Study Permits and Post-Graduate Work Permits

We help students apply for study permits and post-graduate work authorizations including International Experience Class and Working Holiday visas. If you have received a letter of acceptance from a Canadian school, give us a call.

Castlewell Canadian Immigration Services (CCIS) can assist you with your Canadian Study Permit application. We possess extensive experience in Canadian Study Permit applications and can guide you through the process from beginning to end. We specialize in helping individuals navigate the complex immigration process and we have the knowledge and experience to help you avoid common mistakes and ensure that your application is complete and accurate.

Canada is a popular destination for international students looking to access a world class education in a safe, welcoming and diverse country. To study in Canada, international students must obtain a Canadian study permit.  A study permit is a document that allows international students to study at designated learning institutions (DLIs) in Canada. A DLI is a school approved by a provincial or territorial government to host international students. To obtain a study permit, applicants must first apply and be accepted into a program of study at a DLI. You can check if the school you are applying to is on the DLI list here.

In order to obtain a letter of acceptance from a Canadian University, college or other Designated Learning institution, the prospective student must do the hard work of researching appropriate educational programs for themselves and applying to the educational institutions directly. It is also important to choose a program of study that fits you, your plans, and your goals for the future. This is important because Canadian Study Permit applications require you to submit a Study Plan wherein you are asked to justify your choice of program. In the Study Plan you must address questions such as ‘Why do you wish to study in Canada in the program for which you have been accepted?’, ‘What is your overall educational goal?’; ‘Why are you not pursuing a similar program in your country of residence?’ and How will this program enhance your employment opportunities in your country of residence or citizenship?’. Crafting a strong, comprehensive and coherent Study Plan is extremely important for convincing the Canadian Immigration officer that your plan to study in Canada is genuine, that it fits your overall educational and career goals, and that you will take the knowledge you have gained in Canada and take it back to your home country in order to improve your employment prospects and the society in your home country. The immigration consultants at CCIS are experts at crafting very strong and detailed Study Plans that speaks to the genuiness of the applicant’s education plans and outlines their genuine temporary intent in Canada. We understand the requirements and know what immigration officers are looking for and can help you customize your study plan to fit those requirements and maximize your chances of having a successful study permit application.

Once you have been accepted into a program of study in Canada and have received a Letter of Acceptance (LOA), it is important to apply for a study permit as soon as possible. Study Permit processing times can be long and unpredictable, especially in the summer months before most Canadian institutions start the fall semester in September in Canada. Therefore, it is crucial to apply early in order to avoid having your application delayed, causing you to miss some of the program while you wait for your study permit approval.

Note that Canada has a fast-track study permit application process for applicants residing in the following countries: India, China, The Philippines, Pakistan, Vietnam, Morocco, Senegal, Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Antigua and Barbuda, Costa Rica, Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. If you reside in one of these countries and fulfill a number of additional requirements, it may be possible to receive a study permit approval in approximately 20 days. However, you should not rely on this. Always make sure to apply as soon as possible to avoid undue stress.

Applicants must also provide proof of financial support to ensure that they can support themselves while studying in Canada. This financial support could include proof of a scholarship, bank statements showing sufficient funds, or a letter from a sponsor (typically the applicant’s parents) indicating their willingness to support the student. The applicant must show that they have sufficient funds to cover the first year of tuition, as well as living expenses ($10,000 for a 12-month period) and return transportation to their home country.

Depending on the age and circumstances of the applicant, police records, English language proficiency test results and medical examinations may also need to be included in the application.

If you are approved for a study permit in Canada, you will be issued a Letter of Introduction (LOI). Th LOI is not the study permit, but is instead an approval letter that applicants must present to border officers upon arrival in Canada. The actual study permit will be issued upon arrival in Canada. In addition to the LOI, applicants will be issued a visa, stamped in their passport if they are of a Citizenship that requires a visa to travel to Canada, or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), if they do not require a visa in their passport.

The study permit has certain conditions attached to it, such as the length of time the student is permitted to study in Canada and whether or not they are permitted to work while studying. Most study permits allow students to work up to 20 hours per week during the academic session and full-time during scheduled breaks, such as winter and summer holidays.

The length of time that a study permit is valid can depend on the length of the program of study. For most degree-issuing programs (Bachelors, Masters), the study permit is usually valid for the length of the program of study plus 90 days. In-Canada study permit extension applications can be applied for if necessary.

It is important to always maintain your valid status in Canada and ensure that you check whether you are required to apply for a new study permit due to a change in your status or education program. IRCC states that students are not required obtain a new study permit in order to transfer between educational institutions, study programs, or study levels, but there are some circumstances where a new study permit can be required, so check with us to determine if this applies to your circumstances. In addition, you must always comply with any conditions imposed upon you as a study permit holder, such as restrictions on the nature of work, maximum hours you can work per week, how long you can study, etc.

