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10 Best Canadian Universities For African Students to Study in Canada

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As an African student seeking to further your education abroad, you would want to know the best Canadian universities where international students like you can study considering many factors.

With my efforts towards admission into a top Canadian university, I totally relate. Everyone is enamoured with the concept of education in Canada and the benefits it provides.

Canada is one of the best countries in the world for education because it is home to some of the world’s best schools.

In addition to this, over 450,000 international students are studying in Canada, and the number is growing. Many of these students prefer Canada to other developed countries because of the benefits of studying in Canada.

The ten best Canadian universities for African students include:

  • University of British Columbia
  • McGill University
  • University of Montreal
  • University of Alberta
  • McMaster University
  • University of Ottawa
  • University of Calgary
  • University of Waterloo
  • Western University
  • University of Toronto

Please note that the Canadian universities I recommend in this article is are based on the following parameters:

  • Student community
  • Tuition Fees and Funding
  • Quality of education

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It also takes into consideration the QS World University Rankings by Subject, which includes the top Canadian universities, ranked based on a methodology that evaluates each university’s academic and employer reputations, research impact, and other factors.

With that in mind, let’s see my top picks of the best universities for you to consider if you want to study in Canada.

The 10 Best Canadian Universities For African Students

As previously stated, Canada is home to a plethora of excellent educational institutions. The best for you as an African student include:

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10. University Of Toronto

The University of Toronto is located in -you guessed it- Toronto, which is in the south-eastern region of Canada. Toronto, a large city by any standard, is widely regarded as Canada’s financial and commercial center. With its vibrant music, nightlife, and high level of international diversity, its claims to be Canada’s cultural hub may well be true.

It should also be noted that, while the University of Toronto’s main campus is located in the heart of the city, the university also has two other campuses, one in Scarborough (a district in the city’s east) and one in Mississauga (a neighbouring city to the west).

Although it is very expensive, it finds its way to this list due to the strong international community and standard of education on offer here. The top features include:

Academic Strengths

The University of Toronto was founded in 1827 and is well-known for its insulin research, bone marrow transplants, and regenerative medicine, as well as its pioneering work in artificial intelligence.

Fees & Funding

Tuition fees for undergraduate domestic students at the University of Toronto begin at CA$6,100, depending on the program. Prices for international students are unavoidably higher, ranging from around CA$54,900 to CA$68,750, depending on the program.

Graduate-level tuition ranges from CA$21,560 to $64,810, depending on the program. However, the university states that it is dedicated to providing financial support for those pursuing graduate programs in research. There is also the option of receiving partial funding.

Student Community

The University of Toronto has a large student body, with 93,081 students enrolled according to the most recent figures. Of these, 20,296 (22 percent) were graduate students, and 23,019 (25 percent) were international students. Among the institutions featured in the QS World University Rankings, Toronto has one of the largest student populations.

In addition to being spread across three campuses, the University of Toronto manages its large community through a college system similar to that used at Oxbridge (Oxford and Cambridge) in the United Kingdom. Applicants to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences select one of seven colleges, each of which offers a smaller student body within the entire university.

For details on how to apply to the University of Toronto, read this.

9. Western University

Western University

This university is located in the city of London, Ontario, Canada. Western University is well-known for providing its students with a variety of co-curricular activities. These include leadership and learning opportunities both on and off campus.

Academic Strengths

Western University has 12 faculties. They include engineering, business, social science, science, health sciences, arts and humanities, medicine and dentistry, and media studies.

UWO Canada offers over 400 undergraduate majors, minors, and specializations, as well as 88 graduate degree programs. The school offers a variety of interdisciplinary programs in areas of study such as engineering, law, business, medicine, and more, through its 12 faculties.

Fees & Funding

For international graduate students at Western University, the basic tuition fee ranges from CA$35,935 to CA$35,935.  

To assess the financial aid available to international students at Western University, visit the international student funding page.

Student Population

The student population at the university is estimated to be 28,309, with 6,314 international students (22 percent).

8. University of Waterloo

University of Waterloo

The University of Waterloo is a public university that was established in 1957. Its campus is located in Ontario, Canada, and it encompasses 1000 acres of land with over 100 buildings. Waterloo Canada University also has three Canadian satellite campuses and four affiliated university colleges, including St. Paul’s University College,  St. Jerome’s University, Conrad Grebel University College, and Renison University College, . It is divided into six academic departments: applied health sciences, engineering, arts, environment, sciences, and mathematics.

Academic Strengths

The University of Waterloo offers more than 100 undergraduate degrees and 190 graduate degrees through six faculties and 12 faculty-based schools.

