With 21 of the world’s top 500 universities and 32 in the top 1000, Canada welcomes more than 400,000 international students each year. It offers the best study programs worldwide, as well as hosting some of the leading research institutions and academic institutions.
If studying abroad is your plan, Canada should be top of your list. Please read this step-by-step guide in advance to apply for a Study Permit in Canada.
Step 1: Understand the requirements
Achieving entry to a Canadian educational institution requires an understanding of the different requirements of the schools and the courses they offer. Candidates should also carry out a careful analysis of the rules and regulations applicable to the study permit application process. Only recognized schools and approved study periods will be considered.
Ideally, you should start planning your Canadian study permit at least one year in advance. Common requirements for all universities and institutions include an up-to-date passport, English or French language proficiency along with proof of passing prescribed language tests with minimum grades/scores and proof that you can finance your study and the cost of living in the country.
Of course, the requirements may vary between provinces, so this step must be done in a careful and systematic way.
Step 2: Decide your Course and Institution
The first step in choosing an institution is to determine its status as a Designated Learning Institute. Only DLIs can admit foreign students.
You will be asked to choose a specific core course when you apply to study in Canada. The Canadian academic setup is flexible with regard to changing courses, although it is better to compare your options in advance and choose the main one that you are really interested in obtaining.
Step 3: Take the Language Knowledge Test
In order to enter Canada, all international students must demonstrate their skills in English or French. IELTS is the preferred test for English proficiency, and some institutions also accept the Cambridge English: Advanced or TOEFL exam.
For French, you can choose DALF, DELF, or TCF, although the TEF exam is the most common option.
Choose the test, pay the fee, and reserve your dates in advance. Of course, you will have to improve your language skills to ensure that your application is not rejected.
Step 4: Apply to Universities
Now is the time to contact your list of colleges, get your application packets, and send them ahead of time. Having the option of applying to a dozen universities can be advantageous, but you will have to consider the application fee, which ranges from $ 100 to $ 250.
Do not apply randomly. Compare your options, identify your preferred course and institution, and select one or two alternatives for support.
Take care when completing the application form and be sure to provide accurate information supported by documentary evidence. Once this is done, it is time to face the unbearable wait until you receive your acceptance. Once you confirm your interest, the university will send a letter of acceptance, which plays an important role in future procedures.
Step 5: Apply for a Study Permit
Now that you have an institution ready to admit you, it’s time to apply for the Canada Study Permit. You can apply online or visit your local visa application center. Your application must be accompanied by the acceptance letter received in the previous step, your passport, and documentary evidence that you have adequate finances to study in Canada.
If you have submitted an application to an institution in the province of Quebec, you will receive, along with the letter of acceptance, a ‘Certificate of Acceptance of Quebec’ (CAQ). Be sure to include this document in your study permit application.
Step 6: Time of Travel
Once the application has been processed and an interview has been conducted, if necessary, the immigration officer will decide on your application for a study permit. If accepted, it’s time to start planning your trip to Canada.
Your permit will have a start date, which is the date from which the permit takes effect. Please note that you will not be allowed to enter Canada before this date. Plan your trip accordingly.
Step 7: Study Time
The immigration officer will verify your permit and other documents at the port of entry before allowing you to enter Canada. This is the final step of the immigration process and now you can focus on starting your journey as an international student in Canada.
What happens after your studies are completed?
After graduation, the Canada Post-Graduation Work Permit allows students to start their careers here.
Recent changes to the Rapid Entry selection system have made it easier for international students to transition to permanent residence.
There are also multiple provincial immigration streams specifically targeting international students.