Study Abroad in Canada

Are you looking for information about study abroad in Canada and excelling career in Canada? Wondering which courses will be suitable for your profession and will help progress in career? Check this page to know about the study in Canada and the study abroad programs offered by the popular Canadian universities.

What Indian students need to study abroad in Canada

The following points need to be accomplished to be eligible to get a Visa to study in Canada.
  • You must be accepted for learning by the designated learning school/college/university in Canada.
  • You will have to prove that you have enough money to pay for your tuition fees.
  • You will also need to show money required for your living expenses and then for your travel and for visiting family members.
  • If you do not have so much of cash in hand, you must have an equivalent approved loan available for education in Canada.
  • You should be able to have money for travelling to and from India.
  • You should be able to prove a clean track police record. This is usually possible by getting a Police Clearance certificate.
  • You should also provide a Medical certificate providing your physical and mental fitness
  • You should be able to satisfy the authority of your leaving Canada at the time of finishing your education in Canada. This is usually done by having a return ticket to India

The CIC website offers comprehensive information about applying for Visa and Citizenship in Canada and at the same time is the portal through which all the official formalities need to be done before visiting the designated office/ centre near your home.

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About Canada

Canada is a country in the continent of North America and has 10 provinces and 3 territories. The country covers an area of 9.98 square kilometres. Canada is the second largest country by land area. The capital of the country in Ottawa.

Geography of Canada

Canada occupies a major chunk of the continent of North America and stretches from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, with the Arctic Ocean to its northeast. Given its expanse, the temperatures of Canada do vary a lot and depends on which region you would be in.

Quick Facts

  1. Canada spans about 9,984,670 square kilometers of land area and is spread over 6 time zones.
  2. Canada has one of the longest streets in the world which is about 2000 kilometres of a stretch.
  3. The the coastline is also another longest records Canada holds. The coastline is about 202,080 kilometres long.
  4. One of the cartoon characters and a lovely of the toy of today, Winnipeg or widely known as Winnie-the-pooh was designed and crafted in Canada.
  5. The Blackberry smartphone was developed in Ontario.
  6. Canada's motto is A Mari Usque ad Mare. It means "From Sea to Sea."
  7. Skydome is Toronto's Rogers Center. It hosts one of the largest big screens by Sony. The big screen measure 10 m x 33.6 m.
  8. The big nickel is a reproduction of a 1951 Canadian Nickel coin. The coin is kept in Sudbury and is nine meters in diameter.
  9. Canada bagged 14 Gold medals in the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.
  10. Canada is a name coined after "Kanata", name of a local village where a French explorer had arrived.
  11. Canada is home for about 55,000 plus species of insects.
  12. Another an interesting feature in Canada is the smallest desert in the world which is in British Columbia and which is about 15 miles long. The desert has a long boardwalk being made for tourists and visitors to walk on.
  13. Hotel de Glace is a Hotel in Quebec. This hotel is made from slabs of ice and snow. Every year the ice and snow melt away and thus the hotel is remade every year. As a rough estimate, 400 tonnes of ice and 12000 tonnes of snow is required every year to rebuild the hotel in the winter season.
  14. Montreal is known for its beautiful churches and is called as the City of Saints and Hundred Bell Towers.

Student Visa Application Process

Before even beginning to apply or even to look for a university, get onto your drawing board and draw your life profession career. This could be a few ideas on the board or a flowchart of education in Canada and what you want to do, then pin down to certain courses that you want to learn and qualified and certified. Remember, certification is very important in getting a good job and a career satisfaction. Otherwise, as you know, even a beggar earns thousands of rupees every day.

Pinning down to a particular course will help you determine the college/university you want to get in.

There are instances when you do not need a Study Permit to enter Canada for a short course.
  • If you are planning to take up a course which is less than or equal to 6 months, you then do not need to have a Study Visa to get to Canada. The only condition is that you complete the course within the stipulated time. If you take more time for completion of the course, then you will have to exit and re-enter Canada.
  • If you are a staff member or a family member to the Foreign representative from India to Canada and are accredited to the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (DFATD) and are currently residing in Canada, then you do not need to apply for a Visa. Simply approach the nearest embassy in Canada. The Embassy will get in touch with the Office of Protocol at DFATD to find out whether you need a Study permit.
  • If you are a member of foreign armed forces from India, then you come under the Visiting Forces Act of Canada and under which you do not need a Study Visa. But if you intend to have your children or family with you, they will have to go through the usual procedures. Refer below for more information.
  • Finally, if you were an Indian citizen with NRI or PIO status and are now a Registered Indian in Canada, then also you do not need a Study Permit in India.

