In the Know: Successful Applications

UVic Global Community Newsletter: June 01, 2020

In the Know: Advice for international students is a section of the UVic Global Community Newsletter that includes valuable information for undergraduate and graduate international students in the following categories: degree-seekingincoming exchange, and incoming study abroad/visiting.

COVID-19: Stay Informed

Special immigration measures are currently in effect due to the disruption of services associated with impacts of COVID-19. At the time of publishing, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) continues to accept certain temporary resident immigration documents online. In-person applications at the Visa Application Centres or Canadian Port-of-Entry are not accepted at this time. In the times of COVID-19, it is extremely important to stay up to date with COVID-19 related information on the IRCC website.

Our office is closely monitoring current COVID-19 situation and will add relevant information to UVic COVID-19 website – international section. Please check the page regularly for updates or refer to the IRCC COVID-19 website for information.

Note: With current pandemic, IRCC suggests students extending their study permits to include a brief explanation to say that you need to extend your study permit to continue your study in Canada.

Top 5 tips for submitting successful applications to IRCC

As a temporary resident of Canada, there are documents you must apply for and maintain. Some of the most important are your documents issued by IRCC.

The established process to obtain, extend, amend or replace a Canadian immigration document almost always involves submitting an application to IRCC.

When it's time to submit an application to IRCC, the following tips will help you avoid common mistakes that can lead to a frustrating delay or even a refusal.

1. Do not wait until the last minute.

Be sure to allow yourself plenty of time for reviewing instructions and gathering the required forms and supporting documents. If you rush, you could miss an important detail and submit an incomplete application.

If you are applying for a new document, check the current processing time for your application. If you need the document by a specific date, we recommend submitting your application well in advance of the current processing time, which is only an estimate. **Due to COVID-19 pandemic, IRCC is unable to provide processing timelines for specific applications at this time. 

If you are applying to extend a document, we typically recommend submitting your application 120 days before the document will expire.

2. Follow the instructions.

Review the instruction guide related to your application.

Instruction guides for applications submitted by international students in Canada are listed here:

  • Study permit extension application [IMM 5552]
  • Temporary resident visa application [IMM 5256]
  • Student work permit application [IMM 5580]
  • Post-graduation work permit application [IMM 5580]
  • Application to amend an error on a study permit or work permit [IMM 5218]
  • Application to replace a lost or stolen study permit or work permit [IMM 5545]

Some applications can be submitted either online or by mail. Be sure to use the appropriate document checklist and follow the instructions associated with your chosen option for submission.

3. Submit a complete application.

This video offers strategies for ensuring your application is complete:

Although the video refers to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), this department is now called Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

4. Keep a copy of the forms and supporting documents.

Being able to quickly and easily access all forms and supporting documents will save you time and effort next time you need to submit an application to IRCC.

It will also be helpful if IRCC requests that you re-submit, or confirm information on, any of the forms and supporting documents.

5. Track your application.

After submitting an application to IRCC, pay attention to the email account you provide to the IRCC on the application form. Regularly check the inbox and junk mail folder. If IRCC requests additional information from you, they will send you a document request letter to your IRCC online application and set a deadline for a response. Do not miss this deadline. Otherwise, your application will almost certainly be refused.

Keep an eye on the processing time for your application, but remember it is only an estimate. You can also check your application status online.

If necessary, use the IRCC Web Form to update your contact information or follow up with your application if it exceeds the processing time estimation.

If you have questions or concerns while preparing an application for submission to IRCC, contact us at

Want to know what else is going on? Join the UVic Global Community Facebook group to receive regular updates about opportunities and events, both on- and off-campus.