Required Immigration documents

As an international student, you will hold a temporary resident status and are required to have the following documents in which you are responsible for keeping valid at all times during your stay in Canada:

Apply as early as possible for your required documents to make sure you will be able to start your studies as planned.

1. Passport

Your passport is your most important immigration document.  If your passport expires while you are in Canada, all your immigration documents, including your study permit, temporary resident visa and your family’s immigration documents will expire at the same time so it is important to extend your passport before it expires. Processing times vary by country and you should allow for up to 6 months of processing time to avoid interrupting your studies.

2. Study Permit

If you will be studying in Canada for more than six months you must have a valid study permit to remain in Canada while you study as an international student with temporary resident status. 

3. Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) or Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

Citizens of certain countries and territories need a visa to visit or transit Canada. Others need an eTA.

Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)

Depending on your country of citizenship, you may be required to obtain a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) to enter Canada. If you have a valid study permit, a TRV is not needed while you are inside Canada. However, it is highly advisable to keep your TRV valid at all times and extend it before it expires in case of sudden trips abroad.

Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

As of March 15, 2016, IRCC has introduced a new entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals who are flying to or transiting through Canada. This is called an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). Exceptions to this new entry requirement include U.S. citizens, and travelers with a valid Temporary Resident Visa. To learn more about eTA, watch this video in your language by IRCC and get help with your application.

Immigration documents for your family or friends

As an international student at the University of Saskatchewan, you may want to consider inviting your family to visit and/or accompany you during your studies in Canada.

Travelling outside of Canada

If you are planning on travelling outside of Canada for either a few days or a few months there are certain things you need to know or take care of as soon as possible before you leave Canada.

Understanding your immigration status

IRCC

At the International Student and Study Abroad Centre, we understand that the immigration process can be a very confusing and complex process for international students but it is every student’s responsibility to seek the right information and obey the immigration regulations while studying at the University of Saskatchewan.

We encourage all students to actively seek to understand the immigration regulations as they apply to them and to use the available resources and supports provided by the department of the Canadian government called Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) which is responsible for dealing with immigration, refugees and citizenship.  If at any time you have any questions/concerns, please come to ISSAC to speak with one of our International Education Officers.

ISSAC hosts IRCC Information Sessions throughout the academic year. Find our next session in our events calendar and come meet IRCC representatives in person.

Your immigration status in Canada

As an international student, you are responsible for understanding and maintaining your immigration status in accordance with the Canadian immigration regulations.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) recognizes three main immigration statuses: 

  1. Citizen – a legally recognized subject or national of a state or commonwealth, either native or naturalized.
  2. Permanent resident – someone who has been given permanent resident status by immigration to Canada, but is not a Canadian citizen. Permanent residents are citizens of other countries.
  3. Temporary resident – a foreign national who is legally authorized to enter Canada for temporary purposes. IRCC recognizes the following categories of temporary residents: visitors, students, temporary workers and temporary resident permit holders. Temporary residents are subject to various conditions, namely the length of stay in Canada.

As an international student, you hold a temporary resident status.

Taking a leave from studies

If you need to take a leave from your studies because you are Required To Discontinue (RTD) from your program, or because of a personal, medical, financial or any other reason, please come talk to ISSAC to discuss the immigration implications and your leave options, supports and resources.

Following changes to the June 1, 2014 Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) regulations, the University of Saskatchewan is required to report on a bi-annual or ad-hoc basis on your enrolment status. It is your responsibility to maintain enrolment and make timely progress toward the completion of your studies. If you are unable to do so, please review the information below. 

If any of these scenarios pertain to you, please follow the guidance provided.

1. Required to Discontinue (RTD): If you are not registered in your program of study because you are Required to Discontinue, please come talk to ISSAC to discuss the immigration implications this may have and to access or be referred to supports and resources you may need.

2. Undergraduate Students: if you are not registered in your program of study because of a compassionate, parental, medical, or any other reason, speak to an International Education Officer at ISSAC to enquire about the Designated Learning Institution (DLI) Authorized Leave Request for Undergraduate International Students.   

IMPORTANT: if you are approved for a leave from your undergraduate studies, your eligibility for the post-graduation work permit may be affected.

3. Graduate Students: if you are not registered in your program of study for a compassionate, parental or medical leave, or for any other reason, please refer to the College of Graduate and Post-Doctoral Studies Policy Section on Appeals, Leaves of Absence, and Extensions to Time in Program and speak to your graduate administrator in your academic unit.