From 1st June 2014, Government of Canada has made it a requirement to have a letter of acceptance from a Designated learning Institution. A Designated learning Institution is an educational institute which is authorised by the Government of Canada to provide education in Canada for foreign students. Each Designated learning Institution gets a unique number and is called as a DLI #.
First, select the province in which you wish to study abroad in Canada. The list can be accessed over here. You will get a list of all DLIs in the particular province.
Then you can search for a particular institution on the page by partially typing the name of the institution or the city that you wish to look for.

Once you have come to a list of top colleges/universities (DLIs) which will prospectively admit you for your education, write a letter to them to let them know about your desire to learn in the college/university for the desired course.
  • The college should be an approved Designated Learning Institution
  • It should have an approved and correctly matching DLI number as on CIC website.
  • It should have a proper course that you wish to learn.

You should also have the appropriate documents required for your application for study in Canada.

When applying to a school college or university in Canada, make sure you begin the process at least 6 months in advance if applying for admission to a school, or at least 1 year in advance for a university and college.
English can be the main language during your whole application process or the educational institution may even demand French as a fluent language.

Once the school gets back to you, they will be able to let you know the following details.
  • How much is the application cost?
  • How much will be the tuition fees to study in that particular school/college/university?
  • Whether health insurance would be required for study in Canada and what would it cost?
  • Rent and cost of living in Canada
  • What all language tests would be required for study abroad in Canada

Once you have completed and gone through all the above requirements, forms, ready with the documents, authorised wherever required and ready with everything, get ready for the next step - Applying for Study Visa/permit.
An Indian student can apply in two manners for the Canadian Visa.
  • Apply Online
  • Apply Offline

  • Apply online through Internet and official website
The official website for online application of Canadian Study Permit is You will need a scanner and a camera of good quality to make the electronic copies (mostly in PDF format) of your documents. You will also need a Credit Card to make payments.

This is usually the quickest, easiest and guaranteed method.
If you are still afraid of the Apply Online method then you can go for the Offline method.
  • Apply offline through nearest Visa Application Center (VAC)
  • You can apply offline by collecting the application package. Alternatively, you can download the Application Package from the official website:
  • Pay your fees offline
  • If you intend to submit your application through the Visa Application Center then you will have to pay at the Visa Application Center itself. Fees can be paid in local Indian Rupees currency. Please note that the payments and processing through VAC will invite the application centre's commission charges.

Advantage of submitting an application at local Visa Application centres in India
  • You do not need to be restricted to English as your language of communication. You get service as well in the local language.
  • You can take advantage of extended hours of service. When you apply online, you will have to wait for responses and progress according to Canadian Standard time. When you apply for Canadian study permit through local VAC, you get local Indian service time.
  • You can track your application online and do not need to go to the VAC each time to know the status.
  • While submitting online means the same thing, but you get another assurance that your application has been submitted to the correct visa office.

Time required to process Study Permit for Indian students

The approximate processing time required for an Indian student is up to 4 weeks. This time varies on the basis of:
  • Type of application submitted
  • Volume of applications received
  • How easily we can verify information
  • How well and how quickly you respond to any requests or concerns
  • Whether the application is complete.
  • Visa applications sent beyond the government's yearly quota have been delayed

It takes about 4 weeks of time for an application for Study Visa/permit for an Indian Student to get processed. In the 4 to 5 weeks of time either of the following can happen:
  • You change your address
  • If you happen to change your address or telephone number or any contact related information, please notify the same VAC where you had submitted your application. If you have submitted your application online, then get in done through your MyCIC account or approach the nearest VAC centre for more information.

  • Your application gets approved

  • If your application gets approved, then you will get a Letter of Introduction from the government of Canada. You will have to carry this letter of introduction and at the Point of Entry upon arriving Canada, you will get an Electronic Travel Authorization if needed. It will be informed to you in the Letter of Introduction to you. As of now, eTA is not required for Indian students and a Visa will be given by the Immigration officials. This eTA is valid for a period of 5 years or until your Passport expires, whichever is earlier.

    The Study permit Visa will be put on your Passport and will mention whether you can have an only single entry or a multi-entry to Canada for the time your Visa remains valid.

  • Your application does not get approved

  • If your Visa does not get approved, then you will get an email/letter explaining the reason and you will need to rectify the same.


It is an important decision to take for an Indian student to study in a different country and Canada is a no different option.

Canada is a tolerant, terrorism limited, multi-cultural country and with high levels of education and living standards.
Very similar to the USA, Canada was born out of immigrants who made the country to its current standards. Until the late 1990s, 16 to 20 per cent of the population were immigrants arriving and settling in the country.
Immigrants have been from different countries. The 17th to 20th century saw immigrants coming from the European states - mostly to conquer and take advantage of the rich biodiversity of the country for the benefit of their expansion and ruling plans.
But from the 1970s and onwards, immigration is more evident from the Asian countries. People have been coming from the Asian countries to work in the country but in a better lifestyle, more income standards and to enjoy a more peaceful life.

