Canada is an awesome country when it comes to studying, work or living for foreign nationals. The world-class education system, apt work conditions, and government policies attract a lot of immigrants towards applying for a Visa for the country. Every year, a number of international students come to Canada for its first-class education policy, diverse culture and so much more. International students who need to study in Canada will need to obtain a Canadian study permit.
The Canadian study permit serves as a student visa for the duration of the foreign student’s stay. International students do not need a Canadian study permit in most cases, such as when studying a course or program that lasts six months or less. But it will be a good idea to apply for one regardless of the course duration. Otherwise, you will need to leave Canada to apply for a study permit through a visa office. If you decide to continue your studies in another program.
However, in this article, we will provide information in detail on everything you need to know about the Canadian study permit, requirements, application guidelines, and more. Moreover, we will also be providing a checklist on the essential things you need to know as an international student to study in Canada.
Why Study in Canada?
Moreover, there are many reasons why over 500,000 international students choose to live and study in Canada every year. However, below are just a few of the reasons:
1. Academic Excellence:
The first on our list is that qualifications from Canadian study courses are highly respected throughout the globe. However, this is due to Canadian universities’ long history of academic excellence. The country has high academic standards which will ensure that you will be earning a high-quality education experience.
Moreover, a degree, diploma, or certificate from a Canadian university Is highly respected throughout the world. Besides, it is often recognized as equivalent to programs in the United States and countries in the commonwealth. Therefore, it will provide introductions and open many doors to an excellent future and career advancement.
Secondly, studying in Canada is affordable. Tuition fees for international students are much lower in many other top study destinations such as the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom. Although, the quality of education and standard of living in Canada are ranked among the highest in the world. However, this is the number one reason most international students choose to study in Canada for their post-secondary education at college or university levels.
3. Diverse/ Multicultural Society:
Canada is known as a multicultural society as it is known to be built by immigrants. The country is open when it comes to accepting foreigners. Moreover, the country does not only attract students, but also skilled workers from different countries around the world that can contribute to the growth of Canada’s economy.
However, with so many of the world’s ethnic groups fully represented in Canada, every new immigrant can feel right at home in Canada. The country’s rich cultural heritage provides the widest choices of ethnic foods and recreational activities.
Furthermore, other reasons are as follows:
- Canada is a bilingual country with English and French as the official languages. Therefore, offers world-class language education opportunities.
- Canadian universities offer an exciting campus lifestyle, as this is an important consideration for many international students.
- Numerous Canadian communities are safe and secure to live and study
- Canadian institutions are innovative and offer an abundance of research opportunities
- Canadian government policy offers many immigration programs for permanent residence after a period of study in Canada
- Moreover, there are scholarship offers available to international students
- Also, the acceptance rate is high for Canadian universities
What is a Canadian Study Permit?
A Canadian study permit serves as a student visa for the duration of the foreign student’s stay. It is an official document issued by the Canadian Immigration authorities that allows foreign nationals to study at designated learning institutions. However, most foreign nationals or international students need a study permit to study in Canada.
Moreover, the Canadian study permit is not a visa. It does not let foreigners enter Canada. It only allows you to stay and study in Canada and it is different from a student visa, which allows you to enter Canada. Therefore, you may need a visitor visa or an electronic travel authorization (eTA). But in most cases, your study permit, and student visa will be tied together.
Furthermore, once you have your Canadian study permit, you can apply to renew it from within Canada if you decide to continue your studies. However, your study permit may allow you to work part-time on campus. If you are enrolled full-time at an accredited Canadian university. You may also be able to work off-campus, work as a co-op or intern as part of your program, stay as a permanent resident or find work in Canada after you graduate.
Things to Know Before Applying for a Canadian Study Permit
However, the Canadian embassy only issue a study permit to applicants they deem genuine and provided the necessary requirements and documents. Some applicants are usually afraid of getting a rejection or denial from the visa authorities during the application process.
Therefore, the information below will help increase your chances of getting a Canadian study permit. The following is a list of reasons which a student’s application for a Canadian study permit may be disqualified. This is to say, you must take care of these issues before you start the application process, otherwise, they will be rejected. However, they are as follows:
The student does not have the letter of acceptance:
This is a document you get upon receiving an admission offer from the institution in which you intend to study at, indicating that your admission application has been accepted. You must first obtain a standardized acceptance letter from an accredited Canadian higher education provider before you are permitted to apply for a study permit. In short, you cannot start a Canadian study permit application without providing this document.
The validity of the student’s passport:
Moreover, the application may be deemed ineligible if the validity of the student’s passport does not cover the entire study program. Therefore, it is important that your passport remains valid throughout your course duration. The passport must also remain valid to allow you to return to your home country.
During the application process, you will be required to provide proof that you have sufficient funds to support yourself and your family members if any, throughout your stay in Canada. Otherwise, your Canadian study permit application will be denied. However, you can find out more about this requirement below in the “How to apply for a Canadian Study Permit” section.
Failure to explain your motive to study in Canada:
Moreover, you will also need to provide a document known as a letter of intent or explanation. You must submit the letter during the application process to the immigration authorities expressing the goals you will achieve by studying in Canada.
Failure to complete medical examination:
You must take a medical test before applying for a study permit after which you will receive a report which you must show the immigration authorities.
