Study and work permits

If you're not a Canadian citizen or Permanent Resident of Canada, you must have a valid post-secondary study permit to attend university in Canada.

A study permit is the official document granted by the Government of Canada that gives you permission to study in Canada. Visit Waterloo's Student Success Office website to learn about immigration documents and how to apply for them.

We encourage you to apply for your study permit as soon as possible because application processing times can vary. You can check the estimated processing times on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website.

Co-op work permit

If you've been admitted to a co-op program, please apply for your co-op work permit together with your study permit application using your Letter of Acceptance from Waterloo. Highlight all components of the Letter of Acceptance which pertain to your co-op program.

If you're not issued co-op work permit approval or a co-op work permit at the port-of-entry into Canada, you can still apply for a co-op work permit once you're in Canada. We recommend applying right away after arriving at Waterloo, as processing times from within Canada can be 4+ months.

You need your co-op work permit for all co-op work terms and you must have it before starting your first one, which can be as early as January for some Engineering programs. If your program includes a degree-required internship, you can apply for your co-op work permit from within Canada after you arrive.

Proof of payment for study permits

As part of the study permit application process, Canadian visa offices in some countries may require proof that you have paid your tuition fees.