Study Permit

Determine your eligibility – Study in Canada

In most cases, you must obtain a study permit if you want to study in Canada.

To be eligible to study in Canada

You must have been accepted by a designated learning institution in Canada.

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 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.


In some cases, 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.

Foreign representatives to Canada

If you are a family member or staff member of a foreign representative to Canada accredited by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (DFATD), 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 DFATD to find out whether you need a study permit.

Members 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.

Foreign nationals who are Registered Indians 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.

Get the right documents – Study in Canada

Study and work permit holders from visa-exempt countries who received their permit on or before July 31, 2015 will have to get an eTA as of March 15, 2016 to return to Canada. Applicants who get their study or work permit on or after August 1, 2015 will automatically be issued an eTA along with their permit.

You need the following documents to apply for a study permit:

* Proof of acceptance
* Proof of identity
* Proof of financial support
* Letter of explanation

In addition to these documents, you may have to provide other information when you apply for a study permit. Check the visa office instructions for your country or region for local requirements.

If you are not a citizen of the country where you submit your application, you may have to provide proof of your present immigration status in the country where you apply.

If the government that issued your passport or travel document requires a re-entry permit, you must get one before you apply for a Canadian visa. Other documents may also be required.

1. Proof of acceptance

If you plan to attend any school (primary or secondary), college, university or other educational institution in Canada, the school must complete and send you a letter of acceptance. You must include the original letter with your study permit application.

2. Proof of identity

You must provide:

* A valid passport or travel document for you and each accompanying family member. The passport or travel document must allow you to return to the country that issued it. Citizens of the United States do not need a passport. However, you must carry proper identification that proves your citizenship or permanent residence.
* Two recent passport-size photos of you and each accompanying family member. The name and date of birth of the person should be written on the back of each photo.

3. Proof of financial support

You must prove that you can support yourself and the family members who accompany you while you are in Canada. You can prove that you have sufficient funds to support yourself in Canada by showing some of the following:

* proof of a Canadian bank account in your name if money has been transferred to Canada;
* proof of a student/education loan from a financial institution;
* your bank statements for the past four months;
* a bank draft in convertible currency;
* proof of payment of tuition and accommodation fees;
* a letter from the person or institution providing you with money; and
* proof of funding paid from within Canada if you have a scholarship or are in a Canadian-funded educational program.

If there are foreign-exchange control measures in your country, you must provide proof that the exchange control authorities will allow you to export funds for all of your expenses.

4. Letter of explanation

In some cases, you may wish to apply for a study permit even if you do not need one right away. There are benefits to having a study permit, even if you do not require one. If you have a valid study permit, you can:

work part time on campus at the college or university at which you are registered as a full-time student; and
apply to renew your study permit from within Canada, if you decide to continue studying in Canada.

If you decide that you want to continue your studies in another program after you complete your short-term course or program, you must apply through a Canadian visa office outside Canada for a study permit if you do not already have one.

If you are applying for a study permit even though you do not need one, you should include a letter that explains why you are applying. The letter will inform the visa officer that you understand your options. For example, the letter might say:

“Dear Visa Officer,

I would like a study permit for my eight-week English course because I would like to apply to a Canadian-university program after I finish the English course.”

Prepare for arrival — Study

When you arrive in Canada, you will be met by an officer from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) at a point of entry, such as an airport. The CBSA is responsible for border and point of entry activities in Canada.

The documents you need to enter Canada

When you arrive in Canada, a border services officer will greet you. The officer works for the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). The CBSA protects Canada’s borders and points of entry.

The officer will ask to see your passport or travel documents. If you applied for a parent and grandparent super visa, you will have other documents to give to the officer. Make sure that you have them with you and that they are not packed in your luggage. This will speed up your entry into Canada.

Even if you do not need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) or a visa to enter Canada, the officer will ask you a few questions. The officer will make sure that you meet the requirements to enter Canada.

