What you need to know
STEP 1: When to apply
Apply as soon as you get accepted to Bow Valley College and have your Letter of Acceptance. You must apply for your initial study permit from outside of Canada. Check estimated processing time.
STEP 2: Prepare your application
1. Create document checklist
2. Gather your required documents
3. Complete the application form
- If your program includes a work experience/practicum/co-op/clinical/preceptorship, it is strongly recommended to apply for co-op work permit at the same time as you apply for your initial study permit.
- If your program includes a work experience/practicum/co-op/clinical/preceptorship and you are working in a health related field or working with children, you need to get a medical exam done by a designated physician.
- The visa offices in China, India, the Philippines, Vietnam, Pakistan, Senegal, and Morocco have two pathways available for a study permit application – (1) regular stream and (2) the Student Direct Stream (SDS).
STEP 3: Apply
• Online through the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website
- Create IRCC secure account and follow the instructions.
• In person at a Visa Application Centre (VAC)
• By mail to the appropriate visa office
Download the paper application in the "Apply on paper" section of the IRCC website
STEP 4: Study Permit Approval
If your study permit application is approved, you will be issued a Letter of Introduction. If you apply for an initial study permit outside of Canada, you do not need to apply separately for a TRV (Temporary Resident Visa / Entry Visa) or eTA . If your study permit is approved, you will be issued a TRV or eTA along with your study permit approval.
You will need to present this letter to the Canada Border Services Officer when you arrive in Canada to have your study permit issued on the port of entry (airport or US/Canada border).
STEP 5: Arrive in Canada
- Present your Letter of Introduction to the Canada Border Services Officer and request a study permit
- Before leaving the officer’s desk, ensure the information on your study permit is correct and that it states you ‘may work’ or ‘may accept employment.’ If any information is incorrect or missing, request the amendment at that spot.
(*** Please note ELL students are not eligible for work off-campus and ELL students would not have this statement on your study permit)
STEP 6: After entering Canada
After entering Canada, please present your study permit and co-op work permit to the International Education Department (North Campus, Room N333) or email the copy of them to ISSC@bowvalleycollege.ca as soon as possible.
Find out more about requirements to study in Canada