Canadian Student Visa Requirements for International Students

Canada is one of the renowned countries where students from all ethnicities, backgrounds and races come for higher education. It is one of the most highly educate countries in the world, as statistics show that about 56.27 percent of its residents are educate. For students from underdeveloped or developing countries, studying in Canada is a great incentive as it can provide them several opportunities for professional and academic growth.

The question arises, what are the Canadian student visa requirements for international students? It can be daunting to find authentic information regarding the whole details about the process, but look no more, as we have provided an in-depth guide to help you figure out the requirements for securing a Canadian student visa.

Summarized Guide for Obtaining a Canadian Student Visa As An International Student

Student Visa
Student Visa

In order to study in Canada, international students must obtain a Student Visa. The process of applying for a Student Visa can vary depending on the country of origin, but there are some general requirements that all applicants must meet.

First and foremost, applicants must have been accepted to a Canadian educational institution. They must also demonstrate that they have the financial resources to cover the cost of their tuition, living expenses, and travel to and from Canada. 

In addition, international students must be proficient in English or French, as these are the official languages of Canada. Many students satisfy this requirement by taking the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Finally, applicants must be in good health and have no criminal history. If you meet all of these requirements, you may be eligible for a Student Visa.

Detailed Guide for Obtaining a Canadian Student Visa As An International Student

Student Visa
Student Visa

What Is a Canadian Student Visa?

A Canadian student visa is a travel authorization that allows foreign students to travel to Canada for the purpose of continuing their education. The international students must be enrolled at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in order for their student visa to be valid. Additional documents such as evidence of financial backup, English/French proficiency test scores, medical reports etc. may also be required depending on the country of origin.

A Canadian student visa is valid for the time period of the program or degree that is applying for. For example, if  applying for a 2-years Master degree, the Canadian student visa will be valid for 2 years, in addition to 90 days. These supplementary days are for cases such as extension of the student visa and allowing the student sufficient time to pack up and leave Canada.

Eligibility Criteria for Canadian Student Visa

The eligibility criteria for securing a Canadian Student Visa as an international is as follows:

  1. You need to be accept in a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) and have a valid acceptance letter for evidence. Even if you get accept into a university, if the institute isn’t recognize as a DLI, you will not be consider eligible for a student visa.
  2. You need to gather sufficient funds and show evidence of your financial back-up. This is to prove that you can support yourself and your family members (if they are coming as well). The funds include tuition fees, travel cost, living expenses and arrangement of return transportation.
  3. Medical documents to show that you are in good health.
  4. A clear criminal record to show that you are not a threat to Canada.
  5. A document showing intent to return to the home country. This is because a Canada student visa does not include permanent residence. It only allows you to stay in Canada till your studies are complete.

Required Documents for Canadian Student Visa 

The required documents for obtaining a Canadian student visa includes the following:

  1. Proof of acceptance (by the DLI), identity and financial backup.
  2. A letter of explanation outlining details about your goals in Canada as a student and that you understand your responsibilities as an international student. Responsibilities include that you make progress towards your study program, adhere to any restrictions or requirements included in your study permit, and that you stop studying if you fail to adhere to these responsibilities.
  3. If you wish to study in Quebec for more than 6 months, you would require an additional document called the Quebec Acceptance Certificate (QAC). You may be exempt from requiring the QAC if you wish to study in Quebec for a period of less than 6 months.
  4. English or French proficiency test scores of a recognized test such as IELTS, TOFEL, etc. These tests ensure that during your stay in Canada, you will be able to communicate and won’t experience a language barrier. You may be exempt from giving the proficiency test in case you’re from an English speaking country such as Australia, the USA, UK etc.
  5. Biometric data depending on your age. People aged 17 years old and younger, or 61 years old or older are exempt from the biometric verification requirement. 
  6. Minors who are applying for a Canadian Student Visa must have a Custodian Declaration Form completed by their custodian. The custodian must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident who is at least 18 years old. The form must be sign by the custodian and notarize by a Canadian Notary Public.


While applying for a Canadian student visa, it is natural to feel anxious given the long procedure, but by breaking down the entire process into parts, you’ll have a better perspective of how to plan your time for each step. 

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