IRCC Extends Distance Learning Measures for PGWP Holders


Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced an extension in distance learning measures for PGWP holders. The extension will make students eligible for a Post Graduation Work Permit if they complete 50% of their PGWP-eligible studies outside of Canada by 31st December, 2023. 

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What does the extension mean for students?

Before pandemic, one of eligibility criteria of PGWP required foreign students to finish no more than 50% of studies online. Moreover, the time that they spent studying online, outside of Canada, was not included in the PGWP eligibility.

Hence, the time that the students spent studying in Canada was only counted to provide them the post graduation work permit. 

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But now, because of this extension, the students will be able to get a PGWP if they are able to complete 50% of their studies outside of Canada by the end of 2023. 

Since, students were unable to travel during the pandemic, IRCC eliminated online study restriction for particular students. So, those students enrolled in post graduation work permit-eligible programs in progress in March 2020 were eligible as well. Moreover, those who started their PGWP-eligible programs between March, 2020 – August 31, 2022 were considered eligible too. 

In simple words, international students who started studying before 31 August, 2022, can count 100% of their study time for PGWP eligibility. However, those students who began studying between 1 September (2022) and 31 December (2023) can only use 50% of that time for eligibility. 

The current extension is not for international students studying abroad after 1 Sept, 2023, and it doesn’t matter why they started studying. Further, those who began studying after 31 Aug, 2023, are also not counted.

Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)

A post graduation work permit is an open work permit that allows international students to work in Canada for any employer. This program allows students to live and work in Canada for about three years once these foreign students complete their studies in Canada. 

An international student was eligible for PGWP if:

  • The training program at a designated learning institution was at least 8 months long. The student must have completed their study in a vocational, academic, or professional training program. 
  • The student must have received an official letter from the eligible DLI and a transcript too. These documents verify that the student met the requirements needed to complete their study. 

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Niyati Chaurasia

Niyati Chaurasia

Niyati’s specialty lies in Canadian immigration matters along with crafting helpful, user-oriented content.

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