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Paying For Your Education

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The best way to pay for your education is with money that doesn't have to be paid back, such as help from parents and other relatives and money from summer jobs.

Financial Aid

Ontario’s Student Access Guarantee ensures that every qualified Ontario student has access to the financial help they need through OSAP and financial aid provided separately by Ontario colleges and universities.

This site also offers the following tools and information to help you understand OSAP better:

Scholarships and Bursaries

Many organizations and service groups offer scholarships or bursaries to students based on factors such as academic merit, community involvement, or financial need. You can find more information about these awards at the following websites:

Financial Aid From Schools

Ontario's publicly funded colleges and universities provide financial aid to postsecondary students in financial need through bursaries, scholarships, work-study programs and summer employment programs.

This aid is separate from the funding you can apply for through OSAP. Ontario's Student Access Guarantee ensures that college and university financial aid is available to supplement OSAP aid.

College and university aid may be awarded based upon your financial need, academic merit and/or other factors. The amount of aid, the eligibility criteria, application process and application deadlines vary based on your program and school.

In addition, most schools have emergency loans available for students in financial distress. Generally, these are short-term loans (usually 90 days), such as a loan to cover tuition while waiting for OSAP funding to come through.

Contact the financial aid office at your school to see what kinds of programs are available.

Bank Loans

Loans designed for students may also be available from private lenders such as banks, trust companies and credit unions. The interest rates for these loans are higher since the government does not set their rates, and repayment terms may be tougher than with government-sponsored loans. Also, interest accrues on bank loans while you are in school.

Some lenders also offer lines of credit. These are preset amounts of money from which you can withdraw sums as needed. You pay interest only on the money you withdraw. Talk to your financial institution to find out what options might be available to you.