This on-line directory is maintained by CICIC, in consultation with competent authorities responsible for education in the provinces and territories of Canada. CICIC is not a competent authority.
Educational institutions included in the directory
The directory is the only authoritative list of CURRENTLY recognized, authorized, registered and/or licensed educational institutions in the provinces and territories of Canada.
It includes public and private:
- elementary/secondary schools, and school boards/districts eligible and/or authorized to use the EduCanada brand;
- Cégeps, polytechnics, and other educational institutions;
- private career colleges and vocational/technical schools;
- theological schools;
- language schools;
- Other designated learning institutions (DLI).
It is updated on an ongoing basis to reflect the latest available information.
Educational institutions not included in this directory
We do not publish a list of PREVIOUSLY recognized, authorized, registered and/or licensed educational institutions in the provinces and territories of Canada. If you seek historical information on the previous status of an educational institution and its academic programs in Canada, please contact us or the relevant ministries/departments responsible for education.
At the elementary and secondary levels, we do not publish a complete list of individual schools (public or private). Only those that are eligible and/or authorized to use the EduCanada brand are included.
At the postsecondary level, we do not publish a comprehensive list of all academic programs by field of interest.
We do not publish a list of any providers that are exempt from mandatory registration by provincial/territorial legislation. These vary by jurisdiction but are usually defined as programs with fewer than 40 hours of instruction and tuition fees of $1,000 or less. Providers of professional programs designed for specific employers are not usually included either, regardless of the duration of the program and the cost of tuition.
Also excluded are educational institutions authorized by the federal government, such as:
List of terms specifically used in the directory
- Legislative Status1
Recognized Institution: Public or private institution that has been given authority to grant degrees, diplomas, and other credentials by a public or private act of the provincial/territorial legislature or through a government-mandated quality assurance mechanism.
Institutions Authorized to Offer Specific Credentials: Public or private institution that has been given authority to grant specific degrees, diplomas, or other credentials through a government-mandated quality assurance mechanism, and/or by a private act of the provincial/territorial legislature.
Registered or Licensed Institutions: Private institutions that have been given, under provincial or territorial legislation governing commercial activities, the right to operate as a business for the purpose of offering private training programs after it has been established, for consumer protection purposes only, that they meet minimum financial and other requirements.
1 The legislative status distinguishes the types of legislation and government-mandated quality assurance mechanisms in place for different types of institutions. In cases where legislative status is listed as “other”, the institution is subject to other agreements and/or policies of provincial or territorial governments. These include, for example, a small number designated learning institutions (see definition below) and some language schools. All institutions found in this directory have met the requirements established by the relevant provincial or territorial government for each type of institution. CICIC is not responsible for recognition decisions made by educational institutions, professional regulatory authorities, or employers in their respective decisions and policies to admit students, license professionals, or hire employees. For further clarity on the legislative status of a particular institution, please contact CICIC or the relevant ministries/departments responsible for education.
Public Institution: Institution controlled or managed by a body most of whose members are elected or appointed by or under the scrutiny of a public authority.
Private Institution (not-for-profit): Institution, controlled or managed by a body most of whose members are not selected by a public authority, that is not established for the purpose of distributing profits to individual directors, employees, owners or shareholders.
Private Institution (for-profit): Institution, controlled or managed by a body most of whose members are not selected by a public authority, that is established for the purpose of distributing profits to individual directors, employees, owners or shareholders.
University: A postsecondary institution that grants its own degrees and normally undertakes the creation and extension of knowledge through research and scholarly activity, and the dissemination of knowledge through teaching, publication, and presentation. In most jurisdictions, the authorization to use the term “university” is regulated by provincial and territorial governments through legislation.
College or institute: A postsecondary institution that offers a variety of technical, vocational, or applied diploma or certificate programs. Some are authorized to offer programs of study leading to bachelor's degrees and bachelor's degrees in applied areas of study.
Private career college and vocational/technical school: A privately owned institution that provides career specific and vocational training to meet labour market needs in a broad range of occupational fields. Private career colleges must be registered or licensed, as applicable, under provincial or territorial legislation to ensure that they meet minimum financial, program, and other basic requirements. In some jurisdictions, there are additional processes for voluntary accreditation or quality assurance for private career colleges.
Theological School: An institution (also known as a seminary, divinity school, or theological college), most often established for the training of theologians or the clergy, that are usually recognized under a private act of a provincial or territorial legislature and that are usually not subject to quality assurance mechanisms at the provincial or territorial level.
Language school: An institution that provides second language instruction in English or French and either has been authorized to do so by a provincial or territorial government or has completed the accreditation process administered by Languages Canada.
School board/district: A public authority -- which may be referred to as a school board, school district, school division, school authority or district education council (the terminology used varies by province/territory) – that is entrusted with the local governance of education. The power delegated to these local authorities, whose members are elected by public ballot, is at the discretion of the provincial and territorial governments and generally consists of the operation and administration (including financial) of the group of schools within their board, district or division, curriculum implementation, responsibility for personnel, enrolment of students, and initiation of proposals for new construction or other major capital expenditures. Normally, for international students to attend such schools, they must apply to the relevant school board or district.
