Canada Study Permit

Canada Citizenship Immigration Services - The easier route to your degree

Canada Citizenship Immigration Services

A Canadian study permit enables you to study in Canada’s top notch institutions of higher learning. This permit is required in many cases where foreign nationals enroll to study in Canada. It’s important to note this is not a visa. With the study permit, you will require some type of visa to allow you entry into Canada and have an extended stay. 

Most people who wish to study in Canada opt for a visitor visa with their study permit, as its requirements are easier to fulfill and the fees are lower. This enables them to enter and stay in Canada for 6 consecutive months. Should your study period be longer, you can get another visitor visa to extend your stay or get a visa for a longer stay – depending on what your individual needs and goals are.

The application for the study permit should be made before leaving for Canada, and once your study permit is approved, you can use it in your application for a visitor visa. 

You are allowed to travel outside of Canada during the duration of your study permit, but make sure you can provide proof of your school enrollment upon your return to Canada. 

Eligibility Requirements

  1. Enroll in a DLI learning institution (a learning institution which was designated by its province to enroll foreign nationals). A DLI school acceptance letter will be required. 
  2. Provide proof of sufficient funds for tuition, living expenses for you and any family members joining you in Canada, and return transport for you and any family members who join you. 
  3. Have a clean criminal record. In some cases you may be required to produce a police certificate. 
  4. Be in good health. In some cases a medical exam will be required. 
  5. Provide proof of intent to leave Canada before the expiration date on your study permit. 
Your responsibilities

Unlike other visas and permits, this one has a specific purpose: education. Therefor, this visa comes with specific responsibilities which you are held up to whilst in Canada: 

  1. Make progress towards completing your study program.
  2. Do not disrespect conditions listed on your study permit.
  3. Stop studying if you no longer meet the requirements.
  4. Leave Canada by the time your permit expires.

Conditions which might be specified in your study permit:

  • Whether you’re allowed to work in Canada.
  • Whether you’re allowed to travel within Canada.
  • The date you must stop studying.

These conditions are not in all study permits, but they may appear in some cases. 

Duration of stay

In most cases, a study permit is valid for the duration of your study program plus an extra 90 days. The purpose of the extra time is to allow you to prepare to leave Canada after you have completed your program, or – should you need to – apply for an extended stay.

3. If you finish your studies before your study permit expires

If you finish your studies early, your permit will stop being valid 90 days after you complete your studies, no matter what day is printed on the study permit.

You’ve completed your studies on the date your school first notifies you by completion letter, transcript, degree or diploma.

You must provide proof of the date your school notifies you, or the date you get your degree, diploma or certificate. If you don’t have proof, we’ll use the earliest issue date on the document. We may confirm this date with your school.

If your school requires you to take courses before they accept you into the main program your study permit will be valid for the length of those courses plus 1 year. Once you get accepted into the main program you will need to apply for an extended your stay as a student.

If your courses finish after the expiration date on your permit you will need to apply for an extended stay as a student. Otherwise, you will be forced to stop studying and leave Canada.

If you finish your studies early your permit will expire 90 days after you complete your studies regardless of the expiration date printed on the study permit.

Your studies are considered completed on the date your school first notifies you by completion letter, transcript, degree or diploma.

You are required to provide proof of the date your school notifies you or the date you get your degree, diploma or certificate. Otherwise, the government will use the earliest issue date on the document as the date of completion. The government may check the date directly with your school. 

Do you need a study permit?

Most foreign nationals who wish to study in Canada require a study permit. These are cases when a study permit is not required:

  • For programs that last up to 6 months.
  • For studies that aren’t part of a longer program.
  • If all your studies are completed within 6 months. 

Children don’t need a study permit if they are living in Canada with a parent who has a work permit or a study permit. 

You may want to get a study permit even if you don’t have to have one in order to be able to work during your study period, or in case you will required an extended stay to continue studying. 

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