More international students are choosing Canada, opting for permanent residence

May 25, 2017

By Canadian Immigrant Magazine |

Latest statistics show a significant increase in the number of international students enrolling in Canadian universities for the 2017- 18 academic year.

Between 2008 and 2016, the number of study permits that become effective each year have more than doubled. In 2008, a total of 128,411 study permits became effective – in 2016, this figure was 267,780.

By the end of 2016, there were more than 414,000 active study permits — although the actual number of international students in Canada differs from this figure, as some study permit holders may not currently be in Canada, and many international students study in Canada without a study permit.

Almost half of these students study in Ontario, with British Columbia and Quebec following behind as popular study destinations.

The latest data for 2017 from the University of Alberta International shows that applications to graduate programs from foreign nationals rose 82 percent overall, with significant increases in the numbers of Americans (+60 percent), Indians (+152 percent) and Iranians (+196 percent) applying. At the undergraduate level, overall international applications were up 27 percent, compared to a growth rate of 11 percent at this time in 2016.

“We welcome a growing interest in studying in Canada and expect this development to be more than a one year anomaly – we expect to see strong numbers also in the coming years,” stated Julia Jones-Bourque, Marketing & Communications Manager at the University of Alberta in a statement to CIC News.

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