Best Colleges In Canada For International Students

Last Updated on December 31, 2022 by Omoyeni Adeniyi

Canada is one of the best study destinations for international students. Why is Canada always attracting students from all countries in the world? The answer is simple. Canada is home to most of the top universities and colleges in the world. Furthermore, the cost of living and the affordable cost of studying in Canada along with the straightforward visa process makes the admission process easier for international students. Being a country with such a friendly atmosphere for students regardless of their nationality, colour or race makes it a safe Heaven for International students to pursue their higher education.

Best Colleges In Canada For International Students

Once you’ve made up your mind to study in Canada, the next step is choosing the college or university to apply to. There are many great institutions in Canada and choosing the best can be a difficult task to accomplish. There are a number of factors you need to consider to make the right choice. While there are no specific rules for choosing a college or university in Canada, this post can help make the process easier for you.

Tips to Help You Make the Right Choice

  • Study interest: Knowing the course, you want to study is a useful first step. If you’re planning to study a professional or specialized course, you might want to consider institutions that offer your specialized program as their core specialization. For example, if you wish to study Medicine, rather than attending a random University, the best option is to attend a university that has a College of Medicine.

Even if the course you want to study is a general course, you will want to make sure that the school you are considering offers it. Go to the school’s official website and search through the courses they offer. This will help you make the right choice.

Other factors to consider when choosing a college in Canada include:

  • The official language of the school: the most common languages spoken in Canada are French and English. Some schools use one or both as their official language. You must ensure that you’ll be able to communicate fluently in the primary language of the school as much as possible.
  • Type of school: are you interested in studying in a vocational school, University, college, or Institute? There are top schools to consider for each of the categories you choose.
  • Type of degree- the type of degree you’re planning to pursue also determines the school you will choose
  • Location: ensure to research to find out where the school is located. Are you looking for a suburban, urban or rural location?
  • Accommodation: this is also another important factor you need to consider early enough. Does the school provide accommodation for international students in form of hostels or will you be solely responsible for finding accommodation off-campus?

Some of these factors may be more important to you than others. Hence, you should feel free to customize this list to reflect what is most important to you in a school. Once you have narrowed down your list, the next step is to forward your application. All schools in Canada have different application processes and requirements, therefore it is important to find each school’s requirements before you apply.

Best Colleges in Canada to Consider

Here are the top best colleges in Canada to consider:

  1. Centennial College

Centennial College is one of the best colleges for international students in Canada. It is located in Toronto and is the first community college in Ontario. The college was established in 1966 and is globally recognized for its multiculturalism with international students from over 100 cultural groups.

The Centennial College has 5 Campuses and houses 8 schools comprising of Business, engineering, tourism, aviation, arts etc. You can apply for full-time, part time or virtual programs. The school is very friendly to international students regardless of their race.

Centennial College offers over 95 diploma and certificate courses in community health studies, engineering technology, science, communications, business, general arts, transportation and hospitality.

  1. George Brown College

This college has three main campuses all located in Toronto, Canada’s largest city. It runs part-time, full time and continuing education programs that are flexible and allows you to combine classes with part-time jobs. The college is globally recognized for its close partnership with companies, organizations, and industry leaders to ensure programs are evolving and provide students with the requisite skills and technical know-how that will make them relevant in the marketplace.

George Brown College offers a wide variety of programs in community services, business, art, design, early childhood education, health science, culinary arts, engineering technologies, preparatory studies.

Degree programs are approved by the Ontario Post- secondary Education Quality Assessment Board.

The College is a member of the Association of Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology of Ontario and other recognized educational bodies in Canada. It is certainly a school you will love as the admission requirements and procedure favour international students.

  1. Seneca College

The College is located in Toronto and it offers both Full time, part-time and continuing education programs that allow international students to take up part-time jobs while studying. It offers courses relating to technology, applied arts, financial services and business. The college is in partnership with various industry leaders to provide the requisite 21st-century skills that will make students relevant in the marketplace.

