Canada : Studying and Living

Published On: 24 Jul 2009

 | Last Updated On: 25 Aug 2014

Canada is a wonderful place to study which is among the favorite destination for many Indian students who are seeking quality education in a peaceful environment. Canadian education boasts of many features including the attractive scheme where international students have the option of living and working in Canada once they complete their studies, provided they possess the necessary qualifications and expertise. Canada is a vast country and offers top-rated education in almost all the disciplines of studies. A number of Canadian universities are world's top rankers. The McGill University and University of Toronto stand out for their excellence in education. Here people are friendly and welcoming, and Toronto, the country's financial capital, is quite similar to London and perhaps the most cosmopolitan city on earth.

Applying to Canada

International students are expected to start planning for their studies in Canada 1 year in advance. All Canadian universities process applications from international students independent of one another. Additionally, deadlines vary from programme to programme and university to university. In some cases, where a programme offers two start dates in an academic year, two deadlines will be offered i.e., October 15 for admissions to January and April 15 for September. Some universities will operate a rolling admissions process specifying a start date for the application process rather than a final deadline.

You need the following documents to apply for a study permit:

· Proof of acceptance

· Proof of identity

· Proof of financial support

· Letter of explanation

Months of Admission

The major intake for Canada is primarily in Fall (September). The other intake is in the month of 'winter' i.e. January, but it depends on the students program and the institution that the candidate is applying to. Very few institutes might have the May intake as well. There are several programs on offer by Canadian universities. However, the management, engineering and medical courses are the most sought after.

Courses & Eligibility for Higher Studies in Canada

For Advanced Diploma / Diploma / Certificate level of studies the candidate is required to have Higher Second Class in HSC. For Bachelors Degree the candidate is required to have first class in HSC. For Post Graduate Certificate / Diploma level of study one should have higher second class in HSC and Masters Degree the candidate requires having First Class in Bachelors Degree (4 years only) OR First Class in Bachelors Degree (3 years in India) Plus Post Graduate Certificate or Diploma (Canadian)

Eligibility for Studying in Canada

To be eligible to Study in Canada:

· You must have been accepted by a designated learning institution in Canada.

· You must prove that you have enough money to pay for your tuition fees and living expenses for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada and return transportation for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada.

· You must be a law-abiding citizen with no criminal record and not be a risk to the security of Canada. You may have to provide a police certificate.

· You must be in good health and willing to complete a medical examination, if necessary.

· You must satisfy an immigration officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your authorized stay.

Cost of Study in Canada

For programs like Diploma and Certificate Program the tuition fee approximately ranges from C$10,000 to $ 13,000 per year. For Bachelors Program the fee ranges from C$10,000 to $ 15,000 per year and for Masters Program fee expenditure ranges approximately from C$12,000 to $ 16,000 per year. Approximate fees and living costs are calculated based on the future costs on a 3% average inflation rate.

For example, a Bachelor of Applied Science in Chemical and Biological Engineering from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia will cost you Tuition/Program Fees of $ 29,682, Compulsory Fees of $ 576 and books/Supplies at $ 991 coming $ 31,249 for one year. With living costs for that one is calculated by cost of living/shelter at $ 6,084, groceries at $ 2,484, miscellaneous, $ 2,496, and local public transport at $ 768 coming in a total of $ 11,832 as living costs for one year.

Student Accommodation in Canada

Many schools have accommodation conveniently located on or near their campus. Dorms generally have a shared kitchen, bathroom, and laundry facilities. Some offer optional meal plans where you can pay a set price up-front for two or three meal tickets per day. Many international students also find it allows them to make friends and find study partners more easily, saves on transport to campus, and generally enables a smoother social transition.

Students can also go for private accommodations and can check with the housing office or student union office on campus for a current list of rental units nearby. These private accommodations are not inspected by the institutions, therefore it is students’ responsibility to contact the landlord, inspect the premises and determine suitability for their needs. With the private accommodation, price, quality and availability will vary greatly. Rent can be especially high in some cities. Expect to pay from C$400-$1500 per month, depending on the city, the neighbourhood, and whether there are co-tenants. Landlords typically collect one month’s rent up-front as a damage deposit, which is returned to when you move out if no damages are incurred.

Private rentals require a signed lease, which is a legal document stating your responsibilities as a tenant, such as paying rent on time, keeping premises clean, repairing any damages caused by you or your guests, and not disturbing other tenants. Landlords may add various rules and conditions to the lease. Read the document carefully before signing and ask for a copy.

Many Canadian families welcome international students. This may be an effective way for you learn about daily life in Canada, and meet new, friendly people. Home stays also offer a more stable and secure environment for younger people coming to Study in Canada. Depending on the Type of Accommodation the approximate living cost and expenses Per Month in Canada would be –

· Residence/Dormitory: C$ 350 to $ 515

· Off campus Rental Housing: C$ 350 to $ 700 (shared apartment) and C$ 500 to $ 1500 (single apartment)

· Home-stay: C$ 400 to $ 800

Earn while studying

International students graduating from a program of 2 years or more would be eligible for a 2 year work permit after graduation. However, this is applicable if the student has studied in cities other than Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal and is also employed outside this area. In these 3 cities, students are eligible for a 1 year work permit after graduation. The experience gained would provide them an opportunity to work in an international setting and at the same time allow them to broaden their horizons.

Work on campus: You may work on campus at the institution where you study without a work permit if you are a full-time student at a public post-secondary institution, such as a college or university, or a collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEP) in Quebec. If a private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as a public institution, and receives at least 50 percent of its financing for its overall operations from government grants (currently only private college-level educational institutions in Quebec qualify) or a Canadian private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees and you have a valid study permit.

Work off campus: Study permit holders in Canada may gain work experience by working off campus while completing their studies. As of June 1, 2014, you may qualify to work off campus without a work permit. If you qualify, your study permit will allow you to work up to 20 hours per week:

· during regular academic sessions

· Full-time during scheduled breaks, such as the winter and summer holidays or spring break.

To qualify, you must:

· have a valid study permit

· be a full-time student

· be enrolled at a designated learning institution at the post-secondary level or, in Quebec, a vocational program at the secondary level

· be studying in an academic, vocational or professional training program that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate that is at least six months in duration.

Work as a co–op student or intern: For some academic programs, work experience is part of the curriculum. Foreign students who wish to participate in a co-op or internship program must apply for a work permit as well as a study permit.

Life in Canada

Canada has an encouraging multicultural diversity. Almost all of the world's ethnic groups are represented here. Canada is a cold country with freezing winters, so you should be prepared for the long winters that last all of five months. International student advisors at schools can help students get in touch with such groups. Canada is a bilingual country with two official languages, English and French. The vast majority (75 per cent) of Canada's French-speaking inhabitants lives in the province of Quebec, which is located in the eastern part of the country but there are French-speaking communities throughout the country. International students can apply for their Permanent Residency which takes up to 15 to 18 months from within Canada. However they need to meet the minimum eligibility criteria of 67 Points. In Canada you can study at serene settings on the Great Lakes, near the ocean, or close to the mountains. Canada not just has a wealth of natural beauty; it is also famous for its cosmopolitan and multicultural cities brimming with ethnic foods, great entertainment, cultural events, and sports.

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