Top Ten Canadian Universities: How to Make Your Pick

Canada takes pride in its growing reputation as the best place to study abroad. Providing excellent quality of educational programs that matches world’s university giants like Oxford or Stanford, a welcoming and a tolerant community and safe student environment, it isn’t surprising that international students are hurling in to enrol in top-ranked Canadian universities. The staggering 92% increase in the number of international students over the last decade is not only due to the superb choice of undergraduate and advanced-level postgraduate study programs, but is also has merit in the rich city diversity of Canada and even better offerings for outdoor activities.


Enrolling in a Reputable Canadian University Improves Your Job Prospects

If you choose to study in one of the Canadian provinces, you not only get the chance to enjoy the real-life postcard Canada but also improve your prospects to get a job from a Canadian employer or another employer in an English speaking country. from the presence of international students is impressive. Newly created jobs serve as a sort of a guarantee for your study investment. Although top Canadian universities are not as expensive as their UK or their US counterparts, international students still need to payway more than the domestic candidates. Tuition fees are easier to manage when you think of them asjob generators. Engineering and business, as well as the natural and social sciences, are popular study alternatives for international students in Canada. These study fields are also widely believed for raising your job odds, so the benefits are mutual.

Region Average Tuition for Canadian Students Average Tuition for International STudents
Canada $6,907 $16,252
Alberta $5,655 $11,703
British Columbia $8,313 $15,673
Manitoba $4,712 $10,280
New Brunswick $6,069 $11,314
Newfoundland and Labrador $2,752 $3,174
Nova Scotia $8,856 $18,255
Ontario $9,918 $22,217
Prince Edward Island $5,260 $11,602
Quebec $2,979 $14,907
Saskatchewan $3,942 $5,918

Average tuition fees for international students across Canadian provinces in 2017/2018.


Canadian Universities Rank Higher on Global Lists

Prestigiousranking institutions place several Canadian universitiesamong the top fifty in the world. When you think that the top-ten competitors include Oxford, Harvard and California Tech Institute, and include runners-up from the growing Chinese higher education sector, having three or four among the best 50 out of 1,000 is an admirable number. The list includes the University of British Columbia at position 34, and the McGill University at position 42. It is obvious that 2018 will put yet another plus on the side of top Canadian universities.


Navigate the Canadian Tuition Fees Maze

Certainly study costs will be the one factor you will not overlook when you choose your university preference. The rise of the average tuition fees of about 5 to 6 percent in thelast yearfor graduate and for undergraduate international students is another proof of the exceptional value of Canadian colleges and course programs. As more and more people are getting their degrees in Canada, faculties are improving and, despite the tough competition, international applicants are spoiled for choices.

When you are budgeting your Canadian education costs, make sure to add costs for housing, academic materials, living expenses, transportation and insurance. For example, there is a difference in the costs of living if you choose to study in one of the cosmopolitan universities, such as the ones in Toronto and Vancouver, or if you opt in for a college in Nova Scotia. Monthly apartment rent off-campus can range between $500 and $1,500 depending where you live. On-campus housing alternatives will save you travel money and on the bonus side, provide options for working while you study. Multiplescholarship opportunitiesare for sure of great help and many universities attract international students by offering various scholarships.


Have Your Budget Priorities Set, What Else is There to Consider?

If you fail to do your research on the top universities by your essential criteria, you may miss out on the best possible experience. Openness to international students is part of Canadian culture. Some towns are more dynamic while others have a less urban feel. Have that in mind when you are thinking about going for the cheapest option. These top-ten international student-friendly Canadian universities will offer a rich social life and plenty of options to try out the life of a Canadian while you study there as an international student:


Top 10 Canadian Universities for International Students for 2018

International Students By Raja Shahid (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by Raja Shalhid / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0


10. University of Manitoba - Winnipeg, Manitoba

University of Manitoba by James Terenko / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

By James Terenko / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA-3.0

The largest and oldest university in Manitoba offers over 90 courses to international students, including preparatory programs and distance learning. The central prairie location provides many explorative opportunities. Its low point is the distance from everywhere else in Canada. However, studying in Manitoba may be your only chance in life to see rare species, such as polar bears and beluga whales.


9. York University - Toronto, Ontario

York University By The City of Toronto from Toronto, Canada (Toronto: York University Aerial) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by The City of Toronto / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.0

If the costs associated with the tuitions fees and the central location of the University of Toronto are over your budget limit, consider applying to York University, in northern Toronto. It is just behind UoT in size and its diverse courses can accommodate almost any chosen subject. If you want to attend York, you must calculate for the time and the costs associated with getting from northwest Toronto to wherever you choose to live (such as downtown Toronto). However, York has a fine residential capacity for its students and the size of the campus can compensate for the lack of urban attractions. York University has an enticing study program, including novel cross-disciplinary degrees, such as integrated science, disaster management and globalization of indigenous peoples.