IMPORTANT: if you are approved for a leave from your graduate studies, your eligibility for the post-graduation work permit may be affected.

4. University of Saskatchewan Language Centre Students: If you wish to take a leave of absence from your program or you wish to leave your program at the Language Centre, you must talk with Lynn Bytyqi, U of S Language Centre Student Advisor

Designated Learning Institution (DLI) Authorized Leave Request for Undergraduate International Students

If you are an undergraduate international student and are not registered/enrolled in your program of study because of a compassionate, parental, medical, or any other reason, speak to an International Education Officer at ISSAC to enquire about the Designated Learning Institution (DLI) Authorized Leave Request for Undergraduate International Students.

Requests for DLI Authorized Leaves for Undergraduate International Students are handled through ISSAC.  An International Education Officer will work with your college to complete the process involved. The decision on whether to grant or deny the leave is made by your college.

A request for leave is only considered for international undergraduate students for immigration purposes. If your leave request has been approved, when the University of Saskatchewan is required to report on your enrolment status to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), you will be reported to IRCC as being on an “authorized leave” from study.

  • Leaves can only be requested for one academic term at a time, up to a maximum of two approved leaves within one academic year (May 1 to April 30).
  • No extensions will be granted and each new request will require new supporting documentation.
  • Retroactive leaves will not be considered – you can only request a leave by the deadline for registration changes in the Fall and Winter terms only.
  • Leaves will not be considered if you are unable to register in an academic term due to outstanding tuition fees.

IMPORTANT: if you are approved for a leave from your undergraduate studies, your eligibility for the post-graduation work permit may be affected.

Reporting Enrolment Status

Canadian Designated Learning Institutions Compliance Reporting

Reporting to IRCC International students’ Enrolment Status

As a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada, the University of Saskatchewan is required to report to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) the enrollment status of international students who have applied for a study permit as of June 1, 2014 and are enrolled in a program of study of at least six months in duration. To learn more about the compliance reporting and student enrollment status options, please visit the IRCC website.

Reporting will take place twice a year at the discretion of IRCC. The University of Saskatchewan will receive an email notification from IRCC when a report becomes available for completion and submission.

The International Student and Study Abroad Centre is taking the lead to report on IRCC the enrolment status of international students. We will be contacting international students if we have questions about their enrollment status at the time of reporting. Please check your PAWS account regularly.

Overview of the Compliance report

The University of Saskatchewan will be completing the Compliance report using the Government of Canada online portal. To overview the structure of the compliance report, please visit the IRCC website here.

There are two types of compliance reporting requests according to IRCC:

  • Periodic verification: The report is sent to the IRCC twice a year usually in the fall and in the winter or spring, subject to the IRCC notice.
  • Ad-hoc verification: Reporting can take place outside of the regular reporting periods upon IRCC’s request.

Need help?

For help or more information, please contact the International Student and Study Abroad Centre. Or speak to an International Education Officer at ISSAC during drop-in hours Monday to Friday, 9 am to noon. No appointment necessary.

We are here to assist you with questions regarding the IRCC Compliance report. All international students who have a study permit must comply with the Government of Canada’s regulations.

Staying in Canada permanently

As an international student, you may choose to apply for permanent residency so that you can stay in Canada permanently as an immigrant. 

ISSAC hosts workshops on permanent residency by provincial and federal government partners, SINP and IRCC, respectively. To see when our next workshop will take place check our events calendar or contact us

Start by exploring the following:

Effective May 1st, 2018, the university will only accept Permanent Resident Cards as proof of permanent residency. A Permanent Resident Card offers many security features and is the recommended official proof of immigration status of the federal government. As a permanent resident, you will normally receive the card within 60 days of becoming a permanent resident. The university will update your student record upon receipt of your card and your immigration status will be updated to reflect the day you became a permanent resident.  

More information on the Permanent Resident Card can be found here:https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/news/video/pr-card.html

PR Card processing time can be found here: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/times/index.asp

Getting help

Use the International Student Guide to learn about life as an international student at the U of S including immigration matters and information on working and living in Canada.

International Student Guide

If you can't find what you need in the International Student Guide contact The International Student and Study Abroad Centre (ISSAC). We are here to help! Drop-in advising is available.

ISSAC