The federal and provincial governments have established student financial assistance programs for Canadian citizens and landed immigrants studying at the post-secondary level. This aid is provided in the form of loans and grants, on the basis of demonstrated financial need. The appropriate provincial or territorial authorities will evaluate your application and then provide funding, based on your assessed financial need, in federal and/or provincial student loans or grants. Government student loans are interest free while you are attending full-time at a post-secondary institution. You begin repaying the loan six months after you cease to be a full-time student. You must apply for student financial assistance through the province you are considered to be a resident of. For example, residents of Alberta will apply for federal and provincial student financial assistance from Alberta Learning. The Scholarships and Student Finance Office provides access to application forms and advice concerning the federal and various provincial student financial assistance programs.
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*Students from Nunavut contact 1-877-860-0680 for Student Loan Application.
Scholarships and Student Finance works with policy makers and service providers to improve student loan programs. Student feedback is welcome.
If you do not qualify for a government student loan, many banks offer personal student loans or student lines of credit. For a personal loan, you pay only the interest while you are in school. You begin repayment of the principal when you cease to be a full-time student.
Unlike government student loans, these loans are not based on financial need.
To qualify for these loans you generally must have a co-signer (e.g. parent or guardian) and you are encouraged to have a regular part-time job so that you can make your monthly interest payment. Application for a personal student loan or a student line of credit can generally be made at your local bank.