What is a Study Permit?
A Study Permit provides permission to pursue study in Canada for any program duration of 6 months or more. The Study Permit helps you to maintain your legal status in Canada. It also helps you to apply for a Social Insurance Number and work permits during and after your program of study. It is your responsibility to ensure that your Study Permit is valid for the duration of your program and stay.
When to Apply
The Study Permit process can be time-consuming. It is very important you apply for the permit as soon as you receive the Proof of Acceptance letter. We recommend applying a minimum of 4 months before your program start date.
How to Apply
Students may apply for their Study Permits via an online application portal or via paper applications. It is suggested that you apply via the online portal, if you are able to, as generally, online applications are processed more quickly than paper applications. Average applications are processed within 45-90 days, although the processing time-frame is subject to change at any time. Please check with IRCC directly for further information on processing time-frames.
Student Direct Stream
A student may be eligible for Student Direct Stream where processing time is usually 20 days. For eligibility for Student Direct Stream, the student should be a legal resident living in one of the following countries:
- China, India, Morocco, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Vietnam.
- Student must pay upfront one year of tuition in order to show IRCC a copy of the receipt.
- To learn more about the Student Direct Stream, please visit the IRCC website
Steps to Apply
1 Have all your required forms and documents collected and completed.
2 Sign up for an account with Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
Visit the Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website to sign up for an account.
3 Enter your personal reference code.
A unique code given through Come to Canada, our online eligibility tool.
4 Continue to the application page where you need to upload the completed form(s) and scanned copies of required documents.
Tip: It is usually sufficient to upload whatever the IRCC system asks you to upload. However, it is also recommended that you upload any relevant documents under the “client information” tab.
Please make sure to check the Country Specific Requirements on the CIC website to see if it applies to you.
5 Proceed to the payment page and pay the CDN $150 application fee with a valid credit card.
6 Submit your application
Documents Required for Initial Study Permit
1. Application for Study Permit [IMM 1294] form.
If applying online, the most recent version of this form should be available. If submitting via paper application, please be sure that you download the most current version from the IRCC website. Please note, a signature is not required for online applications, but is required for applications submitted in paper format.
2. Letter of Acceptance from Northeastern University.
The Proof of Acceptance letter along with the admissions documents from Northeastern should be uploaded. If there are any conditions listed in the Acceptance letter please be sure to upload proof that you have met all conditions prior to submitting any immigration application.
3. Explanation Letter.
Recommended, but not required. List the reasons why you have chosen Canada and what you plan to do after you complete your studies. Please also list your study plan and explain how you have met all the conditions listed by Northeastern University.
4. Proof of Financial support
You are required to show that you have funds to cover 1 year of tuition and living expenses. This usually means tuition + $10,000 CAD per year for individuals and an additional $4,000 CAD for each dependent. Use one or a combination of the following:
- Proof of tuition payment + accommodation fees
- Bank statements from the last 4 months. If family members support you, use their bank statements as well as a signed financial support letter stating that they will be supporting you.
- Proof of a student education loan.
- Proof of a scholarship.
- A Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) of $10,000 CAD.
5. Scanned copy of passport.
Include identity page and all other pages with stamps, visas, or markings.
6. RECENT Digital photo.
Must meet following criteria:
- At least 35mm x 45mm
- Full front view of head with tops of shoulders
- The size of the head (chin to crown) must be at least 31mm x 36mm.
- At least 420 x 540 DPI
7. Medical exam, if required
Check if you need it, what to expect, and where to go: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/medical- police/medical-exams/requirements-temporary-residents.html
Find out if you need biometrics and how to complete this process: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/biometrics.asp
If your application is approved, the visa office serving your country of residence/citizenship will issue you a Letter of Introduction. Please read through your Letter of Introduction/Port of Entry letter (POE) closely and carefully. Further instructions related to requirements for a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV), Entry Visa, or eTA will be included in this letter. Please note that it is imperative that you take any next steps outlined in your Letter of Introduction (POE) in a timely manner. Do not book your travel arrangements to Canada until you’ve received your Letter of Introduction.
- If you require a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV or Entry Visa), you will be asked to submit your passport to be stamped with a visa.
- If you require an electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), you don’t have to submit your passport. An eTA will be issued to you automatically. Your eTA number and expiry date will be included in the Letter of Introduction.
Although Canadian immigration regulations do not specify a timeline for when a student can arrive before the program start date, the border services officer may question a student’s intention should they arrive months before the start of the program. The officer could choose to grant a shorter entry period. Therefore, OGS recommends that students arrive no earlier than 30 days before their program start date.
When you travel, make sure to have the following documents in your carry-on bag:
• A valid passport
• Letter of Introduction (POE letter) – contains permit reference number
• A copy of a valid letter of acceptance from your school
• Proof that you have enough money to support yourself during your stay in Canada
• Letters of reference or any other documents
• Either a valid eTA or visitor visa (temporary resident visa)
If you have any questions about applying for your study permit, please email us at OGScanada@northeastern.edu