8. University of Waterloo - Waterloo, Ontario

University of Waterloo By Victor Vucicevich (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by Victor Vucicevich / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

If you are thinking about enlisting in an innovative post-secondary program, the University of Waterloo, located 90 minutes from Toronto, is just what you need. Student entrepreneurs can engage with after-school activities in Velocity Garage, a free start-up incubator and grow as businessmen along taking exams. Advanced tech and interdisciplinary courses, such as knowledge integration, nanotechnology engineering and remote piloting lay a fertile ground for developing a business idea that you can launch after you graduate.

7. Simon Fraser University - Burnaby, British Columbia

Simon Fraser University By Peter&dave (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

[Public Domain]

Simon Fraser University provides stunning mountain views to take your eyes off the books when you complete your course lessons. Simon Fraser University is a new favorite for internationals, topping the ranks this year by the student reputation. The great thing about the three campuses located in Burnaby, Surrey, and Vancouver is that they have established a social scene for students with strong bonds to the local community. The wide scope of academic classes ranging from advanced environmental programs to business design and mechatronics makes it inclusive to all type of scholars. If you enjoy cool courses with an exuberant social life, Simon Fraser might be your choice.  Simon Fraser is about 30 minutes by car, or an hour by bus, from downtown Vancouver.


6. University of Alberta - Edmonton, Alberta

University of Alberta By WinterE229 (WinterforceMedia) (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

[Public Domain]

Some say that the cold weather is the lowest point of your Canadian studies, and though Edmonton is pretty far north, many don’t consider it as scary weather-wise as some cities. The rates for grad students are a factor that may make you forget about the living costs. The excellent research reputation can compensate for the harsh winters. The city-sleek ambience, the wide-range of student support services, and a world famous shopping mall are welcoming students from almost 150 countries who come to study at the University of Alberta.


5. University of Calgary - Calgary, Alberta

University of Calgary By Qyd (talk · contribs) (Self-photographed) [GFDL (, CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or CC BY 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by Qyd / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

Apart from over a hundred study programs, if you want to build not only your academic skills, but also your athletic prowess, the University of Calgary is a top pick as it is located in one of the world’s best and cleanest cities to live. With an average of 333 sunny days per year, it is a contrast to the stark Canadian weather everywhere else. Calgary has all essential aspects of Canadian hospitality  - diversity and a multicultural openness. The amazing ski slopes 2 hours away are just a bonus.


4. University of New Brunswick - Fredericton and Saint John, New Brunswick

Fredericton Campus By HazelAB (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by HazelAB / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

Canadian medical and law schools top among the favorites for international students. The New Brunswick University will definitely suffice for the pickiest future medical doctors and lawyers while the 75 other courses available at Fredericton and Saint John campuses make the University of New Brunswick one of the best options if you are on a budget, particularly if you find a bargain in accommodation. The study curricula comprises attractive programs related to human and satellite intelligence, as well as courses in global web activism.   


3. McGill University - Montreal, Quebec

By paytonc (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by paytonc / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.0

There are two main reasons you wouldn’t want to miss McGill University, especially if you speak French. The first reason includes the affordable tuition rates for international students, which are   $14,618 for undergraduate and $12,550 for graduate tuition and fees. If you are lucky enough to be a French citizen, you can qualify for extra-affordable rates on the level of Quebec residents. Tuition savings aside, you will not have enough hours in the day to enjoy Montreal’s European vibes. If you don’t dig in the bountiful festivals on offer, including the largest comedy festival in Canada, you just might spend the extra savings on theaters, music and visual arts.  


2. University of Toronto - Toronto, Ontario

U of T By ITeshi at English Wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

[Public Domain]

Toronto is the picture of Canadian multiculturalism and one of the deciding factors for over 15,000 student per year to choose it as a preference. The tuition fees and the costs of living are not exactly cheap, though, and if you have a generous study budget at your disposal, you will enjoy one of the most vibrant international student communities in Canada, located in the core of Canada’s largest and most multicultural city. The world-famous University of Toronto is great for culture fans, with many world class attractions, including the Toronto Film Festival, which is one of the top 3 film festivals in the world.


1. University of British Columbia - Vancouver, British Columbia

UBC By Shawn from Airdrie, Canada (UBC) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

by Shawn / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.0

Sometimes, it pays off to pay higher tuition fees to get lively panoramas, a choice of smaller and larger campuses, as well as access to some of the best research grants in the world. In as much as Vancouver gets higher and higher on the list of world’s most expensive cities, the picturesque surroundings of Vancouver are not only populating world travel magazines, but also luring in newcomers to settle. All the best open-air experiences in Canada are in the Vancouver area, so, if you are thinking long-term and want to stay in Canada after you complete studies, the University of British Columbia is a smart choice.  

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