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Canada announces important new measures on post-graduation work permit eligibility for students beginning programs online

Canadian immigration officials have announced three new elements of flexibility for international students beginning their studies online from outside of Canada. The new guidance allows students to engage in online study through April 2021, and, with some conditions, to count those online courses toward eligibility for a post-graduation work permit in Canada.

Three changes are being introduced:

1. Students may now study online from abroad until April 30, 2021, provided that at least 50% of their programme is eventually completed in Canada to be eligible for the post-graduation work permit(PGWP) 

2. Students who have enrolled in a program that is between 8 and 12 months in length, with a start date from May to September 2020, will be able to complete their entire program online from abroad and still, be eligible for a post-graduation work permit.

3. Students who have enrolled in a program with a start date from May to September 2020 and study online up to April 30, 2021, and who graduate from more than one eligible program of study, may be able to combine the length of their programs of study when they apply for a post-graduation work permit in the future, as long as 50% of their total studies are completed in Canada.

In order to be eligible for any of these options, students must have submitted a study permit application before beginning studies in spring, summer, or fall 2020, or the January 2021 semester.

Source: IRCC