Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)

Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan (COISL)

Eligibility Requirements

In order to be considered for a COISL, you must meet the requirements under each of the following areas:

  • Approved institution
  • Approved program of study
  • Bankruptcies
  • Citizenship
  • Course load
  • Debt Reduction Repayment recipient
  • Fraud
  • Government assistance
  • Income Verification
  • Lifetime maximums
  • Overpayment of a loan, grant or bursary
  • Residency
  • Satisfactory academic progress
  • Student Loan Default

    Approved Institution

    You must be enrolled or planning to enrol in an approved postsecondary institution. Approval is granted annually when an institution meets predetermined requirements and deadlines. This approval can be withdrawn at any time.

      • To be eligible for the Canada portion of the Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan, you must be enrolled at an approved postsecondary institution anywhere in the world.
      • To be eligible for the Ontario portion of the Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan, you must be enrolled at an approved public university or college of applied arts and technology in Canada, or an approved private postsecondary institution in Ontario.

    You can find out if an institution is approved by using School Search.

    Approved Program of Study

    You must be enrolled or planning to enrol in an approved program that is 12 or more weeks in length. Most programs offered by Ontario public universities and colleges of applied arts and technology are approved for funding. If you are not sure whether the program you wish to take is approved, contact the financial aid office at your institution.

    Correspondence Courses

    Correspondence courses are approved for OSAP if:

      • they have a specified start and end date,
      • the student's progress is monitored through regular assignments, exams, and contact with faculty, and
      • the program leads to a degree, diploma, or certificate.

    Co-op Programs

    Students in co-operative programs that require work terms are considered full-time students provided that the work terms constitute or are equivalent to an essential element of a program of studies.

    Make-up Years

    Students enrolled in make-up years are eligible for OSAP. A make-up year is defined as a program of study at a university that a student must complete as a prerequisite for admission into a graduate program.

    Academic Upgrading

    Students enrolled in academic upgrading programs are not eligible for COISL.


    In general, you are not eligible for a COISL if you have been restricted because of a Bankruptcy, Consumer Proposal, or Consolidation Orders under the Orderly Payment of Debts. In some cases, you may be able to restore your eligibility for COISL following a bankruptcy related incident.


    You must be a Canadian citizen, Permanent Resident of Canada (landed immigrant), or a Protected Person. Those studying under a student visa are not eligible for a COISL.

    Course Load Requirement

    You must be taking at least 60 per cent of a full course load, or 40 per cent if you are a student with a permanent disability. No averaging of course loads is permitted. For example, if you take 80 per cent of a full course load in your first term and 40 per cent in your second term, the course loads cannot be averaged to equal 60 per cent to meet the minimum requirement. In this case, you would not be eligible for an integrated loan in the second term. If you are not sure of your percentage of a full course load, contact your institution.

    Debt Reduction in Repayment Recipient

    You are not eligible for an additional COISL if you are in receipt of Ontario Debt Reduction in Repayment or Stage 2 of the federal Repayment Assistance Plan.


    If your eligibility has been restricted for such things as: providing incorrect information when you submitted your OSAP application; or being convicted of a criminal offence involving fraud or theft under the Criminal Code (Canada) with respect to any student financial assistance program in Canada, then you are not eligible for a COISL.

    Government Assistance

    If you are receiving other government assistance (e.g., Ontario Disability Support Program) that covers a portion of your expenses, you must check with the government agency about receiving benefits and OSAP at the same time. For further information, contact the local office of the agency from which you are receiving benefits.

    Income Verification

    If there was a significant variance in the income you reported to the Canada Revenue Agency, the income you reported on your OSAP application, and/or any other income reported by you to the ministry and/or your financial aid office, then you are not eligible for a COISL.

    Life-time Maximums

    You are eligible to receive a Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan for up to a maximum lifetime limit of 340 weeks of postsecondary study. The lifetime loan limit may be extended an additional 60 weeks to a maximum of 400 weeks for full-time students enrolled in doctoral programs. For students with permanent disabilities, the lifetime maximum increases to 520 weeks on the federal portion of their loan. For the Ontario portion of their loans, exceptions to Ontario’s lifetime limits can also be considered.

    Overpayment of a loan, grant or bursary

    If you have been assessed with a loan, grant or bursary overpayment, these must be repaid in full before additional COISL aid will be considered.


    You must be an Ontario resident in order to be eligible for COISL. To be considered an Ontario resident, you must meet one of the following residency criteria:

      • You have always resided in Ontario, or
      • Ontario is the last province you resided in for 12 consecutive months without being a full-time postsecondary student.

    In certain circumstances, you can meet Ontario residency requirements on the basis of the residency of your spouse (if applicable) or parent(s) (if applicable). You must fill out the OSAP application to determine whether your residency can be based on that of your spouse or parent(s).

    If you have never resided in any Canadian province for 12 consecutive months in which you were not a full-time postsecondary student, you may be eligible for assistance in Ontario. If you wish to determine if you are eligible for financial assistance, contact the financial aid office at the Ontario postsecondary institution you plan to attend to discuss your situation. You may be required to provide a history of your (and your spouse or parent(s), if applicable) residency in Canada as well as documentation that confirms your date of entry into Canada (e.g., Canadian Immigration Record, Permanent Resident Card, or Protected Persons Status Document).

    Satisfactory Academic Progress Requirement

    You must maintain satisfactory academic progress. Students are required to successfully complete the academic requirements of their program of study to continue to be eligible for further assistance. Frequent or multiple switches, drops, withdrawals and/or repeats of programs that are funded by OSAP may be considered lack of academic progress and direction. Contact your financial aid office for further details.

    Student Loan Default

    To be eligible for a COISL, your previous student loans must be in good standing (i.e., you must not have defaulted on a student loan). If you have defaulted on your student loans, you must obtain clearance in order to be considered for additional COISL.