However, other causes of study permit application denial include:
- The student has a criminal record or case
- Failure to show proof of intent to return to your home country
You are eligible to apply for another study permit application in case of denial. But it will still be the same outcome if you do not address the objections for the previous application denial.
How to Apply for a Canadian Study Permit
Generally, you must apply for a study permit before you come to Canada. Some people can apply for a study permit from within Canada. In some cases, you can apply when you arrive in Canada at the port of entry. Make sure you understand which option is available to you.
Moreover, you can apply for a Canadian study permit either online or through a paper application. Which can be acquired from the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) official website. Applications through paper usually take about twice as long. Therefore, it is always recommended to check the processing times well prior to the application.
1. Eligibility requirements:
This is the first of the Canadian study permit application. You must first determine if you are eligible to apply. Therefore, you can study in Canada if you:
- Are enrolled at an Immigration and Refugee Council of Canada (IRCC)’s designated learning institution (DLI)
- Prove you have enough money to pay for your:
- tuition fees
- living expenses for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada
- return transportation for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada
- Obey the law, have no criminal record, and get a police clearance certificate (if required)
- Are in good health and get a medical examination
- Prove to an officer that you will leave Canada when your study permit expires
2. Get your documents ready:
Moreover, you should submit the following documents when applying for a Canadian study permit:
- A letter of acceptance from a designated learning institution (DLI) you will be attending in Canada.
- As many of the documents needed for a complete application as possible such as:
- Proof of identity, which includes a valid passport or travel document, two recent passport-size photos
- Proof of financial support. However, you can prove funds with any of the following:
- Proof of a Canadian bank account in your name, if you’ve transferred money to Canada
- Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) from a participating Canadian financial institution
- Proof of a student or education loan from a bank
- Your bank statements for the past 4 months
- A bank draft that can be converted to Canadian dollars
- Proof you paid tuition and housing fees
- A 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
- A letter of explanation. This document will help the visa officer to understand you and your goals. Therefore, it should explain:
- why you want to study in Canada and
- that you understand your responsibilities as a student
- Your study permit will not be finalized until you submit a complete application. Besides, waiting to submit documents will cause delays in the processing. Moreover, you should include a letter of explanation for any documents that are missing due to COVID-19.
3. Canadian study permit application:
However, to apply you will need to get a Canadian student visa application package, either from the CIC official website or by contacting the nearest visa office, or the Canadian embassy/ consulate in your home country.
Moreover, you will need to answer a few questions about yourself on the CIC website in order to get the application package. These questions will determine whether you are eligible to apply online for a Canadian study permit. Including the documents, you will need to provide for the application.
If you are found eligible after providing answers to the questions, you will receive a personal checklist code. The code will be valid for 60 days, and you will be needing it to submit your application online. Therefore, ensure to print out the page containing the code for future reference.
Furthermore, you will have to create a MyCIC account, when you are ready to apply for the Canadian study permit. This is where you will enter your personal checklist code. After that, you will then receive a personal document checklist which will allow you to upload and send your documents to the CIC. You will need access to a printer or scanner to do this. Then, you can submit your complete application to CIC, once you have all the documents ready, including the application form, and necessary fees.
4. After you apply:
However, some applicants may have to attend an interview at the local visa office in their home country. But before that, you will need to submit your fingerprints and photo. After that, the visa authorities will start to process your study permit application.
They will check your application to make sure you have all the necessary documents. The application may be returned without processing, or request for the missing document if it’s incomplete. Then, you may be asked to go to an interview with a Canadian official in your country or send more information.
Moreover, if your application is approved, you will get your study permit at the port of entry when you arrive in Canada or it will be mailed to you if you are already in Canada.
In conclusion, the following are the things you should know when applying for a Canadian study permit:
- A registered learning institute of Canada should accept your candidature.
- You should also prove that you possess enough funds to meet the below expenditure.
- Tuition fees
- Expenses incurred towards a stay of self and family member
- Expenses incurred towards return travel of you and your family member
- You should not have any criminal record
- You must be ready to undergo any medical test
- A Study Permit is an authorized document that is given by the Canadian government
- You must leave the country as soon as your stay validity completes
- Just after 90 days of your study program, your visa expires.
- You will receive a program completion notification from the institute after you complete the course.
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Study permit exemptions
Furthermore, students may not need a study permit in certain cases such as:
- If you choose a short-term study course, you will not need a Study Visa. A short-term study course is that which lasts less than 6 months.
- If you are a foreign armed force member, there is no need for a student visa in Canada for you to study. This is granted under the Visiting foreign forces act of Canada.
- If you are a relative or a family member of any of the staff at the ‘Department of Foreign affairs, trade, and development, Canada’, you will not require a study permit.
- If you get an Indian status registration when you are in Canada, you will not require a study visa to study in Canada.
However, with a Canadian study permit, you can be working while you study in Canada. You can qualify to get a part-time job to work on or off-campus for up to 20 hours during school semesters and full-time during breaks. But to qualify, you must be a full-time student and have a valid study permit.
Moreover, your study permit will be invalid 90 days after you complete your studies in Canada. Therefore, you are going to need a graduation work permit if you want to remain in Canada and seek employment after your studies.