What is higher education like in Canada? What about the structure and culture of his education?

  • Canadian higher Education structure

The higher education structure in Canada has a lot in common with Americans, only, higher education in Canada is also affected by the British system.

In Canada, every province and territory is responsible for all levels of education, including universities. There is no federal accreditation in Canada. This means that every province and territory has a strict and special education standard to ensure that each education institution provides the best quality.

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Higher education is divided into 3 semesters: Autumn Semester (late August/early September to December/January), Winter Semester (January to April) and summer Semester (April/May to July).

  • Differences between Quebec & other Canadian territories

In Quebec, ‘ College ‘ means a 2-year pre-university program, or a 3-year professional program, and after that students can proceed to an undergraduate program at a 3-year university and provide a Bachelor’s degree. After having a Bachelor’s degree, students can proceed to postgraduate level (1-2 years and get a Master’s degree, and then 3 years or more for a PhD degree).

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Outside of Quebec, ‘ College ‘ is identical to the Community college or engineering faculty, where the student will get a certificate, diploma, or associate degree (equivalent to an Advanced diploma). Students can study at undergraduate or postgraduate level at university (but they need a honour degree), while in graduate lectures, they can acquire advanced certificates, degrees or diplomas.

  • Institutional type

As in America, in Canada you can choose to study in the Faculty of Engineering or community college, if you have decided to pursue a career in a particular field; And you can also transfer to the university to continue the study to the undergraduate level.

Here are some types of institutions in Canada:

  • Liberal Arts College

This educational institution emphasizes undergraduate programs in liberal arts, which are usually interdisciplinary (covering more than one discipline), such as a literary department that also includes social, natural and formal sciences.

  • Country

State institutions receive funding from provincial, territorial or federal governments. However, they still attract tuition from students, and can also receive funding from private parties.

  • Private

Private institutions do not accept government funding, but receive funding from bona fide alumni, and research grants, as well as tuition fees collected from students. Private universities usually attract and retain the best staff, who have a good reputation in the field concerned.

Academic culture

  • Interacting with lecturers

The way to interact with lecturers in Canada is very different from most places. Lecturers have working hours where students can visit them and ask questions. Lecturers are very friendly and approachable. They will also answer questions as the lecture class progresses.

  • Program Structure

In 1 semester, students can take 5 courses. Each course consists of lecture classes of 2 hours per week, and one hour of the tutorial where the Assistant lecturer leads the discussion with topics related to the topics discussed in the lecture class of the week.

  • Multicultural

As discussed in the article ‘ Why Study in Canada? ‘, multicultural is highly appreciated in Canada. The policy has existed since the 1970s and continues today. So in Canada you will be lecturing with peers with diverse cultural backgrounds, as well as learning from lecturers coming from different countries (or at least having experience working abroad).

  • Terminology

Canada has many of the same higher education terminology as Americans. For example, ‘ school ‘ is used for education from kindergarten/pre-school to universities. ‘ I am studying English ‘ (which means I am studying English) will sound more prevalent than ‘ I am reading English ‘ which is more commonly used in English universities.

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