Study In Canada

IRCC make changes to the study visa in Canada by expanding the Student Direct Stream (SDS)  up to 7 new countries.

Columbia, Peru, and Brazil are now included among the seven countries in Canada’s fast-track program for international students.

IRCC made this announcement that they have added 7 new countries for the exposure of international students.

The countries that are included in the announcement are given below:

  1. Costa Rica

  2. Colombia

  3. Brazil

  4. Peru

  5. Antigua and Barbuda

  6. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

  7. Trinidad and Tobago

The Student Direct Stream (SDS) is a program that offers an alternative to expedite the processing of study permit to those who are looking to study in a Canadian designated learning institution (DLI).

Any potential international students to Canada are first required to receive a Letter of Acceptance (LOA) from a DLI. 

DLI’s are universities, colleges, and post-secondary educational institutions in the premise of Canada that are given authorization by the government of Canada to invite international students. Once the student receives an LOA, they are needed to submit an application for a study permit to the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The main purpose of a study permit is to allow students to pursue their educational careers in Canada.

The processing time for study permit varies for each country and take several months for the overall processing. The main advantage of SDS is that the processing time for study permits reduces substantially. The application through the SDS can be completed within the duration of 20 calendar days on average.

In 2018, IRCC launched the SDS system for students in India, China, Vietnam, and the Philippines. The program expanded in the year 2019 and included Pakistan, Senegal, and Morocco.

There are a certain set of criteria that the candidate must follow to apply for a study permit from the above-stated countries:

  1. Language Proficiency: The IELTS test requirement for the study permit is that the candidate must score at least 6.0 in each section (Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing). The IELTS test can either be IELTS Academic or IELTS General Training. The French-speaking (Francophones) candidates are required to obtain the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) equal to 7 in each section on Test d’Evaluation de Français. 
  2. Proof of a Guaranteed Investment Certificate of at least $10,000 CAD: 
  3. The candidate is required to submit full payment of the tuition fee for the Canadian educational institution for the first year.
  4. Letter of Acceptance (LOA) from designated Canadian institutions.
  5. Educational transcript for the most recent year. 
  6. Medical examination proof: This is a requirement for candidates whose field of study requires an upfront medical exam.

Before this Coronavirus pandemic, Canada hosted around 642,000 international students for the year 2019. Within the top 15 sourced countries, China, India, Columbia, Brazil, Vietnam, and Morocco were the countries that were the SDS participants.

After today’s announcements regarding SDS, Columbia, Peru, and Brazil are the ones that will have the most impact on the enrollment of international students in Canada. Brazilian students population in Canada has increased around ten folds in the last two decades while the population of Columbian students has nearly quadrupled. The population of Peru students has increased fivefold from the year 2000. As per the statistics, IRCC noted that around 16000 study permits were issued in the year 2019. Out of these, 10000 were from Brazil and around 4400 were from Columbia. 

For most international students, the SDS has proved to be beneficial as it offers greater certainty of approval for the study permit application. From the perspective of IRCC and DLI’s, the SDS is beneficial in providing students that are genuinely interested in pursuing education in Canada, and are not using the study permit as a loophole for entering Canada for another alternative purpose.

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