Education System in CANADA
Education in Canada is under the complete jurisdiction of the provinces and territories and as such, there is no federal education system in Canada. In keeping with the national commitment to education, public education in Canada is free upto and including secondary school in all the provinces.
However, each provincial system, while similar to the others, reflects its specific regional concerns, and historical and cultural heritage. At the post-secondary level, institutions are divided into community colleges and universities.
There are significant differences between the education systems of the different provinces of Canada. Secondary schooling in Canada could go up to Grade 11, 12 or 13, depending on the province unlike in India, where Grade 12 is standard all over the country.
Post secondary education is offered by four types of educational institutions:
- University Colleges
- Community Colleges/Technical Institutes
- Career Colleges
Universities: Canadian universities are largely public funded, and, as a result, offer consistently high quality education at lower tuition rates for international students than their counterparts in competing countries. They offer a broad range of courses and degrees from undergraduate to doctorate and also certificate and professional degrees.
University Colleges: As a component of the Canadian university system, university colleges offer students a choice of either academic oriented university degree programmes or the more practical-oriented college diplomas and certificates. As a part of the Canadian college system, university colleges are distinguished by their strong student support services, small classes and strong campus environments. They also offer combined degree/diploma programmes and university transfer programmes.
Community colleges and technical institutes: They typically have a more vocational-related curricula, with small classes, off-campus course offerings, a greater ratio of laboratory space to class room space, and an interactive teaching style. The uniqueness of Canadian colleges lies in the combination of employer-centered curricula. These institutes have the primary function of responding to the training needs of business, industry, and public service sectors. Most colleges and technical institutes offer diplomas and certificates rather than degrees, however, more and more now grant degrees and applied degrees.
Technical/ Career College : This is a privately owned and operated school with the main objective of preparing students for the job market after a short period of instruction. The emphasis at career colleges is on practical skills over a broad range of programmes. They specialize in such areas as business, computers, and secretarial skills. Although privately owned, these institutes are provincially approved and regulated, ensuring that programmes standards and quality are maintained.
The academic year usually starts in September and ends in May, and is normally divided into two semesters. Some institutes operate on a semester or trimester system and admit students in January and/or May as well as September. Many institutes offer a limited number of courses and special programmes during the summer session.
Type of Certification
- Certificate is a qualification awarded upon successful completion of a programme which is usually one year in length, and is offered at colleges.
- Diploma is the qualification awarded on the basis of one or two year’s successful study, and is offered at colleges.
- Undergraduate/bachelors degrees are awarded by a university after four years of full-time study, and lead to graduate level studies.
- Graduate/post graduate degrees lead to advanced degrees, diplomas and certificates. A pre-requisite to participate in graduate studies is a bachelors/undergraduate degree (4 years).
- M.B.A. programmes will typically require a minimum of two to three years of relevant work experience, GMAT score of 580-600, TOEFL score of 560-600, and a 4 year degree, and are generally 2 years in duration, though a few institutes offer a fast track option.
- Pre-requisites to participating in a master’s programme is a four year bachelor’s degree with high academic standing equivalent to a minimum mid-B grade in Canada (mid 70’s); at least two academic letters of reference; and other qualifications as specified, ie., TOEFL, GRE general and/or subject test. Master’s programmes generally require two years to complete full time, and usually require a combination of course work and thesis.
- Doctorate or Ph.D. is a degree ranking above a master’s degree, and generally requires four to seven years to complete full time. A combination of course work, original research, and a thesis is required. Prerequisites are typically a master’s degree, although direct entry from a bachelor’s degree to a Ph.D. programme may be possible depending on the school and programme. Minimum high-B grade in Canada (high 70’s) is required; where relevant, demonstrated research competence equivalent to at least a B+ grade; at least two academic letters of reference; and other qualifications as specified, ie., TOEFL, GRE general and or subject test.
- Post-doctoral programmes are much more specialized, research oriented programmes. One of the most important factors in granting post-doctorate fellowships is the personal network established between the interested applicant and the faculty member within the institution.
Top Reasons to Study in CANADA
- A degree or diploma from Canadian educational institutions is instantly recognized around the world as being of the highest standard.
- Tuition fees for international students in Canada are much lower than comparable countries.
- Canada spends more per capita on education than any other country in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
- There are 100,000 international students from all parts of the world annually in Canada. Your educational experience is sure to be truly international.
- Canada is renowned all over the world for its tradition of hospitality and tolerance. A remarkable multicultural society ensures that you will be welcomed and made to feel at home during your stay in Canada. More than 600,000 Canadians trace their roots back to India.
- Canada is a world leader in software development, telecommunications, aerospace, engineering, urban transport, biotechnology, mining technology and environmental industries. As a student, you have a wealth of research and scholars to draw upon a variety of disciplines.
- Canada offers a wide choice of over 90 universities and 150 colleges and technical institutes, featuring virtually every program imaginable.
- For all that it offers, Canada has a remarkably low cost of living. Its inflation rate has remained one of the lowest in the industrialized world.