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Studying in Canada

Studying in Canada

 

A study permit is a document that is issued by the Canadian government.  It allows you to:

  1. be in Canada;
  2. to study, and;
  3. to work on (and sometimes off) the campus where you are enrolled as a full-time student  – see our Working in Canada page for details.
Study permit - New format

Recently issued study permits usually look like this.

 

Who Needs One

A study permit is required for anyone that wants to study in Canada for 6 months or more.  Study permits will only be issued for study at Designated Learning Institutions (DLIs).

Queen’s University is a Designated Learning Institution and its DLI number is: O19376023352

Study permit applications now require a valid DLI number.

Those that will study in Canada for less than 6 months, can do so as a visitor (ie. no study permit is required), but they will need to apply for a study permit if they want to extend their studies.

Exchange students can change their immigration status from visitor to student without leaving Canada if they decide to extend their studies, but most other students must apply outside of Canada.

Citizens of some countries may require a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) to be allowed to enter Canada, even if they do not require a study permit. Additionally, those who require both a study permit and a TRV will automatically be issued a TRV as part of a successful study permit application made outside Canada.

More information about TRVs is available on the Canadian Permits and Visas page of our site.

On-campus work requires a study permit, even if the studies are shorter than 6 months.

 

First (initial) Study Permits
(applications processed outside Canada)

 

When to Apply

A study permit application can take many months to be processed.  It is a good idea to apply as soon as you have your proof of admission to Queen’s.

United-States

Citizens and permanent residents of the United States of America have the option of applying when they enter Canada (processing is done immediately).

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) publishes expected processing times.  To find the expected processing time for your study permit application select “visiting, studying, and working temporarily”, then “study permit”, and then your country of residence.

 

How to Apply

Apply through the Canadian Visa Office serving your country or region of residence. Make sure to follow instructions on Study Permit application from that local office as requirements are very localized.

Canada

If you are already in Canada, please note that only specific groups of people are allowed to apply for study permits inside Canada.  They include those that:

  • have a work permit or study permit, OR;
  • have a visitor status in Canada but are:
    • the spouse/partner of an international student or worker, OR;
    • an exchange student, OR;
    • a visiting student.

See below for details.

 

After Applying

If your application is taking longer than expected (see “When to Apply” above), each Canadian visa office has a link to submit a case-specific enquiry.  Find the link at the page with information about the Canadian Visa Office serving your country or region of residence.

If your application is successful, the visa office will give you a Port of Entry Introduction Letter.  You must present this letter to Canadian immigration officials when you enter Canada.  They will give you your study permit at that time.  See our Arrival in Canada and at Queen’s page for more details.  You are not eligible to study based on the Port of Entry Introduction Letter alone (without the actual Study Permit paper).

If your citizenship requires you to have a Temporary Resident Visa, the visa will be issued with your Port of Entry Introduction Letter.

You should not travel to Canada until you have been issued the Port of Entry Introduction Letter and Temporary Resident Visa (if required).

 

Extending Study Permits
(applications processed inside Canada)

Only specific groups of people are allowed to apply for study permits inside Canada.  They include those that:

  • Are already in Canada, AND;
  • have a work permit or study permit, OR;
  • have a visitor status in Canada but are:
    • the spouse/partner of an international student or worker, OR;
    • an exchange student, OR;
    • a visiting student.

Study permits will only be issued for study at Designated Learning Institutions (DLIs).

Queen’s University is a Designated Learning Institution and its DLI number is: O19376023352

 

Coming from Canadian High School

A study permit for high (secondary) school studies can only be used for high school studies. According to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada, you must apply for a new study permit to begin your studies at Queen’s.

 

Coming from Canadian College or University

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada allows post-secondary students with valid study permits to change schools or programs without applying for a new study permit.

While a new study permit is not required, those who applied for a study permit after June 1, 2014 must notify Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada of the change in schools.

 

How To Apply

It is recommended to apply online. Follow our Guide for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) online application for Study Permit, Work Permit and Visa (PDF)

When To Apply

You must apply before your current study permit expires.  If you submit your application before your current study permit expires then you can stay in Canada while your application is processed.  In this time you have “implied status“.

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada publishes current processing times for temporary residency document applications (this includes study permits) through their processing centre.

 

Application Fees

The study permit application fee is $150 CAN (or local equivalent).

 

 

Temporary Resident Visas

A Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) is a visa that is required by citizens of some countries to come to Canada.   It must be valid on the date that you enter Canada, but it can expire any time after that.

If you successfully apply for a first (initial) study permit through a visa office outside of Canada, a TRV will automatically be issued.

If you already have a study permit but your TRV has expired, or if you do not require a study permit (because you will study for no more than 6 months), please visit our Canadian Visas and Permits page for more information.

 

Need More Help?

 

Support through Queen’s

If you have further questions, after reviewing the information above, advising is available (without an appointment) from the International Student Advisers at the Queen’s University International Centre from Monday to Friday between 11:00 am and 4:00 pm.

 

Support outside of Queen’s

IRCC Help Centre

(frequently asked questions – online)

Call Centre 1-888-242-2100

(for those already in Canada)Canada

Automated telephone service

(available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week) If you have a touch-tone telephone, you can listen to prerecorded information about IRCC programs, and check the status of your application.

Call Centre agents

Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (local time, excluding holidays) Services are available in French and English.

E-mail

(Expect 1 to 2 week response time)

For general questions about the IRCC website, online application system, or an application being processed within Canada.

question@cic.gc.ca

If your question is about a specific application (if not, start with the Help Centre noted above), it is important to provide as much information as possible. This should include:

  • Surname (last name) – Exactly as it appears on the passport or identity document
  • Given name(s) (first name) – Exactly as it appears on the passport or identity document
  • Date of birth (YYYY-MM-DD)
  • Country of birth
  • Complete address (including the postal code). If the residential address is different from the mailing address, please provide both addresses.
  • Telephone number
  • Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number / Client ID number
  • Type of application submitted (Temporary Resident Visa)
  • Approximate date that the application was submitted, and whether it was submitted online or mailed to a specific office.
  • Online application reference number (if applicable)
For specific technical difficulties with the online application system or other aspects of the IRCC website.

web-tech-support@cic.gc.ca

In addition to the information noted above, it is also wise to provide a description of the problem (and screen shots [Mac][Windows]) of:

  • The page you are attempting to access, and
  • The error message you received (if applicable)
For case-specific questions about applications being processed at a Canadian visa office outside of Canada.

Find the case-specific enquiry link at the page with information about the Canadian Visa Office serving your country or region of residence. There you will also find a generic e-mail address for the office.  Do not use both.  Choose which option is best for your question.

For case-specific questions about applications being processed within Canada.

The case-specific enquiry system for applications processed within Canada can be used when processing has taken longer than the currently advertised processing times, or there are important updates to an application.