Are you thinking of an educational haven for students from around the world? Then, you might be glad to hear that Canada is the place for you as there are many great benefits for students who decide to study in Canada.
Top Reasons to Study in Canada
- Numerous Universities: If there is any country that has numerous universities strategically located across its urban and regional areas, then its Canada. Presently, Canada is home to ninety six universities, a large number of which are open to international students, making it a choice study destination for students across the globe. The presence of many universities increases a student’s chance of getting admission to study in Canada, thereby reducing the rate of rejection and having to apply to numerous universities and colleges before being admitted.
- Large Land Mass: In terms of land mass, Canada is currently the second largest country in the world after Russia. Also, it has a population density that runs at approximately four residents per square kilometer, making the area spacious enough to accommodate a large number of immigrants.
- Bilingual: There are two national languages in Canada- English language which is being spoken in most of the western regions and French which is mostly spoken in eastern province of Quebec. The bilingual nature of Canada makes it a choice destination for ESL and FSL students who want to broaden their horizon in English and French languages respectively.
- Beautiful Natural Resources: British Columbia, one of the most popular places in Canada has an enviable number of rugged mountain ranges and large underground malls, all connected to beautiful subway stations. Over the years, Canadian students and international students have come to appreciate these features which ironically, seem to be issues of great concern for a lot of people.
- Welcoming People: If there is a group of people in the American continent that are very friendly and welcoming to visitors, then it’s Canadians. In addition to being very warm and welcoming, Canada is on the edge of technology, making it a one-stop country for the open-minded international students that abound world over.
Having known the reasons you should consider studying in Canada, you might want to know the top universities in Canada.
Top Notch Canadian Universities: Here is a list of high ranking Canadian universities:
- Queen’s University
- University of Calgary
- Western University
- University of Waterloo
- Université de Montréal
- McMaster University
- University of Alberta
- University of British Columbia
- McGill University
- University of Toronto
Common Courses in Canada
It is no longer news that Canada is home to over five hundred and seventy two thousand international students yearly and this is because of the wide variety of courses to choose from. Courses offered in universities across Canada include but are not limited to agricultural science, computer science, business, finance, medicine and surgery, pharmacy, engineering, architecture, arts, etc.
In addition to these courses, Canada is also home to over one hundred and fifty colleges which offer both short courses and diplomas in addition to the undergraduate and graduate degrees. Generally, the Canadian school year usually begins in September but occasionally, some postgraduate courses begin earlier or later.
One satisfying fact about obtaining a Bachelor’s Degree in Canada is that, it will equip you with the knowledge and skills that you require to pursue your dream career in your chosen field or study for higher degree(masters PhD). Besides, the structure of degree for undergraduate studies seems to be more liberal than what is obtainable in other countries. As an undergraduate student studying in Canada, a certain number of credits will be given to you as soon as you complete each course. Still on the issue of being liberal, the student is given the privilege to choose from the list of courses offered in the department that he or she is currently studying in. This is in contrast to the degree structures in other countries where the institution in question decides which courses need to be taken by the students each semester. The competition is understandably high and it takes quite an enormous effort to be accepted into most universities. Students in which English isn’t their first language are usually required to take the English language proficiency test. To beat the increasing competition, it is worthy of note that any evidence of secondary school achievements like volunteering, student clubs, etc. can help increase your chances of acceptance into your choice university.
Before now, Canada only admitted students with a four year Bachelor’s degree into their Master’s programs but currently, they are now accepting three year Bachelor’s degrees as a prerequisite for their Master’s programs. Interestingly, Canada has a Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) in place to help international students to obtain their dream jobs after finishing postgraduate school. A vast majority (about ninety percent) of those that stay back in Canada after obtaining a postgraduate degree get employed within six months.
In addition to masters degree, Canadian universities offer a number of PhD courses which come with lots of benefits, one of which is the reduced tuition cost as compared to that of other universities. Presently, there are about two hundred thousand international students studying for their PhDs in Canada. These PhD courses can take from three years to six years to complete. Once your Ph.D. studies is completed, you are entitled to a three-year work permit which could eventually lead to permanent residence or citizenship.
How to Apply to Study in Canada
Different institutions have different application processes but one thing most, if not all, Canadian institutions have in common is a proof of potential international students’ language proficiency. In addition to showing a proof of your language proficiency, you must provide copies of your transcripts from previous institutions/education. You must also present a proof of your financial stability for the studies you’re about to embark on and your medical coverage. Ensuring you meet all the requirements for the institution you wish to apply to is a very important step in your application process which can save you a lot of troubles in the future.
Also, note that you will need to choose your major when applying to most universities. However, you don’t have to panic if you are unsure of exactly what your majors would be. You can always change your majors later as Canadian universities are usually quite flexible with changing majors later.
It also important for you to be very sure that you are applying to a school that has been approved by provincial or territorial government to host international students. If the school you’re applying to isn’t on this list, don’t waste your precious time applying to them as you won’t be granted the admission.
If you wish to begin studying in September, try to apply very early, no later than March. Remember to do an extensive research on the universities you wish to apply to. Research about their application deadlines too as different universities have different application deadlines.
Canada is a bilingual country and as such, courses at Canadian universities are usually taught in either of their two official languages (English or French). Every applicant is mandated to provide a language proficiency, whether they are native English or French speakers and the only way to go about this is by taking a language proficiency test. If you are applying for an English-speaking university, IELTS is accepted by all whereas for French-speaking universities, TEF is the most commonly used and accepted. The language proficiency fees are usually around $100.
Funding/Scholarships to Study in Canada
Despite the fact that the tuition fees for international students seem little compared to that of other countries, paying for higher education can still be very difficult for some international students. This explains why it is necessary to apply for funding to help offset part of the cost of studying abroad.
In addition to the various organizations in individual student’s home country that offer study-abroad scholarships, Canadian universities offer a wide range of scholarships to both home and international students. As with most scholarships, the competition is very high so, it’s advisable for you to find ways to stand out from the crowd and apply as early and for as many as possible.
Another way to source for funds to complete your studies is getting a job on or off-campus. What’s quite encouraging about working in Canada is the fact that as a full-time student in Canada, you are entitled to work twenty hours per week during school sessions and full-time during winter and summer holidays. How sweet!
As a student, you can study in Canada for up to six months without a student visa but if you would like to work, you would need a work permit to achieve that. To get a study permit, you will need the following documents:
- Proof of acceptance – the acceptance letter you received from your university will serve this purpose.
- Proof of identity – a valid passport is an ideal document for this.
- Proof of sufficient funds – you will need a minimum of CA$10,000/year along with $833 for each extra month.
- Letter of explanation- This is also a good idea as this could hasten your approval, and help the visa officer understand your aspirations and duties as a foreigner in Canada.
My Final Thoughts: Studying in Canada for your bachelor’s or postgraduate degree is a great idea as the application process is easy and the visa requirements less stringent. What is more? An array of scholarships and grants have been put in place to aid your study. I encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity to apply to study in any of the Canadian universities.
Also Read On: Fifteen Reasons to Migrate to Canada
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