OINP PhD Graduate Stream

The OINP PhD Graduate Stream is a pathway for international graduates with a doctoral degree from an Ontario university to secure permanent residence in Ontario, Canada. Administered by the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program, this stream is designed to attract and retain highly educated individuals who have demonstrated their commitment to the province through their academic pursuits. The process involves an Expression of Interest (EOI) system, ensuring a fair selection of candidates with the right qualifications and ties to Ontario.

Stream Requirements:

  1. Expression of Interest and Invitation to Apply:

    • Applicants must receive an invitation to apply after registering in the OINP’s Expression of Interest System. Timely application submission with accurate qualifications as per the EOI is crucial.

  2. Education:

    • A completed PhD degree from an eligible Ontario university is mandatory. At least two years of the PhD studies must have been legally completed in Ontario. Applicants with bursaries or grants with a return-to-home-country obligation are ineligible until they fulfill these commitments.

  3. Residency in Ontario:

    • Legal residency in Ontario for a minimum of one year within the past two years before applying is required. Cumulative residency is accepted, allowing for gaps if the total residency adds up to 12 months.

  4. Settlement Funds:

    • Applicants must demonstrate the ability to support themselves and dependents upon settling in Canada. This can be fulfilled through funds in bank statements, annual earnings from employment in Ontario, or a job offer in the province.

  5. Intention to Live in Ontario:

    • A clear intention to live and work in Ontario after obtaining permanent residence is crucial. Ties to Ontario, including work history, job applications, studying, volunteering, property ownership, visits, and professional networks, must be evident.

  6. Legal Status in Canada (if applicable):

    • Applicants applying from within Canada must maintain legal status throughout the application process. 'Implied status' is accepted, allowing applicants to remain in Canada under existing permit conditions while awaiting a decision on renewal.

  7. Application Period:

    • Applications must be submitted within two years of completing PhD requirements. The degree date must be within two years of the OINP application submission date.

Scoring Factors:

Employment / Labour Market Factors:

  1. Work or Study Permit Status:

    • 10 points for a valid permit; 0 points without a valid permit.

  2. Earnings History:

    • 3 points for $40k or more earnings in a year; 0 points for less than $40k.

Education Factors:

  1. Highest Level of Education:

    • 10 points for a PhD; points decrease for lower education levels.

  2. Field of Study:

    • Points awarded based on the field of study, with a focus on STEM/Health and Trades.

  3. Canadian Education Experience:

    • Points for having more than one Canadian credential.

Language Proficiency:

  1. Official Language Ability:

    • 10 points for CLB 9 or higher; points decrease with lower language proficiency.

  2. Knowledge of Official Languages:

    • 10 points for proficiency in two official languages.


  • Points allocated based on the location of study, with higher points for studying in Northern Ontario and reduced points for studying in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) or Toronto.

Eligibility of Applicants:

The OINP PhD Graduate Stream seeks eligible candidates who not only possess a PhD from a recognized Ontario university but also demonstrate a genuine commitment to the province. Eligibility hinges on factors such as legal residency, financial stability, and a clear intention to contribute to Ontario's community and workforce post-permanent residency. Prospective applicants should thoroughly review the criteria and scoring factors to ensure they meet the stringent requirements and increase their chances of successful nomination.

Navigating the OINP PhD Graduate Stream can be complex, and AKM Law is here to assist you throughout the application process. Our experienced immigration professionals understand the intricacies of the program, ensuring that your application aligns with the requirements and maximizes your chances of success. From EOI registration to document preparation, we provide comprehensive support, guiding you at every step.

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