Study Permit

Study Permit

A study permit is a written authorization issued by an officer allowing foreign nationals to study in Canada. A study permit becomes invalid 90 days after your study program has been completed. Your program is considered complete when you receive a notification of program completion from your school.

Generally, foreign nationals must obtain a study permit in order to study in Canada. However, foreign nationals may be exempted from requiring a study permit in the following situations:

  • Family members or private staff accompanying a foreign representative accredited by Global Affairs Canada; or
  • Members of the armed forces of a country designated for the purposes of the Visiting Forces Act.

Study permit is not required for the following activities

  • attending preschool;
  • completing a distance learning program;
  • following audit courses (where a student is permitted to attend an academic course without obtaining credits);
  • taking courses included in tour packages as a secondary activity for tourists;
  • taking a course which is not academic, professional or vocational in nature that is of general interest and can be completed within the period authorized upon entry to Canada;
  • taking a course or a program of study which is six months or less that can be completed within the period authorized upon entry into Canada.

Eligible to apply for a Study Permit

  • For post-secondary level, an acceptance letter from a Designated Learning Institution must be demonstrated. All primary and secondary institutions in Canada are automatically designated and do not appear on the DLI List.
  • Have intention to leave Canada at the end of studies.
  • Providing satisfactory proof of financial support
  • Provide Police Clearance Certificate.
  • Will not be a risk to the security of Canada;
  • Are in good health (a medical examination may be requested);

Work without Permit

To work in Canada as a student working off-campus, full-time international students can work off-campus without a work permit:

  • up to 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions, and
  • full-time during scheduled breaks, such as the winter and summer holidays or spring break.

To qualify, you must:

  • have a valid study permit,
  • be a full-time student,
  • be enrolled at a designated learning institution at the post-secondary level or, in Quebec, a vocational program at the secondary level, and
  • academic, vocational or professional training program that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate that is at least six months in duration.