To apply for a study permit, you need an acceptance letter from a designated learning institution. A designated learning institution is a school approved by a provincial or territorial government to host international students. All primary and secondary schools in Canada are designated learning institutions.
Study permits are only required for courses of study that are intended to last six months or longer. Any course or program that is less than six months, does not require a study permit. After being accepted to a specific course at a DLI, you can submit your application for a study permit. There are a number of requirements that must be met to satisfy a visa or immigration officer.
Canada continues to be one of the world’s most popular destinations for international students. As of 2019, Canada is the most pp The study permit is a document that is issued to foreign nationals who would like to study in Canada. To apply for a study permit, you must first enroll and be accepted to study at a Canadian education institution.
Who can apply for a Study Permit?
- Foreign students who have applied for and been accepted into a Designated Learning Institution (DLI). A DLI is a school approved by a provincial or territorial government to host international students. All primary and secondary schools in Canada are designated learning institutions. You must also meet the following requirements:
- You must also be a law-abiding citizen, with no criminal record, and not a risk to the security of Canada. You may be required to provide a police certificate
- You must be in good health and willing to complete a medical exam if needed.
- You must satisfy an immigration officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your authorized stay.
- You must prove that you have enough money to pay for your:
- Tuition fees
- Living expenses for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada and
- Return transportation for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada.
- You can prove your funds by providing the following:
- Proof of a Canadian bank account in your name (if you have transferred money to Canada)
- Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) from a participating Canadian financial institution
- Proof of a student or education loan from a bank
- Bank statements for the past 4 months
- Bank draft that can be converted to Canadian dollars
- Proof you have paid tuition and housing fees
- Letter from the person or school giving you money, or
- Proof of funding paid from within Canada, if you have a scholarship or are in a Canadian funded educational program
Minimum funds needed to support yourself as a student (and family members who come with you):
|Persons coming to Canada
|Amount of funds required per year (does not include tuition)
|Amount of funds required per month (additional to the tuition)
|You (the student)
|First family member
|CDN: $ 4,000
|Every additional accompanying family member
|CDN: $ 3,000
- Letter of explanation explaining to the visa officer why you want to study in Canada, and you understand your responsibilities as a student
You do not require a study permit to go to school in Canada if:
- You wish to study in a short-term course or program:
- You do not need a study permit if you plan to take a course or program in Canada that lasts six months or less. You must complete the course or program within the period authorized for your stay in Canada.
- You are a family member of a foreign representative to Canada:
- o If you are a family member or staff member of a foreign representative to Canada accredited by Global Affairs Canada (GAC), you may not need a permit to study in Canada. You should contact your embassy in Canada. Your embassy can contact the Office of Protocol at GAC to find out whether you need a study permit.
- You are a family member of foreign armed forces:
- If you are a member of a foreign armed force under the Visiting Forces Act, you do not need a permit to study in Canada. If your family members, including minor children, want to study in Canada, they must meet the requirements.
- You are a foreign national who is a Registered Indian in Canada:
- If you are a citizen of another country who has Registered Indian status in Canada, you do not need a permit to study in Canada.
If the school you are studying in loses its DLI status while you are studying, you can keep studying until your study permit expires. However, you won’t be able to extend your permit unless you are enrolled at a designated learning institution (DLI).
You should apply for a study permit before you travel to Canada. Your study permit isn’t a travel document. Your permit lets you study in Canada, but you may also need a temporary resident visa (TRV) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to enter Canada. Once you are approved for a study permit, you will receive either a TRV or an eTA, depending which country you are applying from. This document will allow you to enter Canada.
Some of the most common reasons for students getting rejected for a study permit:
- lack of funds
- low scores on English language proficiency tests
- incorrect information provided on applications
- inadequate documents
- not being able to prove you will return to your home country once you graduate
- selecting a study program that does not align with your previous studies, etc.
To increase your chance of success in applying for a study permit:
- Make sure you show a clear, logical progression in studies from previous education to Canadian education being pursued.
Extend your Study Permit or Change Conditions
Check the expiry date on your study permit, and make sure you apply before that date. You should apply for renewal at least 30 days before your current permit expires. If you decide to change programs or school / institution, you must complete an application to change the conditions of your study permit.
Restore your status as a student
If your study permit expires before you get your grades, you have 2 options: You can:
- Apply for a visitor record to stay in Canada longer or
- Leave Canada and apply for a Post Graduate Open Work Permit
You may apply to restore your status as a student within 90 days of losing it. You may only apply if you have continued to meet the requirements under which you were allowed to enter and stay in Canada and you have met all the conditions imposed on your study permit.
After you apply to restore your status, you may stay in Canada until a decision is made on your application, but you are not allowed to study until your status has been restored.
There is no guarantee that your application to restore your status will be accepted. On your application, you must provide full details of all the facts and circumstances that caused you to lose your status.
The government of Canada does not pay for the medical costs of foreign students. Health insurance varies among provinces. To receive more information on health insurance packages, contact your school to see what packages they offer.
Work while you study
If you have a valid study permit, you may work while studying in Canada without a work permit. Spouses/Common-law partners of foreign students can also work in Canada while their spouse is studying. Your spouse can apply for an Open Work Permit which allows them to work in any job without restriction. The duration of the work permit will be the same as your study permit.
Full-time students who are enrolled at an institution may work at that institution’s campus in any job without a work permit. Students may work at more than one campus of an institution, provided they are in the same municipality. Students may be enrolled in any course to be eligible.
The permitted institutions are:
- Community Colleges
- College of General and Professional Teaching
- Publicly Funded trade/technical schools
- Private Institutions authorized by provincial statue to confer degrees
To be eligible to work on-campus, you must hold a valid study permit and be a full-time student
Foreign students may qualify to work off-campus without a work permit. This will allow them to:
- work up to 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions and
- work full-time during scheduled breaks, such as the winter and summer holidays or spring break.
To be eligible to work off campus, you must:
- Hold a valid study permit
- Be studying at designated learning institution
- Remain in satisfactory academic standing
- Be studying in an academic, vocational or professional training program that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate that is at least six months in duration.
- You must stop working on the day you longer meet the eligibility requirements
If your program requires you to work, you must apply for a co-op work permit in addition to your study permit.
You cannot work off campus if:
- You are enrolled in an English as a Second Language or French as a Second Language program;
- You are taking a general interest course or program; and
- You are a visiting or exchange student
Contact us for more information about Studying in Canada or for assistance in applying for a Study permit.