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Government Student Aid Overview

What is Government Student Aid?

The Government of Canada offers student grants and loans to full-time and part-time students. Grants and loans help students pay for their post-secondary education.

  • apply for grants and loans in one application, directly with your province of residence
  • you don't need to repay grants you receive
  • you need to repay loans after finishing school, with interest
  • you may be eligible for more than 1 type of grant - when you apply with your province, they will assess your eligibility for all available grants

Benefits of Government Student Aid

  • No interest while you are a full-time student
  • No payments required while you are a full-time student
  • No co-signer or collateral required
  • Applying for a provincial loan initiates the process by which your eligibility is evaluated for grants
  • Assistance is available if you experience financial hardships during repayment

How Much Funding Can I Get?

A visual of a financial need calculation with bright circles that reads Expenses minus Resources equals Unmet Financial Need

The amount you can receive in grants and loans is calculated when you apply with your province or territory.

Assessments are done for each student independently.

The amount you can receive depends on several factors, including:

  • your province or territory of residence
  • your family income
  • if you have dependents
  • your tuition fees and living expenses
  • if you have a disability

Watch a Video About How Government Student Aid Works

The National Student Loan Service Centre offers the Government Student Loans and Grants Orientation Webinar.

This 17-minute presentation will provide a thorough overview of the process and include such topics as how to apply, what loans and grants are, the stages of a student loan, repayment information and how to use your National Student Loan account.

We recommend that all first-time borrowers watch this video.

The NSLSC.ca website has resources for borrowers. The best place to start is by opening the "Resources" tab > "Learning Hub". This page has the most recent information for all students at any point of your loan lifecycle.