Why Americans Attend Canadian Universities


Attending university is an important decision, as it takes into account a huge array of factors, from expenses, living accommodations, program requirements, and potential for job placement. Finding the right fit for you is important, as the time, money, and energy put into your university education needs to be well spent. In light of all this, considering international universities is always an option. One such example is the relationship between Canada and the United States, in which approximately 10,000 American students head up north to Canadian universities every year. This article will look at a number of possible reasons why Americans attend Canadian universities and the factors that should be considered before you decide to make a similar move.

A Quick Overview of Why Americans Attend Canadian Universities

International students account for a meaningful percentage of Canadian university students. McGill University, University of British Columbia, and the University of Toronto, some of the best universities in the country, have the highest number of international students in Canada. Their programs and services cater to both international and domestic students and provide programs that are attractive to students from other countries, the United States included. For the most part, Americans consider Canadian universities as viable options because of a combination of a number of incentive programs combined with affordability, fair application requirements, and world-class programs.

Understanding Why Americans Attend Canadian Universities

You might be wondering why American students would consider Canadian universities as a potential choice for their post-secondary education. There are a number of factors that might be influencing their decision, from cost to quality to atmosphere. We will outline a few of the most common reasons here:


Many American schools have very high tuition rates, often more than most students can afford without taking out hefty student loans. One of the reasons why Americans attend Canadian universities is because they provide similar qualifications and quality of education for a comparable overall cost.

Canadian universities are almost exclusively public institutions, meaning they get the funding and quality standards that go along with being public. As a result, the quality of Canadian university education is very high, in many cases higher than many American institutions, meaning that Canadian schools offer good quality programs for less cost than their American equivalents.

One factor that contributes to the low cost, aside from government support, is that Americans attending Canadian universities can take advantage of the exchange rate between American and Canadian currency and stretch their finances even further. For those students interested in working to finance their education, some Canadian schools allow international students to obtain a work permit after a certain amount of time has passed. This gives American students the opportunity to work part-time in order to fund their education. Additionally, students studying abroad may be eligible for financial aid from the American government. Some provincial student financial aid is available for provincial residents as well as citizens and landed immigrants, but this varies by region.

Attending Canadian universities can sometimes come at the expense of “branding” from universities like Stanford and Harvard, which can allow their graduates easier access to employment through the recognition of the prestige of their alma mater. If you are willing to look past this minor quality, Canadian universities can help you save money without having to sacrifice quality.


On a related note, many international students, Americans included, can be eligible for scholarships at Canadian universities reserved exclusively for international students. These scholarships are offered to entice foreign students to acquire Canadian degrees and potentially develop a fondness for Canada through personal experience. They are also meant to incentivize students to look into Canadian universities as legitimate options and to generally reduce potential education costs for students.

Other Variables

Aside from the financial angle, there are a multitude of other reasons why Americans attend Canadian universities. Some Canadian universities offer specialized courses suitable for specific industries that students may be interested in if they want a job in a similar industry back home. For example, a student from Maine may go to a university in Nova Scotia to study fisheries and natural resource management because that is a major industry back home.

Employers may find degrees from Canadian universities more appealing in the United States because it implies that someone is versatile and potentially has access to contacts across the border. Even better, most employers consider Canadian degrees to be “just as good” as American degrees, so students can get the benefits of Canadian education without having to worry about having a degree that isn’t recognized once they get home.

Generally speaking, registration and application processes are less headache inducing than American schools; most Canadian universities don’t require essays or recommendation letters, or even extracurricular activities, but this varies by school and program. Furthermore, many schools don’t consider SAT scores, since there is no universal equivalent in Canada. Again, this varies by institution; for the most part Canadian universities can be slightly more forgiving when it comes to credentials and academic track records than many of the major American schools.

Subjective Reasons

On a more personal level, there are a few characteristics of Canada and Canadian universities that can help determine why Americans attend Canadian universities.

