Why study in Canada?
Canada has been declared the country with the best reputation in the world for the third consecutive year. In addition to taking home the overall title, Canada claimed the number one spot in categories ranging from “best place to live” to “best place to study,” while also ranking high for working, visiting and investing. Looking for a legit reason to sew that maple leaf patch on your backpack? Here are 5 top reasons to enroll in one of Canada’s premiere educational institutions as an international student.
Studying in Canada: Choosing a school, college or university
There are many different types of schools and institutions in Canada. For more information and listings of schools, contact the organizations listed below for each institution type, or consult:
Many schools and institutions across the country offer opportunities to study in French.Primary and secondary schoolsThese are schools that teach students up to the grade 12 level. Find out more information about schools from theMinistry of Education of the province in which you would like to study.Post-secondary institutions
(universities and colleges)Post-secondary schools include colleges, universities and technical schools. Each post-secondary school has its own set of rules on how to apply, and decides what level of English or French you will need to be accepted. For more information on post-secondary schools, contact:
Also visit Education In Canada to get detailed profiles, requirements, application and admission information for programs of study at Canadian CEGEPs, colleges and universities.Important: Each province and territory in Canada is responsible for designating schools at the post-secondary level that may enrol international students. The designated learning institution list includes universities, colleges, private career and vocational schools, as well as language schools. If you apply for a study permit application and your letter of acceptance is from an institution that is not designated for international students, your application will be refused.Private career and vocational schoolsProvincial governments do not necessarily regulate private schools. Make sure that the private school you apply to meets provincial education requirements. For more information on private career colleges, contact the National Association of Career Colleges.Language schoolsThere are many schools in Canada that teach English or French as a second language. Provincial governments regulate language programs at public institutions.Most provincial governments do not regulate language programs at private schools. For more information about private language programs, contact: Languages Canada
How to apply to a school, college or university:
Once you have chosen a place to study you will need to apply to that school, college or university. Every school has different rules on how to apply.Make sure you apply early for your course of study. Apply at least six months in advance to primary and secondary schools. University and college students should apply a year before they want to start their studies.Contact the school where you want to study to learn how to apply. They will give you the right application forms and be able to tell you about:
the cost of applying;
rent and how much it will cost to live in Canada;
Fill out the application form for the school or schools of your choice, and submit it according to the instructions provided. If the school admits you as a student, they will send you a letter of acceptance. You need a letter of acceptance in order to apply for a Study Permit.Health insuranceThe Government of Canada does not pay for the medical costs of foreign students. Health coverage for foreign students varies between provinces. Contact the school at which you are applying to receive more information about medical coverage and health insurance.
You need the following documents to apply for a study permit:
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. See a sample standard letter of acceptance (PDF, 73.68 KB).
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.
The following table shows the minimum amounts that you will need.
|Number of persons||All provinces except Quebec||Quebec|
|Single student||Tuition plus $10,000 for a 12-month period (or $833 per month)||Tuition plus $11,000 for a 12-month period (or $917 per month)|
|+ one family member||$4,000 for a 12-month period (or $333 per month)||$5,100 more for a person 18 years of age or older for a 12-month period (or $425 per month)$3,800 more for a person under 18 years of age for a 12-month period (or $317 per month)|
|+ each additional family member||$3,000 for a 12-month period per dependent child of any age (or $255 per month)||$5,125 more for a person 18 years of age or older for a 12-month period (or $427 per month)$1,903 more for a person under 18 years of age for a 12-month period (or $159 per month)|
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.”
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:
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 Global Affairs Canada (GAC), 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 GAC 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.
Top questions about studying in Canada
You may also apply for a post-graduation work permit to continue working in Canada after you graduate from an eligible institution.
You may continue to work off campus until your work permit expires.
You must meet the following conditions:
not work more than 20 hours a week during academic sessions,
maintain full-time status at your institution,
maintain satisfactory academic standing, and remain enrolled in an academic, vocational or professional training program that is six months or longer and that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate.