On January 22, 2024, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC) announced a number of updates and measures to the International Student Program. A cap will be placed on the intake of outside Canada study permit applications, resulting in approximately 360,000 approved permits. The number allocated to British Columbia or SFU is not known at this time.

The following updates are highlighted into two parts for undergraduates and graduate students. Note that the information on this page is current as of February 2, 2024.

Undergraduate Students:

1.     Beginning January 22, 2024, unless exempted, most international students must include an attestation letter with their outside Canada study permit applications.

2.     Current students applying to extend or change the conditions of their study permits within Canada are exempt from having an attestation letter.

3.     In the weeks ahead, spouses/common-law partners of undergraduate students will no longer qualify for open work permits. IRCC has yet to announce the implementation date.

Graduate Students:

1.     Master’s and PhD students are exempt from the study permit intake cap and requirement of attestation letter for their study permit applications.

2.     Starting on February 15, 2024, a longer, 3-year post-graduation work permit will be available to those who are graduating from a master’s degree program that is less than 2 years and who meet all other PGWP eligibility criteria. For undergraduate students and other short-term graduate level programs (e.g. graduate certificate/diploma), there are no changes to the eligibility criteria for the PGWP. 

For more information about how the above updates may impact you, review our News and Updates section.  We will update the page with new details as they become available.

If your study permit application is delayed, you may consider arriving late or applying to defer your admission.


If you are new to Canada, we do not recommend missing more than the first week of classes as it is very difficult to catch up. Contact your professors or an academic advisor for advice.

If you need to apply to defer your admission, please see the deferral information on the Admissions website. You should also refer to the deadlines  information online to see course drop dates, tuition and enrollment deadlines.


Please contact your Supervisor or Graduate Secretary for assistance.  You should also refer to the Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Fellows office website for information regarding procedures and important deadlines.  Note that financial penalties will apply if you fail to drop your courses within the first 13 days of the term.

Exchange Students

Please contact