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Financing your Education
Financing your Education

Paying for Post Secondary Education is something many parents think about from the time their children are born. Children begin to think about it as they grow closer to graduation. The following resources will assist you with calculating costs, planning and financing Post Secondary Education.

Calculating the costs of Post Secondary Education

  • CanLearn has a number of tools to help you calculate the Cost of your Post-Secondary Education, including a Cost Breakdown and an Education Cost Calculator. It provides suggestions and tools to assist you in planning how to pay for an education as well as Tools and ideas for budgeting during the school year.
  • The OSAP Access Window site provides the approximate costs of your postsecondary education, financial assistance available to help you pay for it, a repayment calculator for estimating monthly loan payments after graduation, and other information to make decisions about postsecondary education.
  • Bank of Canada's currency converter - If you are planning to attend a college or university outside of Canada, you can use this to calculate your costs in Canadian dollars using today's exchange rate for most of the world's currencies.
  • The Ontario Colleges Application Services (OCAS) includes valuable information about how much college will cost and ways to pay for college in the Plan section of the site.

Paying for Post Secondary Education

Part-time Jobs

  • Balance the income gained from a part-time job with the time lost to studies.
  • Try to restrict your employment to no more than one day on the weekend and one evening during the week.
  • When you are in high school you can work for two months – July and August, but when your are in college or university, your can work for four months – May, June, July and August.


Most banks and trust companies offer Registered Education Savings Plans (RESP).

A Registered Education Savings Plan lets you save and invest - on a tax deferred basis- until the funds are needed to pay for a child's post-secondary education.

The government can top up your contribution, up to a maximum amount per eligible child.

Bank Loans

Most banks and trust companies offer student loans or student lines of credit to those who qualify. Depending on a student’s personal circumstances, students may need a co-signer. For more information contact a financial institute. Loans must be paid back.


All students are encouraged to apply for OSAP even if you feel you don’t qualify, because many colleges and universities use OSAP data to determine student eligibility for on-campus jobs, grants and bursaries controlled by the college or university.

OSAP is intended to promote equality of opportunity for post secondary studies by providing direct financial assistance for educational costs (such as tuition fees, books, and supplies) and basic living expenses. 

During the time you're in school, the loan is interest-free.

Interest begins after you graduate and use must begin to repay the principal and interest on the loan within the six-month period after your studies end. 
Other OSAP programs offer assistance to students with specific needs; for example, Assistance for Students with Disabilities .
Prestigious Awards
Prestigious awards are highly competitive awards that usually won by high achieving students.
Scholarships and Bursaries
Scholarships are based on merit, using academic and / or non-academic criteria. Bursaries are based on financial need. Both scholarships and bursaries are free money and do not need to be repaid.


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