Apply for your studies

Join the growing number of international students who have made the choice to learn and live in British Columbia.

What do you want to study?

BC’s post-secondary institutions offer everything from short-term courses to four-year degree programs including:

  • English as a second language.
  • Career/trades/vocational programs.
  • Technologies and technical programs.
  • Degree programs.
  • Graduate programs at the Master’s and PhD levels.

Education Planner BC

Education Planner BC provides detailed program information about post-secondary programs available in BC universities, colleges, and institutes. Use this website to:

Learn about the costs of post-secondary and options for financial aid

Plan for learning and employment

Confirm your program planning options

Group of students

Evaluate your international qualifications

Many international students who come to study and work in Canada are highly educated. Institutions need to know whether or not your credentials meet their admission or transfer credit requirements. It will take at least four weeks to complete an evaluation of your credentials.

For information on evaluating your international qualifications, visit the following resources:

Submit your school application

Each school and institution will have different admissions requirements. The quickest way to apply is by contacting the international education office of the institution you want to attend. They can advise you on admissions requirements, programs, housing, health-care insurance, and orientation.

Once you have applied and been accepted to the school or institution of your choice you will receive an acceptance letter. You will need this letter to apply for a study permit.

If you have applied to more than one institution you may receive more than one acceptance letter, in this case it is up to you to decide which institution to attend.

Apply for a study permit

In most cases, you must obtain a study permit if you want to study in Canada. Before applying for a study permit, determine your eligibility to study in Canada.

Apply from outside Canada
You can apply online from outside Canada if:

  • You are over the age of sixteen;
  • You have no accompanying family members;
  • You live in and are a citizen of the following countries: Australia, Barbados, Denmark, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Republic of Ireland, Sweden, and USA; and,
  • Your field of study does not require a medical examination (check your institution for details).

Before you apply, make sure you have all the required documents and are prepared to pay the processing fee.

Paper application
If you can’t apply online, you can submit a paper application.

  1. Download and print the application package.
  2. Collect all the required documents.
  3. Pay the processing fee.
  4. Submit your application to a visa office.

Depending on what country you are from you may be required to have a temporary resident visa. The visa office will process your application for a temporary resident visa at the same time as your study permit application.

Apply from within Canada

  1. Determine if you are eligible for a study permit.
  2. Collect all required documents.
  3. Pay the non-refundable processing fee.
  4. Register for or log into your MyCIC account.

Paper application
If you can’t apply online, you can complete and mail a paper application.

Renew or extend your study permit

Please make sure to renew your permit at least 30 days before your permit expires. If your permit expires before you are approved for extension you can continue to study in BC until you receive a decision.

To extend your stay in BC as a student you must complete the appropriate forms. You cannot extend your study permit beyond the expiry date of your passport.

If your study permit has expired, and you have not applied for an extension, you will be required to leave Canada. In some cases, you may be able to apply to restore your status as a student within 90 days of losing your study permit.