For one, the option of citizenship is available after a particular amount of time has been spent as a resident of Canada (usually six months), which your schooling would count towards. Canadian universities may be great entry points for anyone looking to immigrate.

The drinking age across Canada is also lower than every single U.S. state, with most provinces setting their legal drinking age at 19, and others as low as 18. Student interested in the social side of university and college life may find this appealing, but likely won’t be the only reason students consider.

On a more personal level, Canadian society is generally more tolerant. Students who may not feel comfortable going to school in the U.S., for one reason or another, may feel more accommodated in Canada merely because they won’t be judged as openly or readily.

Determining the Reasons Why Americans Attend Canadian Universities

Overall, there are a number of reasons why Americans attend Canadian universities. Whether it’s the reduced costs, the quality of the programs, the application requirements, or the potential for citizenship, choosing to study abroad in Canada can be an exciting and meaningful experience for students all over the world. Before committing to anything, however, you should take note of your reasons for applying and evaluate the pros and cons. While the experience will undoubtedly be worthwhile, choosing the right school for your needs is important, regardless of where you decide to attend or the program you wish to study.

Methods to Deal with Anxiety


This article provides some simple techniques that can help in alleviating anxiety associated with the sudden and demanding change of lifestyle that becoming a full-time student brings with it.

Determining the Methods to Deal With Anxiety

Anxiety can have a multitude of negative health effects, both mental and physical, and is brought on by a number of different factors. The most common source of anxiety is stress, often associated with unpleasant tasks. There are a multitude of methods to deal with anxiety, regardless of its source, which address the physical and mental causes of anxiety. These techniques are generally applicable and don’t apply to any particular kind of anxiety.

2 Effective Methods to Deal With Anxiety

Get Some Rest

Ensuring that you get quality sleep at night and being well rested can reduce the chances of experiencing anxiety. The body uses sleep to regulate the hormones that control emotion and sleep deprivation disrupts the body’s capability to perform that regulatory process. We constantly push our bodies to do more, without properly giving it a chance to recover – which can lead to irritability or anxiety. Establish a regular sleep cycle and avoid ambient lighting like a computer or TV before bed. This will allow the body to produce serotonin and help you fall asleep. There are also apps that measure your sleep cycles by using the built in gyroscope in the phone and wake you up when you’re out of REM sleep for a maximum feeling of restfulness. Allowing the body to reset and face the day strong and well rested is just one of the many methods to deal with anxiety.

Eat and Drink Properly

The saying “you are what you eat” certainly carries some truth; if you eat poorly you will likely feel that way as well. Eating healthy foods that are good for long-term energy can provide the body with nutrients throughout the day. Food that provides the body with short term bursts of energy, like processed foods, refined sugars, and simple carbs cause temporary spikes in energy, which leaves low periods where the body’s required level of sustenance exceeds the level of nutrients being provided. Demanding performance from a malnourished body and mind puts stress on your system, which only compounds the effects of anxiety. Eating a balanced diet and eating regularly will help to stabilize blood sugar and energy levels throughout the day.

Drinking coffee in moderation is also important because caffeine can disrupt the body’s natural cycles and contribute to daily stress. Although a mug of coffee in the morning is likely okay, several servings or servings late in the day can negatively impact the quality of your sleep, which as we saw earlier, can also contribute to anxiety. Another common method of dealing with anxiety is the use of alcohol. Since alcohol is a depressant, it can temporarily reduce the feeling of anxiety, tension and stress but, just like caffeine, it has a negative effect on the body’s natural cycle and as a depressant has a negative effect on your mood. Although dehydration is not a direct cause of stress and anxiety, a lack of fluids puts stress on the body, which can exacerbate any current, or pending feeling of anxiety. One of the best methods to deal with anxiety is to eat well and often, avoid caffeine and alcohol, and to stay hydrated.

Stay Tuned for More Anxiety Tips!

Tune in again for next weeks article as we explore more of the many ways in which you can utilize different methods to deal with anxiety.