Seneca College of Arts and Technology is a public community college established in 1967. It offers over 140 careers specialized 4 Year degree programs, 2-3 years diploma programs and 1 year Postgraduate programs in areas of TECHNOLOGY, Computer Science, Engineering, Marketing, Brand Management, International Business, Bio-Technology, Accounting, and many others.

  1. Mohawk College

Mohawk College is one of the best community colleges in Canada. It was first established in 1967 and has grown to be one of the best colleges in the country with a core specialization in applied research. The community college provides students with collaborative project spaces supported by teachers and industry partners. It offers a wide range of programs in all areas including community services, health technology and business.

The college is globally recognized for its open doors to international students from all countries of the world. As an international student, you get to enjoy certain privileges ranging from awards, academic support, health insurance, accommodation alternatives among many others.

  1. Georgian College

Located in Ontario, the Georgian College is one of the best colleges for international students in Canada. It is globally recognized for its CO-OP programs and partnership with leading industry and business leaders in the country, providing employment opportunities and paid internships to outstanding students. The college has a special love for international students receiving over 4000 international students annually from over 85 different countries.

For accommodation in this community college, they have many options, therefore it will be easier to find one that suits your needs. The admission process and requirements are also friendly to international students.

  1. The Ontario College of Art and Design University

If you’re passionate about arts and design, then you’ll want to check out the Ontario College of Art and Design University. It is located in the Ontario district and I Campus is a stone throw to the Entertainment District. It is right next door to Ontario’s Art Gallery.

With this unique location, the college offers students the perfect place to study and get inspired. Experience the rich Canadian cultural heritage and free-living in the heartbeat of Toronto while getting a quality education at the OCAD U. the visual design and art programs run in the college are the best in Canada and students walk away with BDes, BFAs and even MFAs or MAs.

  1. Red River College

This college was first established in 1938 as the Manitoba Technical Institute (MIT) and was later renamed Red River College in 1998. It is one of the best colleges for international students in Canada. With a graduate employment rate of 95% and graduate satisfaction rate of 98%, students are sure to get the very best quality of education and experience in the Red River College. The school runs over 200 programs and currently have a student population of over 30,000 drawn across all countries of the world. It is a public college and located in the heart of Manitoba.

  1. Humber College

Humber College is one of Canada’s largest community colleges for international students. It currently has a student population of over 27,000 full-time students draw from over 80 countries the college is located in the heart of Toronto and is a member of Polytechnics Canada. It offers a wide range of career focused programs including bachelor’s degrees, diplomas and professional certifications.

The college was first established in 1967 and currently offers over 150 programs including postgraduate programs. It is the most comprehensive and dynamic community college in Canada.

  1. British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)

British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) is a public polytechnic institute located in Burnaby British Columbia. It offers programs related to trade, health, technology and business. The institute is actively engaged in applied research and focused on solving industry-based problems. The institute also has the Aerospace Technology Campus in Richmond and other advanced facilities in the heart of British Colombia.

  1. Algonquin College

Algonquin College is a public community college with several campuses located in Ontario. The college is named after the indigenous occupants of North America who first occupied this region- Algonkin. In 2019, the college was recognized as the National Capital Region’s Top Employer of the year. In fact, the college ranks as the 2nd best Ontario college for student and graduate satisfaction.

It is no news that Canada is one of the best Study and work destinations. There are many world class colleges in Canada and you can get confused not knowing which one to choose. I believe that the information shared in this post will help you make a well informed decision.

Best Colleges In Canada For International Students For Masters

Masters in Canada is a 1-2 year postgraduate program offered as an academic or a professional degree. An MS in Canada is either a course-based program or a thesis-based program for higher studies in Canada. However, there are some Canadian universities offering it as a mixture of two. The average tuition fee for graduate studies in Canada ranges from 20,000 CAD to 30,000 CAD annually. For Indian students, the cost of Canada Universities for MS ranges from INR 11.11 lakhs to 16.6 lakhs.  

Application deadlines of the Canadian Universities for MS course is October – January to submit the applications; the admission is finalized by May. You will need to have a 4-year bachelor’s degree (65%-86% aggregate), 6.5 or more IELTS score, GRE scores (required for top universities), and LORs to get admission to MS courses in Canada. After MS in Canada, you can look from a pool of Jobs in Canada and make an average annual salary of 169,000 CAD (INR 93 lakhs). 

