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Average Tuition in Canada by Province and Programs

Learn about tuition differences in Canada – by field of study and province.

The average tuition in Canada for colleges and universities can vary by province. For domestic students, undergraduate fees hover around $6,693 per year on average while graduate tuition cost about $7,472 annually. International students pay higher rates, with averages ranging from $20,120 (graduate students) to $33,623 yearly for undergraduate students. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at average tuition costs across Canada by programs and province, and also compare the Canadian average against other tier 1 countries like the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.

Highlights of Trend of Average Tuition in Canada

  1. In general, tuition rates in Canada for both domestic and international students are lower than those found in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia; currency differences aside.
  2. Domestic (Canadian) students pay far less than international students. For example, in 2021/2022. – Canadian undergraduate student tuition was $6,693 on average (1.7% increase from prior year). – Canadian graduate student tuition was $7,472 on average (1.5% increase). – International undergraduate student tuition was $33,623 on average (4.9% increase from prior year). – International graduate student tuition was $20,120 on average (3.6% increase from last year).
  3. The increase in overall average tuition in Canada for both domestic and international students may be largely due to increased investment in virtual learning and support due to COVID-19.
  4. Average Tuition in Canada for Domestic (Canadian) Students: In 2021/2022, the average tuition across all provinces for domestic students was $4,250 at colleges and about $6,700 at universities. The highest tuition cost rates were found in Ontario with an average of $9,743 annually while Saskatchewan had lowest tuition on average.
  5. Many schools across Canada introduced additional compulsory fees which bumped up the average cost of attendance. Nationally, average additional compulsory fees for undergraduate students rose 8.0% from a year earlier to $1,002 in 2021/2022. Average additional compulsory fees for graduate students rose 8.0% to $955.
  6. In terms of increased additional average tuition in Canada, Saskatchewan was the highest (+54.4%), followed by Nova Scotia for graduates (+49.3%). Post-secondary schools in Prince Edward Island (+2.3% for undergraduates and +2.3% for graduates) recorded the least growth in additional fees.
  7. These highlights are adapted from Statcan‘s report – Tuition and Living Accommodation Costs (TLAC) survey, 2021/2022.

Average Tuition in Canada vary by province.

Canadian tuition fee vary from province to province. This is because each province has different business fees and government policies for education. However, we can still calculate average tuition in Canada by looking at the latest statistics based on student populations across all programs in each region of the country.

Average tuition in Alberta – Undergraduate domestic students in Alberta paid an average of $5,347 CAD per year in 2021/2022. International students paid an average of $21,548. On the other hand, internationals graduates tuition in Alberta averaged at $11,804.

Average tuition in British Columbia – In BC, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $5,392 per year. International students averaged at $25,472 CAD. Graduate international students averaged at $16,988 in BC.

Average tuition in Manitoba – In Manitoba, undergraduate students paid an average of $4,196 per year. International students in Manitoba paid average tuition of $15,582. On the other hand, International graduates averaged at $10,995.

Average tuition in New Brunswick – New Brunswick undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $7,540. International students averaged at $14,290 CAD. Graduate internationals averaged at $11,593 in NB.

Average tuition in Newfoundland and Labrador – In Newfoundland and Labrador, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $13,680 per year. International students averaged at $19,752 CAD. Graduate domestics students paid an average of $11,472 and internationals averaged at $15,9840

Average tuition in Nova Scotia – In Nova Scotia, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $2,716 per year. International students averaged at $12,035 CAD. Graduate international students averaged at $4,087 in NS.

Average tuition in Ontario – In Ontario, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $7,133 per year. International students averaged at $34,961 CAD. Graduate internationals averaged at $21,686.

Average tuition in PEI – In Prince Edward Island, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $6,270. International students averaged at $21,525 CAD. Graduate internationals students had an average of $11,905.

Average tuition in Quebec – In Quebec, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $3,406 per year. International students averaged at $21,857 CAD. Graduate domestics students paid an average of $12,616 and internationals averaged at $15,392.

Average tuition in Saskatchewan – In the province of Saskatchewan, undergraduate domestic students paid an average of $6,887 annually while International students averaged $20,211 CAD. On the other hand, Graduate international students paid an average of $6,032 yearly.

So which province is the cheapest for schooling in Canada and which is the most expensive?

From the stats, Newfoundland and Labrador has the cheapest tuition cost for both international undergraduates and graduate students in Canada. NL also have the lowest fee average for Canadian students. On the flip side, Ontario and British Columbia appear to be the most expensive destination for international students while Nova Scotia ranks among highest fees for Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

Average tuition fees in Canadian provinces

Average tuition fees in Canadian provinces for Domestic and International Students.

