As an international student thinking about getting your education abroad, you must have done an extensive research to choose a destination. You definitely came across blogs or websites saying that Canada is one of the best study destinations for many young professionals, and we want to explain why that is true: not only does Canada’s educational institutes offer a wide range of programs that you can choose from, but they also hold the high standards and top international rankings, in addition to boasting some of the lowest tuition fees for English-speaking countries. In addition to that, you will have a great opportunity to strengthen your skills in speaking and writing English, which is the official language in most Canadian provinces, as well as French, which is the second official language in the country.
As you embark on this journey, you must keep in mind that the destination you choose to study depends on many factors, such as the study program you want to join, the quality of life, the healthcare system, and the economic structure of the Country. Canada is a country with some of the most educated minds in the world, which is why many industries have moved to the major parts of the country where skilled workers and affordable resources are plentiful. It is also well known for its great healthcare system, and for the wealth of multicultural people, which will make you feel right at home even if you are on a different continent.
If you are thinking of long-term plans as well, Canada offers many immigration streams to international students who obtained their education in one of the DLI, for example, you can apply for work permits through the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program. Studying in Canada provides an opportunity to test out the Canadian lifestyle and gain an important foothold in this diverse country.
Student Life in Canada
Canada is known for its cultural diversity, friendly people, and tolerant attitudes towards foreigners. Nearly a fifth of Canada’s students are international, so here are some of the basics you may need to know about Canadian life: you will have plenty of opportunities to practice your skills in real work environments.
At every level of higher education in Canada, student life is a huge part of your experience. College and university connect you with friends and colleagues who will remain valuable contacts throughout your career.
Canada is a melting pot of many different cultures, people are polite, and encourage foreigners to retain and share their cultural practices, it is also one of the safest countries on earth.
Canadian universities have various ways to assess the English language proficiency of international students seeking admission. It is possible to study in Canada without IELTS, given that you qualify for the alternative language proficiency requirements specified by your chosen university. Several foreign students from select nationalities are also allowed exemptions from providing English language proficiency scores. Further, Canadian academic institutions also readily accept English language proficiency tests other than IELTS which can you can submit during the admission process.
If you choose to take an English test, it should be one of the following: IELTS, TOEFL, or CELPIP.
- IELTS (International English Language Testing System): This is an international standardized test of English language proficiency for non-native English language speakers, most Canadian institutions accept it, so it is the most preferable test to take if you want to study or immigrate to Canada.
- TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language): is a standardized test to measure the English language ability of non-native speakers wishing to enroll in English-speaking universities.
- CELPIP (Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program): is an English language assessment tool that measures listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills. This test is accepted in immigration cases but not accepted in all studying cases.
In case you choose French to be your first language, you can take TEF or TCF tests to evaluate your knowledge:
- TEF (Test d’ Evaluation de Français): This is an international benchmark test that measures your level of knowledge and skills in French. This test is accepted in study and immigration cases too.
- TCF (Test de Connaissance du Français): is a French language proficiency test for non-native speakers of French that is designed by the France Education International and accredited by the French Ministry of Education to evaluate proficiency in the academic level of French.
The study permit is a document we issue that allows foreign nationals to study at designated learning institutions (DLIs) in Canada. Most foreign nationals need a study permit to study in Canada. Make sure you have all the documents you need before you apply. You should apply before you travel to Canada.
You can study in Canada if you:
- are enrolled at a designated learning institution (DLI)
- If you’re coming from outside Canada to study as an international student, your DLI must be on the list of DLIs with an approved COVID-19 readiness plan.
- prove you have enough funds to pay for:
- your tuition fees
- living expenses for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada and
- return transportation for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada
- obey the law, have no criminal record, and get a police certificate (if required).
- are in good health and get a medical exam (if required).
- prove to an officer that you will leave Canada when your study permit expires.
Post-graduation work permit
You may be eligible for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) if you graduated from a designated learning institution (DLI) and want to stay in Canada temporarily to work.
You can apply for a PGWP if:
- your study permit has been valid within the last 180 days
- you have a valid visitor record
- you submitted an application to extend your study permit before it expired and no decision has been made on your application
- you submitted an application to change your status to visitor before your study permit expired and no decision has been made on your application
- completed a study program at a designated learning institution that was at least 8 months long, and that led to a degree, diploma, or certificate
- maintained full-time status as a student in Canada during each semester of your study program
Note: Work obtained through the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program may help support your application to become a permanent resident of Canada.
Frequently asked questions
Yes, you can study in Canada without IELTS as there are many available alternatives offered by Canadian universities to those who don’t have IELTS scores. These alternatives are:
- Language proficiency exams like TOEFL, PTE, CPE, Cambridge English Exams, etc.
- Many universities offer their own English language course like the Intensive English Language Program (IELP) which you can opt for as an alternative for IELTS in Canada.
- Submit proof that you have studied in an English medium school for at least 4 years as the replacement for English proficiency scores.
- The candidates from an English-speaking country are also exempted from providing IELTS scores in Canada.
To study in Canada without IELTS, the major universities listed below accepted other alternatives:
– University of Winnipeg
– Brock University
– University of Saskatchewan
– Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador
– Cambrian University
– Okanagan College
– Concordia University
– Seneca College, Toronto
– Carleton University
Yes, you may be able to bring your spouse or common-law partner, and dependent children, with you to Canada. They may be eligible for a study or work permit, or a visitor visa. You must submit their applications online when you apply for your study permit.
You should apply for a study permit before coming to Canada. Make sure you have a letter of acceptance from a designated learning institution in Canada before you apply.
You should apply online for a study permit, whether you’re outside of Canada or already in Canada. If you can’t apply online because of a disability or because there’s a problem with the online application, you can apply on paper.
Yes. However, your study permit is not a travel document. It doesn’t give you the right to travel to or enter Canada. Along with your permit, you may need:
- a visitor visa (temporary resident visa) or
- an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)
Depending on where you’re from, you may only need your passport. Make sure you know which document you need to travel to and enter Canada.
Having the travel document you need also doesn’t guarantee you’ll be allowed back into Canada. You still must show the border services officer that you meet all the requirements before we’ll let you re-enter.
Canadian immigration policy offers international students many ways to stay and settle in the country after graduation. A popular option available to international students after graduation is the possibility of an open work permit under the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP). Under the PGWPP, an individual who has studied full-time at a participating Designated Learning Institution (DLI) may be eligible to apply for a PGWP.
In order to be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), a foreign national must be at least 18 years old and have studied full-time in Canada in a program of at least 8 months.
Yes, a potential international student can explore Canada as a visitor before studies begin. Individuals should verify whether they need a Temporary Resident Visas (TRV) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to enter Canada.