top of page

Designated Learning Institutes (DLI)

Updated: Jan 5, 2021

What is a Designated Learning Institution?

A designated learning institute is one that has been approved by the provincial or territorial government in Canada to host international students who wish to study in Canada.

To apply for a study permit, a candidate requires an acceptance letter from a chosen learning institute. It is beneficial that this be a Designated Learning Institute (DLI) because this education is eligible for points through the Express Entry program, as Canadian education, and in most situations makes you eligible to apply for a Post Graduate Open Work Permit, with which you may obtain Canadian work experience for additional points towards your Express Entry Profile.

Although an international student may under some circumstances attend an institution that is not a DLI, this will not be counted as Canadian education, nor will it make them eligible for a post graduate open work permit.

When you receive your acceptance letter, it will include a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) number that starts with the script “O”. This number must be included in your application form.

Note: All primary and secondary schools in the country are considered designated learning institutions. You do not need to include a DLI number on your study permit application form if you are applying to this type/level of school.

In the unfortunate instance that the school you are studying at loses its status of being a designated learning institution, you can:

  • Keep studying at the same institute till the time your current study permit expires

  • File an application to renew your permit by enrolling at a designated learning institution

Post-Graduation Work Permit

One benefit of attending a DLI is that you put yourself in a position to be able to obtain a Post Graduate Open Work Permit. This work permit allows you to work for a further 1-3 years in Canada, and if your work is in a skill type 0, A or B, you may use this experience towards your application for Express Entry to Canada.

Students may apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit that authorizes them to work in Canada, upon completion of their studies. To be eligible to apply, international students must have:

  • Completed their studies in Canada under a degree, diploma or certificate program at an eligible Designated Learning Institution

  • Held a full-time student status in Canada (with no breaks)

  • Received an official letter from the eligible DLI sanctioning that the student has met all the requirements to complete his study program

List of Designated Learning Institutions by Territory/ Province

Step 1: Select the particular territory or province that your chosen institute is in.

Step 2: Input keywords such as school’s name, city’s name, etc.

Step 3: Locate the designated learning institution number and mention it under the section”

For more information about Designated Learning Institutes, or to obtain a study permit, contact us at info@immigrationstationcanada, or go to our website,


About Us

Immigration Station Canada is a dedicated, professional Canadian Immigration firm practicing out of Northumberland County, just east of Toronto, in Canada. We serve clients from Kingston, Belleville, Brighton, Cobourg, Oshawa, the GTA, Guelph, Milton, Stratford and St. Catharines and around the world. Our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant, Anne C. McCaughey (Annie) is an experienced immigration services provider and a fifth generation Canadian who values the immigration process and the unique individuals who immigrate to Canada to become part of the fabric of this wonderful country. If you would like to submit a question to Ask Annie, use the link located at the top right of the page.

How Can We Help?

We do work permits, study permits, visitor visas, Express Entry, spousal sponsorship, family class sponsorship, and Canadian citizenship with an expertise in Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) applications and Global Talent Stream applications.

Please contact us if you would like assistance with your immigration application or to book an appointment.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page