Alberta Opportunity Stream

Last updated: 14 March 2023

Alberta Opportunity Stream

The Alberta Opportunity Stream (AOS) is a pathway to Canadian permanent residence for foreign nationals working in Alberta and international graduates who have completed their studies at an approved Alberta post-secondary institution.

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International Graduates of Alberta Post-secondary Institutions 

If you're an international student, you can benefit from the Alberta Opportunity Stream if you have completed your studies at an approved Alberta post-secondary institution and if you are employed in Alberta on a Post-Graduation Work Permit. 

The Alberta Advantage Immigrant Program (formerly the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program or AINP)  urges student applicants who demonstrate education and skills that are aligned with Alberta's labour market needs to make use of the AOS.

To apply, you must:

  • show that you have at least six months of work experience in Alberta in an occupation related to your field of study (this is less than the requirement for other applicants).
  • meet the same minimum language and income requirements listed on this page.

It is important to note that if you studied in another Canadian province, you will not be eligible for the AAIP as a Post-Graduation Work Permit holder. You can, however, be considered for the program if you have a different type of work permit.

Residency Status and Work Permit Requirements

You must meet the following residency requirements both at the time your application is postmarked and at the time your application is assessed: 

  • have a valid temporary resident status in Canada that authorizes eligibility to work in Canada (i.e. temporary foreign worker);
    • Residency status considered ineligible under the AOS includes:
      • Refugee claimants or individuals involved in a federal appeal or removal process;
      • Temporary residents residing or working in other Canadian provinces; or
      • Foreign nationals residing or working in Canada without a valid temporary resident status.
  • have a valid work permit (not maintained status or restoration status) for an eligible occupation based on either:

Language Proficiency

You must have a minimum of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) score of 4 in either English or French for each language skill: listening, reading, writing and speaking in English or French.

However, if you are applying under NOC code 3413 (Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates) you need a minimum of CLB 7 in English or French. 

If you are applying under NOC 0, A and B occupations, you will need a minimum of CLB 5 in each language skill. 

Education Requirements

At the time of applying for the AOS, you must have completed at least a Canadian high school diploma or equivalent in your country of origin. The highest level of foreign education must be verified through an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) from an IRCC-recognized organization that confirms the education requirements are met.

ECAs are not required if you have a Canadian degree, diploma or certificate from a recognized Canadian post-secondary, technical college or secondary institution. ECAs are also not required if you have work experience that qualifies you for the AAIP in a compulsory or optional trade, and have a valid Alberta Qualification Certificate or trade certificate that is recognized by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.

If you hold a Post-Graduation Work Permit and you're applying for the AOS, you must meet the requirements for graduation for an Alberta Advanced Education approved credential issued by an Alberta Advanced Education-approved post-secondary institution in the province.

Note: As of July 10, 2018, the AAIP says if an applicant who has been admitted to an Alberta Advanced Education approved post-secondary program before April 1, 2019, may be eligible to apply to this stream. 

If you have been admitted to an Alberta Advanced Education approved post-secondary program before April 1, 2019, you may be eligible to apply to this stream.

You will be required to have completed a minimum high school level education to be considered for this stream, unless you hold a Post-Graduation Work Permit.

Learn more about recent AOS education requirement changes. 

Work Experience Requirements 

Note: 'Current occupation' refers to the occupation an individual is working in at the time of the application.

You must meet the following work experience conditions if you are interested in submitting an application to the AOS:

  • You must currently be employed in the occupation listed as your 'current occupation' when submitting to the AAIP .
  • You must be working in an occupation that matches your work experience at the time of applying and at the time the AAIP processes the application.

In order to meet the work experience requirements for the AOS, you must: 

  • have a minimum of 12 months of full-time work experience in the 'current occupation' in Alberta within the last 18 months; or
  • have a minimum of 24 months of full-time work experience in the 'current occupation' in Canada and/or outside Canada within the last 30 months
    • This work experience can be a combination of experience gained in the province of Alberta, in Canada (outside Alberta) and/or outside Canada.

