Work Permits for Students

Off-Campus Work Permit

New rules that take effect on June 1, 2014, make it easier for study permit holders to work off campus. Full-time students pursuing an academic, professional or vocational training program at a designated learning institution will be:

  • eligible to work off campus without a work permit;

Allowed to work off campus for up to 20 hours per week during a regular academic session and full time during regularly scheduled breaks; and

Able to work off campus immediately rather than waiting six months.

NOTE: Your spouse or common-law partner may apply for a work permit.

Work as part of a co-op/internship program

New rules may affect your eligibility to work as part of a co-op or internship program:

  • Starting June 1, 2014, you will be able to work as part of a co-op or internship program only if the work is an essential part of an academic, vocational or professional training program offered by a designated learning institution.
  • To work as part of a co-op/internship program, you will need a co-op work permit that is separate from your study permit.
  • If you are studying English or French as a second language (ESL/FSL), or participating in general interest or preparatory courses, you will not be eligible to work during your studies, unless you become eligible to apply for a work permit with a positive Labour Market Opinion from Employment and Social Development Canada.

Attending a designated learning institution

To apply for a study permit on or after June 1, 2014, you will need to have a letter of acceptance from a designated learning institution.

  • Each province and territory in Canada is responsible for designating schools at the post-secondary level that may enroll international students on or after June 1.
  • A list of designated learning institutions at the post-secondary level will be available on the CIC website by June 1, 2014.
  • If your study permit application is received on or after June 1 and your letter of acceptance is from an institution that is not designated for international students, your application will be refused.
  • All primary and secondary institutions in Canada are automatically designated but will not appear on the designated learning institution list. If you are applying for your child to study in Canada at the primary or secondary level.