Given the diverse population in Canada, the histories, cultures and economic backgrounds also represent a richer presence. All discrete cultures have majorly combined into one.

Indians prefer to live in Vancouver where a lot of people from the British Isles, India and China come and settle. French is a native language in the Quebec region and thus French is a majorly spoken language in Quebec.
People in Canada are friendlier than in the United States and you might end up making friends with a stranger across the road.

People like to spend money on themselves. Savings is not a huge concept in Canada. It is said that if a Canadian citizen stops working, then he/she may declare bankruptcy in the next 2 months of time span. People love to eat and restaurant chains are on the high rise in Canada.
And yet the World Bank has nominated Canadians as the second wealthiest people after Australia.
The Human development reports mention that the Natural resources, productive assets and human resources are the best in the world and they live one of the best qualities of life in Canada. The different factors that are taken into account are life expectancy, income levels, health, education and gender improvement.

Territories in the Northwest and Yukon extend the country right up to the North pole. The climatic conditions are very extreme over here and can be a challenging area for people to survive.

Cost of Living for Students

The cost of living in Canada differs a lot given the widespread of the country. But on an overall basis, the cost of living is higher in cities of Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary. It is a very common trend to see both the parents working to have a decent income and this is considered far too important in Canada. A decent lifestyle with an ability to own a house can contribute to the major cost of living in Canada.
An apartment on rental for a year in Vancouver could be anywhere between 14 to 17 thousand a year while the same while it could be 7 to 11 thousand in Montreal. A bike on rent could be 100 to 150 dollars but a car could cost you 6 to 8 thousand CAD per year.
Transit expenses could be about a 1000 dollars and phones with connections could take you somewhere in between 2000 to 2500 Canadian dollars per year.
If you have a child and if both parents are working, then childcare could be yet another big expense amounting to 15 to 16 thousand dollars a year.
Thus let us say that if you are earning about a 100,000 Canadian dollars a year and want a home on rent, a Cable TV connection, a Smartphone and will use Transit facilities and make use of Childcare, and enjoy some meals at the Restaurants once in a while, you could be spending roughly 35 to 40 thousand dollars in a year and the rest of the money could probably go towards savings.
While the above cost may be true for Vancouver or Calgary or Toronto, living in Montreal can be cheaper and you may spend only 15 to 20 thousand dollars a year on the above.

Documents for University Admissions in Canada

Once you have sent your letter of request to your preferred college/university for study in Canada, it is time to collate all the required documents.
The documents that are required can be classified under 4 headings:
  • Proof of acceptance
  • Proof of Identity
  • Proof of Financial support
  • Letter of explanation
  • Documents specific to Indian student applicants
  • Documents required by Indian students currently residing outside India
  • Necessity of Re-entry
  • Proof of acceptance
  • This document is the letter of acceptance being sent by the school or college/university with a DLI number and accepting your application for study in Canada. This is always the first step towards any Study permit application. Once you get an original letter from the institute, always verify the DLI number and keep scanned soft and hard copies. You will need to attach the original copy of the letter received from the institution along with your study permit application for education in Canada.

  • Proof of Identity
  • Since you will be travelling to study abroad in Canada, as an Indian student, the passport is the first and most of the times, the most required document to enter Canada. If you are having an accompanying family member, then they should have their own passport.
    You should keep plenty of passport size photographs along with you with the name and date of birth written on the back side of the photograph.

  • Proof of financial support
  • The next (maybe first!) important thing to produce is financial support. The following requirements are mentioned by the Canadian government, which can be accepted as proof of financial support:
    • Proof of a Bank account in a Canadian bank in your (the student) name and with the requisite amount of money being transferred in the account.
    • Proof of student or an education loan from a financial institution for study abroad in Canada. This is usually in the form of the document provided, signed, authorised and stamped by a recognised and nationalised financial institution and also is known to the Government of Canada.
    • Your Bank statements at least for the past 4 months
    • A Bank draft in a currency that is convertible. Although Indian Rupees are accepted, Euros or US Dollars or Canadian Dollars are better accepted
    • Proof of payment of tuition and accommodation fees for study in Canada. This is usually the receipt from the institution after they have received the said money either by cash from your own pocket or through the loan facility.
    • Letter from the person/self or financial institution providing you with the monetary benefits
    • If you are having a scholarship or being funded by a Canadian institution, then this letter does all the work for your education in Canada

    Rough 2016 estimates for finance required for study abroad in Canada
    This table is a 2016 update of what expenses may be required to study in Canada. The values given are a rough estimate and may be less or more depending on personal spending habits. All values are in Canadian dollars.

    Student by self in Canada but not in Quebec
    Tuition fees plus 10,000 Canadian dollars for 1 year.

