Skip to main content

Study or exchange programs lasting more than 6 months

Questions?

Registrar's Office
418 656-3080
immigration@reg.ulaval.ca

If you come for a study program that is more than 6 months or for a two-semester exchange, you need to get a Certificat d’acceptation du Québec [Québec acceptance certificate] (CAQ) from the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration [Québec’s Ministry of Immigration, Francisation, and Integration] (MIFI) as well as a study permit from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Getting the necessary documents to enter and stay in Canada takes several months, so we strongly advise you get started as soon as possible.

You can begin the immigration process when you receive your offer of admission. The Registrar’s Office (for regular students) or the International Office (for exchange students) will email you your offer of admission. You won’t receive a printed copy of your offer of admission by mail. This offer of admission, whether conditional or final, contains all the information required for your immigration process. 

If your study or exchange program includes a mandatory Québec-based internship, you can also apply for a co-op or internship work permit when you apply for a study permit. You don’t have to fill out a separate application for it.

You must complete all the immigration steps before you arrive in Canada. You must have your CAQ and your IRCC study permit approval with you when you arrive. If you don’t, you may not be allowed into Canada when you arrive and you may be sent back to your home country, or you may only be admitted as a temporary visitor, which won’t allow you to study in Canada.

Visit the Travelling to Canada and clearing Canadian customs pages to prepare for your arrival in Canada and to learn about the specifics during the COVID-19 pandemic.

You must use the official websites of the Québec and Canadian governments to complete the immigration steps.

Even if you intend to physically stay in Canada for only 6 months or less, what is important is the length of the study program. So, if your acceptance letter says that your study program is longer than 6 months, you have to take the necessary steps to get a CAQ and a study permit. 

This is usually the case if you are in one of the following situations:

  • Study program that started via distance learning outside Canada, even if you have less than 6 months left to complete the program in Canada
  • Master’s double degree program
  • Cotutelle (joint supervision) agreement that involves being at Université Laval for 6 months or less
  • PhD defence

For your protection, if you would like to use an immigration representative for the process, make sure they can legally carry out this role. See the MIFI (in French only) and IRCC websites about this.

Passport

Certificat d'acceptation du Québec [Québec acceptance certificate] (CAQ)

The first step in the immigration process is to apply for temporary selection ($120) from the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration [Québec’s Ministry of Immigration, Francisation, and Integration] (MIFI). Most international students need a CAQ to study in Québec. However, certain categories of students are exempt. The processing time for a CAQ application is approximately 4 weeks. 

Study permit

The second step in the immigration process for coming to study in Québec is to apply for a study permit ($150 + $85 for biometrics) from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Before you can apply, you must first receive your CAQ or the CAQ electronic notice of issuance unless exempt. The processing time for study permit applications vary. If you apply for a study permit from outside of Canada, the application automatically includes your visa or Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) at no additional cost.

Temporary resident visa (TRV) or Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

If you apply for a study permit from outside of Canada, the application automatically includes your visa or eTA at no additional cost. You need the visa or eTA to be able to enter Canada unless you are a U.S. citizen or are exempt for another reason. The visa is placed directly in your passport, whereas the eTA is linked electronically to your passport. If you are from a country for which a visa is required, you will need to send your passport to the Canadian visa office that serves your country of residence so the visa can be placed in your passport. IRCC will provide you with instructions at the appropriate time.

Internship work permit

Students who have to do a mandatory internship as part of their study program in Canada must get a co-op work permit through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in addition to a study permit. There is no fee for this permit, and you can apply for it when you apply for a study permit. It is best to apply for it before you arrive.

Getting authorization documents for your family members

If you would like members of your family (partner and/or children) to join you while you are studying in Canada, you can apply for their immigration documents when you apply for your study permit. When you are answering the questions for creating your online application, answer “Yes” to the question “Do you want to submit an application for a family member?. For more information, see the section on Getting authorization documents for your family members.

Underage students

Students who are minors under the age of 17 when they apply must meet special requirements to be allowed to enter Canada and study in Québec. In Québec, the age of majority is 18.

Webinar – The immigration process to study in Quebec

Watch the webinar given by Université Laval on April 8, 2022, which reviews the immigration process that must be successfully completed in order to study in Quebec.

Please note that information released by the governments of Quebec and of Canada takes precedence over that which is shared in this video.

Part 1 : Webinar

Part 2 : Questions and answers

The Immigration section of this website is intended to provide general information on current procedures, which may change at any time without notice. The laws and regulations in force in Québec and Canada, as well as the websites of Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration [Québec’s ministry of immigration, francisation, and integration] (MIFI) and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), take precedence over this page.

Last updated on: 2022-05-18