Canada Student Visa Application

Canada Student Visa Application

Do you want to study in Canada? We're here to help. This article on Canada student visa covers all you need to know from student permits to entry requirements, costs, visa details and more.

Canada is one of the best study abroad destinations for international students. Thanks to its prestigious universities, high acceptance rates, top-notch infrastructures, cultural diversity and security, Canada continues to attract high numbers of international students yearly.

The most important document you need to study in Canada is a student permit, it serves as your ircc student visa for the duration of your study. However, to move there, you must first get a visitor's visa or Electronic Travel Authorization(eTA).

As welcoming as Canada is to international students, there are a lot of rules and guidelines you must follow. In this article, we will teach you the step by step process to apply for a Canada student visa.

Table of Content

  • Canadian Student Visa

  • What is a Canadian study permit?

  • Canada Study Permit Requirements

  • How to apply for Canada Student Visa

  • Frequently Asked Questions

Related Article: How to get Canada Student Visa in Nigeria


Canada Student Visa

A Canada Student Visa is an official document that allows international students to move to Canada to study. To qualify for a canada visa for f1 students, you may need to apply for a visitors visa or electronic travel authorization(eTA). You also need a study permit. So, to get a student visa, you need to apply for a visitor's visa with a study permit or an eTA with a study permit. A study permit is not the same as a student visa. A student visa allows you to travel to Canada for studies, while a study permit guarantees your stay during your studies.

To apply for a study permit Canada, you need a valid passport and a letter of acceptance from a designated learning institute(DLI).

A designated learning institute is any college, university or post-secondary institution that has been given approval by the provincial government to admit international students to programs in Canada for a limited period of time. 

Designated Learning Institutes play a very important role when applying for a Canadian study permit. Your study permit canada can only be approved after you submit your letter of admission from a recognized DLI. If your study permit expires before you complete your course, you must apply to extend your study permit.

Also, if you wish to stay and work in Canada after your studies, it is important that you choose the right program and institution from the list of approved DLI's. This is because there's a limited number of institutions that will give you eligibility for a Post-Graduate Work Permit(PGWP).

Note: Students who wish to attend colleges or universities in Quebec can only attend DLI's chosen by the Quebec government. They are also expected to get a study permit from the Government of Canada.


What is a Canadian study permit?

The Canadian study permit is a document issued to international students to study in designated learning institutes in Canada.

To apply for a study permit, you must;

  1. be enrolled into a recognized DLI.

  2. Submit proof of Funds- this entails your tuition fees, living expenses for yourself and your dependents, and return tickets to your home country.

  3. Have a clean criminal background - you must prove that you have no criminal record. You might need to provide a police certificate for this.

  4. Be at least 18 year old or older

  5. Have a good medical history. Check here to find out if you require a medical exam.

  6. Have proof that you will return to your home country after completing your studies.

If you meet the criteria listed above, you can check here to confirm that you are eligible to apply for a study permit.


Student Direct stream 

The sds Canada visa is a faster visa processing route for students who live in certain countries. It usually takes about 20 calendar days(or longer) to process most SDS visa Canada applications without ielts canada study visa.

You can apply through the student direct stream if you meet the following pte requirements for Canada student visa;

  1. If you're a legal resident of one of the following countries;
    • Antigua and Barbuda
    • Brazil
    • China
    • Colombia
    • Costa Rica
    • India
    • Morocco
    • Pakistan
    • Peru
    • Philippines
    • Senegal
    • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
    • Trinidad and Tobago
    • Vietnam
  2. You must have an acceptance letter from a designated learning institute.

  3. You must be living outside Canada when you apply

  4. You must submit proof that you have paid the first year's tuition

  5. You must have an attestation of issuance of your Quebec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) from the ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration.(for students planning to study in Quebec).

  6. Medical examination(if required 

  7. Police record(if required)

  8. Official transcripts 

  9. English Language Proficiency examination

Check this: 45 Best Universities In Canada For International Students 2024


Canada Study Permit Requirements 

Valid Passport

Your international passport must be valid throughout the duration of your program. If you're applying online, upload a copy of the information page of your passport from your country of nationality or equivalent identification documents.


Acceptance Letter

Once you are admitted into a DLI in Canada, your school will send you a letter of acceptance. Include the original or an electronic copy(if applicable) with your study visa without ielts.

If you've been conditionally accepted to a course different from your desired program, you may need to take prerequisite courses.

Your study permit will only be valid for the length of the prerequisite courses plus an extra year. After completing the courses, you must apply for an extension of your study permit to begin your main program.


