About Study Permits

A study permit is an immigration document issued by the Canadian government that gives you permission to remain in Canada, on a temporary basis, to study.

As an international student, you must apply for a study permit before coming to Canada if your program of study is longer than six months in duration.

Applying for an initial study permit


Apply as soon as you receive your Letter of Acceptance from Mount Allison.


  • Study permit: $150 CAD
  • Biometrics fee (if applicable): $85 CAD


  • IRCC processing times vary widely. Check typical processing times for your country on the IRCC website.
  • It can take several months to receive an approval for a study permit so it's important to apply as soon as possible. If an error is made on an initial application, or further information is requested from a Visa Officer, you may be required to resubmit an application a second time. Plan accordingly.


Recommended Option

Alternative Option

  • By mail to the appropriate visa office
    • Download the paper application in the "Apply on paper" section of the IRCC website
  • In person at a Canadian border. Only for:
    • US citizens or permanent residents
    • Residents of Greenland or St. Pierre and Miquelon

Additional considerations

Medical Exams

Check the IRCC website to see if you need to take a medical exam. If you do, you have two options:

  1. Take a medical exam with an IRCC-approved Panel Physician before submitting your initial study permit application. Then include your medical report in your application. We recommend this option as it may save you time.
  2. Alternately, apply for your study permit first and wait for a visa officer to send you a medical exam request. This may delay the processing of your application.

Biometrics (photographs and fingerprints)

  • Most study permit applicants will need to appear in person to have their fingerprints and photographs taken at a biometrics collection service point.  Exceptions include US citizens or nationals.  For more information, visit the IRCC website: Facts about biometrics
  • If you apply online for your study permit (recommended) and you are required to give biometrics, you should receive a letter in your IRCC account message box within 24 hours of submitting your online application. 
    • You’ll get an e-mail to let you know that you have a new message in your IRCC message box. 
    • Once you receive this letter, you have 30 days to visit a biometrics collection site to give your biometrics. For a full list of collection points, please visit the IRCC website: Where to give biometrics

The immigration information on this page has been reviewed and endorsed by Mount Allison University’s Regulated International Student Immigration Advisor (RISIA Registration No. S708818) in compliance with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations. However, information may change without notice. Always refer to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) at www.cic.gc.ca for the most up-to-date information.