Canada does not have a central clearing house like the UCAS in the United Kingdom or the Common App in the US. When applying to universities and colleges in Canada, generally students will be applying to each institution individually. There are some exceptions, such as the Ontario Universities Application Centre (OUAC) where students can apply to multiple universities on one single application but for the most part, they will be applying to universities and colleges directly.
Admission requirements will vary between universities and colleges and programs. Students will need to contact each school individually to find out the admission requirements for the programs they are interested in.
Below are some important issues for students to consider in addition to the academic requirements for admission.
Designated Learning Institution
Before submitting your Canadian Study Permit application you must receive an offer of admission from a “Designated Learning Institution”. The “Designated Learning Institution” title is determined by the Canadian Government and includes most universities and colleges in Canada but make sure to check the designation before submitting your Study Permit application. Also, ensure to include a copy of your admission letter with your application.
English Language Requirements
The language requirements for most universities in Canada state that if you have not (i) lived in a country where English is the acknowledged primary language, or (ii) studied at a school full-time for a prescribed number of years where the language of instruction was English, then you need to submit English language scores from a standardized English language testing facility.
Please see “Study English” [LINK] for more information
Students will need to check the application deadlines at each university and college as some institutions only accept applications a certain points during the year. Universities and colleges will each take a different amount of time to assess your application but on average a decision takes between 4-6 months. We suggest to the students we work with to apply for admission as early as possible to ensure they also have enough time to apply for their Canadian Study Permit. The Study Permit application can take 4 -15 weeks depending on which Visa Office you are applying to and whether it is a busy time for Study Permit applications.
The academic year in Canada is usually from September to May but many universities and colleges will also have an intake in January. Many universities and colleges also offer select courses during the summer months (July and August).