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Immigrate to Canada

Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada do not require a study permit or visitor visa to study in Canada, regardless of their country of residence.

All others are considered international students and may be required to obtain a study permit and/or a visitor visa to enter Canada. Some exceptions apply. For example, you do not need a study permit if you are attending a program of six months or less.

To apply for a study permit for programs of study of at least six months' duration, you may require a letter of acceptance from a designated learning institution (DLI). Consult the Directory of Educational Institutions in Canada to find a designated learning institution.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada is the department responsible for immigration to Canada. Consult Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada's Web site to learn about requirements and determine your eligibility for a:

WHAT IS A DESIGNATED LEARNING INSTITUTION (DLI)?

A designated learning institution (DLI) is an educational institution that:

  • has been so identified by a provincial/territorial ministry/department responsible for education in Canada;
  • is now able to host international students on programs of study of at least six months' duration.

Postsecondary educational institutions in Canada that meet the criteria are listed:

  • in the Directory of Educational Institutions in Canada; and/or
  • on Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada's Web site .

A DLI number will be required on your visa application form.

All elementary and secondary educational institutions in Canada are automatically considered designated learning institution (DLI). A DLI number is not available for these institutions and is not required on the visa application form.

International Education Guides