Students pursuing masters in Canada are awarded the qualification of Masters of Science (MSc) or Masters of Arts (MA). Apart from these, students also have options for specialist master’s degrees such as Master of Fine Arts (MFA), Master of Engineering (MEng), MBA in Canada and others. Pursuing any of these degrees. The costs of each type of master’s course will vary drastically depending on where you wish to study. There are plenty of MS in Canada Scholarships to help you pay tuition fees and cost of living.

Top Universities for Masters in Canada

With over 96 public Canada universities for MS and 15,000+ study programs, Popular Universities in Canada for Masters offer various programs. The table below shows top universities in Canada for MS according to QS world rankings 2023. 

UniversityProgramQS Ranking 2023
McGill UniversityMS in Computer Science#31
Western UniversityMS in Management#32
University of TorontoMS in Computer Science#34
University of British Columbia MS in Computer Science#47
University of AlbertaMS in Electrical and Computer Engineering#110
McMaster UniversityMS in Management – Data Science and Business Analytics#116
University of MontrealMaster of Science in Nursing#152
University of WaterlooMS in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence#154
Queen’s UniversityMS in Computing Science#233
University of OttawaMs of Computer Science#237
University of CalgaryMS in Electrical and Computer Engineering#242
Dalhousie UniversityMaster of Computer Science#308
Simon Fraser UniversityMS Computing Science#328
University of VictoriaMS in Psychology#359
York UniversityMS Computer Science#456
University of SaskatchewanMS Finance#473
Concordia UniversityMaster of Computer Science#551-560
University of QuebecMS in Computer Science#571-580
University of GuelphMS in Computer Science#591-600
Carleton UniversityMaster of Computer Science#601-650
University of ManitobaMS Computer Science#651-700
University of New BrunswickMS in Electrical and Computer Engineering#701-750
Memorial University of NewfoundlandMS in Management#751-800

Note: If you wish to study a short-term course in Canada at a postgraduate level, you can opt for PG Diploma in Canada instead of a Masters’s program. 

MS in Canada includes not only the traditional lectures and tutorials but also site visits, projects, and group work. Most of the master programs include dissertations making up most of the course credit. With several degree options, students tend to choose the most affordable universities for MS in Canada. However, they must also keep in mind other criteria such as availability of program, placement, rankings, etc. The table below shows the popular masters in Canada along with some of the top-ranking universities offering those programs: 

Popular Masters ProgramUniversityEstimated Full Tuition Fee (in INR)
MS Software EngineeringMcMaster University, University of Calgary, Western University, Concordia University, University of Regina13.35 lakhs- 49.74 lakhs
Masters in NursingU of T, McMaster University, McGill University, UAlberta, UBC0.92 lakhs- 42.47 lakhs
Masters in Computer ScienceU of T, University of Waterloo, UBC, McGill University, UAlberta42.46 lakhs- 54.60 lakhs
Masters in FinanceUToronto, UBC, McGill University, Queen’s University, Universite de Montreal18.21 lakhs- 48.53 lakhs

Why Study MS in Canada?

  • World-class Universities- According to QS World University Rankings(2023), there are eight Canadian universities that are among the top 200 universities in the world.
  • Specialization Chances- A MS degree is offered in a number of study fields such as medicine, IT, engineering and technology, finance, management, business administration, architecture, nursing, design, etc. 
  • Affordability- Tuition fee in Canada ranges from 30,000 CAD-55,000 CAD. Studying master’s in Canada is comparatively more affordable than pursuing MS in USA (35,000 CAD- 82,000 CAD annually) or Australia. 
  • Funding Options- Around 70% more funds and scholarships are offered to students in the form of scholarships, fellowships, etc. as compared to the USA. 
  • Job Opportunities- According to a survey by the Canadian Bureau of International Education (CBIE), approximately 60% of international students desired to stay back after MS in Canada.
  • Immigration and Visa Process- Immigration in Canada is more welcoming than in another study abroad destinations. Students looking for a PR can apply for a post-graduation work permit.
  • Work-while Studying- While studying, international students can apply for various part-time employment options to gain valuable work experience and also earn to at least be able to cover their living expenses. 
  • Global Leader in R&D- Canadian universities perform 40% of R&D work spending over 13 billion CAD. Major research opportunities in Canada are in areas of clinical medicine; biology; information & communication technologies; agriculture; fisheries & forestry; earth and environmental sciences; and economics & business.

