Want to apply for a student visa to Canada? Read this!
In the last part, counsellor Suchitra Surve of Global Education Counsel offered advice on studying in Canada. Here, she takes us through the Canadian student visa application process. Illustrations by Uttam Ghosh
So you have finally decided to take up a course at a university in Canada.
If you haven't been to the country yet, you may want to first get acquainted to the student life in Canada.
In Canada, a student visa is termed as 'Study Permit'. An official document is issued by an officer that allows a person who is not a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident to study in Canada.
All overseas students are required to obtain a Student Authorization and Visa before going to Canada for their studies. Students must also meet the requirements of the Canadian Immigration Act and Regulations.
Under normal circumstances, it takes at least two months for visa to be processed. A Canadian student visa is usually required for programmes that are longer than 6 months but if the course is less than six months a Temporary Resident Visa will be required.
You may want to contact the Government of Canada offices or embassies for application of visas.
List of documents required
- An original Passport, valid for at least one year, from the proposed date of entry into Canada.
- Two passport size photographs as per specifications.
- Letter of acceptance from Canadian University/ College or Technical Institute, is required to be carried along with other important documents.
- Original test scores of TOEFL/IELTS taken within last 24 months.
- Original score cards of any standardised tests like GRE/GMAT/SAT will be required along with the Transcripts, Diploma Certificate etc.
- Student must demonstrate that they have sufficient liquid assets to pay the tuition fees, living expenses and travelling cost without engaging in employment in Canada.
- The following documents of the sponsor or applicant will be needed:
- Income tax return papers for the last 2 years.
- Bank Statement (final balance in the account should be a minimum of 6 months old, any large deposits in the account have to be substantiated).
- Bank passbook
- Any other financial documents
- True certified copies of mark sheet and degree certificate showing their previous education and their qualifications supporting their chosen course of study to be carried with their originals.
- Students are advised to carry work experience certificates, if required by the University.
- Scholarships or any financial assistance from any University/College must be presented on official letter stating the full amount of the award, its duration and any governing conditions.
- Student needs to carry the original copy of Educational Loan, if taken any.
- Fee for Canadian Work Permit visa is $ 150 (INR 6,900) and Study Permit is $ 125 (INR 5,750). In addition to visa fee, visa applicants in India, Nepal and Bhutan are required to pay a non-refundable service charge. The visa fee is payable in cash(INR only) or by bank draft favoring "Canadian High Commission".
Note: The Visa Fee is subject to change. Modified fees structure will be mentioned on the official website of the Canadian Embassy.
Additional things to remember
- A medical test will be required for study programme exceeding 6 months.
- You may need to submit a police verification certificate if you are coming to Canada as a tourist, student or temporary worker. For Permanent residence Visa, a police certificate is mandatory.
- Visa and Student Authorization will be issued, if the student is found to be in good health and there are no other concerns with their application. If additional documents are required, intimation will be sent by the visa officer.
- The student may be called for an interview, if required. Students will be informed about the time and place for the interview.
- In India, the Canadian Immigration and Citizenship (CIC) High commission visa offices are located at New Delhi and Chandigarh. One can directly submit the application to these visa offices (or) at any of the VFS centres located at New Delhi, Chandigarh, Jalandhar, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Kolkata.