Eligibility Criteria for SDS Canada

2 mins read4.3K Views 3 Comments
Piyush Kohli
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Apr 7, 2020 12:56 IST

Through the SDS Canada, prospective international students can get study permit faster. IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada), the department that looks after the issues of immigration, refugees and matters related to Canadian citizenship. SDS applications are processed by the IRCC usually within 20 days, if the candidate is fulfilling all the eligibility requirements set under the SDS rule. Under the Student Direct Stream (SDS) program, it is mandatory for the candidates need to submit their application electronically. The paper applications are processed under the study permit application stream.

International students who want to apply under the SDS program are required to meet the eligibility requirements that comes under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) and Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR).

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Eligibility Criteria for SDS Program

Candidates need to submit the following set of documents to be eligible for the SDS application processing:

  • Recent educational transcripts.
  • Letter of acceptance from the Designated Learning Institute (DLI).
  • English Language Proficiency Test: Candidates must have scored a minimum IELTS score of 6 bands in each module for both UG and PG courses.
  • Proof of a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC): Students need show a Guaranteed Investment of Certificate (GIC) of CAN$10000. You can buy this from any bank which is listed on the IRCC SDS website or insured by the Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC).

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GIC should fulfil the following criteria:

  • Once the student buys the GIC, the bank gives the GIC certificate, a letter of attestation, the Investment Balance Confirmation or the Investment Directions Confirmation to the student.
  • The funds are secured in account which a student cannot access and are only released once the student arrive in Canada.
  • Once the student lands in Canada, the bank must validate their identity before releasing the funds.
  • The student receives an initial amount once they identify themselves. Students receive the remaining funds in monthly or bimonthly instalments.

Proof of full first year tuition fee:

Following can be used as proof:

  • Tuition fee receipt from your DLI.
  • Bank receipt indicating that you have paid tuition fee to your DLI.
  • Official letter from DLI confirming tuition fee payment.

Proof of medical examination: Students need to undergo a medical examination if they want to stay for more than 6 months.

Candidates should know that incomplete applications are refused straight away. In case the biometric fee is not paid, the visa officer can ask to submit the fee. Excepting biometric fee, if the application processing fee is not paid or is not included in the application, then the application is refused.

Apart from this, candidates who are going to pursue a bridging program at a DLI before the commencement of their main program may be eligible to apply under the SDS program, however, they should meet the eligibility criteria for the program.

Status of family members of the study permit candidates under the SDS program

Family members of the candidates who applied under the SDS program are eligible for concurrent processing if they also apply at the same time when the candidates applies for it. Temporary residence applications of the family members of the applicants needs to be submitted online as part of a family grouping.

Learn more about the SDS Program:

About the Author
Piyush Kohli
Study Abroad Expert

With a plethora of knowledge of the education domain, Piyush Kohli has been involved with study abroad for over 5 years and counting. He comes with prior experience on the complexities of the study abroad applicatio... Read Full Bio




Reva Chaudhary

2 years ago

Hi, I paid for my first-semester fee and now I am going to start my winter semester, so just before starting the winter semester, I paid FOR my winter semester fee. Will I be eligible for SDS? I paid my first-year fee but in installments.

Reply to Reva Chaudhary


Navpreet kaur

2 years ago

Can we show a bank loan as a proof of funds?

Reply to Navpreet kaur


Piyush KohliStudy Abroad Expert

2 years ago

Hi Navneet, yes you can show bank loan as proof of funds.


Gulshan Kumar

2 years ago

Hi Piyush,
I have BCA with 61% & has 3 yrs of work exp. (1 yr in the field to pursue PGD) & IELTS 6 each. If the college is accepting with said scores, can i apply under SDS with the help of edu loan and poor financial background of parents? As i don't have to show financial papers in case of SDS?

Reply to Gulshan Kumar


Piyush KohliStudy Abroad Expert

2 years ago

Hi Gulshan, you need to show the minimum finance as required under SDS rules in order to apply through SDS.

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