FAQs about Canada


Q: Will I get a dedicated counselor for the entire application and visa process?
A: Yes. Once you sign up with Focus Education, you will be assigned a dedicated counselor who will guide you through the entire process.

Q: Does Focus Education have any special relationship with Irish institutions?
A: Yes. Focus Education has relationships with a number of Canadian institutions, giving you the benefit of improved turnaround times for application processing and assessment.

Q: How will Focus Education help me?
A:Focus Education has been sending students to Ireland and other countries for the last 5 years. Focus Education has trained counselors who have got experience and expertise to assist students. We provide you with:

  • Professional counseling and information on various courses and institutions
  • Application Forms – Brochures – Guides etc.
  • Admission Assistance
  • Visa Counseling
  • Travel and accommodation arrangement
  • Procuring Residential Facilities
  • Student Loan


Q: What types of accommodation are available?
A:Many schools offer on-campus housing ranging from shared condominiums to dormitory-style housing. The cost for these may or may not include a meal plan and or other utilities such as phone and Internet connection. If you choose to live off-campus, prices may be lower but will include the additional cost of furnishings, hydro, electricity and/or other miscellaneous expenses.


Q: What are the admission requirements for Canadian universities?
A: Each Canadian university sets its own policy regarding admission requirements. It would be advisable to identify which universities in Canada offer the program which interests you, and then contact those universities directly regarding their admission requirements.

Q: Will the certification I receive after finishing my study program be recognized in other countries?
A: A certificate, diploma or degree from an accredited Canadian institution will be recognized by employers and institutions around the world. To find out if the institution where you plan to study is accredited, you should contact the university directly.


Q: Do I need special clothing for the winter in Canada?
A:Canada has four different seasons and we highly recommend you bring clothing for all seasons. During the winter months (November to March) you will need warm clothes, a winter jacket, warm hat, scarf, some gloves and winter boots. All buildings and houses are heated during the winter to about 20ºC indoor temperature.In Canada, most schools are in session between September and June:Season: Fall
When: September to November
Temperature variation: Between 20ºC and 5ºC
Average: 10ºCSeason: Winter
When: November to March
Temperature variation: Between 5ºC and -25ºC
Average: -10ºCSeason: Spring
When: April to June
Temperature variation: Between 5ºC and 20ºC
Average: 10ºC Season: Summer
When: June to August
Temperature variation: Between 20ºC and 30ºC
Average: 25ºC

Q: What is the currency in Canada?
A:The currency in Canada is the Canadian dollar.


Q: Can I get a scholarship or bursary to study in Canada?
A: Many educational institutions in Canada have scholarships for international students. You will need to contact the institution directly to find out more about the scholarships or bursaries they have available for international students.

Q: I would like to study English or French in Canada. Are there awards or grants available for studying a language in Canada?
A: Unfortunately, there are no grants or awards available for language study programs (English or French). Awards are available to international students only for masters or doctoral programs (except for some programs, namely medicine and tourism). Some language schools do provide promotional arrangements.

Q: Are there any grants or awards available for studying at the primary, secondary, pre-university or undergraduate levels?
A: Unfortunately, there are no grants or awards available to international students for study at these levels. There are only opportunities for awards at the graduate level (masters and doctoral levels) .

Q: Are there any grants or awards for studying at the Masters or Doctoral level in Canada?
A:Yes, the Government of Canada Awards are announced every year around September; these are administered by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The competition is open until the first week of December and an average of fifteen awards are offered each year. There are other institutions and government departments that may offer awards or supplementary assistance based on the study discipline. Below is a list of some organizations that offer awards (please note this list is non-comprehensive):

  • Quebec Government Awards: Awards for research, post-doctoral studies, and masters and doctoral programs (All areas except MBA, tourism and languages)
  • Doctoral research scholarships
  • Postdoctoral fellowship scholarships
  • Short-term research or professional development scholarships
  • Visiting Fellowships in Canadian Government Laboratories: Awarded to scientists and engineers for research visits.
  • Trudeau Foundation: Awards are offered for doctoral studies in the area of human rights and social justice, responsible citizenship, Canada and the world, and the relationship between man and his natural environment.
  • Organization of American States: Awards for masters and doctoral studies and research in member countries of the OAS in the areas of education, environment and sustainable development, government and democracy, science and technology, reduction of poverty and social development, economic development, and trade.


