As an international student, it can be very challenging to find the right university or college to study at in Canada. Going through a consultant doesn’t always help because they may have limited exposure to Canada and its universities and colleges. So here are some factors to consider when choosing where you want to student in Canada.
The University – This is the most crucial aspect of choosing a destination. To help you decide you should look at these aspects of the institution:
- World and National Rankings – World ranking associations are Times Higher Education and QS World University Rankings. QS also gives rankings by country. For example the University of Alberta is ranked number 4 according to the QS index. Also a country’s national newspapers may help you find information on national rankings.
- Teaching Excellence – How qualified are the professors and even if qualified, can they teach? These are important questions. According to MacLean’s magazine, a well-recognised paper in Canada, Alberta has two of the best teaching universities in Canada. Additionally, the University of Alberta has many professors who hold Excellence Teaching Awards.
- Academics – In addition to ranking and teaching excellence the program and curriculum are equally important. You must attend an accredited institution, especially if you want to have your degree recognised and also obtain a study permit to study in Canada. Accreditation is granted to universities and colleges whose curriculum and etc. meets national standards.
Finances – Factors to consider here are:
- Scholarships for international students – Some Canadian universities give good scholarships to international students.
- Permission to Work – The Canadian government allows international students to work up to 20 hours per week while they are a student and this can be done both on and off campus.
- Cost – not only does tuition cost come in here, but the cost of living. The same cost of living doesn’t apply to all provinces, so when you are planning on studying in Canada, you will want to look at which province/city has an affordable cost of living.
Support Services – look for a university or college that has great support services such as:
- International Centre – where workshops, cultural and recreational activities and helpful staff abound. International students studying in Canada need this kind of support.
- Health Services – what kind of health plans and on-campus services are provided?
- Career Placement Services – many campuses offer both international and national students assistance in resume writing, interview workshops and job postings. Also when choosing a university or college to study at in Canada, find out if it offers internships and co-operative work programs to their students.
- Security – what kind of security is provided? For example the University of Alberta has 24 hour security at their student residences.
Location – location is so important for several reasons such as climate, social life, cultural or religious relevance, cost of living and job opportunities once you graduate or even while a student. For example, 88% of Georgian College’s graduates find employment after studying in Canada.
If you would like to know more about studying in Canada and about their fine education system, you might want to consider the services of Alberta Rose Education Centre, a Pakistan based company to help you find the right undergraduate program. They also provide editing services and other consultancy services for prospective graduate students.