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Is College Free in Canada?

Moving to Canada to attend college is an interesting option needless to say. Canada is overall cheaper, and with comparable quality of life to america.

But is college free in Canada?

The short answer is not any.

There are, however, some caveats to think about. Even when it isn’t entirely free, you’ll be able to expect to pay lots less in comparison with the US for similar training.

Is it a viable option to review in Canada? Absolutely. Does it make sense to your situation? Perhaps.

In this text, we’re going to analyze in-depth the prices of faculty in Canada, and if you need to consider going there.

College in Canada isn’t the Same as in america

Before entering into the monetary stuff, it is very important make a distinction, especially if you’re going to ask inquiries to a Canadian person.

While college and university are just about synonyms in america, they’re different schools in Canada. The Canadian equivalent is solely called university. College is a very different sort of school. They’re more like vocational schools, and they’re more focused on teaching a job.  Think trade schools / college juniors.

Editor’s note: For the sake of the article, while you read college, assume we’re talking about universities. We’re going with the overall accepted US meaning.

How Much Does It Cost to Attend College in Canada?

College in Canada isn’t free. However it’s far more affordable than in america. For comparison, the common yearly tuition within the US is about $32.000, while the common yearly tuition in Canada is about $5.000.

Naturally, there are lots of factors influencing the costs, as these are the averages.

There are colleges within the US where you’ll be able to pay as much as $80.000-90.000 per year. But there are also colleges which can be far more affordable. Still, even the most cost effective US universities can’t compare to average Canadian ones on the subject of affordability.

But there’s a catch.

The common tuition fee we reported only applies to residents. If you’re a global student, don’t expect to pay lower than $20.000/year as a tuition.

It’s still cheaper than the US by a large margin, and living in Canada is cheaper too. But the choice might lose a few of its appeal. Still, studying abroad is a superb technique to open your mind and get in contact with different cultures.

There Is a Technique to Attend College for Free in Canada

It’s, in actual fact, way easier to attend college without spending a dime in Canada because of the many scholarships available to both local and international students.

Let’s take a fast have a look at the 2 most interesting scholarships for international students in Canada.

Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

  • What: a full scholarship for doctoral studies in any field
  • Who: both local and international students
  • How: you must inform the school you would like to apply for this system, or get nominated by it. You may’t apply directly for this scholarship.

Ontario Trillium Scholarship (OTS)

  • What: a full scholarship for doctoral studies in any field
  • Who: this scholarship is exclusively for international students
  • How: students get selected by the school. You may’t directly apply to this system. You may only notify the institution you have an interest within the scholarship. They are going to evaluate your situation by themselves.

Warning: this program is currently suspended. We expect it to come back back once the COVID situation has been sorted out.

There are various other scholarship programs available for international students who want to study in Canada. But generally, they only offer some economic benefits, without covering your entire tuition fee. This implies you’ll still need to pay some money to attend these schools.

Still, they might be enough for you in deciding to review abroad. If you would like to look deeper into these programs, search for the Nelson Mandela Award by the University of Toronto, and the F.A. Davis Scholarship for nursing.

The right way to Get a Scholarship

Scholarships are awarded to outstanding students. So, the plain answer can be: “become an excellent student!”.


A student is taken into account outstanding due to its academic and life achievements. It’s not enough to be a model student with high grades. Scholarships are competitive, it is advisable prove that investing on you is worth it to the institution.

Start along with your grades. In case your GPA is lower than 3.0 don’t even bother. The closer to 4.0, the higher. Then, consider your extracurricular activities. Which of them are probably the most prone to impress the administration?

When you, like me, are a beer pong champion, you most likely don’t wish to put it in your resume. But in the event you do volunteering, or excel at a sport, then by all means add these relevant facts about yourself in your application.

Also, prepare a killer essay. There are various guides on the Internet on the way to do it, but the overall gist of it’s that you would like to demonstrate your dedication to the varsity. That is the most effective technique to prove you’ll be an investment for the institution granting your scholarship, so craft an important essay. It’s your ticket to the cash.

Why Study in Canada?

Canada is an interesting place to review in. It’s overall cheaper than the US, with a comparable quality of living.

The country has two official languages, so in the event you’re enamored with how French sounds, you’ll be able to kill two birds with one stone and learn the ropes of the language. Just don’t expect everyone to really know French.

Canada can be far more peaceful than the US as a rustic. It’s probably because fewer people live there, nevertheless it’s not only that. Canadians usually are more peaceful than US residents, so in the event you’re trying to get away from a loud environment, Canada is likely to be an excellent choice.

Studying abroad is an excellent experience, because you get the chance to get involved with different cultures. It’s an important technique to open up your mind to the blessings of this world. You’ll learn a lot about yourself and get a unique perspective on life.

The Downsides of Studying in Canada

There are, after all, downsides to studying in Canada as well.

The most important one is that employers may not take a university degree from Canada as seriously as one from america. While these kinds of employers have their reasons, I believe they’re a bit too overzealous of their judgments. They’re a dying breed needless to say.

You almost certainly don’t wish to work for these people anyway. In the event that they judge your worth due to where you bought your degree, they aren’t very bright.

Still, it’s absolutely an element to think about. If employment is your #1 priority, nothing will beat a US college.

Another potential issue is housing. Yes, Canada is cheaper than the US, but you continue to need to search out housing, and living is pricey irrespective of where you go. A minimum of, in first world countries.

Last, the paperwork might postpone lazier people. Bureaucracy is a large turn off for a lot of, since it looks like you’re doing numerous irrelevant stuff simply because someone decided so. I understand you. Been there, done that.


Studying in Canada isn’t free, nevertheless it’s way cheaper than within the US. There are upsides and drawbacks to studying abroad, so my suggestion is to weigh them and understand which of them would impact you probably the most.

The prospect of studying abroad is super cool, and more people should do it. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to afford it. Scholarships help with that.

When you’re trying to pursue higher education, Canada is well one among the most effective countries to take action.

Also read: The ten Most Expensive College within the US (2022 Updated)

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