Q: What is permanent residence in Canada?
A: Obtaining “permanent residence” or “permanent resident status” in Canada is also known as “immigrating to Canada” or becoming a “landed immigrant”. The successful end result of the Immigration process is the issuance of an immigrant visa. Persons to whom an immigrant visa has been issued must present themselves to an Immigration officer at one of Canada’s official ports of entry in order to become landed immigrants.

Q: What benefits do I have if I am a permanent resident of Canada?
A:Canadian permanent residents/landed immigrants and citizens enjoy all of the same rights and privileges (i.e. free health care, free elementary and secondary education, etc.) with three (3) exceptions:

  • Permanent residents cannot vote;
  • Permanent residents cannot hold a Canadian passport;
  • Permanent residents can be deported for certain criminal convictions.

Q: How do I keep my Permanent Resident (PR) status?
A:To keep your status as a permanent resident, you must have been physically present in Canada for a minimum of 730 days (not necessarily consecutive days) within the five years following the date on which you were granted permanent resident status. In some cases, you may accumulate residency days while outside Canada.


Q: Will Focus Education help me with pre-departure formalities?
A:Yes. Focus Education will organize a pre-departure orientation program which will help you in your transition to life as a student in the Canada. The program will address topics ranging from cross-cultural issues to ticketing, medical insurance, foreign exchange rates, documents you should take with your while traveling to the Canada, arriving to college or university, orientation at college or university, insurance policy, airport pick-up and accommodation booking, etc.


Q: What are the tuition fees?
A: Tuition fees for international students are higher than for domestic students.

  • The cost of study will depend on the course but most international fees start at about CA$15,000 (£9,300) per year.
  • The Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC) has a useful website illustrating the costs at different universities across the country.
  • Scholarships are available for international students at undergraduate level and there are also specific scholarships for sporting and academic achievements. Find out more from the Canadian Commonwealth Scholarship Program.
  • The Canadian government and other organizations also offer scholarships for postgraduate and doctoral study.
  • Tuition fees are more expensive for international students than for Canadian nationals. However the average cost of courses in Canada is generally lower than that in other English-speaking countries such as Australia and the U.S.
  • A full-time Masters degree in environmental science at the University of Toronto will cost an international student $34,000 (£20,365).
  • Tuition fees are more expensive for international students than for Canadian nationals. However the average cost of courses in Canada is generally lower than that in other English-speaking countries such as Australia and the U.S.
  • A full-time Masters degree in environmental science at the University of Toronto will cost an international student $34,000 (£20,365).

Q: What are other costs of living in Canada?
A: Student life isn’t all about studying. Whether you want to head out with friends, travel to the other side of the country, or explore the many cultural events our cities have to offer, you’ll need to set aside some extra spending money. Some international students choose to study and work in Canada to help cover the cost of these extra expenses.

Q: How Much Does It Cost to Study Abroad in Canada?
A:Studying in Canada is a rewarding investment in your future with access to a premier education, exciting cross-cultural experiences, and a globally recognized degree. Not unlike going to school in your own country, university or college in Canada for international students requires some degree of planning and financial commitment before you arrive, and while you are here.


Q: Do I need a Study Permit (Student Visa)?
A: Anyone planning to study for more than six months in Canada needs a Study Permit. If you plan to study for less than six months but may decide to stay longer, you should apply for a Study Permit before coming to Canada for your studies. International students from certain countries may also need to obtain a temporary resident visa in addition to the study permit.

Q: What is a temporary resident visa?
A: A temporary resident visa is an official document issued by a Canadian visa office. It is placed in your passport to show that you have met the requirements for admission to Canada as a temporary resident. Depending on your citizenship, you may need a temporary resident visa to enter Canada.

