Cost of Studying in Canada | How much does it cost to study in Canada | Financial Assistance in Canada | Newcomers Canada

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Undertaking third level education in another country is always quite expensive, especially when you must pay for travel costs, accommodation and general living expenses on top of college fees. However, the good news is Canadian college fees are often cheaper than other colleges in other developed, English speaking countries such as the US, the UK and Australia.


The cost of studying in Canada will vary depending on the course and the province you are studying in, but the average cost for an international student can be between CDN$8,000 and CDN$15,000 per annum for an undergraduate. Post-graduate courses are more expensive.  

Accommodation is another high expense. On-campus accommodation is always popular with college students, due to easy access to classes, amenities and other students, but this is always the most expensive option. It’s recommended to find accommodation yourself in the area near the college or university, as this is guaranteed to be cheaper.

Students are also responsible for buying course materials such as textbooks and supplies. They must also support themselves during their studies by paying for food, transportation and other expenses. You can find a useful tool to help you calculate the cost of post-secondary education at Can Learn.

Financial Assistance

Many students depend on financial assistance programs to cover the costs associated with post-secondary education in Canada. Generally speaking, there are two types of financial assistance for students: 1) “student loans,” which have to be repaid and 2) “grants,” “scholarships” or “bursaries,” which do not have to be repaid.

Both the federal government and the provincial or territorial governments have financial assistance programs that provide low cost loans, grants and scholarships for students. You can find detailed information on both federal and provincial or territorial financial assistance programs for students at Can Learn.

More information on loans, grants and scholarships can be obtained from the university or college that you plan to attend. Most institutions have an office that is responsible specifically for these matters.

For further information on scholarships, see our ‘Scholarships’ section. To find out more about obtaining a work permit and working while you are studying, see our ‘Ability to Work’ section.

Source: Welcome to Canada: What you should know, Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Reproduced with the permission of the Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada, 2013.