Students Visa, Work Permit, CAQ, CSQ


All information in this section is taken from the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website and the Quebec Department of Immigration, Francisation and Integration (MIFI) website. if there are differences, IT is the IRCC and MIFI that prevail. For all requests from IRCC, please note that processing times may vary. It is therefore important to check processing times before applying.
The information contained on this site does not constitute legal advice and does not engage the College of MLC.

CAQ and study permit

International students who come to study at MLC College must obtain a CAQ and the letter of acceptance of the application for a study permit prior to their arrival in Canada. Some people are exempt from having a CAQ and a study permit to study, among other things, those who come to study in a program of study for up to six (6) months. International students who come to study in a program of study of more than six (6) months (with exceptions) must therefore obtain a study permit regardless of the length of their stay.

During your studies, you will probably need to renew your CAQ and study permit.

Apply for a CAQ and study permit


What to do before your first term of study

International students who come to study in a program of study of 6 months or more as well as exchange students for two semesters must obtain valid study authorizations to study in Quebec. The process is done prior to arrival in Canada.


Request of Quebec Certificate of Acceptance

Once the letter of admission has been received, the first step is to apply for a Certificate of Acceptance of Quebec (CAQ) with the Department of Immigration, Francisation and Integration of Quebec (MIFI).
For more information on the process, visit the MIFI website. If you have any questions, you can contact MIFI.
When you receive your letter of approval from the CAQ, you can apply for a study permit.
We recommend keeping a photocopy or scan of the submitted documentation and requesting a follow-up number for all your mailings. This way, you will have proof of the sending and receiving of your documents.


Application for study permit

The application for a study permit is submitted outside Canada to the Canadian visa office in your country of citizenship, in your country of residence or in the country where you were legally admitted. The application can be made online (if you are eligible) or paper.

Processing times vary depending on where and when you apply. It is therefore important to check the processing times before applying. For more information on the process, visit the IRCC website.

Preparing for your arrival

Once you have received the letter of acceptance of your study permit application, you can arrive in Canada. The study permit should be issued to you upon arrival in Canada upon presentation of this letter and other documents confirming that you are coming to study in Canada (CAQ and admission letter from the College of MLC in Montreal). It is therefore important to wait for the acceptance letter before arriving in Canada.

When you arrive, make sure that the information on your study permit is accurate. If you are eligible for work on campus or off-campus, it should include it on your study permit. Check to see if you are eligible for work. Your study permit should have the same expiry date as your CAQ unless your passport expires before, at which point the expiry date will be the same as that of your passport.

Spouses of facts, accompanying spouses

Is your spouse accompanying you during your study stay in Canada? He or she may be eligible for a work permit in order to work in Canada during your study stay. The validity of the work permit will be the same as that of your study permit.

Take the time to read your CAQ approval letter, your CAQ and your study permit, important information about the conditions to be met during your stay can be found there.


Depositing your documents

You must file your CAQ and study permit as well as your passport and birth certificate at the personalized welcome for new international students at the MLC College in Montreal, which takes place at the beginning of the term. After this date, you can file a copy of your documents directly with the Registrar.

WARNING: You are required to have valid study authorizations for the entire term in which you are enrolled. If not, the College may cancel your term.

Look at the expiry date of your immigration documents, you will need to renew them (if necessary) before their expiry date.


Renewal of the CAQ and study permit

Your CAQ and/or study permit will expire in a few months, so you need to start the process to renew them. It is suggested that you start the process at least 3 months before your study permit expires.


Biometric data collection

What is biometrics?

The collection of biometric data consists of taking photographs and fingerprints. It is a reliable and accurate tool to confirm a person's identity. More than 70 countries around the world use biometric data in their immigration programs.

Who is affected by this new stage in the immigration process?

  • From 31 July 2018: foreign students from Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
  • From December 31, 2018: International students from Asia, Asia-Pacific and America.

For more information on biometrics, visit the Government of Canada Assistance Centre.


Renewal of the CAQ and study permit

For your CAQ, you can contact The MIFI to get a duplicate of your CAQ.

For your study permit, you can apply to replace an immigration document.

Don't forget to check the processing time.

Student work and post-graduation

During your studies, you may be able to work on and off campus if you meet the eligibility criteria. If you have an internship to do, you will need a work permit to do so. Once you have completed your studies, you may be eligible for the post-graduation work permit.

CSQ and permanent residence

Do you want to settle in Quebec permanently after your studies? If this is the case, you may, under certain conditions, be admitted to apply for the Quebec Certificate of Selection (CSQ) as part of the Quebec Experience Program (QEP) at the end of your studies. This program is a simplified method for obtaining a CSQ, intended for graduate students with a degree from a Quebec university. It is also possible to obtain the CSQ through the regular program if you qualify. Once you have obtained the CSQ, you will be able to apply for permanent residence in Canada.