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6 Most Common Questions International Students in Canada Ask

Canada gives international students the option to work part-time while studying.

Once you begin to consider studying in Canada, tens of questions will pop up in your head. These questions will depend on factors like your desired course, financial state, location, and university preference.

However, some questions such as those on immigration and financing are quite common to all foreign students. We have therefore made a compilation of the 6 most common questions international students in Canada ask.

This page does not just contain a list of these questions but also provides answers to them.

You will find the answers helpful as you continue in your quest for obtaining education in Canada.

Table of Contents

What are the 6 Most Common Questions International Students in Canada Ask?

Common Questions International Students in Canada Ask?

Q. Do I require IELTS to study in Canada?

Q. Can I also work while studying as an international student in Canada?

Q. How many times can I get a Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) in Canada?

Q. Can I become a permanent resident after studying in Canada?

Q. How does my passport affect my stay in Canada as an international student?

Q. What kinds of schools can I study at in Canada?

Do I Require IELTS to Study in Canada?

This is the top of the list among questions international students who wish to study in Canada ask. English-speaking countries such as the UK, USA, and Australia require students to prove proficiency in the English Language to move in and/or start study. Because of this, many students wonder if they must take IELTS to migrate to, and begin study in Canada.

Proof of proficiency in the English Language is not a requirement to obtain a study permit in Canada, although it is part of the admission requirements in many Canadian schools.

Other kinds of visas and permits might require immigrants to take a language test but not a study permit. Since the primary language of instruction in Canada (excluding Quebec) is English, schools require students to be able to communicate in English. The only way to prove this is by stating that students take a language test like IELTS.

Fortunately, most schools that accept IELTS also accept other kinds of English proficiency tests such as TOEFL, PTE, and CAEL. Some schools also waive English Language tests for students who have had previous education in English-speaking countries.

If you think you don’t want to take IELTS, simply look for a school that does not require you to demonstrate proficiency in the English Language. If you must meet the English proficiency test requirement, look up the various tests your school accepts and go for anyone other than IETLS.

Can I also Work while Studying as an International Student in Canada?

Canada gives international students the option to work part-time while studying.  Usually, you are allowed to work for up to 20 hours per week as a full-time international student. You can also work full-time during terminal breaks. This does not require you to get a work permit and your workspace may be on or off your campus.

Your study permit provides details on whether you are permitted to work in Canada as a student or not. If this detail is missing, you can report to the IRCC and get your permit amended without extra payment. One cogent reason why the detail may be missing is if your program type does not permit you to work in Canada as a student.

If your program includes a co-op or internship term, you need to apply for a co-op work permit. To do this, you must provide a letter from your school that confirms that your program does include a co-op or internship placement.

The work and study option is a wonderful opportunity as you can work for more funds to be able to support yourself in school. You will gain relevant work experience if you find employment in an organization that is very similar to your career path.

You can also decide to stay back and work in Canada after your studies so as to gather enough experience. The permit that allows you to do this is the Post Graduate Work Permit.

How Many Times Can I get a Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) in Canada?

The Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) is an official permit issued by the Canadian Government that allows students who have completed post-secondary education in a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) to stay back and work in Canada. With a PGWP, you can be able to work part-time, full-time, or stay self-employed.

The PGWP is bounded by time and the permit may remain valid for anything from 8 months to 3 years. The Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) use the duration of your program of study in Canada to determine the validity period of your PGWP.

An international student in Canada can only get the Post Graduate Study Permit once with no offer of an extension.

A student can only get an extension if the duration of the program could not be determined as at the time he/she was applying for the permit. If you wish to maximize your stay in Canada using a PGWP, it means you should go for a program that has a duration of two years or more or take two or more programs having a duration of one year each.

You must also understand that the validity period for your PGWP cannot go beyond the expiry date of your passport. Those who study for one year or less in Canada will get a one-year PGWP.

If you still wish to work in Canada after your PGWP has expired, you can apply for the Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP). This is a permit that allows you to continue your work in Canada while your Permanent Residency status is being worked on.

It, therefore, means that you must be willing to remain in Canada as a permanent resident and must have begun an application in that regard to obtaining BOWP in Canada. You should apply for BOWP before your PGWP expires.

Can I become a Permanent Resident after Studying in Canada?

Anyone can apply to become a permanent resident in Canada so far as they meet the IRCC immigration and residency requirements. After your study in Canada, you can apply to become a permanent resident in Canada.

Having stayed in the country for some period of time, you may have an edge in meeting the requirements for the immigration programs over those who have never been in Canada.

A common immigration program students may use to obtain PR in Canada is the Canadian Experience Class (CEC).  This program requires you to have one year of work experience in a skilled occupation within the past three years from when you submitted your application.

You may include the work you did while on a Post Graduate Work Permit as relevant work experience. Many students therefore after their study apply for PGWP, after which they apply for PR using the Canadian Experience Class.

Other programs through which you can readily apply for PR as a student in Canada are the Quebec Experience Class and the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). Do you also know that Canada allows foreigners to apply for study permits and PR at the same time? This process is referred to as ‘dual intent.

How does my Passport Affect my Stay in Canada as an International Student?

Asides from your visa which is your travel document to Canada, you need some form of residence permit or the other to remain in Canada. This could be a study permit, work permit, work and study permit, or an offer of permanent residency.

Only the visitor visa allows you to stay in Canada for six months without any kind of permit. As an international student in Canada, your visa, study permit, and passport all affect your stay in the country. The validity period for your permit cannot extend beyond the validity period of your international passport.

To be on the safe side, ensure your passport still has a long time before expiry (about five years) before you migrate to the country. If you have finished a program in Canada but want to take another and need to extend your study permit, your passport must provide for that. You, therefore, need to renew your passport first so you can get enough extension for your study permit.

All kinds of permit extensions in Canada require you to pay an extension fee. You can save yourself costs by having a passport that allows your permits to be extended for the maximum duration possible.

What Kinds of Schools can I Study at in Canada?

Canada provides you with hundreds of options when it comes to higher institutions of learning. From colleges to polytechnics, institutes, and universities, you will readily find a post-secondary school that fits your career choice. As an international student in Canada, you should not apply to just any kind of school.

The only kinds of post-secondary schools international students in Canada are allowed to study at are Designated Learning Institutions (DLIs).

All Canadian primary and secondary schools are automatically Designated Learning Institutions. This does not apply to higher institutions of learning.

DLIs are determined by the provincial or territorial governments in Canada. There are specific criteria used for determining what post-secondary schools should be DLIs or not so the list is constantly updated. You will find a comprehensive list of Designated Learning Institutions in Canada on this page. Before applying to any school, make sure you have confirmed from the school’s website that international students can submit applications.

If you apply to a school that is not a DLI, you have only wasted your time as well as the money you spent on the application and delivery of transcripts. This is because the DLI number of the school that offered you admission is a requirement when applying for a study permit from the embassy.