Canada

Three Canadian universities are named among the top 50 in the world in the latest ranking by QS Quacquarelli Symonds, a provider of analytics and insight to the global higher education sector.

McGill University, the University of Toronto, and the University of British Columbia all made the cut of the best 50 universities in the world, according to the organization’s annual QS Top Universities ranking.


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The strength of Canada’s university education system is further evident by the appearance of another 11 Canadian universities, for a total of 14, in the top 25 per cent of the more than 1,400 universities ranked by Quacquarelli Symonds in its list.

Mcgill University Is In The Most Student-Friendly City In The World, Montreal

McGill, based in what was described as the most student-friendly city in the world in the QS Best Student Cities 2017 ranking, has 50 research centres and institutes, more than 400 programs, and an alumni network of more than 250,000 around the world.

“Based in Montreal, McGill University ranks among Canada’s most prestigious universities, attracting thousands of international students from over 150 countries every year, and the highest percentage of PhD students of any Canadian research university,” notes Quacquarelli Symonds.

“Graduates are highly sought after by employers, with the following percentages of graduates in education or employment two years after graduation:

  • 81 per cent of art graduates;
  • 95 per cent of engineering graduates;
  • 91 per cent of medicine graduates;
  • 84 per cent of science graduates, and;
  • 92 per cent of all PhD respondents.”

McGill ranked 27th on the list with an overall score of 81.9, narrowly beating out the University of Toronto for the bragging rights to the best university in Canada. 

The University of Toronto ranked 34th with a score of 81.5. 

At the undergraduate level, that university offers about 700 programs in humanities and social sciences, life sciences, physical and mathematical sciences, commerce and management, computer science, engineering, kinesiology and physical education, music and architecture. It also offers second-entry professional programs in education, nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, law and medicine.

The University Of Toronto Named Second-Best Canadian University

At the master’s level. UofT offers over 280 graduate programs in a wide variety of fields, including more than 60 professional graduate programs and 76 combined programs that include professional master’s components. The university has 40 collaborative programs and three diploma programs.

The University of British Columbia, the third most highly rated Canadian university on the list, placed 47th globally with a score of 77.

“The University of British Columbia is recognized internationally for excellence in teaching and research as well as global impact. Since 1915, UBC has been opening doors of opportunity for people with the curiosity, drive and vision to shape a better world,” notes the report from Quacquarelli Symonds.


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“UBC is committed to equity, diversity and inclusion to strengthen its community, the quality, relevance and impact of its research, and the opportunities for the full pool of potential participants in the research ecosystem. UBC is also the first university in North America to commit to implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.”

The other 11 Canadian universities among the 14 ranked in the top 25 per cent of all these post-secondary learning institutions throughout the world are:

  • University of Alberta, ranked 110 with a score of 56.9;
  • Université de Montreal, ranked 116 with a score of 55.9;
  • McMaster University, ranked 152 with a score of 50.4;
  • University of Waterloo, ranked 154 with a score of 50;
  • Western University, ranked 172 with a score of 46.7;
  • University of Ottawa, ranked 237 with a score of 39.4;
  • University of Calgary, ranked 242 with a score of 39;
  • Queen’s University at Kingston, ranked 246 with a score of 38.8;
  • Dalhousie University, ranked 308 with a score of 34.3;
  • Simon Fraser University, ranked 328 with a score of 32.9, and;
  • University of Victoria, ranked 359 with a score of 30.5.

Most of the roughly 350,000 foreign nationals who come to study at Canadian universities must apply for study permits. 

International Students Can Work In Canada While Completing Studies

A study permit, once issued, allows a foreign national to study in Canada at an approved institute for the duration of the specified course or program.

There are exceptions. Foreign nationals do not require a study permit to go to school in Canada under the following conditions:

  • the course or program of study is less than six months in duration;
  • the student is a family member or staff of a foreign representative to Canada, or;
  • the student is a member of a foreign armed force.

To be eligible to study in Canada students must:

  • have been accepted by a school, collegeuniversity or other educational institution in Canada;
  • have proven they have enough money to pay for their tuition fees, living expenses, and return transportation for themselves and any family members who come with them to Canada.
  • be law-abiding citizens with no criminal record and not a risk to the security of Canada. They may have to provide a police certificate;
  • be in good health and willing to complete a medical examination, if necessary, and;
  • satisfy an immigration officer they will leave Canada at the end of their authorized stay.

Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) may also be required if the student is a citizen of a country from which such visas are required for entry into Canada. This is not required for citizens of visa-exempt countries.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) allows students to work while studying in Canada.

A student may be able to work in Canada during his or her studies under the following categories:

Spouses or common-law partners of foreign students are also eligible for work permits for the duration of the study permit.

Upon graduation, a foreign student may apply for a work permit under the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program. Under this program, the work permit may be issued for the length of the study program, up to a maximum of three years. 

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