Average tuition in Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Yukon are somewhat uniquely discounted due to the peculiarity of demand for international education in those regions. Do check out list of schools you can study in NWT, Nunavut and Yukon.

Average tuition fees in Canada by field of study (programs)

International Students: Average tuition rates in Canada by province and university for international students. International undergraduate students pay average of $20,514 CAD annually whereas graduate students are paying about $12,939 per year. The average is calculated based on the following data from Statcan. There were a total of 13 universities that made it in to the analysis, with Quebec having the lowest tuition rates and Ontario having the highest.

Domestic Students: In contrast to international students, undergraduate students who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents pay an average of $6,693 annually. The cost for graduate studies ranges from an average of $7,472 CAD per year at colleges to $22,151 at universities.

Canadian Student Tuition Fees in Canada by field of study 2021/2022 – Costs and Comparisons to International Students.

The table below shows average undergraduate tuition fees for domestic and international students by province. This includes average costs of different subjects such as Engineering ($11,501), Social sciences & humanities ($12,08) and business ($12,607).

Students of six professional programs paid the most in average tuition fees in 2021/2022: dentistry ($22,731), medicine ($14,604), veterinary medicine ($14,374), law ($12,910), pharmacy ($11,373) and optometry ($10,735).

Full-time Canadian students in social and behavioral sciences and legal studies paid on average $5,725 in 2021/2022, with fees ranging from $2,658 in Newfoundland and Labrador to $7,934 in Nova Scotia.

Undergraduate tuition fees in business, management and public administration were on average $6,991. Students in Newfoundland and Labrador ($2,695) paid the lowest fees, while those in Ontario ($9,406) paid the highest.

In physical and life sciences and technologies, undergraduate students in Newfoundland and Labrador ($2,666) paid the lowest tuition fees, while those in Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario and Saskatchewan paid more than the Canadian average of $6,246.

Undergraduate tuition fees in the humanities averaged $5,754 in 2021/2022, ranging from $2,646 in Newfoundland and Labrador to $7,771 in Nova Scotia.

Master of Business Administration is the most expensive graduate program in Canada, with students paying over $25,000 on average.

Students enrolled in an executive MBA program paid on average $51,295 in tuition in 2021/2022, while those in a regular MBA paid on average $29,286. These averages at the national level reflect the broad range of fees among the provinces that offer these programs.

The average tuition fees for executive MBA programs in Canada, which are geared toward working professionals with significant managerial experience, ranged from $13,719 in Quebec to $93,985 in Ontario, while the average tuition fees for regular MBA programs ranged from $2,564 in Newfoundland and Labrador to $42,707 in Ontario.

Business, management and public administration ($14,272) graduate students had the third-highest average tuition fees for graduate programs nationally, followed by dentistry ($13,114).

Average graduate and undergraduate tuition fees for Canadian students

Average graduate and undergraduate tuition fees for Canadian full-time students, by province and selected field of study (programs).

Tuition costs in Canada vs United States, UK and Australia

Compared to other countries like the US, UK and Australia, Canada has the lowest average tuition fees for international students.

Comparing the average tuition in Canada with other countries is a difficult task because of different education systems, entry requirements and cost structures. For example, undergraduate degrees in Australia are more expensive than those in England but this does not entirely suggest that they have higher quality programs. In addition to this, the average tuition fees for international students in Canada are much lower than the United States and England. For example, undergraduate students at universities in Canada pay an average of $24,536 CAD per year as compared to $36,000 USD at universities in America.

International Students: In contrast to domestic students, international students who are not citizens or permanent residents of Canada are charged as much as four times the average tuition fees depending on their program.

The study by Statcan shows that international students in Canada pay an average of $20,514 CAD to attend universities and colleges. This is roughly four times higher than the average undergraduate tuition fee for domestic Canadian students ($5,992 CAD).

The highest average tuition fees for international students are found in professional health programs, such as dentistry and medicine. International students pay an average of $38,452 CAD to attend a program in this field, which is almost seven times the average undergraduate tuition fee paid by domestic Canadian students.

For graduate studies, international students studying business, management and public administration pay an average of $21,322 CAD in tuition fees, which is almost three times the average graduate tuition fee for domestic students.

Though international students are charged more on average than domestic students, Canada still remains a relatively affordable destination when compared to other countries like the United States and England. The high quality of education and diverse range of programs available in Canada makes it a favorable destination for students from all over the world.

In conclusion, Canada is a great country for education. Domestic and international students seeking to study in a Canadian university or college are by all means welcome. We recommend our topic on how to study in Canada to help get you started. You might have also seen how average tuition in Canada compares to other major countries such as US, UK and Australia. The choice is yours!

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