The number of foreign students choosing Canada as a study destination is increasing every year as Canada offers top choices for university, relatively low tuition fees, stable political environment and the best living conditions.
As a result, applications for study permits are increasing and so are the processing times for these applications. Therefore, it has become crucial to ensure that your study permit application is submitted completely and without any missing documents.
We wanted to provide you with some key tips we learned through the years in order to ensure you avoid delays in your Study Permit Applications:
1. Updated forms and complete checklist
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)'s application forms are constantly updated. If you started your application a couple of months ago and you decide to complete it today, make sure you have the most up to date form as your application could be returned.
Every country that you are applying from will have a different checklist of documents to submit. Make sure that no information or supporting document is missing from your application.
Visit http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/applications/student.asp to obtain your country specific document checklist.
2. Apply online
Although this cannot be confirmed for everyone, we have seen much faster processing times through applications submitted online. You will be able to check the status of your application online and save on the postage fees.
3. Extending your study permit
If you are looking to extend your studies in Canada and you submitted your extension application after your study permit expired, you will still be considered a temporary resident of Canada until a decision about your application is made. This is known as the "implied status", which legally allows you to continue studying in Canada as long as you continue meeting the conditions of your study permit.
4. Medical exams
Depending on your country of origin, you may need a Medical exam and/or a police clearance certificate in order to obtain a study permit. Although it is not mandatory at the time of submission of the application, you may save on the processing times by including a completed medical exam you submit your application.
The medical examination is required if you have resided or stayed temporarily for six or more consecutive months in a designated country or territory in the year preceding your application.
Find out more on medical exams:
5. Police clearance certificates
Some international students will also need to provide a police clearance certificate in order to obtain a study permit, depending on their country of origin. This is why it is important to check your country-specific document checklist to see if you need to provide a police clearance certificate in your study permit application. Furthermore, you will need to ensure that the police certificate is certified translated in either English or French.
Find out more about police certificates:
6. CAQ for Quebec students
If you plan on studying in the province of Québec, you may need obtain a "Certificat d'Acception du Québec (CAQ)" beforehand. There are prerequisites and exemptions for the CAQ application.
If you meet the prerequisites, you will be issued a CAQ for the validity of your study program. Most importantly, you must study at the level or program that you have declared in your CAQ application. If you intend to change programs during your studies in Quebec, you must apply for a new CAQ.
Lastly, if you are extending your studies in Quebec beyond the validity of your study permit, don't forget to also apply in advance for an extension of your CAQ!