Student Direct Stream: Apply for a Fast-Track Study Permit

Last updated: 23 March 2022

Student direct stream canada sds

The Student Direct Stream, or SDS, is a program designed to make the process of applying for a Canadian study permit faster and more efficient for some international students.

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Eligibility Requirements for Canada's Student Direct Stream


The SDS program currently serves residents of 14 countries: Antigua and Barbuda, Brazil, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, India, Morocco, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Senegal, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and Vietnam.

Canada aims to process all study permit applications eligible for SDS processing in 20 calendar days.

To submit an application for a Canadian study permit through the SDS program, prospective student applicants must:

  • provide a copy of a letter of acceptance from a Canadian Designated Learning Institution;
  • present a confirmation document for the applicant’s upfront medical exam;
  • prove that they have obtained a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) of $10,000
  • prove that tuition fees for the first year of study are paid; and
  • show proof that they either completed studies at a Canadian curriculum high school or show proof of a language test results demonstrating an IELTS score of 6 in English or NCLC 7 for French.
  • submit the application at a Visa Application Centre (VAC).

An application that is approved will be issued a letter of introduction, or what is officially known as a Point of Entry letter of introduction, and a temporary resident visa to enter Canada.

The letter of introduction, or Point of Entry (POE) letter, is issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) as proof of approval for a study permit and is presented to a visa officer upon arrival in Canada.

Citizens of one of the countries listed above cannot be residing in another country at the time of applying for a study permit through the SDS program.

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