The following information includes definitions used by Northeastern University Canadian campuses to determine whether an international student enrolled in a graduate program at the NU Toronto or Vancouver campus is considered to be a full-time student for Canadian immigration purposes.

Academic Sessions

Semester-Based Programs

For semester-based programs, NU has three semesters per year:

  • Spring Semester: January to April
  • Summer Semester: May to August
  • Fall Semester: September to December

Please see a list of semester-based programs below:

  • Master of Science in Computer Science
  • Master of Science in Computer Science Align
  • Master of Science in Data Analytics Engineering
  • Master of Science in Information Systems
  • Master of Science in Information Design and Data Visualization
  • Master of Science in Bioinformatics
  • Master of Science in Biotechnology


Quarter-Based Programs

For quarter-based programs, NU has four quarters per year:

  • Winter Quarter: January to April
  • Spring Quarter: April to July
  • Summer Quarter: July to August
  • Fall Quarter: September to December


Please see a list of quarter-based programs below:

  • Master of Professional Study in Analytics
  • Master of Science in Regulatory Affairs
  • Master of Science in Project Management
  • Master of Professional Studies in Informatics

Scheduled Breaks

There are three scheduled breaks at NU Canadian campuses, dates may vary by program: 

  1. Spring Break
    • One week in March for semester-based programs
    • One week in April for quarter-based programs 
  2. Summer Break
    • Summer semester for semester-based programs
    • Summer quarter for quarter-based programs 
  3. Winter Break
    • Last two weeks in December
    • First week in January (depending on final exam schedule)  

Definition of Full-Time for Immigration Purposes

Current Students

Students enrolled in graduate programs at Northeastern University are considered to be full-time students for the purpose of Canadian immigration if they are registered in 8 or more credits per academic semester/quarter, except during scheduled breaks. 

During scheduled breaks, students may choose to take the break or have part-time/ full-time course load if courses are available*. 

*Students are advised to verify with their Academic Advisor that they will have enough on-ground courses available in the remainder of the program before choosing to take classes during scheduled break. PGWP eligibility requires the majority of the program to be completed in person, in on-ground courses.  


Students on Co-Op

Students are considered to be full-time for immigration purposes if they are registered with the proper non-credit co-op course during the co-op term, as reflected on their transcript. 


Students with Special Accommodations

Students with reduced course load are considered to be full-time for immigration purposes if they have received official approval from the Disability Resource Center of NU for special accommodations. 


Graduating Students

Students who have completed the final course towards graduation and while awaiting the letter of completion to be available are considered by NU to be full-time for immigration purposes.