Top Universities for Masters in Canada by International Student Percentage

UniversityInternational StudentsPopular Program
University of Toronto21%Master of Law
University of British Columbia32%Master in Computer Science
McGill University29%M.Sc Computer Science
McMaster University17%Masters in Economics
Universite de Montreal22%Masters in Statistics
University of Alberta26%MEng Engineering Management
University of Ottawa19%Master of Computer Science
University of Waterloo20%Master of Mathematics
Western University20%MS in Management
University of Calgary19%Master in Electrical Engineering

MS in Canada Application Deadlines

UniversityDeadline (Tentative)
University of TorontoJanuary 31, 2023 
University of British Columbia (UBC)Program Specific
McGill UniversitySeptember Sem- December 15, 2022 | January Sem- July 15, 2023
McMaster UniversityNovember 24, 2022 to  December 8, 2022
Universite de MontrealFall and Summer- February 1, 2023
University of AlbertaJanuary admission- November 1, 2022
May admission- March 1, 2023
July admission- May 1, 2023
University of OttawaFall- March 1, 2023
Winter- August 1, 2023 
University of WaterlooFebruary 1, 2023
Western UniversityMarch 1, 2023
University of CalgaryJuly 1, 2023

Applying for MS in Canada

Applying for admissions in Canada can be competitive as the number of applicants far exceeds the actual number of accepted admissions. Academic sessions start in the month of September, however, few universities might also have several start dates. It is always advisable that international students must apply for admission early and preferably submit their admission applications by the month of January. 

Eligibility for Masters in Canada

To be eligible for admissions in MS in Canada, an applicant must:

  • have a minimum GPA often 3.0/4.0 (equivalent to 65- 70%) or its equivalent international UG degree in a related field of study.
  • provide test scores such as GMATor GRE, depending on the program of choice.
    • Minimum GMAT scores required: 550 
    • Minimum GRE scores required 140 in verbal. 150 in quantitative
  • Non-native English speakers must provide proof of English proficiency through TOEFL, IELTS, or other equivalent exams.
  • Few master’s programs (such as business/ management) also require 1-3 years of work experience.

NOTE: Although most master’s programs are taught in English, some of them might have French as the language of instruction. This majorly depends on the province you are in (for instance, Quebec). As proof of French proficiency, students must clear TEF or DELF.

IELTS Requirement for MS in Canada

International students from non-native English-speaking countries are required to submit proof of English language proficiency. The minimum scores requirements of ELP test would vary depending on the program, however, the general scores at top universities offering masters in Canada are:

UniversityIELTS Score
University of Toronto6.5
University of British Columbia6.5
McGill University6.5
McMaster University7.0
Universite de Montreal6.5
University of Alberta7.0
University of Ottawa6.5
University of Waterloo7.0
Western University6.5
University of Calgary6.5

Requirements for MS in Canada

As part of the application package, students must submit the following documents for admission to MS in Canada:

  • A completed admission application form
  • Certified copies of academic transcripts and certificates from all educational institutions attended
  • CV/Resume
  • References or Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal statements/writing samples
  • Scores of standardized tests to study in Canada include
    • GRE/GMAT scores
    • Language proficiency (English/French)
  • Payments of non-refundable application fee.
  • Copy of Passport
  • Proof of scholarship or funding

Masters in Canada Costs

The costs involved in studying abroad require international students to estimate their financial budgets before starting the process. The cost of studying MS in Canada includes one-time payable pre-arrival costs, tuition fees as well as living costs.

