Study permit: How to apply

You need to give your biometrics

You now need to give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics) when you apply for a study permit if you are from Europe, the Middle East or Africa.

Find out who needs to give biometrics and how the new application process works.

Get your documents ready

Before you apply for a study permit, you need:

  • an acceptance letter from a designated learning institution (DLI)
  • a valid passport or travel document
  • proof you can support yourself, and any family members who come with you, while you’re in Canada

Find out which documents you need before you apply for a study permit.

How to apply

Generally, you must apply for a study permit before you come to Canada. Some people can apply for a study permit from within Canada. In some cases, you can apply when you arrive in Canada at the port of entry. Make sure you understand which option is available to you.

Apply for a study permit outside Canada

Do you live in China, India, the Philippines or Vietnam? You might be able to get your study permit faster by using the Student Direct Stream.

Note: If you need an electronic travel authorization (eTA) or visa, we will issue it automatically at the same time as your study permit. You don’t need to apply separately or pay another fee.

Apply online

Save time and get case updates online!

  • No courier fees or mail delivery time – we get your application instantly.
  • Avoid processing delays. Incomplete applications are returned to you. Applying online helps ensure your application is complete before you submit it.
  • If we need to ask for more documents, you can quickly submit them online.
  • Get updates on the status of your application directly in your online account.

Ready to get started?

To apply online, you need a scanner or camera to create electronic copies of your documents, and a valid credit or debit card.

Apply on paper

The application package includes an instruction guide and all the forms you need to fill out. Read the Instruction Guide [IMM 5269] to get all the details to apply on paper.

Download the application package.

Select the country/territory you will be applying from to find out where to submit your application. You can choose your country of nationality or the country/territory where you have been legally admitted:

Apply for a study permit within Canada

You can only apply for a study permit within Canada if you’re:

  • a minor child in primary or secondary school
  • an exchange or visiting student
  • a student who has completed a short-term course or study program, which is a condition for being accepted at a DLI
  • someone who holds a temporary resident permit (TRP) valid for at least 6 months, or their family member
  • a spouse or common-law partner (and their family members) being sponsored to immigrate, who are:
    • in Canada, and
    • have applied for permanent residence, if eligible
  • a person with a study permit from a visa office abroad, and the permit was issued before you got to Canada, who wants to keep studying
  • the family member of:
    • athletes on a Canadian-based team
    • media representatives
    • members of the clergy, or
    • military personnel assigned to Canada
  • a family member or private staff member of a foreign representative who is properly accredited (90 days before or after you are no longer authorized to study without a study permit), or
  • a foreign national or their family member with a valid study or work permit, who wants to stay in Canada longer to study

If you’re in Canada and none of the options above describe you, you need to follow the instructions for applying for a study permit from outside Canada.

Remember that you can’t stay in Canada after your passport expires. If you renewed your passport since you entered Canada, you have to submit photocopies of both your new passport and the stamp placed in your old passport when you apply.

Apply online

Save time and get case updates online!

  • No courier fees or mail delivery time – we get your application instantly.
  • Avoid processing delays. Incomplete applications are returned to you. Applying online helps ensure your application is complete before you submit it.
  • If we need to ask for more documents, you can quickly submit them online.
  • Get updates on the status of your application directly in your online account.

Ready to get started?

To apply online, you need a scanner or camera to create electronic copies of your documents, and a valid credit or debit card.

Apply on paper

The application package includes an instruction guide and all the forms you need to fill out. Read the Instruction Guide [IMM 5552] to get all the details to apply on paper. Submit your application to the address listed in the application package.

Download the application package.

Apply for a study permit at the port of entry (POE)

You can apply for a study permit when you enter Canada, if you’re a:

  • citizen of the U.S.
  • permanent resident of the U.S.
  • person who has lawfully been admitted to the U.S. for permanent residence
  • resident of Greenland
  • resident of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon

Find out which documents you will need to apply. Make sure you have them with you at the POE.

Note: In order to apply for a study permit at an air port of entry, a lawful permanent resident of the U.S. travelling to Canada must apply for and obtain an eTA prior to boarding their flight to Canada.

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