To apply for a Canada Student Visa (study permit), students must first enroll and be accepted to study at a Canadian educational institution. In addition to the Study Permit, students may need a Temporary Resident Visa and/or and eTA (electronic Travel Authorization), depending on their country of citizenship or residence.
Who can apply for a Canadian Student Visa?
Foreign students who have applied for and been accepted into a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) may apply for a Canada Student Visa in order to come to Canada and complete the specific program for which they have been accepted. You must have received an acceptance letter from the designated institution which you plan to attend before you submit your application for a Canada student visa. Additionally, you must meet the following requirements for a Canada student visa:
You must have been accepted by a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada.
You must prove that you have enough money to pay for your:
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 must be a law-abiding citizen with no criminal record and not be a risk to the security of Canada. You may have to provide a police certificate.
You must be in good health and willing to complete a medical examination, if necessary.
You must satisfy an immigration officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your authorized stay.
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 representatives to Canada:
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.
Extend a Student Visa or Change Conditions
If you want to extend your stay in Canada as a student, you must complete the an application to do so. 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 you study permit.
Restore Status as a student
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 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 is a provincial jurisdiction and varies among provinces. We recommend you contact the school to receive more information regarding the health insurance packages they offer.
Work while you study
Students enrolled in a full-time program may work on-campus or off-campus without a work permit. Certain conditions apply, depending on the location of work, and type of program the student is enrolled.
Bringing Family to Canada
You may bring your spouse, common-law partner, and dependent children to Canada to be with you while you study. Your spouse or common-law partner will receive an Open Work Permit for the duration of your studies. The open work permit will allow your spouse or partner to work for any employer within Canada.
Spouse/Common-law partner Open Work Permit
Spouses/Common-law Partners of International students studying in Canada are eligible to apply for an Open Work Permit which allows them to work for any employer in Canada in any job. The duration of the work permit will be the same as the spouses study permit(visa).
Post-Graduation Work Permit
Once you have graduated from an eligible program at a Canadian post-secondary institution, you may qualify to apply for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program. This program offers graduates a three year open work permit which will allow you to earn valuable work experience. You do not need to have a job offer to get an open work permit.
Please Note: You must apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit no later than 90 days after receiving written confirmation of graduating (a transcript or an official letter) in order to be eligible. You must also make sure you still have status as a student (your study permit did not expire) when you apply.
Additionally, Canada allows foreign students who have completed their studies in Canada and have gained a certain amount of work experience within Canada to apply for immigration to Canada under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC).