Applying for your Study Permit

What is the Study Permit?

The Canadian study permit is the legal document that allows you to remain in Canada temporarily as a student.

Processing Times

Study permit applications are processed at Canadian embassies and consulates worldwide. Your permit application may be processed at a visa office within your home country or in a neighbouring country.

Processing times differ from country to country. Check the processing time for your country here.

How to Apply

  • Apply on paper at a Visa Application Centre (VAC). A VAC is a third party organization that collects and securely sends your application and passport to the processing embassy or consulate. Applying in person at a VAC may be the best option if you are required to submit biometrics.
  • Apply online through the IRCC website.

Cost

The cost for the study permit application is $150. An additional $85 fee is charged for collecting your biometrics. If you use the services of a VAC, the biometrics fee will be included in the fee charged by the VAC.

Entry Documents

If you require an entry document, such as a temporary resident visa (TRV) or an electronic travel authorization (eTA), to enter Canada, it will be issued to you automatically if your application for a study permit is approved.  There is no need for you to make a separate application.

Documents for submission will vary depending on your country of residence and citizenship. Review the visa office instructions for your country of residence here; once you have selected your country of residence, find the document checklist and visa office instructions PDF (if applicable) and save or print both. Refer to these documents often. Many countries require the visa office instructions checklist to be included with the study permit application.

For most study permit applications, you will be required to submit:

  • Proof of identity: valid passport or travel document
  • Proof of acceptance to uLethbridge: Letter of Acceptance sent by Admissions (after you accept your offer of admission)
  • Application for a Study Permit Made Outside of Canada (IMM1294)
  • Proof of financial support: Check the IRCC website for required amounts
  • Letter of Explanation: a document explaining why you wish to study in Canada and that you understand the regulations & limitations of the study permit

You may also need to submit the following additional documents:

  • Biometrics: digital copies of your fingerprints, retinas and photos
  • Medical Exam: You may arrange a medical exam with an IRCC panel physician and include their report with your study permit application, or apply for the study permit and wait for instruction from the visa officer.
  • Family Information Form (IMM5645)

If your country of application does not have specific requirements outside of those listed above, you may choose to apply online. If your country has specific application requirements (Visa Office Instructions), we encourage you to apply on paper at a Visa Application Centre (VAC). If you are eligible to apply via the Student Direct Stream (SDS), you must submit your study permit application online.

OnlineYou should apply online if there are no visa office instructions listed in the application package for your country of application here (see Gathering Essential Documents for details).  If you are eligible to apply via the Student Direct Stream (SDS), you must submit your study permit application online.

In Person at a VACYou should apply on paper, in person at a VAC if:

  • you need to submit specific documents according to the visa office instructions for your country of application or
  • you need to provide biometrics

At the Port of EntryYou can choose to apply at a Port of Entry if you are an American citizen or permanent resident or a resident of Greenland or St. Pierre et Miquelon.

Due to service disruptions related to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, all study permit applicants are encouraged to apply online. Please see here how COVID-19 is affecting services offered by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Submit your Study Permit Application Online

The online application is ideal for applicants who do not need to submit additional documents. You must apply online if you wish to apply via the Student Direct Stream. If your country of residence has specific visa office instructions, consider applying on paper at a VAC.

Submit your Study Permit Application at the VAC

If your country of residence has additional requirements for a study permit application (as listed in the visa office instructions), we recommend applying on paper at a Visa Application Centre (VAC).

Submit your Study Permit Application at a Port of Entry

This option is only available to citizens and permanent residents of the USA, as well as residents of Greenland and St. Pierre and Miquelon.

 

Request Assistance from an International Student Advisor


This guide has been written by a Regulated International Student Immigration Advisor (RISIA) in accordance with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations.  The information provided is subject to change at any time. While we will endeavor to update this page regularly, please always see the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website for the most current information.