Tuition Fees for Masters in Canada for Indian Students

Average annual tuition fee of masters in Canada for indian students is discussed below: 

UniversityAverage Tuition in CAD/YearAverage Tuition in INR/Year
University of Toronto45,11027.3 lakhs
University of British Columbia40,45024.48 lakhs
McGill University32,99019.97 lakhs
McMaster University43,57526.37 lakhs
University of Montreal46,43028.1 lakhs
University of Alberta33,53020.29 lakhs
University of Ottawa30,19018.27 lakhs
Simon Fraser University39,29523.78 lakhs
University of Waterloo22,80413.8 lakhs
Western University17,30010.45 lakhs

Cost of Living in Canada

The cost of living in Canada is around 2% lower than the USA. However, a few states might have much lower expenses. The monthly accommodation fee varies depending on the Canadian province. The average monthly accommodation cost around 850 CAD- 1,000 CAD annually.

Other living expenses include costs spent on food, transportation, books and supplies, etc. These estimated expenses are:

ExpenseCost of Living in Canada in CADCost of Living in Canada in INR*
Books and Material (yearly)Up to 1,665 CADUp to 1 lakh
Health Insurance (monthly)550- 915 CAD33,000 to 55,000
Food (monthly)250 CAD15,000
Transport (monthly)30- 65 CAD2,000-4,000
Entertainment (monthly)135 CAD8,000
Phone & Internet (monthly)30 CAD2,000

The chart below shows the estimated minimum and maximum monthly accommodation fees at best Canadian cities for international students.Monthly Accommodation Expenses in Canada

MS in Canada with Scholarships

To fund their studies in Canada, students can apply for various scholarships to study in Canada. These include scholarships awarded by universities, the government of Canada, private organizations and agencies, etc. These scholarships help students to take care of the tuition fee as well as the living expenses in many cases.

The table below shows some of the scholarships available to international students pursuing Masters in Canada:

ScholarshipAwarded toScholarship Amount (in CAD)
Ontario Graduate Scholarshipgraduate students at universities in Ontario10,000- 30,000
Graduate Entrance Scholarshipstudents enrolled in Masters in Taxation program at University of Waterloo3,500
JN Tata Endowment ScholarshipIndian students looking for studies abroad1,832- 18,315
Aga Khan Foundation Scholarshipstudents from developing countries covering tuition & living expensesVaries
Graduate Dean’s Entrance Scholarshipfull-time students enrolled in a thesis-based master’s program at UBC5,000
International Entrance Awardsstudents enrolled in an MBA program at McGill UniversityUp to 20,000
Graduate Scholarshipstudents enrolled in a masters program at University of Waterloo1,000
Hira and Renu Ahuja International Graduate Scholarshipfull-time graduate enrolled in a masters program at University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Engineering20,000
Graduate Fellowship (UMGF)full-time students of the Faculty of Graduate Studies at University of Manitoba14,000
Master’s Entrance Scholarshipfull-time graduate student at UAlberta in the form of a stipend17,500 + 10,000
Innovates Graduate Student Scholarshipstudents enrolled in a research-based graduate program at UAlberta26,000

Financial Aids in Canada for Masters in Canada

Apart from these scholarships, international students can also opt for other financial aid options, these include:

  • Education loans- Students can opt for education loans provided by various banking institutions, non-banking financial corporations, etc. Few of the popular loans to study in Canada include HDFC Credila, ICICI Canada GIC program, SBI Ed Vantage Education Loan, etc. 
  • Work-Study- International students can opt for various work-study options and can work up to 20 hours during sessions and full-time nursing vacations. Some of the options for work-study in Canada include-
    • Co-op program (co-operative education)- Several Canadian universities offer Master through co-op programs. This refers to alternate periods of academic study and work experience where students are paid for their work experience.
    • Internships- Includes paid or unpaid, work experience for academic credit or better placements.
    • Other opportunities include applied research projects, professional practicum and volunteering. 

Jobs after Masters in Canada

Friendly immigration policies and the easy availability of work permits for Canada make it a popular destination among graduates looking for career opportunities abroad. The scope after completion of MS in Canada highly depends on the choice of program.

  • Salaries of Computer Science graduates in Canada are among the highest-paid.
  • Healthcare and medical industry is the third largest with the most number of employment options.
  • There is a high demand for law graduates in Canada with lawyers earning about 72,000 CAD annually. 
  • Master degree graduates are able to earn 29% more than bachelor graduates.
  • Employees in Canada observe a salary increase of about 9% every 15 months.

Jobs after MS Specializations in Canada

SpecializationJob ProfileAverage Salary in CAD
MS in Computer Science in CanadaComputer Systems Engineer64,698
Systems Designer77,870
Computer Engineer76,784
MS in Electrical Engineering in CanadaElectronics Engineer71,003
Electrical Design Engineer76,185
Electrical Engineer80,569
MS in Civil Engineering in CanadaStructural Engineer78,264
Construction Engineer92,851
Civil Engineer73,197
MS in Mechanical Engineering in CanadaMechanical Engineer77,209
Building Systems Engineer86,388
Project Mechanical Engineer94,282
MS in Data Science in CanadaDatabase Administrator79,161
Database Analyst74,417
Database Manager79,281

Salaries by Cities for Masters in Canada

Calgary, Toronto, Quebec, Montreal, etc. are some of the high-paying cities. The table below shows the average city-wise annual salaries in Canada.

CityAverage Salary (in CAD)Top Employers
Montreal190,000CGI Group; Bell Canada; McGill University; Ubisoft Entertainment Inc.
Toronto189,000RBC Bank; Deloitte; CIBC (Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce); TD Canada
Winnipeg175,000Birchwood Automotive Group; University of Manitoba; Bison Transport Inc.; Qmetrix
Ottawa181,000Shopify; IBM Canada Ltd; Ciena Corp; Canada Post Corporation
Calgary178,000University of Calgary; Suncor Energy Inc.; ATB Financials; Alberta Health Services; Canadian Natural Resources Limited
Richmond152,000FLIR Systems Inc.; Whitewater West; Layfield Group
Brampton173,000Loblaw’s Company Limited; Rogers Communication Ltd.; Maritime Ontario; Region of Peel
Mississauga179,000Hatch; SOTI; RBC Bank; TJX Companies Inc.; Baylis Medical Company
Vancouver181,000UBC; Inc.; Telus Corporation; StemCell Technologies; Lululemon Athletica Inc.

Work Permit after Masters in Canada

Students looking for global studies are turning towards Canada for higher education. One of the important factors being friendly policies to get a work permit for Canada. Graduates from top Canadian universities are able to secure a 3-year work permit which then roles into permanent residency. With a long history targeting highly skilled immigrants, about 65% of international candidates in Canada had a master’s degree in 2017.

  • Students pursuing a Masters in Canada can apply for a Post-graduation Work Permit (PGWP).
  • PGWP is an open work permit, allowing students to work for any company in Canada.
  • Its validity depends on the length of the educational program. The maximum duration for PGWP is three years.
  • To be eligible, a student must apply for a post-graduation work permit within 180 days of completing their program and obtaining transcripts.

Top-paying Sectors after Masters in Canada

Some of the popular sectors to explore after completing your MS from Canada are:

SectorAverage Annual Salaries (CAD)
Electrical Engineering75,000 
Civil Engineering48,000 
Mechanical Engineering50,000 
Data Science & Machine Learning65,000 

After studying and some work experience in Canada, international candidates can apply for permanent residency or PR in Canada. As permanent citizens, candidates tend to get most of the social benefits as citizens of Canada, can work or study anywhere in Canada, and can even apply for Canadian citizenship.

According to reports by CBIE (Canadian Bureau for International Education), the total number of international students has increased by 82% over the past five years. Thus, making Canada the world’s third-leading study abroad destination after the USA and Australia. According to reports, 34% of these international students were from India alone. 

Canada has a multicultural society providing ample opportunities to support young talents. If you have the requisite passion for pursuing an masters in Canada, the country offers significant returns for all your investments, helping you to reach your goals. You can also further your opportunities and horizons by continuing your studies after your master’s and planning a Ph.D. from Canada. 

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