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Study in Canada

Updated: October 26th, 2022

Are you seeking to pursue your studies up in the Great White North?

Well, according to the Center for World University Ranking in 2022, Canada consists of 42 top-ranking universities, with the University of Toronto ranking #1, McGill University ranking #2 and the University of British Columbia ranking #3 on a national scale.

Knowing where to study in Canada is relevant to your career development. The invaluable work experience acquired in the Canadian workforce will boost your resume experience by huge volumes.


Top Canada Universities for International Students

International students can explore various Canada universities that offer scholarships and mentorships to kick-start their journey. Below, we highlight the current top Canada universities:

Memorial University of Newfoundland

  • Tuition fees: $2,150 – $11,460 per year
  • Programs and departments: certificate, diploma, undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate programs in various fields such as environmental studies, chemistry, biology, computer sciences, English, sociology, humanities and much more.

University of Regina

  • Tuition fees: $1,715 – $20,050 per year
  • Programs and departments: Offer undergraduate and postgraduate courses such as arts, business administration, education, media and arts, engineering, science, social science, health sciences and much more.

Royal Roads University

  • Tuition fees: $3,750 – $27,600 per year
  • Programs and departments: Offers graduate and postgraduate courses, while general studies allow students to earn university credits without enrolling in a certificate, diploma and degree program. For undergraduate programs, you can enroll in business administration, environmental sciences, entrepreneurial management and much more. For graduate programs: corporate social innovation, disaster and emergency management, conflict analysis and management, business administration and much more.

University of Saskatchewan

  • Tuition fees: $4,110 – $24,000 per year
  • Programs and departments: Offers certificates, bachelor's and National Diplomas in various programs such as drama, economics, education, electrical engineering, ethics, justice and law and much more.

Athabasca University

  • Tuition fees: $1,625 – $17,250 per year
  • Programs and departments: Offers degree programs in arts, commerce, general studies, human resources, nursing, art and more. The university also offers diplomas and post-baccalaureate certificates.

For a more in-depth breakdown of the Canada universities you can study at, find our list of top Canada universities here.

Additionally, if you are interested in exploring Canada's colleges, you can check out our resource on the top five cheap colleges in Canada that won't break the bank.

Did you know that Canada is currently striving to fill the worker-to-retiree ratio?

The Business Council of Canada (BCC) released a report based on a survey. The report comprises 80 businesses in Canada that explains how they plan to maximize Canada's immigration programs when hiring foreign workers in Canada.

Furthermore, the report highlights that two-thirds of companies seek out global talent abroad through Canada's immigration programs, while the remaining third hire foreign workers who are already in Canada.

That being said, it is evidence that Canada places immense value on talented individuals that will contribute to the Canadian economy, so much so that it has created flexible graduate programs that enable students to gain permanent residency.

Suppose you are an international student wanting to live and work in Canada; you may be interested in our resources that explain the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)requirements for Canadian permanent residency.

Apply to Your Chosen Canada University

As you can see, there is a wealth of Canada universities to choose from, giving students loads of options. However, suppose you are looking to live and work in Canada after you have completed your studies. In that case, it's important to check if your DLI meets the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP), as different DLIs will be subject to different criteria.

Do I Need a Study Permit?

Most foreign nationals need a study permit to study in Canada. Perhaps certain situations or circumstances may exempt students from a study permit, but most of the time, a study permit is required.

International students must apply for their study permit before coming to Canada and have a letter of acceptance from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada. The application for your study permit will depend on whether or not you reside inside or outside of Canada.

While your study permit allows you to study in Canada, you can also apply for a visitor visa (temporary resident visa) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to enter Canada. Find out more about a visitor visa here.

To be able to study in Canada, many requirements need to be met. These are as follows:

  • Be enrolled at a Designated Learning Institution(DLI), and you must have a letter of acceptance from the DLI.
  • Have enough money to pay for your tuition fees, living expenses, and return transportation (for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada).
  • Not have a criminal record.
  • Be in good health.
  • Prove that you intend to leave Canada when your study permit expires.

