Visitors, study permit holders, and work permit holders are considered temporary residents. The Federal Government and the Provincial Governments in Canada have developed various pathways to allow such temporary residents to become “Permanent Residents” (PR) and remain in Canada “permanently” as a first step towards becoming Canadian citizens.
International students studying at the University of Alberta usually have the option to apply for a PR under one of these common economic immigration programs:
Federal Economic Programs managed through the “Express Entry” online system:
Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP paper application):
To comprehend the requirements for these programs; you first need to understand:
Express Entry (EE): An online system used to manage PR applications for eligible skilled workers under the Federal Economic Programs
National Occupation Classification (NOC): A system used in Canada to classify jobs/occupations. For immigration purposes, the main groups that are eligible under the Federal Economic Programs, are those with skill types 0 (management jobs), A (professional jobs usually requiring university degree) or B (technical jobs usually requiring college diploma).
Below is information on the above-listed programs to help determine the right program for you:
In addition to these requirements, all applicants applying under the previous programs have to:
- Be admissible to Canada
- Plan to live outside the province of Quebec (note: in the case of applying under the Alberta Opportunity Stream; you need to be living in the province of Alberta)
Frequently asked questions: Express Entry
I have a job offer using my Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP); will I get the additional 200 points towards my CRS score?
No. In most cases, a valid job offer must be supported by a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), which the employer would have to apply for through Employment and Social Development Canada/Service Canada. The job offer you get because you hold a PGWP is LMIA exempt thus not considered “eligible” for additional points under the CRS.
What happens after I create an Express Entry profile?
What am I supposed to do while I’m in the Express Entry pool?
- Start preparing the required supporting documents. It can take time to secure, such as police certificates (for you and any of your family members who are 18 years old or older) and employment letters (more information on supporting documents below).
- Keep your profile up to date (e.g., you start a new job, get married/divorced, adopt/have a new child)
- Improve your CRS score to increase your chances of being invited (e.g., find a valid job offer, improve your language score, and gain more relevant work experience).
What happens if I get an invitation to apply for PR?
Accept your invitation and apply for PR through EE. Your EE invitation remains valid for 60 days.
The online PR application form and all other supporting documents need to be uploaded within that time; supporting documents include:
- Passport or travel document
- Language test results
- Proof of your work experience: letter(s) from previous employer(s) confirming the length of your experience, job title, and duties (duties must reflect most of the main duties listed under respective NOC)
- Education credential assessment report if:
- You’re applying through FSW program OR
- You want points for the education you got outside Canada
- Written job offer from an employer in Canada (if you have one)
- Police certificates
- Medical exams (through a designated Panel Physician)
- Proof of funds
How much does it cost to apply through Express Entry?
There are no fees to set up your Express Entry profile; however, you are required to pay the fees for the language test and, if applicable, the credential assessment report
If you receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA), you need to pay:
- The non-refundable processing fees for you and your family members upon submitting your PR application online ($550/adult and $150/ dependent child)
- The right of permanent residence fee upon receiving PR approval and before any PR documents are issued ($490/person excluding dependent children)
How long does the process take?
You cannot determine how long it takes from the time you set up your EE profile till the time you get an ITA; however, the higher your CRS score the better chance you have of getting an ITA. You can compare your CRS score with past minimum CRS scores of lowest-ranked candidates invited to evaluate your chances.
Once you receive an ITA; you have 60 days to submit your PR application. Once submitted, it usually takes about 6 months to process your PR application
How long will the EE profile remain active?
It automatically expires within 12 months of submitting your EE profile, after which, it will be removed from the system
You need to create a new profile to be considered under EE, so we suggest to print screenshots of your profile to make it easier to re-enter your data the second time
Will my work experience during the time I was studying full time at the University of Alberta count towards my CRS score for Express Entry?
No. Work experience gained while studying full time is not considered “eligible” Canadian work experience and is not considered when your CRS score is calculated (see section 15(7) of the respective Ministerial Instructions)