Apply for an Initial Study Permit at a Port of Entry

To apply for an initial study permit at a Canadian Port of Entry , follow steps 1 - 4 below:

Only the following people can apply for a study permit at a Canadian port of entry:

  • citizens and permanent residents of the USA,
  • residents of Greenland and St. Pierre and Miquelon.

Find the application package for the country you are applying from here. Once you have selected your country of residence, find the document checklist and the visa office instructions PDF (if applicable) and save or print both. Many countries require the checklist from the visa office instructions to be included with the study permit application.


  • From the application package, open the “Application for a Study Permit Made Outside of Canada (IMM1294)”.  Open the document with Adobe Reader. If you have trouble, you can get help here.
  • Use the Instruction Guide 5269 to help you complete the IMM1294. Here are some important tips for completing the application:
    • Complete the form on your computer. Do not fill it in by hand.
    • UCI: If this is your first ever application to IRCC, you can leave the UCI (universal client identification number) blank.
    • Designated Learning Institution (DLI) number: ULethbridge’s DLI number is O18776949622. The first digit is a capital letter “O” and not a zero “0”. This number is also listed on your Letter of Acceptance.
    • Letter of Acceptance: Use this document to answer questions about your duration of study.
    • Employment: Include any paid employment from the past 10 years. If you have no work experience, include any secondary or post-secondary studies and duration and state that your occupation was “student”.
  • Validate, Print & Sign: When you have completed the application form, click the blue “Validate” button. If you have made mistakes or missed any fields, these sections will be highlighted red and you will need to complete these areas prior to attempting to validate again. Once you have successfully validated, a page of black bar codes will be generated as the final page of the document. Save this document. Print and sign the validated document. 

Gather the necessary documents. You can view the document checklist and visa office instructions for applicants in the US here .

Take care in ensuring that all documents are clear, legible and well-written.

Submit your completed application package at the port of entry.  This can be at the Canada/US border, or at the airport where you land in Canada. 

If you are not a citizen of the US, you may need to obtain an appropriate entry document to Canada.

  • If your application to study in Canada is approved, a Border Services Officer will issue your study permit.  Please ensure that all details are correct before leaving the area.
  • If your application to study in Canada is refused, please contact us for advice before re-applying.

If you have a Letter of Acceptance to the Bachelor of Nursing/Bachelor of Nursing After Degree or Bachelor of Education, you will require a co-op work permit in addition to your study permit. The co-op work permit will allow you to complete the practicum components of your program.

To apply for the co-op work permit:

  • Review your Letter of Acceptance. In Box 24, ensure that "yes" is checked.
  • Include the letter from the faculty regarding practicum work as a supporting document in your study permit application. This letter has been provided to you by email together with your Letter of Acceptance.

Please note that work which brings you in close contact with people, such as nursing or teaching, requires a medical exam performed by an IRCC panel physician.

Your co-op work permit will be issued to you along with your study permit.


Request Assistance from an International Student Advisor

This guide has been written by a Regulated International Student Immigration Advisor (RISIA) in accordance with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations.  The information provided is subject to change at any time. While we will endeavor to update this page regularly, please always see the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website for the most current information.