International graduates must be aware that their study permits become invalid 90 days following their graduation, regardless of the permit’s printed date. Therefore, it’s crucial that graduates inform the IRCC of their current status within this 90-day period; otherwise, they may face the loss of their Canadian status.

Post-Graduate Work Permits

Fortunately, many graduates may qualify for a Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP), which authorizes them to work for any employer throughout Canada for up to three years after their graduation, depending on the length of their program of study. Additionally, obtaining work experience through a PGWP can be beneficial when applying for Canadian permanent residence, particularly through programs such as the Canadian Experience Class and some Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) streams.

To be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) in Canada, you must meet the following requirements:

To obtain a post-graduation work permit, the applicant must currently hold valid temporary status or have left Canada. They must have graduated from an eligible designated learning institution (DLI). They must also submit clear evidence that they meet all of the following criteria:

  • They have completed an academic, vocational or professional training program at an eligible institution in Canada that is at least 8 months in duration leading to a degree, diploma or certificate.
  • They have maintained full-time student status in Canada during each academic session of the program or programs of study they have completed and submitted as part of their post-graduation work permit application. Exceptions can be made in certain circumstances only for certain periods of leave from studies and during the final academic session.
  • They have received a transcript and an official letter from the eligible DLI confirming that they have met the requirements to complete their program of study.

Note: The transcript and official letter must be included in a post-graduation work permit application.

Within 180 days of applying for the post-graduation work permit, applicants must also meet one of the following criteria:

  • They hold a valid study permit.
  • They held a study permit.
  • They were authorized to study in Canada without the requirement to obtain a study permit under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations.

Applicants can receive only 1 post-graduation work permit in their lifetime.

If you meet all of these requirements, you may be eligible to apply for a PGWP, which will allow you to work in Canada for up to three years after you complete your studies. It’s important to note that there may be additional requirements depending on your specific situation, so it is prudent to check the official Canadian government website for more information.

Studying in Canada offers a wide range of benefits to international students. Canada is a multicultural society and international students can experience this diversity firsthand by meeting people from all over the world. The country has a reputation for being safe and welcoming to newcomers. International students can also enjoy the natural beauty of Canada, from the Rocky Mountains to the stunning coastlines.

Canada’s education system is also highly regarded. Canadian universities and colleges are known for their academic excellence and their commitment to research and innovation. International students can choose from a wide range of programs and institutions across the country, including some of the top-ranked universities in the world.

With a study permit, international students can benefit from all that Canada has to offer and pursue their academic and personal goals in a welcoming and supportive environment. However, the process of obtaining a study permit can be a long and complicated one, full of bureaucracy and red tape. This is where hiring the professionals at Castlewell Canadian Immigration Services can make all the difference.

Contact Us

Q. Can my spouse and immediate family accompany me to Canada when I apply for a Study Permit?

Yes. An accompanying spouse may be able to obtain an open work permit, enabling them to work for any Canadian employer, and minor children may be able to study at Canadian elementary and secondary schools.

Q. Can I study in Canada without a Study Permit?

In most cases, it is mandatory for foreign nationals who wish to study in Canada to obtain a study permit. Nonetheless, there exist certain exceptions:
Pre-school, courses of general interest or self-improvement, and audited courses are generally not considered study for the purposes of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and are exempt from the requirement for a study permit. Distance learning scenarios where study is conducted completely remotely with no in-Canada component are also generally exempt from a study permit. Minor children accompanying parents in Canada who are either Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents, or who hold temporary status in Canada as a worker or student are generally permitted to study at the pre-school, primary or secondary level without a study permit. Short-term courses of less than 6 months are also usually exempt.
There are many scenario-specific study permit exemptions available that depend on your unique situation. Contact us in order to determine whether or not your scenario requires you to apply for a study permit.

Q. Why does a Study Plan require me to show temporary intent? Doesn’t Canada want to retain international students and have them obtain Permanent Residence?

It is important to remember that a Study Permit is by definition a temporary status document. As such, in the study permit application, it is extremely important to evidence your genuine temporary intent for Canada and satisfy an officer that you have the intent and means to return to your home country at the end of your authorized stay. Of course, Canada does wish to retain the highly skilled and educated people who come to Canada as international students. Thera are mechanisms like the post-Graduate work permit (PGWP), which allows students in Canada to transition to a work permit after their program of study ends. In addition, completion of a Canadian degree can greatly help in Canadian Permanent Residence application categories, such as those under Express Entry where Canadian education is weighted very heavily in the points allocation. However, if you outline your intentions to apply for Permanent Residence and stay in Canada forever in your Study Permit application, that can potentially be detrimental to your study permit application because that kind of intention is inappropriate to the type of application you are submitting. Once you are in Canada on your study permit and nearing the end of your program of study, you are free to apply for a PGWP, and then for Permanent Residence, if eligible.