25 Things You Didn’t Know About Studying in Canada

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Canada is among the world’s most prestigious study destination for international students. But beyond the myriad of scholarships, study options and work opportunities available to students during and after their studies, there are various other factors that are often not mentioned.

If you are planning to study in Canada, there are minor and MAJOR things you deserve to know.

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So today, we share with you 25 things you probably didn’t know about studying in Canada!

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  • Studying in Canada is no Picnic

Forget about what people tell you about things falling right into place for them the moment they step into Canada. The truth is that they rarely mention what it takes to keep on. As a student, the Canadian education system is not a walkover, and if you are not inclined towards hard-work you will burn out.

  • If you are studying in Quebec, you must learn French

According to statistics, more than 80% of the inhabitants of Quebec speak only French! Without a good working knowledge of French, there is little that you can do by way of interaction in the city. Even when your lectures are conducted in English language, you will need knowledge of French language to adequately survive in Quebec.

  • There are limitations to work-study options!

There is a limit to the kind of jobs you can get with a study visa. Though the system allows students to work full-time, in most cases, you will most likely never earn enough to foot your tuition or accommodation bills by yourself.

  • There are universities that do not demand IELTS or TOEFL scores

One of the primary deterrents to education in North America is the preference for language test scores. Yes, most colleges and universities require that you prove your English language proficiency. However, in Canada, not every university demands IELTS or TOEFL scores. There are schools that exempt individuals who have completed their previous education in English language.

  • Acceptance rates are high

One of the reasons why Canada is among the world’s topmost study destination for international students is its high acceptance rates, especially for international students. If you meet all the requirements, there’s a higher chance of gaining admission to a Canadian college or university than in some other parts of the world, including the US.

  • US and Canada are not the same

Many people assume that the US and Canada are one and the same, since they share a long land border and are basically beside each other. Well, this is not true. The United States and Canada are two different and unique nations, each with their own peculiarities. So don’t expect your knowledge of the United State to complement that of Canada. And vise versa.

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  • Canadian study and immigration laws are strict

Never flout any state or immigration law(s) during your stay, unless you want to fall asleep on a plane and wake up in your home country. Many people come to Canada on a study visa and get part-time jobs, working more weekly hours than allowed. If you exceed the allowed number of work hours and you get caught, you jeopardize your position as an international student.

  • You need Health Insurance

You will not be allowed to study in Canada without an active health insurance policy. It is so important that many universities even go ahead to offer students their own preferred insurance plans, just to make life easier for them.

  • Canadian can be too Polite.

Canadians are known to be very polite. They are so used to saying sorry that they created an apology act in Ontario which allows people to apologize without fear that it will be later used as an admission of wrongdoing in court. This means that; that someone says, ‘I’m sorry’, in Canada does not mean they admit to have done something wrong. You’ll need a high level of politeness to make the most of your stay in Canada.

  • The weather is not ‘friendly’

Welcome to the North Pole. Many parts of Canada are cold all year round. In winter time, temperatures often fall below zero degrees! If you are moving to Canada from anywhere in the tropical regions of the earth, you need to prepare for the cold.

  • Canada does not demand GRE

The US is known for their preference for GRE test scores as part of admission requirement. However, this does not necessarily extend to Canada. You mostly don’t need to write and submit GRE scores in most Canadian universities, barring one or two exceptions.

  • Generally, life isn’t cheap in Canada

As a student, before you dream about student vacations, trips and food in Canada, remember that it costs a lot to live well in Canada. Vancouver, a major city in Canada, was ranked as the world’s most expensive city to live in. Several other cities follow suit, and only a few cities, towns and communities are relatively ‘affordable’ to live in.

  • There were more than 572,000 foreign students in Canada in 2018

The number of foreign students studying in Canada rose 16.25% in 2018, marking a third consecutive year of double-digit growth and an overall increase of 73% in the five years since 2014.

  • Indians!

India continues to be the big story in Canada’s international education sector. The number of Indian students grew by 40% in 2018, for total overall growth of just under 350% since 2014. There are currently more than 172,600 Indians studying in Canadian universities, and there are lots more of them living in the cities and suburbs. Because of this, Indian restaurants and businesses dominate many cities.

  • You can receive financial aid while you study

There are several financial aid options for students to take advantage of while they study. There are Teaching/Graduate Assistantships, subject-specific research grants, and even bursaries, all available in a variety of settings. Chances are that you fulfil the requirements for one or two of them, so keep them in mind.

  • Canada is dotted with beautiful landscape and scenery

Once you enter Canada, one thing that should catch your attention is the vast open spaces, mountainous regions, and natural beauty. A large portion of Canada’s land mass is unoccupied, and the greater part of their thirty-something million population is clustered in the cities and towns.

  • Canada offers you an enriching cultural experience

Canada has a highly-diverse population made up of people from almost every continent on earth. This directly results in a rich and vibrant cultural experience.

  • Drinking in public is prohibited

Canada is so responsible, peaceful, friendly and organized, that they have laws prohibiting drinking in public. And as an international student, the last thing you want to do is to flout state laws. S0, drink indoors, and keep your excesses private.

  • Smoking in public is also prohibited in many places

Just like drinking in public spaces is against the law, many cities across the provinces have laws banning smoking in public spaces. Others have designated smoking areas. Again, Canada is a highly-civilized and organized place.

  • Canadians take their flag personal

Canadians, like Americans are known for being very affectionate about their national flag. Any disrespect accorded it is treated as a personal offence. The last thing you want to do is speak ill of, or trample on it, or deface it in any way, either intentionally or otherwise.

  • Homestays are cheaper for Accommodation

Homestays are not only considerably cheaper than other accommodation options – in most cases, they also help students settle into the system faster. Many are even generous enough to offer meals to home-stays – which is a big plus for students living on a tight budget.

  • Scholarships can be revoked

Well, here’s some bad news: scholarships can be revoked. If you are coming to study in Canada on a scholarship, please note this: the scholarship awarding agency typically have terms and conditions associated with the scholarship award. Under certain circumstances such as criminal activity, breach of immigration laws, or below expected academic performance, for instance, the scholarship can be revoked. So find out the conditions of your scholarship award immediately after celebrating it!

ALSO WATCH: Top 10 Scholarships in Canada for international students!

  • From Canada, you can visit the US as a student

This is one advantage you have from being in a country situated close to the United States. As a student studying in Canada, you can visit a couple of places in the US for your dream summer vacation.

  • Every country and race represented in Canada has an association

There are associations for immigrant populations in the country, majorly to help new immigrants settle in more quickly. They also help to ameliorate the effects of culture shock, and they are often headed by individuals who have stayed in Canada for a long time, who are also natives of the student’s country. These associations will do any student a world of good!

  • Canada has multiple standard time zones!

Canada is so big, that some cities have different time zones. You will find up to seven different time zones; from Vancouver which is UTC-7; to St. Johns which is UTC-2!

There you have it. You just learned 25 things you probably didn’t know about studying in Canada. Which of them struck you the most? Tell us about it in the comments’ section below. If you are yet to subscribe to After School Africa channel, this is likely a good time to subscribe. Until next time, YOUR SUCCESS MATTERS!

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