The 11 Best Education Programs in Canada

Image of a group of educators in a classroom

quick answer

The best education programs include Robertson College, the University of British Columbia, the University of Toronto, McGill University, and the University of Alberta, which rank highly for their unique programs and overall institute and research reputation, as rated by academics in the education field.

We often talk about courses to explore, potential careers, and the key to success in a job. However, we sometimes overlook the educators who guide us and the programs that help them get there. 

The best education programs in Canada are ones that keep their students and their students’ future students at the heart of their programs, whether they are in-person or online colleges. In fact, a teacher’s impact goes far beyond the classroom — research shows that a good teacher increases a student’s chance of attending college, reduces the risk of teenage pregnancy, and increases future earning potential. 

Here, we’ll uncover the best education programs in Canada, what’s unique about each, and options that don’t include a Degree so you can make an informed decision on where to start your career in education. 

The 11 Best Education Programs in Canada

College Best For
1. Robertson College Early Childhood Education
2. University of British Columbia Unique program offerings
3. University of Toronto Graduate programs
4. McGill University Kinesiology program 
5. University of Alberta Connecting students and the community
6. Western University Research-intensive programs
7. University of Montreal French speakers
8. Humber College Field experience
9. University of Calgary Various educational pathways
10. York University Range of specializations
11. Centennial College International students

The rankings are based on a variety of factors. The data is primarily pulled from MacLean’s university rankings, which focus on institute and research reputation. MacLean’s surveyed 1,200 academic professors, deans, and chairs from 70 different Canadian universities to get their feedback.

Participants were asked to list their top 10 universities based on their specific programs and research. The responses for both program reputation and research reputation were weighted equally in their results. 

We compiled our list using the data from MacLean’s research. In addition, we’ve included college options that offer certifications other than a Bachelor of Education. All of the best education programs in Canada below offer students a comprehensive and hands-on experience, with an emphasis on meeting the diverse needs of future students. 

1. Robertson College

Photo of exterior of Robertson College

Best for Early Childhood Education

Robertson College offers some of the best education programs in Canada for Early Childhood Education, including both Certificate and Diploma options. In as little as 19 months, students can begin their careers in Early Childhood Education. Robertson also offers micro-courses in:

With a focus on hands-on learning, courses are available in-person and online, allowing students both flexibility and the opportunity to learn from experts in person. Robertson also offers students lifelong career support through its Workforce Team; students are paired with professionals in their field who can help them start their careers. 

Best Features

  • Hybrid learning model
  • Programs can be completed in two years or less
  • Lifelong career support with Robertson’s Workforce Team

Average Tuition: $$$

2. University of British Columbia

Photo of exterior of UBC

Best for unique program offerings

Offering campuses in both Vancouver and Kelowna, the University of British Columbia (UBC) is featured in many “best” lists. With beautiful campuses as well as online and hybrid learning options, students can learn in whichever way suits their learning style best. 

UBC has a wide catalogue of education courses. Students can choose to specialize in different languages or focus on Indigenous teaching. Additionally, students can earn their Master’s in a variety of education-related subjects, such as Business Education, Early Childhood Education, and Museum Education. 

Best Features

  • A wide range of teaching specialties 
  • Hybrid course options
  • Top-ranked school in Canada

Average Tuition: $$$$

3. University of Toronto

Photo of exterior of University of Toronto

Best for Graduate programs

The University of Toronto’s Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) is Canada’s only all-graduate school of education. OISE offers several teacher’s Master’s programs. The main two programs are a Master of Teaching and a Master of Child Studies and Education. It also offers focuses in Adult Education, Educational Leadership and Policy, and Developmental Psychology and Education. 

With its emphasis on research, the University of Toronto is one of the top-ranked universities in Canada, specifically for its faculty of education. The school prides itself on creating intimate learning experiences for students by combining their passion for research and collaboration.

Best Features

  • Emphasis on research
  • Top-ranked school in Canada
  • Only all-graduate school of education in Canada

Average Tuition: $$$$$

4. McGill University

Photo of exterior of McGill

Best for Kinesiology education

McGill has a reputation for being a popular destination for learners from around the world. Located in Montreal, the university is consistently ranked in the top 50 worldwide and as the top school in Canada. 

McGill offers a range of education course options, including Undergraduate, Master’s, Doctorate, and Certificate programs. Unique program offerings include professional development programs in Inclusive Education and Health Professions Education, as well as its Kinesiology and Physical Education department, which offers Undergraduate, Master’s, and Ph.D. programs. 

Best Features

  • #1 for scholarships and bursaries 
  • Kinesiology and Physical Education program
  • Emphasis on research 

Average Tuition: $$$$$

5. University of Alberta

Photo of exterior of University of Alberta

Best for connecting students and the community

Based out of Edmonton, the University of Alberta (U of A) is known as one of the top four universities in Canada and the top 100 in the world. The university provides its students with opportunities to connect their education with real-world experiences, including co-ops, study abroad programs, and community service placements. 

U of A’s education programs base their teachings on the Cree principle of mâmawohkamâtowin, which is “a way of being that collectively orients our work in ethical, caring, cooperative and compassionate ways to serve our students.” The university offers Undergraduate, Graduate, and Certificate and Diploma programs, as well as a focused Aboriginal Teacher Education Program. 

Best Features

  • Aboriginal Teacher Education Program
  • Real-world experiences in and outside the classroom
  • One of the top four education programs in Canada

Average Tuition: $$$$

6. Western University

Photo of exterior of Western 

Best for research-intensive programs

This London, Ontario, university is one of the best in the world. With its distinguished research-intensive programs and high entrance averages, students can expect a well-rounded education from Western. 

