Study Permit

A study permit is a legal document that allows a student from a foreign country to study in Canada for a short time. Most international students need a study permit before they can be enrolled successfully in an academic institution.

A Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) might also be required to enter Canada based on your country of residence or citizenship.


An international student intends to study in Canada need to secure a study permit from the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). IRCC issues study permits to qualified students, based on some factors.

For a prospectus student to be qualified to apply for a study permit in Canada, the below factors are required

  • To secure an offer letter from a standard educational institution in Canada accepted by IRCC and the Canadian government.
  • To obtain a police clearance certificate.
  • To carry out the medical exam.
  • You have proof that you will leave the country after the study permit expires or apply for a postgraduate work permit if eligible.
  • You have proof that you have enough funds to cover your tuition fees and living expenses during the duration of the program.

If you are qualified for a study permit, It is recommended to gather all your supporting documents and apply for one as soon as you get your offer letter. Study permit processing time varies depending on the country of application. Study permit applications can be made either via paper or online. Depending on where you are applying from or your nationality, you will be issued a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) or in most cases a Letter of Introduction confirming the approval. This document can be presented at the port of entry in Canada to get your study permit from the immigration officer.

Work as a Student

When you come to Canada as an international student, there are a lot of various means to increase your exposure and gain work experience in the Country’s workplace market. There are many opportunities for you to work depending on different levels you are in your study.

There are various opportunities to work in such as

  • On-Campus: You will be permitted to work on campus for up to 20 hours a week without the need applying for a work permit. Nevertheless, It is mandatory to acquire your Social Insurance Number (SIN) before you can start working for any employer.
  • Off-Campus: As a full-time international student, you are entitled to work part-time about 20 hours a week outside the school campus for any employer of your choice as well as the opportunity to work full-time about 37.5 hours during your semester breaks. You will need an open work permit before you can work off the school campus. It is paramount to note that this work experience, will not be used for future immigration application purposes of any kind.
  • Co-op or Internship: If the type of program of study requires a co-op or an internship, It is possible to apply for a co-op work permit when you are applying for a study permit. You will have to get a letter from your school that confirms all students in your program need to complete work placements to get their degree. Your co-op or internship is 50% or less of the total plan of study
  • Post Graduate Work Permit: The post-graduation work permit allows international students who have graduated from a participating Canadian post-secondary institution to obtain valuable Canadian work experience. You can apply for a postgraduate work permit (PGWP) when you have completed a course of study in Canada. PGWP will allow you to work full-time for a period for any employer willing to employ you. Please note that the duration of the work permit depends on the length of your study. That is, you will get a PGWP of two years for a two years program as well as a PGWP of three-year for a three-year program. Work obtained through the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program may help support your application to become a permanent resident of Canada.
  • Dependent Work Permit: Your spouse is also eligible for an open work permit in Canada if S/he wants to accompany you to Canada.