Canada offers the new and exciting

Last Updated : 06 July 2011, 11:37 IST
Last Updated : 06 July 2011, 11:37 IST

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Canada is fast emerging as a preferred destination for higher education for overseas students. The swelling number of students from India are an indication of the growing popularity of higher education portals in Canada.

The number of Indian students enrolled in Canadian universities and educational institutions has steadily grown from 3,000 in 2008 to 18,500 in 2010, according to the Canadian High Commissioner, Stewart G Beck.

Indian students tend to choose places like Vancouver in Canada because of its favourable nature, mild climate and the Indian community stronghold. Also, Canada’s progressive immigration policies and employment opportunities  is turning it into a favourable destination choice for Indian students.

Canadian universities offer diverse programmes that range from Commerce to Astronomy, Biology to Fine Art, Media Studies to Theology. Currently, universities and educational institutions in Canada offer more than a 1000 undergraduate and graduate programmes.
Wide array of courses
Colleges offer unique “co-operative education programmes” that allow students to work while studying.

Apart from regular courses such as a Bachelor’s in Business Administration (Accounting/ Financial services) and Bachelor’s in Sciences, a few even offer new-age courses — Animal Health Technology, Geology, Financial Services Management, Office Administration Certificates, Basic Musicianship, Intercultural and International Studies, Professional Writing, Stagecraft, Performing and Fine Arts, Associate of Arts degree — to name a few.

Students studying under government-funded institutions can get up to a three-year work permit, leading to permanent residency. Finance, banking and investment are the emerging fields in Canada and present a promising future in the country.

Jobs in Computer Science offer good pay and there is ample job opportunity for talented and skilled professionals. Aerospace, Urban Transport, Microelectronics, Advanced Software, Hydroelectric and Nuclear Power, Lasers and Opto-electronics, Biotechnology, Food and Beverage Processing, Geomatics, Ocean and Environmental Industries are other lucrative courses on offer.

Typically, most universities offer four-year undergraduate programmes. The degree awarded is general or specialised. An Honours (bacca-laureate) programme may be harder as more courses have to be completed in the same period of time, compared to a regular Bachelor’s programme in the same discipline. Community colleges and technical institutes in Canada offer programmes that enable students to get a job by meeting the needs of employers or industry.

Each university has its own entrance requirements and determines the equivalency of a student’s academic experience. Students have to prove their proficiency in English through a high IELTS score, no less than 6.0. TOEFL scores are also accepted by most universities. Scores in GMAT may be essential for admission to top-university MBA programmes.

Student intake
Canadian universities normally admit students in September. And though it may not be necessary in all cases, it is recommended that an international student apply to a Canadian university eight months prior to the expected programme start date.

Annual fee varies from programme to programme and from university to university. Fees may vary from 10,000 to 20,000 Canadian dollars. Living expenses would be close to 10,000 Canadian dollars a year. Scholarships that cover tuition fees or living expenses or both given by the university/college/Canadian government often depend on the student’s academic merit.

(The writer is the COO of Oceanic Consultants)

Published 06 July 2011, 11:37 IST

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