Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is making great strides in promoting Canada as a destination of choice for international students seeking a quality education by finding efficient ways to process applications.
To support the growth in study permit applications, IRCC today announces the Student Direct Stream (SDS), which is available to students applying for a study permit from China, India, Vietnam and the Philippines. Students from those countries who demonstrate upfront that they have the financial resources and language skills to succeed academically in Canada will benefit from faster processing times.
Similar programs have been in place in these 4 countries for a few years. We are aligning them together into 1 program to ensure consistency.
We are also working on expanding SDS to Africa and are looking at options in Kenya and Senegal. Expansion to Senegal would be in line with the department’s focus to attract more French-speaking students to Canada.
To qualify for SDS, applicants need to meet additional requirements, in particular language levels that are stricter than regular study permit requirements. Students who do not have all of the additional information required for SDS can apply through the regular study permit application process, either online or at a Visa Application Centre.
The SDS complements the Express Entry system as these students will be well placed to continue on the path to permanent residence and Canadian citizenship after completing their studies in Canada, if they wish to.
IRCC is committed to finding ways to improve its International Student Program by making its services faster, easier and more accessible. The success of the SDS program will be evaluated with the intention to expand the program in 2019.