Proof of Finances

This is another important part of your canada spouse visa for students application process. To study in Canada, You must have enough funds to support yourself and family during your stay in Canada.
The funds should cover tuition fees, living and other miscellaneous expenses. 

Below is a list of the different ways you can prove your funds;

  1. A Canadian bank account in your name

  2. A Guaranteed Investment Certificate from a participating Canadian financial institution 

  3. Student or education loans from a bank

  4. A bank account statement with your last 4 months transactions

  5. A bank draft that can be converted into Canadian dollars

  6. Proof that you paid your tuition  and accommodation fee

  7. Canadian scholarship or grants.(a letter from the person or organisation giving you the funds).

The total amount of money in your proof of funds varies depending on where you'll be living. There are two types of fund requirements in Canada for international students. In the 2 tables below, we'll show you the official estimate of the minimum funds needed to support yourself (and dependants coming with you) in Quebec and outside Quebec.

Outside Quebec


 CAN $10,000(per year) 

 CAN $833(per month)

First family member  

 CAN $4,000(per year) 

 CAN $333(per month)

Every additional accompanying family member

CAN $3,000(per year)

CAN $255(per month)

In Quebec

Person(s) coming to Canada 

 Amount of funds needed(per year)

Amount of funds needed(per month)

1 person under the age of 18

CAN $6,569

CAN $547

1 person aged 18 or over

CAN $13,134    

CAN $1,095

2 people aged 18 or over 

 CAN $19,246

 CAN $1,605

2 people aged 18 or over and 1 person under the age of 18  

CAN $21,579

CAN $1,798

2 people aged 18 or over and 2 people under the age of 18

 CAN $23,290

 CAN $1,941


Statement of Purpose 

Your statement of purpose, also known as a letter of explanation is a concise formal letter that helps the visa officer understand you and your goals. It highlights why you want to study in Canada and guarantees that you accept and understand your responsibilities as an international student in Canada.


Quebec Acceptance Letter(if required)

If you want to stay in Quebec for longer than 6 months, you need to apply for an attestation of issuance of your Quebec Acceptance Certificate(QAC) issued by the Government of Quebec. You can reach out to your school for further assistance on how to apply for a QAC.

Check out the documents and process you need to study in Quebec. 


Immigration medical examination 

  1. You may need a medical examination if at least one of these applies to you;

  2. Students staying in Canada for longer than 6 months.

  3. If you recently spent time in certain countries.

  4. You plan to work in organisations where public health must be protected.

  5. You can get your medical exam before or after you submit your application.

Check here for the process of getting a medical examination.


2 passport sized photograph 

You are expected to submit 2 recent passport sized photograph that meet the Canada passport photo requirement


Custodian Declaration Form(for minor study permit canada)

If you are a minor(younger than 17) that needs a Custodian in Canada, you must include the Custodian Declaration Form in your application. It has 2 pages that must be notarized before you submit your study permit application. 

The Custodian in Canada must sign the first page of the form, and the legal guardians in the child's home country must sign the second page who is either a citizen or permanent resident in Canada, responsible for taking care or providing support for the minor.

All documents must be translated into English or French, with certifications that prove that the translations are 100% accurate. Once you have gotten all the required documents, submit your application and pay the application fee.


How to apply for Canada Student Visa 

There are two ways to apply for a study visa: Online or in person at the designated Visa application centre. 

Online Application

To apply online, you will need;

  • A scanner or camera to create electronic copies of your documents 

  • A valid credit or debit card for payment.

Here are the steps to follow to apply for your study permit;

  1. Register online

Before you register, read the instruction guide carefully. This guide will explain the correct way to fill the application form. 

Next, create an account on the official Canadian immigration website. You will use this account to pay your fees, submit your application and check your visa status.

  1. Fill out the application form

Before you can upload your form, you must answer some questions. Your answers help create a personalised document checklist for you.

  1. Pay the required fee 

Your fees will include the biometric fee and processing fee for you and every person included in your application. 

Biometric fees cover the cost of collecting your fingerprints and passport photograph. Find out if you need to pay a biometric fee.

Depending on your situation, you may need to pay third party fees for;

  • medical exams

  • police certificates

  • language testing 

  • other additional services at the visa application centre.(these fees will be paid directly to the third party)

  1. Submit your application 


Offline Application

For an offline application, you need to visit the Canadian embassy or sw1 visa application centre in your country to submit your documents. You can only apply in person for a non sds Canadian study Visa if;

  1. You have a disability that prevents you from applying online  OR

  2. You have a travel or identity document that is issued to non-national residents, refugees or stateless persons.

To apply in person, you must attach a note with your application to inform the visa application centre that you are eligible to apply in person.

