Canadian student loans programme


The Government of Canada offers Canada Student Loans to full and part-time post-secondary students who demonstrate financial need in most provinces and territories across Canada.  

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Categories of government loan

In Canada, there are 2 main categories of government student loan programs:

Am I eligible for a loan?

To apply for government student loans and grants, you must:

  • be a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada or a protected person
  • be a permanent resident of a province or territory that issues government student loans and grants
  • demonstrate financial need
  • be enrolled in a degree, diploma or certificate program that runs for at least 12 weeks in a 15-week period and is offered by a designated post-secondary institution
  • be taking at least 60 percent of a full course load if you are a full-time student, or between 20 and 59 percent of a full course load if you are a part-time student
  • pass a credit check if you are 22 or older and are applying for student loans and grants for the first time
  • not have exhausted your maximum lifetime limit of financial assistance, including interest-free status

In order to continue receiving student loans and grants each year you are in school, you will need to maintain satisfactory grades.

How do I apply?

In 5 provinces (Ontario, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador,New Brunswickand British Columbia) provincial-federal loans programs are integrated, therefore you only need to apply to one place (your province of residence).

For all remaining provinces and territories (with the exception of Yukon), you apply to one place to receive your student financial assistance, but will receive and manage two separate loans. 

When you apply for a Canada Student Loan, you will automatically be assessed for most Canadian student grants that you may be eligible for.

You have to submit an application for loans and grants every year of study.

Please note:Any paperwork in relation to either federal or provincial/territorial loans can only be completed Funding, Graduation & Awards at the University of Birmingham.

Documents should be sent to: Funding, Graduation & Awards, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, United Kingdom or log an online enquiry.

How will I be paid?

All approved funds will be electronically deposited into the borrower’s bank account once the Student Services Branch receives:

  • confirmation that the student has returned the master student loan agreement to their provincial or territorial Student Assistance Office.
  • confirmation of enrolment from the University; you will receive the enrolment form and instructions in the post and  which should be sent to Funding, Graduation & Awards for completion before returning then back to the correct Student Services Branch.

Private loans

Canadian students may wish to supplement the money they receive from the Canadian government through the Canada Student Loan Program via a private loan. Find out more details on the RBC Royal Bank Royal Credit Line offered to students studying outside of Canada.

Canadian tax credits

Students who file a Canadian tax return may claim reduced taxon their education expenses.