Western’s education faculty has Undergraduate, Graduate, Doctorate, and Certificate programs. The teacher program is 50% in class and 50% in the community, so students receive real classroom experience. The curriculum also focuses heavily on ensuring equity, diversity, and inclusion. 

Best Features

  • 50% in-class learning, 50% in the community
  • Choose between working in one school for practicum or multiple
  • Curriculum focused on equity, diversity, and inclusion

Average Tuition: $$$$

7. University of Montreal

Photo of exterior of University of Montreal

Best for French speakers

A top research university, the University of Montreal, or Université de Montréal, is a French language university in Quebec. Although mainly French-speaking, many programs do offer bilingual courses. The teaching programs, however, are predominantly only available in French. 

Teaching programs include Postgraduate courses, such as a Master’s of Education, a Graduate program in Special Education, and a Doctorate in Education Administration. Students can expect to learn how to teach and meet the needs of all types of learners. 

Best Features

  • French programs
  • Postgraduate education courses
  • Full-time and part-time availability 

Average Tuition: $$$$

8. Humber College

Photo of exterior of Humber College

Best for field experience

As the largest polytechnic school in Canada, Humber College offers students a wide range of course options. With campuses in Ontario, students can choose from in-person, online, or hybrid courses. Humber provides its courses in collaboration with local businesses to provide students with real-world experience. 

For those who want to pursue education, Humber offers courses in Child and Youth Care and Early Childhood Education (ECE). Students in the ECE program experience integrated, hands-on learning and must complete 500-600 hours of fieldwork. 

Best Features

  • High rate of employment for graduates
  • Mandatory field experience for graduation 
  • On-site inclusive child care facility for students

Average Tuition: $$$

9. University of Calgary

Photo of exterior sign for University of Calgary

Best for various educational pathways

The University of Calgary (U of C) offers a wide course catalogue for Undergraduate, Graduate, and professional and continuing studies. With 14 faculties and more than 250 programs, students have their pick of interests. 

U of C provides five pathways to achieving a Bachelor of Education, qualifying graduates to teach from kindergarten to grade 12 in Alberta. The school also provides options at the Master’s and Doctorate levels. Students can focus on a range of subjects, from English to Early Childhood Education, Dance, and more. 

Best Features

  • Multiple pathways to becoming a teacher
  • Wide range of disciplines to choose from 
  • Study abroad opportunities

Average Tuition: $$$$

10. York University

Photo of exterior of York University

Best for a range of specializations

With campuses in the Greater Toronto Area, York University is a top international teaching and research school. Its primary focus is providing excellent cross-discipline programs with an emphasis on diverse student groups. 

With Undergraduate options in Children, Childhood and Youth, Discipline of Teaching English as an International Language (D-TEIL), Education, and Educational Studies, as well as a number of Graduate and Certificate programs, students can choose a discipline that interests them. 

Best Features

  • Variety of programs offered at different levels
  • Wide range of specialization options
  • Students are encouraged to look for advancement opportunities

Average Tuition: $$$$

11. Centennial College

Photo of exterior of Centennial College

Best for international students

Centennial College is a small post-secondary institution in the Greater Toronto Area. It offers real-world experience to students, both locally and internationally. Programs are available in-person, online, hybrid, and full or part time. 

Students interested in education have several Diploma options available, such as Child and Youth Care, Early Childhood Education, and Developmental Services. Students are also able to fast-track their studies. 

Best Features

  • Various pacing options
  • Full- and part-time studies available
  • Focus on international students

Average Tuition: $$$

Careers in Education Without a Degree

Teaching in Canada requires an Undergraduate Degree in a teachable subject, such as English or Math, and a Bachelor of Education, at minimum. Each province has its own requirements — for example, Ontario requires Certification and membership in the Ontario College of Teachers. 

However, not all pathways into education need to follow that route. Post-secondary education is an investment, from the cost of tuition to how long it takes to finish college. If helping people learn is your passion but you don’t currently have a Degree, there are still plenty of options. 

Here are three careers in education that don’t require a Degree: 

  • Early Childhood Educator: Early Childhood Educators work with newborn children to four or five years old, attending to their emotional and physical needs. They are required to have a Certification in ECE, which can take a minimum of one year.
  • Teacher’s Aide: Their responsibility is to assist students, teachers, and administrators with non-teaching-related tasks. Teacher’s Aides usually have a Diploma or other related experience.
  • School Administrator: Administrative Assistants handle all administrative tasks in a school, such as paperwork, registration, and logistics. While a specific Degree isn’t required, it can be helpful. 

FAQ

Which Education Field Is Best in Canada?

The “best” education field in Canada depends on your particular interests, but Early Childhood Education is undoubtedly an in-demand job in Canada that also requires fewer years of education. 

What University Has the Best Teaching Program in Canada?

The University of British Columbia has one of the best teaching programs in Canada, as well as the University of Toronto and McGill. For Early Childhood Education, Robertson College has an excellent, hands-on program. 

What’s the Best Teacher’s College in Ontario?

Some of the best teacher’s colleges in Ontario include the University of Toronto, McGill, and York University, which are all top rated. 

What Are the Best Master of Education Programs in Canada?

The University of British Columbia, McGill, and Toronto University have some of the best Master of Education programs in Canada and are highly ranked worldwide as well. 

Is Teaching a Good Career in Canada?

Canadian employment statistics show that teaching in Canada is a good career choice. There are many job opportunities, and teachers make decent wages and have good benefits and pension options. 

Receive a Top Education in Canada With Robertson

Some of the best education programs in Canada don’t necessarily follow the traditional route of becoming a teacher. Robertson College offers a variety of course options that provide a meaningful education career, with less time spent in a classroom and more spent doing what you love. 

Learn about Robertson’s Diploma programs and courses to start your career today. 

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