How to Apply for a Canadian Student Visa

So, you've found your ideal Canada university and secured your acceptance letter. At this point, you need to apply for your study permit. We give you a brief outline of the steps involved in applying for a study permit below:

  • Step 1: Check eligibility - ensure that you have secured your acceptance letter and meet the program criteria.
  • Step 2: Get a Letter of acceptance from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI)
  • Step 3: Gather important documents like a passport, proof of finances, letter of explanation, and other required documents.
  • Step 4: Pay the application fees and submit your application.

Kindly note: International students should be thorough in the information they provide on their application as the data must be validated with the necessary supporting documents at a later stage.

Speak to our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs), and we will provide you with the following:

  • Help you find a suitable Designated Learning Institution that fits your budget and study plans. We have a partnership with Evergreen College for better tuition rates;
  • assist you in applying for a PGWP eligible study program;
  • help you write a motivational letter for visa purposes;
  • give you access to your very own student visa portal that allows you to upload documents and ask questions to your student advisor during the study permit application process;
  • optimize your application and apply for your study permit on your behalf; and
  • offer step-by-step guidance during the entire process.

What Happens After Applying for the Canadian Study Permit?

Once you've received an acceptance letter from your chosen Canada university, you must attach your acceptance letter with your Canadian study permit.

Below is a list of the required document for your Canadian Study Permit application:
  • Proof of acceptance - letter of acceptance from your DLI
  • Proof of identity - passport and two passport-sized photos
  • Proof of financial funds - minimum of $10,000 plus additional funds for each family member joining you. You will require proof of student loan, a Canadian bank account in your name, paid tuition and housing fees, proof of funding (person or school), student or education loan, and four months' bank statements.
You may be asked for additional information, such as:
  • a letter of explanation - why you want to study in Canada;
  • a certificat d'acceptation du Québec (CAQ) - if you want to study in Quebec;
  • a custodian declaration (minors only);
  • police certificate;
  • medical exams;
  • language testing;
  • biometrics;
  • and other documents - this may vary in country or region.

Note: We urge students to gather their documents in advance as you only have 30 days to acquire and submit them from the date requested by the immigration officer.

Once your student visa is approved, you will receive a port of entry letter of introduction. You need to show this letter to the border official once you arrive in Canada so you can receive your study permit. Additionally, you will receive an eTA or temporary resident visa that will allow you to enter Canada. Be sure to have a hard copy of all your required supporting documents on hand should the official request it at your port of entry.

Know which Suitable Immigration Programs are Available

If you are keen on studying in Canada, you must know immigration options are available to international students. Let us dive into the immigration pathways below:

Express Entry System

The Express Entry system is an online points-driven system that can get you to Canada sooner than you think - the system is designed to yield quick immigration results.

Below are the three Express Entry programs under one Express Entry umbrella:

  • 1. Canadian Experience Class
  • 2. Federal Skilled Worker Program
  • 3. Federal Skilled Trades Program

Express Entry operates on a Comprehensive Ranking System /Score (CRS), and potential students will be selected from the Express Entry pool based on their accumulated points. You can find more information on how to increase your CRS score here.

Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

The PNP is a province-driven program that targets skilled workers, and it is ideal for those who want to work within a specific province and have the right skill set that the province lack. In turn, Canadian employers often use this program to hire skilled foreign workers who can add value to the Canadian economy and fill the labour shortage in the province.

Skilled workers may have to obtain aLabour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from the Canadian employee. A positive LMIA would show that your employee is authorized to hire a skilled foreign worker.

Permanent Residence in Canada: The Application Process

While some steps may be subject to the individual's circumstances, province and program criteria, the steps below are pretty much standard when making the application. All immigration programs will require you to follow these steps if you are applying for permanent residence in Canada:

  • Step 1: Check if you meet the program criteria (and the job requirements) - you can do this with our eligibility assessment.
  • Step 2: Check your Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) Score - under the Express Entry system or other points-driven programs
  • Step 3: Gather your documents, which we will conveniently communicate to you in concise emails
  • Step 4: Create your online Express Entry profile - we provide this service, on your behalf.
  • Step 5: Apply to the most suitable program, pay the application fees and we will submit your application

Kindly note: Applicants who have failed to be honest in the information they provide will cause a delay in processing times, and their application will be rejected immediately.

For your convenience, find out more about IRCC processing times and what to expect after you submit your application here.

