Student Direct Stream: The Quickest Way to Secure a Study Permit for Canada

A study permit is the quintessential requirement for a student who wishes to pursue higher education in Canada. It is a document issued by the Canadian government, consenting foreign nationals to study in Canada. But oftentimes, acquiring it can be a time-consuming process.

To address this issue, the Canadian government has introduced a program called Student Direct Stream or SDS, as a swift pathway for students who wish to study in Canada. It offers a speedy application process for study permits for students. With SDS, applications are processed in 20 calendar days, provided that he or she meets the eligibility.

There are certain criterions which are to be satisfied by the applicant, in order to be eligible for SDS. Firstly, he or she must be a legal resident of China, India, the Philippines, or Vietnam. Secondly, the letter of acceptance from a post-secondary DLI should be submitted for review. Next, the student should be living outside Canada while applying for study permit through SDS. He or she must also possess a GIC (Guaranteed Investment Certificate) of CAD10000. If needed, medical and police certificates should be submitted.

When it comes to language proficiency, the student is expected to score 6.0 or more in each language skill –Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing in IELTS. Another option is to have a TEF (Test d’évaluation de français) score which is equivalent to a Canadian Language Benchmark score not less than 7 in each module/skill.

If the desired place of study is Quebec, the student should submit the Certification of Acceptance for Quebec (CAQ).

Obtaining a GIC is easy, as it can be procured from any of the banks itemized on the Canadian Deposit Insurance Company website. The banks are HSBC Bank of Montreal, Bank of China, Bank of Beijing etc., and in India GIS can be availed through ICICI Bank.

Another important factor is the submission of medical and police certificates. The former must be submitted by students who have travelled or lived in certain territories–including India–for more than six months. The information regarding police certificates will be clarified in the concerned visa office guidelines.

Moreover, through SDS, the spouse, partner, or dependent child will also get a faster visa processing. At the time of online application, it is possible to add their information. The application process is completely online and before starting the process, one should have the instruction guide for filling out the forms, a functional scanner to generate e-copies of the documents, and a valid debit or credit card for fee payment.

After fee payment and submission, the candidate is sometimes asked to provide his or her photo and fingerprints. A detailed letter from the Canadian government will give instructions regarding how and where to do the process. The candidate has 30 days to submit the biometrics. Then the application is processed, usually within 20 days. If approved, a letter of introduction, and an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) or a Visitor Visa will be sent.  When the candidate arrives the entry port, an officer will scrutinize the information and issue the permit if there are no issues. If an application is rejected, the Canadian authority will send a letter explaining the reason. The student can reply to that letter for further clarification.

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