In response to COVID-19, Canada has implemented special measures impacting international students. Learn more.
If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and want to study in Canada for a period longer than six months at post-secondary level, you will need a Canada study permit.
Explore this page, as well as our other study in Canada resources, to learn more about the process of coming to Canada to study.
About Canada study permits
What is a Canadian study permit?
A document issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC) to someone who wants to come to Canada to study, or continue ongoing studies in Canada.
What are the requirements for a Canadian study permit?
At the very minimum, you will need to present a letter of acceptance from a designated learning institution (DLI) and minimum funds (see below). Additional documentation depends on your circumstances. The Canadian study visa requirements also includes the payment of student visa fees and the ability to provide proof of funds for your Canadian study permit. More information on proof of funds and general requirements for a study permit in Canada can be found below.
Are there activities for which study permit in Canada is not required?
Generally, a study permit is not required for:
- 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; or
- 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.
In addition, certain family members or private staff accompanying a foreign representative accredited by Global Affairs Canada, as well as members of the armed forces from certain countries, may be able to study for longer than six months without a study permit.
Upon completion of a study program, graduates may be eligible to obtain a post-graduation work permit.
Can family members accompany an applicant to Canada?
An accompanying spouse or common-law partner may be able to obtain an open work permit, and minor children may be able to study at Canadian elementary and secondary schools.
Where to submit your study permit application?
The process for submitting your Canadian study permit application depends on the country from which you’re applying. Consult the Canadian government’s official page to find out your requirements.