Fees & Funding

For international graduate students at Universityof Waterloo, the basic tuition fee is upwards of CA$23,029.   

To assess the financial aid available to international students at University of Waterloo, visit the international student funding page.

Student Population

The student population at the university is estimated to be 35,088 with 10,269 international students (29 percent).

7. University of Calgary

This is a renowned research university famous for contributing to Canada’s global competitive advantage and assisting in the resolution of the country’s most persistent problems. The University of Calgary is one of Canada’s top comprehensive research universities, merging the best of university tradition with the radiant energy and diversity of the city of Calgary.

Academic Strengths

Open studies, undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education courses are available at the University of Calgary. It has over 250 academic and research programs, as well as more than 110 undergraduate majors. The university also offers more than 70 graduate and certification programs in popular fields such as engineering, science, arts, and so on.

Fees & Funding

For international graduate students at University of Calgary, the basic tuition fee is upwards of CA$18,338.   

To assess the financial aid available to international students at University of Calgary, visit the international student funding page.

Student Population

The student population at the university is estimated to be 31,863 with 6,791 international students (21 percent). 

6. University of Ottawa

The University of Ottawa, also known as U of O, is a bilingual public research university that was founded in 1848. The University of Ottawa has two campuses: the Downtown campus, which covers 31.7 hectares, and the AltaVista campus, which covers 7.2 hectares. It is in the heart of Canada’s capital, Ottawa. 

Academic Strengths

The University of Ottawa is well-known for its cutting-edge learning programs in a variety of departments. Over 450 programs are available at the university, including Arts, Engineering, Education, Health Sciences, Social Science, Medicine, Science, Civil Law, Common Law, Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, and the Telfer School of Management.

It also houses Canada’s largest law school.

Fees & Funding

For international graduate students at U of O, the basic tuition fee is upwards of CA$18,338.   

To assess the financial aid available to international students at U of O, visit the international student funding page.

Student Population

The student population at the university is estimated to be 36,670 with 8,885 international students (24 percent). 

5. McMaster University

This school is situated on approximately 300 acres of land in Hamilton, Ontario. It is the sixth best school in Canada and the 140th best school in the world. McMaster is a science-oriented university best known for its medical reputation. In addition, the university has earned an international reputation for innovative educational programming in the fields of study that it offers. McMaster has regional campuses in Niagara, Kitchener-Waterloo, Burlington, and downtown Hamilton.

Academic Strengths

McMaster University has over 3000 programs at various levels of study available through the over 70 research centers and institutes it houses. It has six academic faculties. These are the DeGroote School of Business, the Faculty of Engineering, the Faculty of Health Sciences, the Faculty of Humanities, the Faculty of Science, and the Faculty of Social Sciences. Combined, they offer approximately 3000 undergraduate and 150 graduate courses.

The university is consistently ranked among the top 100 universities in the world. Furthermoret is well-known for its life-changing research, which garners international media attention.

Fees & Funding

McMaster University is hands-down the least expensive university for you as an African student. For international graduate students at McMaster University, the basic tuition fee is upwards of CA$15,000.   

To assess the financial aid available to international students at McMaster University, visit the international student funding page.

Student Population

The student population at the university is estimated to be 25,577 with 5,386 international students (21 percent). 

4. University of Alberta

At 3rd place on my list is University of Alberta. It is located in Edmonton, Alberta, one of Canada’s fastest-growing and youngest cities, with a vibrant culture and a thriving economy.

This is one of the most prestigious and highly ranked universities in the world, providing students with unique experiences in a beautiful setting in Canada. It is one of the top 150 colleges in the world and one of the top five in Canada. In addition, it is a highly regarded research institution, receiving more than $513 million in external research funding each year. International students can participate in a work-study program to gain more exposure to Canadian culture and lifestyle.

This university is one of the world’s leading research-intensive universities with a reputation for excellence across the humanities, sciences and other major fields of education. 

Academic Strengths 

In 2012, the University of Alberta’s School of Public Health became Canada’s first accredited school of public health, having been accredited by the United States Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).

The University of Alberta courses are offered as over 700 diverse programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels, as well as credentials and exchange programs, within a vibrant and supportive learning environment.

The University of Alberta is well-known for its outstanding programs in engineering, business, MBA, pharmacy, and education.

It is home to world-class facilities such as the National Institute of Nanotechnology of Canada and the Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology.

Fees & Funding 

Canadians pay CA$5,575, while international students pay CA$10,500 at the Masters and Doctoral levels at the University of Alberta (thesis based). At the graduate level, all students pay upwards of CA$22,125 (the lowest you’ll find among these universities).

To assess the financial aid available to international students at University of Alberta, visit the international student funding page.

