Visiting student researcher

Formal status for student researchers at the University of Ottawa

Students from other Canadian or international institutions completing a research internship will now enjoy student status during their stay at the University of Ottawa.

To be eligible, students must:

  • Be enrolled at an educational institution other than the University of Ottawa (in Canada or abroad), and
  • Be engaged in research as their main activity at the University of Ottawa.

Research activities:

  • Must not be paid (scholarships are not considered to be a salary), and
  • Must not lead to receiving credits from the University of Ottawa.


  • Free access to basic services offered to regular students
  • Automatic membership in the compulsory University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP) for fees of approximately $51 a month (international students only),
  • University of Ottawa student card, and
  • Possibility of receiving an official University of Ottawa transcript with a record of the research activity

For more information or to register:

Office of Undergraduate Research 
Tabaret Hall, Room N108-109
Tel: 613-562-5726 or 613-562-5800 ext. 7846

Hosting an international student-researcher

A faculty member who wishes to host a foreign student-researcher can do so by following these steps:

  1. Provide a letter of invitation to the invited student-researcher. We strongly encourage professors to use these templates:
  2. Upon arrival, international student-researchers (undergraduate and graduate students) should come to the Office of Undergraduate Research to register, get their student number and subscribe to the mandatory University Health Insurance Program (UHIP).

Information on immigration procedure

Invited student-researchers must verify what permits, visa, applications, permissions or other documents that Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) requires to enter and to stay in Canada. This includes conducting research activities at the University of Ottawa, even if they are unpaid.  Student-researchers are also responsible for reviewing the requirements on the CIC website that apply to them, and take into consideration the processing times for applications both in Canada and in Canadian visa offices abroad.

Starting on March 15, 2016, Canada will require an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) for all visitors flying into Canada who are citizens of countries other than the United States (U.S.) who do not need a visa to enter Canada. Please check carefully if this requirement is applicable to your situation.

Self-funded student-researchers

Under Regulation R186(a) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, a Self-funded Researcher with autonomous funding arrangements may meet the definition of Business Visitor and thus be eligible to work in Canada without the need to secure a work permit.

The Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) resources can help determine eligibility under this status. Typically, this status is used by graduate student-researchers for an unpaid research stay that is shorter than 6 months, and who are citizens of a country that does not require a visa to enter Canada. The following websites provide useful information: 

Process for Obtaining a Work Permit

In February 2015, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) implemented an Employer Compliance Fee of $230 for work permit applications. In addition to paying this fee, the employer now has to send an offer of employment (with the form IMM5802) directly to CIC. The Office of the Vice-President, Research is responsible for creating an Offer of Employment and covering the $230 fee for student-researchers who meet the eligibility criteria.

The Office of Undergraduate Research will submit both the payment and the offer of employment (form IMM5802) to CIC. In order to process the offer of employment, please send the following information to

  1. A partially filled-out IMM5802 form: The host-professor and student-researcher must complete boxes 24; 26 to 30; 31; 33 and 37 to 44 in the IMM5802 form.These boxes contain information about the student AND the internship.
  2. Include a copy of the Letter of Invitation and the Internship agreement, if applicable.
  3. Conditional Letter of Acceptance (if applicable): this letter is provided by CIC only to work permit applicants entering through the International Experience Canada program.  

As soon as the Offer of Employment and the payment has been processed and submitted to CIC, the required reference numbers will be sent to the host-professor and invited student-researcher. 

The Office of Undergraduate Research ( must be informed immediately if the following situations arise:

  • The work permit is denied;
  • The invited student-researcher cancels his/her research stay.
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