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Planning to study in Canada? Know about the new relaxed visa guidelines for international students

Sep 14, 2022

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Are you planning to go to Canada for your higher studies? With its notable educational institutions and high quality of life, Canada is a favourite destination for higher studies among international students. So, if you want exposure to the global education standards and a degree that has acceptance across the world, studying in Canada is a great option.

In that case, you need to know about the visa process and its particulars in advance before applying for it. However, one inevitable scenario is that you may face delays in the process, which can be a bit unnerving.

According to the Canadian Authorities, the delay in processing the study visa is due to some humanitarian crises and the time required to update technologies to meet the rising demands. There are some relaxed rules for international students applying for a study visa in Canada. Continue reading to learn more. 


Relaxed Rules for Canada Student Visa Delay 


As the delay in visa processing overwhelms students, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced a few relaxed rules. These revised rules are developed to help aspiring candidates not miss their chance to get their higher education in Canada while waiting for their visa confirmation. 

The IRCC mentioned on their Twitter handle: 

"As we transition back to pre-pandemic requirements, we are extending distance learning measures to pursue your studies online from outside Canada while remaining eligible for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) until August 31, 2023." 

They further tweeted: 

"We encourage international students to come back to Canada as soon as possible, but this transition period is available if you need more time." 


Benefits of the Revised Rules 


Here are some benefits of the revised rules for international candidates –

  • If you are already studying online from anywhere outside Canada or submitted your study permit application on or before August 31, 2022, you are still eligible to complete your entire program online. It will not affect your PGWP eligibility. 
  • If you have enrolled for a program between September 1, 2022, and August 31 2023, or apply for your study permit before August 31, 2023, you are eligible to complete 50% of your entire program, which will not affect your PGWP eligibility. 
  • From September 1, 2023, no matter when you start your program, your distance learning time will be deducted from your PGWP duration.

In short, with the persistence of Canada study visa problems, authorities have extended distance learning measures to August 31, 2023.

Canada has always been a preferred international study destination for Indian students. As per the IRCC statistics, in 2020, 33,670 study permits were approved. However, the number spiked dramatically in 2021, with 133,652 permits being approved. Under SDS, 77,230 permits were approved in 2020 and 116,397 in 2021.

Regarding Indian candidates, as the majority of the Indian students have already deposited their fees to their chosen Canadian institutions, the Indian embassy has requested Canadian authorities to speed up and facilitate the visa file processing for Indian students. As per the available data, over 75000 visa applications have been submitted by Indian candidates. As of August 15, they are in the processing inventory. 

Also, the Canadian institutes are in touch with aspiring international students, providing them on-time, actionable information regarding everything associated with the visa application process. 

In a nutshell, universities have a solid contingency plan to help students willing to study in Canada who have not received their study visas yet. With these plans in place, the students can be present on campus at the beginning of the term year in September.

“However, unfortunately, some students may not have their visas confirmed before the fall intake. Even though the primary focus is on clearing up the existing backlogs in visa processing, some applications may not get cleared for the fall season.” As said by the IRCC directive: 

"Despite prioritising study permit applications for students looking to begin their studies in September, some international students may not have their application processed on time to begin their studies in person for the fall 2022 intake period."

The universities are also communicating with students who wish to postpone their admission. The students can get assistance from the institutions regarding their options, including delaying their admission offer for a later intake season or a special consideration under certain circumstances.

The current visa processing time for international education destinations, including Student Direct Scheme, is 12 weeks. Undoubtedly, the delay has raised questions regarding the feasibility of joining the colleges with the commencement of the academic year in September. But with the processing time taking longer, the authorities are genuinely trying to reduce the wait time for the students.

Here is what the Canadian Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship stated:

"Affected students are encouraged to send a request for information and urgent processing through an IRCC web form meant for study permit applications that have been submitted and completed but have exceeded the current processing time for the Student Direct Stream (SDS) scheme."


To Sum Up

From elementary school to post-graduate courses, Canada is famous worldwide for its outstanding quality. With highly qualified educators and 11 out of the top 250 universities in the world, there's no better place to learn and grow. In addition, some universities will provide remote study options to cope with the unprecedented visa problem. If you wish to go for it, then get in touch with leading study abroad consultants like KC Overseas Education for the required guidance.

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