You will not be allowed into Canada if you give false or incomplete information. You must demonstrate to the officer that you are eligible for entry into Canada. You will also have to demonstrate to the officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your approved stay.

Children under 18 should have valid identification with them. The documents a minor child needs to present depend on whether the child is travelling alone or with someone. Find out about the specific requirements for minor children.

The officer will stamp your passport or let you know how long you can stay in Canada. The period is usually six months. In some cases, the officer may limit or extend this period to cover only the planned purpose of your visit. Ask questions if you are not sure about anything.

If you do not obey the conditions of your eTA or visa, we will ask you to leave Canada. Most people asked to leave Canada have the right to a fair hearing to review the decision.

The CBSA officer will ask to see your travel documents when you arrive in Canada. Make sure they are not packed in your luggage, and that you have them with you. This will help speed up your entry to Canada.

You should be ready to show the following documents:

* a valid passport or travel document. Note: If you have an approved eTA, it will be linked to the passport that you used to apply for your study permit.
* the letter of introduction from the visa office that you received when your study permit was approved (this letter contains your permit reference number and the CBSA officer needs this letter to issue your study permit)
* a valid temporary resident visa (if required)
* a copy of the letter of acceptance from the designated learning institution at which you are accepted to study
* proof that you have enough money to support yourself during your stay in Canada and
* letters of reference or any other documents recommended by the visa office where you applied.

Carry these items and all other valuable papers, cash and traveller’s cheques with you at all times. Do not put them in your checked luggage.

You may not be allowed into Canada if any of your documents are missing or if any of the information on your application or letters of reference is incorrect.

Possession of these documents does not guarantee entry. All persons must establish that they meet all the requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations before being authorized to enter or re-enter Canada.

If there are no problems at the point of entry, the officer will let you enter Canada and will issue your study permit. You should:

* check the study permit to make sure your personal information is accurate and
* check the expiry date on your study permit. You must leave Canada by this date.

Disclosure of funds

If you arrive in Canada with more than C$10,000, you must disclose this information to the CBSA officer. If you do not disclose this information, you could be fined or put in prison. These funds could be in the form of:

* cash
* securities in bearer form (for example, stocks, bonds, debentures, treasury bills) or
* negotiable instruments in bearer form, such as bankers’ drafts, cheques, traveller’s cheques or money orders.

Understanding the terms and conditions of your study permit

The conditions listed on your permit tell you:

* the educational level you are permitted to study at;
* that you must remain enrolled at a designated learning institution;
* that you must continue making progress toward completing your program;
* if you are allowed to work in Canada;
* whether you need to report for a medical examination, observation or treatment;
* if your travel within Canada is restricted; and
* when you must leave Canada.

If you wish to change any of the terms and conditions on your study permit, including your level of study, you must submit a completed Application to Change Conditions or Extend Your Stay in Canada.

If you are a post-secondary student with a valid study permit, you do not need to submit an application if you want to change your program of study or the institution where you are studying. You need to notify CIC through your MyCIC account if you are transferring from one designated learning institution to another, though.

It is an offence under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act if you do not comply with the conditions imposed on you when your entry into Canada was authorized, or when your study permit was issued.

You may voluntarily leave Canada, or you may be subject to an inadmissibility determination or hearing. This could lead to your removal from Canada. You will lose your temporary resident status and any permit you have, if you break any of the conditions of your stay.

Leaving and coming back to Canada

If you leave Canada and want to return, you must have:

* a valid passport or travel document,
* a valid study permit if you are returning to study in Canada,
* a valid eTA, if you are from an eTA-required country as of March 15, 2016,
* a valid visitor visa, if you are from a visa-required country (unless you travel solely to the United States or St-Pierre and Miquelon and return to Canada within the validity period of your study permit).

Health insurance

The Government of Canada does not pay for the medical costs of foreign students. Health coverage for foreign students varies among the provinces. Contact the school to which you are applying to receive more information about medical coverage and health insurance.