    Student by self in Canada in Quebec
    Tuition fees plus 11,000 Canadian dollars for 1 year.

    Student with 1 family member in Canada but not in Quebec
    Tuition fees plus 10,000 + 4000 Canadian dollars for 1 year.

    Student with 1 family member in Canada in Quebec
    Tuition fees plus 11,000 + 5100 Canadian dollars (for 18 years plus adult) for 1 year.
    Tuition fees plus 11,000 + 3800 Canadian dollars (for under 18 years) for 1 year.

    Student with 1 family member + additional family member in Canada but not in Quebec
    Tuition fees plus 10,000 + 4000 + 3000 Canadian dollars per dependent child for 1 year.

    Student with 1 family member + additional family member in Canada in Quebec
    Tuition fees plus 11,000 + 5100 + 5125 Canadian dollars (for 18 years plus adult) for 1 year.
    Tuition fees plus 11,000 + 3800 + 1903 Canadian dollars (for under 18 years) for 1 year.

  • Letter of Explanation
  • Sometimes you might want to apply for a second course of education after you complete your first course. If you do not have an authorised and accepted letter of explanation for study in Canada, then you will have to leave Canada, come back to India and apply for the second course.
    Or you might want to work part-time on campus at the college or university at which you are registered as a full-time student.
    This will mean a lot of travel expense.

    For this reason, and even when you may not need a Study visa right away, you can write a letter of explanation for the same.

    Write a letter in a simple format which explains the Visa officer as to why you will be needing to study in another course and why you intend not to leave Canada. If the office agrees, you are in the win to save lots of money and even work part-time in Canada.

  • Documents specific to Indian student applicants
  • Following is the form and document list pertaining to Indian students. This should be mandatorily filled up by Indian students prior to applying for Study Permit in Canada.

    List of forms required for Indian students to study in Canada
    • Application for Study Permit made outside of Canada
    • This application can be done online. Once completed, print the same and the page containing the barcode should be kept on the top of the application.
    • Family Information form
    • This form should be filled by applicants who are travelling along to Canada.
    • Statutory Declaration of Common-law Union
    • This is an accepted status if you are not in a lawful and accepted marriage. For India, such a status is not yet completely accepted.
    • Use of Representative
    • This form may be used if you cannot do all of the formalities and requirements by yourself. The representative should be authorized by the Canadian government. The same form can also be used if you want to cancel the services and authority of the authorized representative.
    • Authority to Release Personal Information to a Designated Individual
    • This form is required to be filled if your application or condition requires you to authorise the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) or the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) bodies to allow to release information from your case file.
    • Custodianship Declaration
    • This form is required if you as a student are less than 17 years old and require a custodian to take your care in Canada.

    List of Documents required for Indian students
    • Fee payments
    • All fees including Application processing fee, biometric fees, etc. should be verified at the Visa office or the Visa application centre (VAC) Payment receipts should be only from India as Canadian bank receipts are not accepted.
    • Photocopies of:
      • Passport front and back pages
      • Issuance and expiry dates
      • Your photo, name, date and place of birth

    • Photos
      • Passport size photograph with face being in the square, neutral expression, mouth closed. No frown, nor smile.
      • 35mm x 45mm, full front view of head from crown to chin (minimum 31 mm of the photo).
      • Must be taken in the last 6 months, Either black and white or colour.
      • Clear and taken in plain white or plain light coloured background.
      • Not digitally altered.
      • Non-tinted prescription glasses allowed, eyes should be clearly visible.
      • No sunglasses.
      • Hairpiece acceptable.
      • Non obscuring headgear for religious reasons are considered alright.

    • Biometric facility for Indian Students to study abroad in Canada
    • VFSGlobal is the authorised body for collection of Biometrics for a candidate staying in Indian and pursuing education in Canada.
    • MIDI's (Le ministère de l'Immigration, de la diversité et de l'Inclusion) letter of approval to your application for a "Certificat d'acceptation du Québec" (CAQ)
    • This is required if you intend to study in Quebec province. Again, this should be provided by the education institution in Quebec.
    • Proof of financial support - as explained above.
    • Photocopy of your Marriage Certificate
    • Any other important document as would be asked by the Visa office.

    Age of minority

    If you want to send your young child for study abroad in Canada then the ruling age of majority comes into role play. Age of majority is the age when the child is considered as an adult and this is different for each state of Canada.
    The age of majority is 18 for states of Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan.

    The age of majority is 19 for states of British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Yukon.

Working and living in Canada is thus not difficult if you maintain the quality of life, peace to get easily enough in the existing communities in your locality. Whatsmore, if you feel like continuing to stay and work in the country, one can easily do so and gain more savings back in India. After all the Canadian dollar is worth 50 to 60 Indian Rupees.

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