Public elementary and/or secondary school: An institution that is operated by a school board or the province or territory. They include all regular public schools as well as provincial reformatory or custodial schools, and other schools that are recognized and funded by the province or territory.
Private elementary and/or secondary school: An institution that is independent and/or private and that, whether affiliated with a particular faith or non-sectarian, is operated, managed, and administered by private individuals and/or groups (e.g., a church, a trade union or a business enterprise, or a foreign or international agency) or that has a governing board that consists mostly of members not selected by a public agency. The extent to which an institution receives its funding from public or private sources does not determine its classification as a public or private school. Privately managed schools may be subject to some regulation or control by public authorities, but these institutions are nevertheless classified as private, provided that they are ultimately subject to private control. Public regulation may extend to areas such as curriculum, staffing appointments, admissions policies, and other matters. Normally, for international students to apply to such schools, they must apply directly to the school.
Vocational training institution: A school, institute or centre for vocational and technical training in Quebec at the elementary/secondary level that offers programs leading to one of the following credentials: pre-work training certificate, training certificate for a semi-skilled trade, diploma of vocational studies, or an attestation of vocational specialization.
Other institution: An institution that does not fall into one of the institution types listed above. In some cases they are not considered part of the education system of the relevant province/territory: for example, it may be a postsecondary institution that is a designated learning institution (DLI) under the federal immigration ministry's international student program.
Designated learning institution (DLI)2: A postsecondary institution that has been so identified by a provincial/territorial ministry/department responsible for education in Canada, and is now able to host international students on programs of study of at least six months' duration.
2This directory is updated on a regular basis to ensure accuracy. In case of any discrepancies between institutions listed as designated learning institutions (DLI) in this directory and the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Web site, the list of DLI on the IRCC Web site shall prevail, and must be used for the purpose of applying under the International Students Program and identifying associated DLI numbers.
Types of credentials
Doctoral Degrees (Doctorate / Ph.D.): Graduate degree offered by university-level institutions that is one level higher than a master's degree and normally requires a minimum of two to three years of full-time study.
Master's Degrees: Graduate degree offered by university-level institutions. It normally follows an undergraduate degree and takes one to two years of full-time study.
Bachelor's Degrees: Undergraduate degree offered by postsecondary institutions, normally requiring three or four years of full-time study.
Applied Master's Degrees: Graduate degree offered in British Columbia by postsecondary institutions. It normally follows an undergraduate degree, and requires one or two years of full-time study. Applied masters degrees focus on both theory and applied skills, and include content relevant to an advanced level of expertise in a recognized occupational sector or profession. The main distinction between an academic master's degree and a master's degree with an applied focus, is the inclusion of practice-based elements and less emphasis on research in the latter.
Applied (Bachelor's) Degrees: Degree offered by postsecondary institutions normally requiring four years of full-time study. Degrees are primarily in technology fields, emphasize technical applications, and frequently involve fieldwork or practical training.
Associate Degree: Undergraduate degree offered in British Columbia by colleges and university colleges, normally requiring two years of full-time study.
University Certificate/Diploma: Credential awarded upon completion of an approved program of study, usually less than four semesters' duration, at the undergraduate level. Advanced graduate diplomas are intended to recognize the completion of specified courses at the graduate level offered to meet the ongoing educational needs of professionals.
College Diploma: Credential awarded upon the successful completion of a program of postsecondary academic and/or vocational training and education, usually requiring two years of full-time study.
College Certificate: Document attesting to the successful completion of an educational or vocational course or program, normally requiring up to two years of study after secondary school.
Attestation of College Studies (AEC): Document attesting to the successful completion of a vocational or technical program of variable length developed by an educational institution with the authorization of the Quebec Ministry of Education.
Affiliated Institution: Institution that retains its administrative independence, but whose power to grant degrees may be held in abeyance, in full or in part, with the parent. The parent supervises instruction in the programs and grants degrees to graduating students. In British Columbia, this definition does not apply to theological colleges affiliated with the University of British Columbia. The private theological colleges meet the criteria for affiliation established by the senate of the university, but this does not imply scrutiny or approval of the course offerings of the private theological colleges by the university senate.
Constituent Institution: Institution that has significant independence from the parent institution in its academic (program and admissions requirements) and financial affairs. Usually awards its own degrees.
Federated Institution: Institution that is a legal entity separate from the parent institution, with which it has academic, research or administrative ties. Usually awards its own degrees, but may hold this power in abeyance with the parent institution.
Canadian Education Statistics Council (CESC)
The Canadian Education Statistics Council (CESC) is a partnership between CMEC and Statistics Canada to coordinate data and research activities related to education. For well over a decade, provincial/territorial governments have supported the pan-Canadian Postsecondary Student Information System (PSIS) survey by providing annual data from CICIC's Directory of Educational Institutions in Canada. Since 2019, the same information was also be used for the Financial Information of Universities and Colleges Survey (FIUC) and the Financial Information of Community Colleges and Vocational Schools (FINCOL).