There is no fee charged for writing, or rewriting the English Exit Test.

If you need more information about the English Exit Test, please contact Wendy Willis by email at eet@dawsoncollege.qc.ca or by phone at 514-931-8731 ext. 3948.

Future Exit Test Dates

The dates for the English Exit Test are scheduled years in advance. There are no other test dates available. The Ministry does not allow any student to write at any other time than these specified dates. Exit tests are always held on a Wednesday at 8:30 am. The next known test dates are:

  • Wednesday, August 12, 2020 (online registration from June 2 – 19, 2020)
  • Wednesday, December 16, 2020 (online registration from October 13 – 30, 2020)
  • Wednesday, May 19, 2021 (online registration from March 15 – 31, 2021)
  • Wednesday, August 11, 2021 (online registration from June 1 – 18, 2021)
  • Wednesday, December 15, 2021 (online registration from October 12 – 29, 2021)
  • Wednesday, May 18, 2022 (online registration from March 14 – 31, 2022)
  • Wednesday, August 10, 2022 (online registration from June 1 – 17, 2022)
  • Wednesday, December 14, 2022 (online registration from October 11 – 31, 2022)



Last Modified: August 18, 2020