Canada attracts thousands of students annually with its highly regarded educational system and institutions. Combined with other factors like a stable political and social environment and a friendly immigration policy, it’s not hard to see what makes Canada so compelling for students worldwide. A report titled International students as a source of labour supply placed the number of first-time study permit holders in 2019 at 250,020.
According to Statista, there were 621,565 study permit holders in 2021. The top source of Canada’s global student population as of December 2021 were:
India – 217,410
China – 105,265
France – 26,630
Iran – 16,900
Vietnam – 16,285
South Korea – 15,805
The Philippines – 15,545
Many international students prefer to work within Canada after graduation. The Canadian government offers pathways and incentives like the Post-graduation Work permit program (PGWPP), allowing international students to obtain open work permits and gain Canadian work experience. A person with Canadian work experience is eligible to apply for permanent residency through the Canadian experience class.
What are the best Canadian Universities?
The ranking is subjective in most cases. Research your choices and try to find your right fit before you think about rankings. What’s right and appeals to you may not be the same for another. Times Higher Education’s (THE) ranking of Canadian Universities in 2022 is:
- University of Toronto, Ontario
- University of British Columbia, British Columbia
- McGill University, Quebec
- McMaster University, Ontario
- University of Montreal, Quebec
- University of Alberta, Alberta
- University of Ottawa, Ontario
How do I apply to a Canadian University?
The application process and processing times vary with each University. Here are some tips for the procedure.
- Contact the departments responsible for education in each province or EduCanada for more information about international students.
- Post-secondary schools (universities, colleges etc.) that can enrol international students are called Designated learning institutions (DLI). You should check the Government of Canada’s DLI list before applying.
- Once your school’s DLI status is confirmed, you can contact your school of choice. They’ll tell you the application costs, tuition fees, health insurance, rent and language tests.
- Be aware of international scholarship opportunities. A list is available at EduCanada.
What is a Study permit?
It is a legal document that allows a foreign national to study at a designated learning institution (DLI) in Canada.
A permit is not a student visa. A Study permit doesn’t grant you entry into Canada- accepted students will be issued a separate visitor visa along with their study permit for entry into Canada.
What are the requirements to be eligible for a study permit?
Before applying for a study permit, you should be fully aware of the eligibility requirements:
- You have to qualify as a fully-vaccinated traveller.
- You should be enrolled in a designated learning institution (DLI)
- You need proof of funds showing you can pay for your tuition fees, living expenses and return transportation.
- You need a police certificate certifying that you don’t have a criminal record.
- You need a medical exam to prove you are in good health.
- You should be able to prove to the immigration officer that you’ll leave Canada at the expiration of your study permit.
What documents are required for this permit?
The IRCC portal lists all the documents that should be submitted along with your study permit application. It includes:
- A letter of acceptance from your DLI.
- A Proof of identity (can be a valid passport or travel document) and two recent passport-size photos.
- Proof of financial support (can be proof of a Canadian bank account, student or education loan, bank statements etc.)
- A letter of explanation that addresses why you want to study in Canada and that you understand your responsibilities as a student.
How do I apply for the Study permit?
You can apply for a Study permit at the IRCC portal.
How much are the fees for a Study permit?
The fees for a Study permit are clearly stated on the IRCC’s portal.
- The Study permit costs $150 per person
- Restoring your status as a student costs $350
What is the Processing time for a Study permit?
The Processing time for a Study Permit is usually 12 weeks if you’re applying from outside Canada.
What happens after you apply for a Study permit?
After you submit your application and pay your fees, the IRCC will send you an instruction letter detailing how and where you can get your biometrics done.
If your application is approved beyond this stage, the IRCC will send you:
- A port of entry letter of introduction
- A visitor visa or an eTA (if you’re from a visa-exempted country)
You do not apply for a separate visitor or student visa.
What is the Student Direct Stream?
The Student Direct Stream is a program that provides faster processing times than a conventional study permit.
To be eligible, you must:
- Be a legal resident of:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Costa Rica
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Trinidad and Tobago
- You need an acceptance letter from your designated learning institution (DLI).
- Live outside Canada at the time of application.
- Have proof of your tuition payment for the first year of study.
- Have a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) of $10,000
- Have a medical exam
- Have a Police certificate
- An IELTS score of 6.0 or higher in reading, writing, speaking and listening OR a Test d’evaluation de francais (TEF) score equal to a CLB 7 in each skill.
The fee for an SDS application is $150, and the Processing time is usually 20 days.
Opportunities after studying in Canada
A Post-graduation work permit (PGWP) is a temporary program that allows international post-graduates to work in Canada. Canadian work experience is vital for any international student who plans to apply for permanent residency. It makes one eligible for the Canadian Experience Class and drastically improves the chances of receiving an Invitation to Apply (ITA).
Applying for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP)
The application for PGWP is online at the IRCC website. All students are allotted 180 days after graduation for applications.
You will be required to submit any of your degree, diploma, official transcript or an official letter confirming that you attended and completed your program.
How much does a PGWP application cost?
The fee for a PGWP application is $155
You are also required to pay an Open Work permit holder fee – $100
Getting a Canadian study permit gives you access to some of the best Universities in the world. Its highly regarded degrees and diplomas will improve your prospects worldwide. Studying in Canada also gives you an edge over other Express Entry program candidates when applying for permanent residency.
We would love to hear about your perspective on the Canadian Study permit. Feel free to share your experiences and guide students looking to embark on the same journey.