Need Help With Your Application?

Using a licensed professional to assist you with your application comes with all kinds of perks! You'll have access to your very own student advisor who will help you find the best place to study in Canada and also help you write a motivational letter to help support your college or university application.

You will also be able to submit all your information and supporting documents on our state-of-the-art Visa Profile Builder. This will allow you to track your application, keep in contact with your designated Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC), and make the entire process simpler, quicker, and more convenient. Are you ready to explore the endless opportunities of student life in Canada?


FAQS: What All You Need to Know About Studying in Canada

1. Can I study in Canada without IELTS?

The short answer is yes. You don't necessarily need to take the IELTS test to study in Canada. Most schools in Canada give international students options between a few approved language tests for academic purposes, such as the Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) assessment and the Duolingo English Test.

You could avoid writing an English test if you meet specific exemption requirements. For example, if you completed four or more consecutive years of full-time education in English in a country other than Canada, where English is the principal language.

2. How much will it cost to study in Canada?

According to Statistics Canada, you can expect to pay an average of $29,714 for undergraduate programs and $17,744 for postgraduate programs per year, while MBA programs average about $27,397 annually. Read more here.

3. Is Canada's student visa open?

Yes, Canada is processing student visa applications, and you can apply for your Canadian student visa. However, to travel to Canada, you must follow COVID-19 measures, which include being fully vaccinated, among other criteria.

4. What should I study in Canada to get PR?

A few immigration programs and streams allow international graduates within specific disciplines and graduate levels to apply for permanent residence in Canada. Two such programs are the Master's Graduate Stream of the Ontario Provincial Nominee Program (OINP) and the Student Stream of the Saskatchewan Provincial Nominee Program (SINP).

Another way international graduates become permanent residents is by staying and working in Canada after their studies. That's because Canadian work experience counts towards your immigration points. International graduates can work in Canada by applying for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). Studying at a PGWP-approved college or university is essential to qualify for a PGWP after you graduate.

5. How to study in Canada with scholarships in 2022?

International students who have shown academic excellence may be able to get scholarships to study in Canada in 2022 and beyond. See this list of international students' Canadian scholarships here.

6. What is the cost of a study visa in Canada?

According to the official Canadian government website, a Canadian study visa costs $150 to apply in 2022. Please bear in mind, however, that by making use of a private Immigration Consultant, such as our RCIC, is a paid service, which comes with many perks. So, rates mentioned here, and quoted through the immigration process may, in fact, differ.

7. How can I study in Canada and work?

The good news is that international students are eligible to work while studying in Canada. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced that there will be a temporary lift in the current work hour restrictions placed on international students in Canada. As it stands, international students that are authorized to work off campus are currently allowed to do so for less than 20 hours per week, this number will now grow to 40 hours per week. 

You can also stay and work in Canada after graduating with a Post-Graduation Work Permit. See question four.

8. How much time do I need to reapply for a study permit in Canada?

You should apply to extend your study permit at least 30 days before your current license expires. If your permit has already expired, you have 90 days to restore your status and extend your permit. You will have to pay a $200 fee to restore your status.

9. How long will my visa application take?

On average, processing times for study permits can take around 15 weeks, depending on your nationality and where you are applying; however, there may be a faster option if you qualify for the Student Direct Stream (SDS). For example, if you are from one of the following countries, you may be eligible for the SDS and could receive your permit to study in Canada in as little as 20 calendar days!

Work in Canada as a Student

As an international student, you can study in Canada and work in Canada for a maximum of 20 hours a week. This a great way to gain Canadian experience, extra funds, and the possibility of future employment by a Canadian employer. 

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Canadian Education System

Said to have one of the best education systems in the world, Canada has a lot to offer for your educational future. You have the chance to receive free government education in both primary and secondary institutions if you are either a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. 

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Study Permit Visa Partners

If you are an international student that is not a permanent resident of Canada, you may need a study permit. A study permit will give you the chance to have access to the great Canadian education system, and even work part-time as an international student. 

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Post-Graduate Work Permit

With Canadian educational institutions recognized around the world, you can greatly benefit from Canada's education system as an international student. You have the opportunity to further your education through a variety of programs offered by recognized Canadian institutions. 

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