Q: How do I obtain a Study Permit for Canada?
A: International Students must apply to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) for a Study Permit once they have received an acceptance letter from a qualified Canadian academic institution. If you have received this acceptance letter, you may use our Study Permit Application kit to prepare your application. Students will have to show that they have sufficient funds to study and live in Canada, and in some cases undergo Medical Examinations and provide Police Clearance Certificates.

Q: How do I apply for a temporary resident visa?
A: If you need a temporary resident visa in addition to your study permit, you do not need to submit a separate application or pay an additional fee when you apply for your study permit at a visa office. The visa office will issue your temporary resident visa at the same time as your study permit if your application is accepted.

Q: When should I apply for my study permit?
A: You should apply as soon as you receive your letter of acceptance from the educational institution (school, college, university). The time needed to process an application to study in Canada may be different depending on the visa office.

Q: What if I want to study in Quebec?
A: International Students who have been accepted into a qualifying educational institution in Quebec must obtain approval from the immigration authorities of the Province of Quebec. To study in Quebec, you will need to first apply for a CAQ (Certificat d’acceptation du Québec) before you apply for a study permit.

Q: How do I pay the fee for a study permit?
A: You must pay a processing fee with your application. The fee will not be refunded, even if your application is refused. Check the website of the visa office where you submit your application to find out the options available to you to pay the fee.

Q: How long is my Study Permit valid for?
A: A Study Permit is valid for the duration of your study program. Should you need to extend the validity of your Study Permit, you must file an Application to Change the Conditions or Extend Your Stay in Canada with Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

Q: Will my study permit need to be renewed?
A:Expiry dates of study permits can vary. Often permits are valid for the duration of the program of study. To successfully renew a study permit, the student must have a valid passport and, if applicable, a valid CAQ (a Certificate of Acceptance required to study in Quebec). Students should start the renewal process at least two to three months prior to the expiry date.

Q: Can I work while studying in Canada?
A: Yes, with certain conditions. International Students holding a valid Study Permit may work on the campus of their educational institution without a Work Permit. However, in order to work off the campus, you must apply to CIC for an Off-Campus Work Permit.

Q: What is an Off-Campus Work Permit?
A: An Off-Campus Work Permit allows International Students to be employed off the campus of the educational institution they are attending in Canada.

Q: Who is eligible for an Off-Campus Work Permit?
A: International Students with valid Study Permits who are registered in a participating educational institution are eligible for Off-Campus Work Permits, if they are in satisfactory academic standing at that institution. In addition, students must have been studying full-time for six months out of the year preceding their application for an Off-Campus Work Permit.

Q: What is satisfactory academic standing?
A: Satisfactory Academic Standing is determined differently by each academic institution. Students must make sure that they meet the requirements for satisfactory academic standing at the institution they are currently studying at in order to be eligible for an off-campus work permit.

Q: Who is not eligible for an Off-Campus Work Permit?
A: International Students who are receiving awards or scholarships from Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade or from the Canadian International Development Agency are not eligible for an Off-Campus Work Permit. Students participating in the Canada-China Scholars Exchanges Program, in the Organization of American States Fellowships Program Exchange or in the Equal Opportunity Scholarship Program, Canada-Chile may not apply for an Off-Campus Work Permit. Visiting students are also ineligible, as well as students who are registered in English or French as a Foreign Language programs, even if they are enrolled in participating institutions.

Q: Can my spouse work in Canada while I study?
A: Your spouse or common-law partner may apply for a Work Permit if you are a full-time student at an authorized institution with a valid study permit.

Q: Can I work in Canada after finishing my studies there?
A: The Post-Graduation Work Program allows most international students to gain Canadian work experience upon graduation of a program which is at least eight months in duration. Please note that you will need a Work Permit to work in Canada after finishing your program of study. This Post-Graduation Work Program is a very good option for people who have studied in Canada because it may lead to being eligible for Canadian Permanent Residency under the Canadian Experience Class or Quebec Experience Class categories of immigration.

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