If you are a Post-Graduation Work Permit holder, you:

  • must have a minimum of six months full-time work experience in your current occupation in Alberta within the last 18 months, and
  • must currently be in an occupation related to your field of study in Alberta based on an approved Alberta educational credential from an Advanced Education-approved Alberta post-secondary institution. Also, if you have completed an Advanced Education-approved one-year post-graduate certificate, the occupation must also be related to your previous undergraduate or graduate field of study Canada.
In addition to meeting the time frame requirements above, the work experience:
  • must have been full-time, for a minimum of 30 hours/week (part-time work will not be considered);
  • must have been in the same occupation as the 'current occupation' listed in the application;
  • must have been authorized by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and with valid temporary resident status if completed in Alberta or Canada;
  • cannot be completed while studying in Canada and doing co-op work placements or internships as part of a study program.*

*If you hold a Post-Graduation Work Permit and have work experience from paid co-op placements as part of study program at an Alberta post-secondary institution, you may use that experience as part of the work experience requirement. The work experience must meet the following conditions:

  1. The paid co-op work term must have been full-time (minimum of 30 hours per week).
  2. The work experience must be directly related to a Post-Graduation Work Permit holder's 'current occupation'.
  3. The work experience must have been in Alberta. 

Job Offer Requirements

To apply for the AOS, you must have a valid job offer from an Alberta employer to work in your current occupation. You must be working full-time for the employer in Alberta. Also, you must possess the required licensing, registration or certification to work in your current occupation in Alberta. 

The job offer must:

  • be for continuous, paid work, full-time work, defined as a minimum of 30 hours/week for 12 months or more for an eligible AAIP occupation;
  • be signed by the applicant and the Alberta employer;
  • offer employment for 12 months or more;
  • offer work in the applicant's current occupation; and
  • offer work in an eligible AAIP occupation for which an applicant has a work permit that meets the AAIP work permit requirements. 

Job offers for the following conditions are considered ineligible:

  • part-time employees, regardless of their working hours;
  • independent contractors, business owners or temporary agency workers, including individuals listed as Directors, Shareholders or Agents of the Alberta employer on the Corporate Registry System (CORES);
  • employees who work in Alberta in a place of employment that is not zoned for commercial or industrial operations, such as a home-based business; or
  • employees who do not work on premises in Alberta, such as those who work in a “virtual” location or serve the employer by telecommuting from a location outside Alberta.

Occupation Requirements

At the time of applying, you must be working in an eligible occupation in Alberta that matches your previous work experience. 

If you hold a Post-Graduation Work Permit, with an with an approved Alberta Advanced Education approved post-secondary credential issued by an Advanced Education approved Alberta public and private post-secondary institution, you need to be employed in an occupation related to your field of study in Alberta. 

If you have completed an Alberta approved one year post-graduate certificate, you must be employed in an occupation related to your previous undergraduate or graduate field of study outside Canada.

Most occupations under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill levels 0, A, B, C and D are eligible under the AAIP . 

Ineligible Occupations List

The AAIP provides two ineligible occupations lists for applicants to the AOS. The first list applies to all applicants to the stream and the second list applies to all applicants to the AOS who are on a Post-Graduation Work Permit. 

If you are working in any of the following applications, you may be ineligible to apply for the AOS.

NOC Skill Level
Occupation Title
School Principals and Administrators of Elementary and Secondary Education
Managers in Social, Community and Correctional Services
Fire Chiefs and Senior Firefighting Officers
Escort Agency Managers, Massage Parlour Managers
Secondary School Teachers
Elementary School and Kindergarten Teachers 
Professional Occupations in Religion 
Authors and Writers
Musicians and Singers
Actors and Comedians
Painters, Sculptors and Other Visual Artists
Court Officers and Justices of the Peace
Dental Laboratory Bench Workers
Early Childhood Educators and Assistants (only those without certification as a Child Development Worker (Level 2) or Child Development Supervisor (Level 3) through Alberta Children's Services – Child Care Staff Certification Office)*
Other Instructors
Other Religious Occupations
Other Performers, n.e.c.
Artisans and Craftspersons
Real Estate Agents and Salespersons
Home Child Care Providers
Home Support Workers, Housekeepers and Related Occupations
Elementary and Secondary School Teacher Assistants
Casino Occupations
Other Personal Service Occupations
Taxi and Limousine Drivers and Chauffeurs
Trappers and Hunters
Other Sales Related Occupations
Operators and Attendants in Amusement, Recreation and Sport
Other Service Support Occupations, n.e.c.
Harvesting Labourers
Landscaping and Grounds Maintenance Labourers
Aquaculture and Marine Harvest Labourers
Mine Labourers

There are additional occupations that are considered ineligible for applicants on a Post-Graduation Work Permit. These occupations are not in demand in Alberta and can be filled by Albertans and Canadians. If your occupation is on the Government of Canada’s list of high-wage and low-wage occupations in the province of Alberta, you are not eligible to apply. 

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