Canada Finance

How much is the student allowance in Canada?

A Comprehensive Guide on Student Allowances in Canada

Student allowances in Canada vary widely depending on the type of financial assistance received, the province or territory of residence, and individual circumstances such as financial need, academic performance, and specific program eligibility. Below, we break down the typical student allowances available through federal and provincial/territorial programs, as well as scholarships and bursaries.

1. Canada Student Loans and Grants

The Government of Canada offers student loans and grants to eligible students. The amounts provided are based on assessed financial need and other factors.

1.1. Canada Student Loan:

  • Maximum Loan Amount: Up to $210 per week of study for full-time students. Part-time students can also receive loans, but the amount is calculated based on a percentage of the full-time amount.

1.2. Canada Student Grants:

  • Grant for Full-Time Students: Up to $6,000 per academic year for students from low-income families.
  • Grant for Part-Time Students: Up to $3,600 per academic year for part-time students from low-income families.
  • Grant for Students with Dependents: Up to $400 per month of study for each dependent under 12 years of age.
  • Grant for Students with Permanent Disabilities: Up to $4,000 per academic year.
  • Grant for Services and Equipment for Students with Permanent Disabilities: Up to $20,000 per academic year.
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2. Provincial and Territorial Student Financial Assistance

Each province and territory in Canada offers its own student financial assistance programs, which include loans, grants, and bursaries.

2.1. Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP):

  • Loans: Varies based on financial need.
  • Grants: Can include the Ontario Student Grant, which covers a portion of tuition for eligible students. Amounts vary based on income and family size.

2.2. Student Aid BC:

  • Loans: Up to $320 per week of study.
  • Grants and Bursaries: Includes the BC Access Grant for Full-Time Students, which provides up to $4,000 per year.

2.3. Alberta Student Aid:

  • Loans: Up to $575 per week of study for full-time students.
  • Grants and Bursaries: Includes the Alberta Low-Income Grant, which provides up to $250 per month of study.

2.4. Quebec: Aide financière aux études (AFE):

  • Loans: Amounts based on financial need.
  • Bursaries: Includes the Quebec Merit Scholarship for Vocational and Technical Training, with amounts varying based on program and financial need.

3. Scholarships and Bursaries

3.1. University-Specific Scholarships:

  • Many universities offer entrance and in-course scholarships, with amounts ranging from a few hundred dollars to full tuition coverage.
  • Example: University of Toronto offers the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship, covering tuition, books, incidental fees, and full residence support.
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3.2. External Scholarships:

  • Organizations such as the Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation (Loran Scholars) offer significant scholarships. The Loran Award is valued at up to $100,000 over four years.

4. Work Opportunities

4.1. On-Campus Employment:

  • Wages for on-campus jobs typically range from minimum wage (around $15 per hour) to higher, depending on the position.

4.2. Co-op and Internship Programs:

  • Co-op positions can provide substantial income, often related to the field of study. Earnings can vary widely, from $15 to $30 per hour or more, depending on the industry and location.

Calculating Total Financial Assistance

Example Scenario: Full-Time Undergraduate Student in Ontario:

  1. Canada Student Loan: $210 per week x 34 weeks (typical academic year) = $7,140
  2. Ontario Student Grant: Based on income and family size, assume $3,000
  3. Part-Time Job (10 hours per week at $15/hour): $15 x 10 hours x 34 weeks = $5,100

Total Annual Assistance: $7,140 (loan) + $3,000 (grant) + $5,100 (job) = $15,240

Key Points to Remember

  1. Application Process: Apply for financial assistance through your provincial or territorial student financial assistance office, which will also assess eligibility for federal programs.
  2. Deadlines: Be mindful of application deadlines to ensure timely processing of financial aid.
  3. Repayment: Understand the terms of loan repayment, including interest rates and repayment start dates. Grants typically do not need to be repaid.
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Useful Resources

By understanding the various sources and amounts of financial assistance available, students in Canada can better plan and manage their educational expenses.

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