After you apply to study in Canada, your application will be reviewed to make sure you submitted all the necessary documents. If you apply correctly you will be given a date and time to go to an interview with a visa officer at the Canadian consulate in your country.

If you weren't able to submit your complete documents with your application, you can submit the missing documents through your official account or the Canadian immigration web form.

You can track your application using the application status tracker and get updates about your application. To create an account, you need just 2 things. They are;

  1. Your unique client identifier(UCI)

UCI is an official document that has either four numbers, a hyphen and four more numbers.(Example: 0000-0000) or two numbers, a hyphen, four numbers and four more numbers.(Example:00-0000-0000).


  1. Your application number

If your study permit application is approved, you will get your study permit either at the port of entry when you arrive in Canada or mailed to you if you are already in Canada.


Cost of the Canada Student Permit

Below is a table showing the canadian student visa cost.

Visa type


Study permit(per student) 

150 CAD

Biometrics fee(per person)

 85 CAD


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I change my school after getting my visa?

Yes, the s1 visa canada allows you to change schools if you meet the requirements of the visa. However, you must notify the Canadian government of your decision if you are a post secondary student changing schools or the conditions stated in your study permit. Notifying the government allows you to apply for a new study permit and begin the application for the new school.

You do not need to notify the government if your study program is 6 months or less.


  1. Can I work after I complete my studies?

With the Canada education visa, you can apply for a Post-Graduate Work Permit(PGWP) after completing your studies. The PGWP allows international students who want to keep working in Canada after completing their studies. The length of which depends on the length of your course.

Eligibility criteria for PGWP 

  • If your study program is less than 8 months, you are not eligible for a PGWP.

  • If your study program is between 8 months and 2 years, you can get a PGWP for the same length as your study program.

  • If your study program is two or more years, you can get a PGWP that is valid for 3 years;

  • If you were enrolled and completed more than one study program, you can get PGWP for up to 3 years.


  1. How long is the Canada study permit valid for?

If your international student visa canada application is approved, your study permit will be valid for the length of your study program plus 90 days.


  1. What is the IELTS requirement for Canada nairaland student visa?

International students must score at least 5.5 in each of the four IELTS for canada student visa bands with a minimum of 6.0 overall.


  1. How do I renew my study permit?

To renew your study permit while in Canada, you must apply online for an extension before your current permit expires.

If your study permit has already expired, you need to restore your status as a student before you extend your study permit. You must apply to restore your status within 90 days of losing it. You can't continue your studies without restoring your status and extending your study permit. 

You may be required to leave Canada if you fail to extend your study permit.


  1. Do I need health insurance to study in Canada?

You must have a health insurance to study in Canada and it must be valid throughout the duration of your study.

You can ask your school for help on how to apply for health insurance.


  1. As an International Student, can I travel out of Canada while studying?

Yes, you are allowed to travel outside Canada during the course of your study. However, your study permit cannot be used as a travel document. Along with your study permit, you must get the best agency for canada student visa and musthave been issued either a US visitor visa from Canada for international student or electronic travel authorization(eTA).

Depending on your nationality, you may only need your passport to travel. It is important you know the correct documents required to travel in and out of Canada to avoid issues during re-entry.

Read more about travelling as an international student in Canada.


  1. Can I work in Canada while studying?

Yes, as an international student, you are allowed to work part-time up to 20 hours a week. During school breaks or holidays, you can work full-time. Note that this only applies to students with valid study permits, enrolled in programs longer than 6 months.


  1. Do I need a study permit for Quebec?

Yes, Quebec requires international studentsb to obtain study permits for programs longer than 6 months. However, firstly,  you need to apply directly to the Quebec government to obtain a Quebec Acceptance Certificate(QAC). This document serves as your immigration papers to study in Quebec. Once your QAC is approved, you can proceed to apply for the Canadian study permit.


  1. What do I do if my school I'm studying at loses its DLI status?

If  your school loses its DLI status, you are permitted to continue studying until your current study permit expires. However, you can only continue studying if you are enrolled at a designated learning institute.



Related Articles:

Share this tip
Subscribe for scholarship alert.
Be among the first to know whenever a new scholarship is going on. Enter your email address and click the Subscribe button ↓
Like our website? Follow us on Facebook