Student Community

The student population at the university is estimated to be 34,000 with 9,689 students (28.5 percent) coming from over 150 foreign countries. 

3. University of Montreal

University of Montreal

University of Montreal, located on the northwestern flank of Mount Royal, one of North America’s finest urban parks, proudly reflects the welcoming multicultural city after which it is named. One in every four students at the University of Montreal is from outside of Canada. Several African students have come to call this place home. Montreal is well-known for its cultural vibrancy, security, and low cost of living.

According to the QS Ranking for World Universities, this school is ranked fifth in Canada. The University of Montreal has about 600 study programs that cover almost every field, and they have a strong interest in Artificial Intelligence.

Academic Strengths

Every year, the University of Montreal receives over $500 million in research funding, making it one of Canada’s top three university research hubs.

The University of Montreal gave birth to many renowned laboratories, including MILA, the world’s leading university research center in deep learning; the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer (IRIC), one of the most productive in its field; and the Centre de recherche en droit public (CRDP), Canada’s most comprehensive public-law research center.

Fees & Funding

Residents of Quebec province pay lower tuition at the University of Montreal. Prices are also determined by the program. Residents of Quebec pay CA$1,195 per year for Masters programs, non-Quebec Canadians pay CA$3,701, and international students pay CA$8,186 (2021/2022 figures).All graduate students pay upwards of CA$20,000. Making it one of the most affordable on this list

Visit this page to learn more about the financial aid available to international students at the University of Montreal.

Student Community

The University of Montreal is a co-educational university with approximately 37,116 students according to the most recent figures. Around 7,625 (20.5 percent) were international, and approximately 22,187 (67 percent) were graduate students.

2. McGill University

McGill University, located in Montreal, Quebec, is the next best Canadian university you should opt for as an African student. Here’s why:

Academic Strengths

Approximately 12 Nobel Laureates and 145 Rhodes Scholars have graduated from the university. The university is well-known for its research rigor and for having the most internationally diverse student body in the country.

Fees & Funding 

Tuition fees at McGill university are one of the most affordable for Africans students on this list. Prices are also determined by the program. For arts and sciences programs, residents of Quebec pay CA$2,725 per year, non-Quebec Canadians pay CA$8,505, and international students pay CA$26,500 (2021/2022 figures). At the graduate level, all students can enroll in a full-time master’s program for the same cost as their undergraduate fees, while international students pay up to CA$20,000 for PhDs.

Visit the international student funding page to learn more about the financial aid available to international students international student funding page.

Student Community

According to the most recent figures, McGill had approximately 39,736 students, of which approximately 12,228 (32 percent) were international and approximately 10,265 (26 percent) were graduate students.

1. University of British Columbia

The University of British Columbia (or UBC as it is fondly called) is our top pick on this list. The university is the best in Canada in terms of reception to international students generally and African students in particular.

The university is located in Point Grey and has two campuses, one in Okanagan and another in Vancouver. The main campus is located in Vancouver and spans 400 acres of land.

Academic Strengths

The university has also produced eight Nobel Prize winners. There are 16 faculties, 18 schools, and 2 colleges at the university. It is home to a number of well-known facilities, including the Centre for Interactive Research in Sustainability, the UBC Welcome Centre, the Chan Centre for Performing Arts, and the UBC Centre for Plant Research. Some of the departments on campus include the Faculty of Dentistry, the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science, and the Faculty of Law.

UBC Robson Square is a vibrant learning center in the heart of downtown Vancouver, the UBC Learning Exchange is a community engagement initiative based in the Downtown Eastside, and UBC’s Centre for Digital Media at the Great Northern Way Campus is in Mount Pleasant. UBC also offers clinical education to Faculty of Medicine students at over 80 training sites throughout British Columbia.

Okanagan Campus is home to the center of research and learning. Many cultural activities and events are organized on both campuses.

Fees & Funding

At the graduate level, Canadian students pay CA$5,646, while international students pay CA$36,946. All students can enroll in a full-time master’s program for the same cost as their undergraduate fees, while international students can pay upwards of CA$23,460 for PhDs.

Student Community

According to the most recent figures, UBC had approximately 55,924 students, of which approximately 15,399 (27.5 percent) were international students from more than 160 countries, and approximately 46,976 (84 percent) were graduate students.

Here’s a guide showing the University of British Columbia complete application process.

Which university will you pick?

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All right guys, ladies, I have shared with you an elaborate breakdown of the top 10 universities you could apply to in Canada as an African student. If you have decided on what school to go for or have successfully gotten your admission into one, do well to drop your tips and comments in the comments section below. Cheers!

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