By Bojidar Bojanov
Open and welcoming to international students, Canada offers affordable (compared to American schools) and high-quality education, thus creating a competitive admission environment. The country has a wide variety of universities with many different specialties. Numerous post-secondary institutions offer programs in French, further attracting students from France. The application process is a serious and difficult task for every applicant as there are many subtleties, differences between provinces and deadlines one must take into account.
As each Canadian university has its own specific entrance requirements, it is recommended to seek out your university’s own application packs which will guide you through the process. Such information should be available online on the institution’s website. Nonetheless, post-secondary institutions programs usually have a minimum admission average so the major required documents are official high school transcripts. Letters of reference, essay of intent, medical form, résumé, criminal record check and an up to date passport are other additional documents commonly compulsory. The requirements for translation of documents shall be communicated by the university itself. Furthermore, the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials (CICIC) provides information on recognition of academic qualifications.
Mc Gill University
One must submit as strong an application as possible because grades are not the sole factor. Letters of recommendation must be unique and personalised: avoid short, generic sentences. Argue why you should be offered admission. The Anglophone section offers valuable assistance during the Personal Essay elective supervised by Mr. Bonetis.
Aside from all compulsory documents, international student additionally submit a language test (TOEFL or IELTS in English and TEF, DALF or TCF in French). Many English-language universities require a minimum score on this language test while Francophone universities often assess applicants on a case-by-case basis.
In Canada, the application process varies by province. In some provinces, students apply through a central application service while in others, applicants contact directly the university. For instance, in the province of Ontario, applications are sent to a provincial university application center website, later sending the remaining supporting documents directly to the institution by a specified deadline.
Upon reception of a letter of acceptance from a Canadian university, one intending to study in Canada for six months or more must apply for a study permit before coming to Canada. To obtain a study permit, students must provide a valid passport and prove that they can pay for their tuition, living expenses and return transportation. Applicants must be law-abiding and have no criminal record. In certain cases, even a medical examination might be needed. Studying in the province of Quebec will additionally require a “Certificat d’Acceptation du Québec” provided by universities.