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Student Direct Stream

If you’re looking to study in Canada then you may be able to get your Canadian study permit faster through the Student Direct Stream (SDS).

To learn more about the Student Direct Stream, study permits, and how to study in Canada, contact one of our expert Canadian immigration lawyers via 0333 305 9375 or online today.


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    What is the Student Direct Stream (SDS)?

    The Student Direct Stream (SDS) is a fast-track study permit processing program for students applying to a post-secondary designated learning institution (DLI) in Canada.

    The SDS provides a simpler, and faster process for students who plan to study at a DLI. The SDS allows international students to apply for their study permits online, and get approved within 20 days.

    The Student Direct Stream is only available to students applying for a study permit, who plan to study at a DLI.

    A DLI is a post-secondary educational institution that has been designated by the Government of Canada as being eligible for full-time studies. To find out if your school qualifies as a DLI and whether or not it offers SDS processing times, visit CIC’s website.

    Eligibility Requirements for the Student Direct Stream

    The eligibility requirements for the Student Direct Stream are as follows:

    1. You must be a legal resident of one of the eligible countries.
    2. You must meet all the regular eligibility requirements for a study permit.
    3. You must have a valid test result from IELTS or évaluation de français (TEF).
    4. Get a medical exam before applying (if required).
    5. Get a police certificate if you need one.
    6. You must have enough available funds to support yourself in Canada.

    If either of the following applies to you, you may need a medical exam.

    • You have lived or travelled for six months in designated countries or territories before immigrating to Canada.
    • You plan to pursue a career in the health field, primary or secondary education, or child or elder care.

    You may also need to provide additional documents depending on the country from where you are applying.

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    Which Countries Are Eligible for the Student Direct Stream?

    The Student Direct Stream is available to students from the following countries:

    • Antigua and Barbuda
    • Brazil
    • China
    • Colombia
    • Costa Rica
    • India
    • Morocco
    • Pakistan
    • Peru
    • Philippines
    • Senegal
    • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
    • Trinidad and Tobago
    • Vietnam

    Documents Needed for the Student Direct Stream

    Following are the documents needed for the Student Direct Stream:

    1. Proof of a language test score
    2. A Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) for $20,635 minimum (previously $10,000)
    3. Proof of payment of tuition fees for the first year
    4. An acceptance letter from a post-secondary DLI
    5. A Provincial Attestation Letter (PAL) from a DLI (unless exempt)
    6. Latest transcript from a secondary or post-secondary educational institution
    7. Proof of completion of a medical exam

    Aside from meeting the basic criteria for SDS processing, applicants must submit the following documentation as part of their e-application:

    • Application for Study Permit Made Outside Canada (IMM1294)
    • Family Information form [IMM 5645]
    • Proof of identity
    • Photocopy of the information and data page of the applicant’s passport

    The officers may ask for more information from you if they need it, in order to make a decision on your application.

    Our expert immigration lawyers can assist you with your SDS Visa application. CONTACT US

    Student Direct Stream Application Cost

    The application fee for a Study Permit through the Student Direct Stream is the same as that for a regular Study Permit application: CAD 150.

    Depending on your situation, you may need to pay for medical exams, police certificates, language testing, and visa application-related services. You may also need to pay a fee of 85 CAD for your biometrics (which covers the cost of collecting fingerprints and a digital photo).

    Student Direct Stream Processing Time

    Student Direct Stream processing times are currently averaging about 20 days.

    You should expect your application to be processed within 20 calendar days or less if you submit all the required documents and information on time.

    Processing times may vary depending on the type of application you submit, whether it’s complete, how easily IRCC can verify your information, how long you take to respond to IRCC requests or concerns, and other factors.

    How to Apply for a Student Direct Stream?

    To get your study permit faster, you must apply online using the Student Direct Stream. There is no paper application for this program.

    Before you apply online, make sure you have the following:

    • A computer and an Internet connection
    • A scanner or digital camera to create electronic copies of your documents
    • A valid credit or debit card to make a payment

    To start the application process, you must select your country from the drop-down list on this page, then follow the mentioned instructions.

    Creating an online account is the first step in applying for an SDS. You will use this account to pay fees, submit your application, and for checking the status of your application.

    Find out how we can assist with your SDS Visa application.

    What Happens After You Apply?

    When you submit your application and pay your fees (including the biometrics fee), IRCC will send you a letter that instructs you to give your biometrics.

    You must bring this letter when you go to give your biometrics. You also need to bring your valid passport. You have up to 30 days to give your biometrics in person at a Visa Application Centre.

    After that, if your application is approved, you will receive a letter of introduction from the IRCC and electronic travel authorization (eTA) or a visitor visa depending on which one you need.

    When you arrive at the port of entry, an officer will check your documents to make sure you meet the requirements for entering Canada. If everything is in order, the officer will print out a study permit for you and give it to you. Make sure you have all your documents before coming to the port of entry.

    If your application is refused, you will receive a letter explaining why it was refused. If you have any questions, you can contact the IRCC office that sent the refusal letter.

    You can also ask the financial institution that issued your GIC to get a refund.

    Call us for further assistance with your Canadian immigration matter.

    How Can IAS Help?

    If you’re planning on applying under the Student Direct Stream, IAS can help you with every step of the way—from gathering the necessary paperwork and organizing it into an application package to preparing your documents for submission.

    We’ll even help you find out if you’re eligible for other types of immigration programs that might be right for you!

    We know how difficult it is to navigate all the information out there, so we want to make sure that we’re doing everything possible to give our clients the best chance at success in Canada.

    For immediate help or assistance, call us on 0333 305 9375. We’re here to help you in person, via the phone, or online.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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