News | Quebec tuition rising faster than national average

Students across Canada paying more this school year

Quebec no longer has the lowest graduate tuition in the country, and Quebec undergraduate tuition is rising at a higher rate than the national average, according to a report released by Statistics Canada (StatsCan) last Thursday.

Universities in Quebec still have the lowest undergraduate tuition in Canada, at an average of $2,415 a year. However, undergraduate tuition increased by 4.6 per cent from last year, the fourth highest rate in the country.

Graduate tuition in Quebec, meanwhile, jumped by 6.4 per cent from last year to $2,600 – more than a hundred dollars more than the graduate tuition rate in Newfoundland and Labrador, which now offers the cheapest graduate tuition in Canada. Only Ontario saw a more precipitous increase in tuition rates for graduate students than Quebec.

Quebec universities also raised tuition for international students by 10.3 per cent, the second biggest increase of its kind. Saskatchewan led the way with a hike of 25.2 per cent.

The StatsCan data, compiled from May to June 2010 and covering the 2010-2011 academic year, showed that undergraduate tuition across Canada rose 4 per cent from 2009-2010, while graduate tuition across Canada jumped 6.6 per cent over the same period.

Inflation increased by 1.8 per cent during the period being measured.

More of the report’s findings include:

• Canadian undergrads are also paying more in compulsory fees (e.g., ancillary fees): $702 on average, up from the $656 they paid on average last year.

• Ontario universities raised tuition on undergraduates and graduates at the highest rates in Canada, 5.4 per cent and 10.6 per cent respectively. Ontario also has the highest undergraduate tuition in the country, at $6,307, more than $750 higher than the next most expensive province.

• The most expensive undergraduate program Canada-wide is dentistry, coming in at $14,701 for the 2010-2011 year.

• At $2,456, Newfoundland and Labrador charges the least for graduate programs at Memorial University, which is the only university in the province.

• The Canadian average for MBA programs is $21,118 – more than $11,000 less than McGill’s MBA program.

• Although it decreased by nearly $350 from last year, Nova Scotia still has the highest graduate tuition in the country, charging $7,350.

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—Compiled by Eric Andrew-Gee