IN HIS TEACHINGS, the Greek philosopher Epictetus proclaimed: “Only the educated are free.” Unfortunately, an education isn’t. On average, undergraduate tuition fees across Canada increased by 3.6 per cent this year, slightly higher than last year’s mark of 2.8 per cent. Quebec had the highest increase at 5.4 per cent—two years after lifting a 13-year tuition freeze—although students at Quebec universities still pay among the lowest tuition in the country as long as they are residents of the province. Alberta and Ontario each saw fee increases of 4.7 per cent, while fees were up two per cent and 2.4 per cent in Prince Edward Island and British Columbia respectively.
Tuition fees in several provinces—New Brunswick, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland and Labrador—remained virtually unchanged, while in Nova Scotia fees actually decreased by 2.9 per cent. Nova Scotia has some of the highest tuition fees in the country, but with the implementation of the Nova Scotia University Student Bursary Trust in March 2008, fees will remain frozen until 2011. As is customary, international students took it on the chin again this year, as their fees rose 3.9 per cent on average to $14,495When it comes to compulsory fees, students across the country are paying 3.3 per cent more on average this year, with Alberta students facing a whopping 10.6 per cent increase. M
All fees in the accompanying chart are for undergraduate arts and science programs as of September 2008. The names of several universities appear twice: Quebec institutions where out-of-province fees apply, and universities where there are different fees for arts programs and science programs.
Compulsory ancillary fees can vary according to program, or in the case of UBC, by campus location: students at the Okanagan campus pay $591—almost $100 less than students at the main Vancouver campus. Ancillary fees include student health plan fees. If students are covered by another insurance plan, they can opt out of most health plans, which range in cost from $49 to $414.
*Tuition at Nova Scotia universities is reduced for residents of the province. Out-of-province students must pay $761 more than the tuition fees listed here.
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