Attending academic courses in Canada
Individuals who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada require a study permit in order to study in Canada. Study permits are not needed for programs that are six month or less in duration, for courses that are not academic, professional or vocational in nature, for incidental courses included in tourist packages or for children attending nursery schools and kindergartens. In order to qualify for a study permit, individuals must demonstrate to Citizenship and Immigration Canada that they have been accepted by an approved educational institution and that they have sufficient funds to support themselves and any family members for the duration of their study program.
Prospective students must not have criminal records and they may be required to submit police clearance certificates as well as undergo medical examinations to prove that they will not burden Canada’s health system. Once individuals have been accepted as students, they may work on campus without a work permit and can also work off-campus for up to 20 hours per week during the academic term and full-time during scheduled breaks, including summers.
In order to qualify for an off-campus work permit, the student must be studying full time (defined as 15 hours of classroom instruction per week) in a publicly funded post-secondary institution that has signed an agreement with their province or territory.
Can my family join me in Canada while I am a student?
Immediate family members of students such as spouses, common law partners, and dependant children (generally up to 19 years of age) can accompany the student to Canada for the duration of the study permit. Spouses may apply for their own work or study permits while they are in Canada and children may apply for their own study permits as long as the family can demonstrate sufficient funds to support themselves while in Canada, as well as ties to their country of origin.
Click on the links on the right hand column learn more about temporary visas.