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University of Alberta

Updated: November 13th, 2023

If you plan to study in Canada, consider the University of Alberta (U of A). Set in Edmonton, Alberta, it is the fifth-largest university in the country. It is renowned for its commitment to excellence in education, research, and innovation. Established in 1908, it consistently ranks among the world's leading institutions. With a sprawling campus, state-of-the-art facilities, and a vibrant academic community, the University of Alberta offers an enriching and transformative learning experience for students from around the globe.

University of Alberta Campuses

Study in Canada | University of Alberta

U of A has 38,000 students across faculties at five separate campus locations. There are four campuses in Edmonton and one in Camrose. Let's take a look at each of them.

North Campus, Edmonton

The University of Alberta's North Campus is set on Treaty 6 lands known as "River Lot Five" during the fur trade era. These lands run from 116 Street on the west to 110 Street on the east, from the North Saskatchewan River until University Avenue. The neighborhoods of Windsor Park, Belgravia, McKernan, and Garneau surround the campus.

The North Campus is home to around 35,000 students and about 7,500 faculty and staff members. It is the university's academic, research, and administrative hub.

Campus Saint-Jean

Campus Saint-Jean was established in 1908 and became attached to the University of Alberta in 1963. It is a French-language teaching campus that has become a leader in research in the science, arts, social sciences, education, and language teaching areas. It hosts 40 researchers and is well-known for its collaborative efforts across disciplines.

Augustana Campus

Augustana University College in Camrose, previously known as the Camrose Lutheran College, merged with the U of A on July 1, 2004. You'll still find traces of the college's heritage in campus buildings, as well as in its liberal arts and sciences curriculum.

South Campus

South Campus's history stretches back to the 1920s, when the Board of Governors bought 379 acres of land south of the Main Campus (North Campus). The modern-day South Campus runs from 60 Avenue north to Fox Drive and from 122 Street east to approximately 115 Street.

South Campus is home to some of North America's top agricultural research and teaching departments. It is well-known for specialized agricultural studies, the Medical Isotope and Cyclotron Facility, and state-of-the-art sports facilities.

Enterprise Square

U of A's Enterprise Square can be found on Jasper Avenue and runs between 102 Street and 103 Street, right in the heart of Edmonton's downtown area. It is a hub for community connection that encourages research, learning, and developing partnerships.

The campus is integral to the university's commitment to teaching, research, and creativity while celebrating its historic architecture and campus spirit in Edmonton's downtown area.

University Rankings

U of A has consistently been ranked as one of the Great White North's highest-ranked universities. It has a reputation of prestige on a global level as well. Let's take a look at where this Canadian university stands.

Ranking Body World Ranking Canadian
Times Higher Education Impact Rankings #7 #2
Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) #111 #4
Times Higher Education (THE) #109 #5
Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) #91 #4
National Taiwan University (NTU) #86 #4

Colleges and Faculties

U of A Colleges | University of Alberta

The College of Health Sciences

The U of A's College of Health Sciences uses the strength of its health sciences faculties and schools to take interdisciplinary health science research and education to a higher level.

College of Health Sciences Faculties:

  • Rehabilitation Medicine
  • School of Public Health
  • Pharmacy + Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Nursing
  • Kinesiology, Sport, + Recreation
  • Medicine + Dentistry

The College of Natural and Applied Sciences

The College of Natural and Applied Sciences combines scientific expertise throughout its faculties, making way for top-level research and innovative teaching efforts.

College of Natural and Applied Sciences Faculties

  • Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences
  • Engineering
  • Science

The College of Social Sciences and Humanities

The College of Social Sciences and Humanities comprises faculties focusing on the arts, business, education, and law. It pushes educational boundaries and is consistent in its approach to shaping a society that is creative, equitable, inclusive, and democratic.

College of Social Sciences and Humanities Faculties

  • Alberta School of Business
  • Arts
  • Education
  • Law

Top Academic Programs at U of A

As you can see from the above-mentioned faculties, the U of A has an expansive academic offering. So, if you wish to start your journey as an international student in Canada and want to be based in Alberta, take a look at this university's top academic programs.

University of Alberta Program Ranking Body Rank
Nursing QS #5 (Global) #1 (Canada)
Petroleum Engineering QS #5 (Global) #1 (Canada)
Mining & Mineral Engineering QS #10 (Global) #2 (Canada)
Environmental Science & Engineering ARWU #2 (Canada)
Chemical Engineering ARWU, NTU #1 (Canada)
Chemistry ARWU #1 (Canada)
Food Science & Technology ARWU #3 (Canada)
Agriculture Science NTU #2 (Canada)

U of A Online Courses

The University of Alberta has partnered with Coursera to provide engaging and thorough versions of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). The online courses are free and open to the community.

The online learning courses offered include:

  • Software Design & Architecture
  • Software Product Management - Specialization
  • Understanding Video Games
  • Problem Solving, Programming, and Video Games
  • Science Literacy
  • Paleontology: Theropod Dinosaurs and the Origin of Birds
  • Paleontology: Ancient Marine Reptiles
  • Astro 101: Black Holes
  • Bugs 101

Applying to the University of Alberta as an International Student

Apply to U of A | University of Alberta

The application process for international students applying to the University of Alberta is straightforward and can be completed online. You must submit an application form, pay the application fee, and provide supporting documents such as academic transcripts, letters of recommendation, and a statement of intent. It is important to note that application deadlines vary depending on the program and level of study. Make sure that you check the university's website for specific deadlines and requirements.

The application process for international students applying to the University of Alberta is straightforward and can be completed online. Follow our quick step-by-step process:

  1. You must submit an application form
  2. Pay the application fee
  3. Provide supporting documents such as:
    • Academic transcripts
    • Letters of recommendation
    • Statement of intent.
  4. Meet the application deadline

Application deadlines vary depending on the program and level of study. Make sure that you check the university's website for specific deadlines and requirements.

To learn more about the university's admission requirements, it's a good idea to get in touch with the U of A International Team.

Accommodation For International Students

You'll find many housing options on and off campus. Here are resources for finding a place to live, including temporary accommodations when you first arrive.

As an international student, choosing to reside on campus at the U of A will come with many benefits:

  • It’s convenient
  • You'll have access to great campus activities
  • You'll be able to build friendships and expand your network while studying in Canada.

Note that the student residence you'll qualify for depends on your study year.

If you prefer off-campus housing<, you'll find that Edmonton has a great variety of student accommodation options available. You can choose from:

  • High rise apartments
  • Walk-up apartments
  • Suites (in a house)
  • Room and board (apartment or house)
  • A bachelor apartment
  • Shared accommodation (house, apartment, or suite)
  • Homestays with a Canadian family

Campus Life and Student Resources

Life at the University of Alberta extends beyond the classroom. The campus provides a vibrant and inclusive environment for students to engage in extracurricular activities, clubs, and organizations. With over 400 student groups, ample opportunities exist for pursuing interests outside of academics, developing leadership skills, and building lifelong friendships.

The university also offers exceptional student resources, including state-of-the-art libraries, research facilities, and student support services. From career counseling to academic advising, the University of Alberta ensures that you'll have access to the resources you need to thrive academically and personally.

Living in Edmonton: The City and its Attractions

As Alberta's capital city, Edmonton offers a vibrant and welcoming student community. Known for its friendly residents and diverse cultural scene, the city provides a high standard of living and a safe environment for international students.

Edmonton is also home to many attractions, such as the renowned West Edmonton Mall, which offers a wide range of shopping, entertainment, and recreational activities. The city is also famous for its beautiful river valley park system, vibrant arts and music festivals, and a thriving culinary scene. Living in Edmonton guarantees a well-rounded experience both inside and outside the classroom.

Successful Alumni

The University of Alberta takes pride in the accomplishments of its alums, who have gone on to achieve great success in various fields. From Nobel laureates and Rhodes Scholars to prominent business leaders and renowned artists, the university's alumni network is a testament to the quality of education and opportunities the institution provides. The Canadian university has alums who have made significant contributions to society, both locally and globally, and serve as inspirations for current and future students.

The University of Alberta has produced a few well-known alumni. They include:

  • Joe Clark - 16th Prime Minister of Canada
  • Beverley McLachlin - 17th Chief Justice of Canada
  • Professor Abdulhakem Elezzabi - Father of Spin Plasmonics
  • John Gamon - Pioneer of the Photochemical Reflectance Index
  • Andriy Kovalenko - Molecular dynamics pioneer of the Kovalenko-Hirata Closure relationship fame


How Much Does it Cost to Study at U of A?

According to the U of A's website, four factors will influence the cost of your tuition. These are:

  • Instructional (tuition) fees, which cover the cost of your courses and lectures. Note that costs differ for each program.
  • Non-instructional fees cover student services and benefits.
  • Books and supplies costs cover all your reading material and textbooks.
  • Accommodation costs will cover your living arrangements. You must decide whether to live on campus in a student residence, off-campus on your own, or with a roommate or host family.

As an international student, your tuition fees are calculated on a program-based model. You'll receive an annual and total program tuition guarantee and can pay your fees on a once-off or bi-annual basis.

You'll have to pay an application fee of $125 or $75 (for current or former students). When you submit your application form, this non-refundable application fee for new students must be paid. You will likely have to pay a $500 tuition when you accept the admission offer and become eligible for course registration.

Will I need a Canadian Study Permit to Study in Canada?

Yes. Once accepted into a program at the University of Alberta, you must obtain a Canadian study permit to study in Canada legally. A Canadian study permit is a document issued by Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), which allows foreign nationals to study at designated learning institutions here.

To apply for a Canadian study permit, you must:

  • Provide a letter of acceptance from the university
  • Proof of financial support
  • Evidence of a clean criminal record.
  • Apply for a study permit well in advance, as processing times vary.

You must follow several steps to apply for a Canadian study permit. These are as follows:

  • Step 1: Check whether you are eligible
  • Step 2: Obtain an acceptance letter from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI)
  • Step 3: Gather all required documents like your passport, proof of finances, proof of acceptance, etc.
  • Step 4: Pay the required application fees
  • Step 5: Apply online

How Long Will it Take For My Canadian Study Permit to Be Processed?

According to the IRCC website, processing for a Canadian Study Permit can take around 11 weeks if successful.

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