An 18-month transition period is now over for post-secondary institutions in British Columbia to obtain the recognized quality-assurance designation, Education Quality Assurance, in order to host international students.
“All post-secondary institutions and language schools in British Columbia that enrol international students on study permits must have Education Quality Assurance designation,” said Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson. “The EQA brand allows international students to easily see which public and private post-secondary institutions meet or exceed government-recognized quality assurance standards, offering consumer protection.”
Changes to the federal International Student Program that came into force in June 2014 require all provinces to develop a list of educational institutions eligible to host international students on study permits.
Post-secondary institutions and language schools in British Columbia interested in hosting international students on study permits were required to obtain EQA designation by Dec. 31, 2015.
Approximately 220 public and private post-secondary institutions in British Columbia are currently eligible to host international students on study permits. Only about 125 post-secondary institutions held EQA designation prior to the implementation of the EQA standard. The number of institutions that have taken the necessary steps to achieve EQA designation demonstrates a strong commitment to providing high-quality education in British Columbia.
The EQA standard supports commitments under the BC Jobs Plan and the International Education Strategy to expand and strengthen quality assurance.
Institutions that host international students for less than six months are not required to be on the list.
The British Columbia International Student Program designated list is posted on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website: