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Top Universities in Canada 2018

Top Universities in Canada 2018 main image

Click here to view the latest version of this article, based on the QS World University Rankings® 2020.

The QS World University Rankings® 2018 is here, and 26 universities in Canada are featured among the world’s best. Of these, four are in the global top 100, while a further nine Canadian universities are ranked in the top 300. Planning to study in the Great White North? Here’s where to consider first, starting with the country’s top 10.

1. University of Toronto

University of Toronto

Overtaking McGill University to once again be ranked as the best Canadian university is the University of Toronto, up one place at 31st in the world this year. Established in 1827, the University of Toronto has around 88,700 students at its three campuses in Toronto, and is renowned for its research innovations, such as the discoveries of insulin and stem cells.

2. McGill University

Ranked 32nd in the world in 2018, McGill University was founded in 1821 and has around 40,500 students, of which 25% are international. Located in Montreal, the university boasts the highest number of Rhodes Scholars (142) and Nobel Prize winners (12) among all Canadian universities. 

3. University of British Columbia

University of British Columbia

The University of British Columbia is down six places to rank 51st in the world this year, but nonetheless remains the third-highest-ranked university in Canada. Located in Vancouver and Kelowna in British Columbia, the university has about 62,900 students, including 14,434 international students from 162 countries.

4. University of Alberta

University of Alberta

Up four places to rank joint 90th in the world alongside South Korea’s Korea University, the University of Alberta was founded in 1908 and is mainly based in the city of Edmonton. The university enrolls 37,830 students from 143 countries and has an annual impact of CA$12.3 billion on Alberta’s economy.

5. Université de Montréal

Université de Montréal

Ranked 130th in the world, the Université de Montréal is Canada’s highest-ranked Francophone university and one of the top 10 employers in the Montreal region. The university was established in 1878 and is one of the most active Canadian universities in research, with research revenue of more than half a billion dollars.

6. McMaster University

McMaster University

McMaster University, up nine places this year to rank 140th in the world, was originally founded in 1887 in Toronto but relocated to Hamilton, Ontario in 1930. McMaster is home to 70 research centers and institutes, and is particularly renowned for its medical school.

7. University of Waterloo

University of Waterloo

Also located in Ontario, the University of Waterloo is ranked 152nd in the world this year and is one of the youngest of these top universities in Canada, having opened its doors as recently as 1957. Today it has 36,670 students, with 37% of its graduate students coming from outside Canada.

8. Western University

Western University

Ranked joint 210th in the world alongside Belgium’s University of Antwerp, Western University is located in London, Ontario. Previously known as the University of Western Ontario, the university was founded in 1878 and now has around 28,800 students.

9. University of Calgary

University of Calgary

The University of Calgary is ranked 217th in the world in 2018, down on last year but nonetheless a top-10 Canadian university. Founded in 1966, the university has five campuses, including one in Qatar, and has been the birthplace of a variety of significant inventions, including the neurochip.

10. Queen's University

Queen's University

Queen’s University is ranked joint 224th in the world in 2018 and is one of the oldest universities in Canada, established in 1841 – 26 years before Canada was founded. Today, Queen’s has around 22,461 students, 10% of whom are international.

Dalhousie University

The remaining top universities in Canada…

  1. Simon Fraser University – ranked joint 245th in the world.
  2. Dalhousie University – ranked joint 279th in the world.
  3. University of Ottawa – ranked joint 289th in the world.
  4. University of Victoria – ranked joint 346th in the world.
  5. Laval University – ranked 378th in the world.
  6. Concordia University – ranked 431-440 in the world.
  7. York University – ranked 441-450 in the world.
  8. University of Saskatchewan – ranked 451-460 in the world.
  9. University of Guelph – ranked 491-500 in the world.
  10. Université du Québec – ranked 501-550 in the world.
  11. University of Manitoba – ranked 551-600 in the world.
  12. Université de Sherbrooke – ranked 601-650 in the world.

=23. Carleton University – ranked 651-700 in the world.

=23. University of Windsor – ranked 651-700 in the world.

  1. Memorial University of Newfoundland – ranked 701-750 in the world.
  2. Ryerson University – ranked 801-1000 in the world.

Find out more about studying in Canada with our complete guide, including advice on applications, visas, fees and more.

For information about ranking categories, and answers to other frequently asked questions, click here.

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Sabrina Collier's profile image
Written by Sabrina Collier
The former Assistant Editor of TopUniversities.com, Sabrina wrote and edited articles to guide students from around the world on a wide range of topics. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature and Creative Writing from Aberystwyth University and grew up in Staffordshire, UK. 

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Hello my GPA is 2.7 can I be able to study in any of this universities


My Sabrina.. It's aastha here.! I am a 12th grade medical student and I want to go for Bsc. Forensic science further in Canada.. Can uh short list some universities for me...and give me some tips regarding how I can do well. Or how much I should score to get a well known university over there.! :)

Hi i am looking for Masters in Data analytics for my daughter who is studying in final yearB.Tech IT can you suggest some good universities with financial grants

Hello Sabrina, I'm Divine from Rwanda i studied in India for undergraduate and post graduate. i have an agregate of 64.6% in International business and banking and i would like to pursue masters in business administration there in canada. can u advice me

Hi Divine, I'd recommend checking our sister site, TopMBA.com, to see the latest rankings for MBAs (you can narrow the results down to show only Canadian business schools). For general advice on studying in Canada, please see our guide.

Hello Sabrina collier, I m Ankush from India , completed my postgraduation from Delhi university in physics. My specialization was in nuclear physics, now I wanna furthur proceed my PhD and post doc from abroad like canada. I wanna know the procedure , how to pursue PhD from the university in Canada??.....plz let me know. Thanking you. Yours faithfully,. Ankush

Hi Ankush, we have an article with full guidance on how you can apply for a PhD in Canada here

Hello there Sabrina, I'm Sadiq Ahmad from prestigious East West University of Bangladesh. I'm willing to transfer credits to one these prominent universities for the completion of my undergraduate program on Economics. Currently I'm doing my 30 credit hours completion this September to December session. Nonetheless, my CGPA is 4.00 out 4.00, and I have been in a 100% merit scholarship since grade-6. So, is it possible for me to obtain a 100% scholarship in one these universities?

Thank You
With Regards,

Hi Sadiq, I can only find full tuition scholarships for one Canadian university, which unfortunately isn't one of the ones listed above - it's at Quest University Canada. You can find more scholarships to study in Canada here.

Hi Sabrina,
This is for my son who is pursuing plus two now and would like to get admitted for Mechanical Engineering with co operative program in Robotics.Can you guide him to get in to a reputed university in Canada for undergraduate degree.He has got an IELTS band overall 7 and his plus one result average is 85%.Please advice.

Hi Shibu, I'd recommend the following links for your son:

Hope these are helpful!

Hi Sabrina, you have still not replied my msg. I've a bachelor's in theatre arts. Please give me a list of universities in Canada and US which can offer me a master's in economics

Hi Emilia, which message do you mean? I can't see one from you on this page. To find the best Canadian/US universities for studying economics, please see our latest subject ranking.

Hi sabrina , i have an agregate of 67% in mechanical engineering can u suggest me a list of uni i can apply to

Hi Joshua, here's a link to our latest subject ranking for mechanical engineering - you can narrow the results down by country to show only Canadian universities. 

Hi Sabrina, I'm padhu from India. I've completed my b.sc catering science and hotel management course and I'm seeking for hospitality and business management course in Canada universities.Could u plz guide me

Hi Padhmanabhan, here's a link to our latest hospitality and leisure management ranking - the results can be narrowed down to show only Canadian institutions. We also have a complete guide on how to study abroad in Canada, which includes info on top universities, student cities, costs, funding and more.

Hi sabrina i m zahoor ahmad from pakistan i complete my Bachelor's degree in medical(zoology,botany,chemistry) n now i wana to study further which universities are better please help..??

Hi Zahoor, here's a link to our latest rankings by subject for chemistry (the results can be narrowed down to show only Canadian universities). 

Hii sabrina I'm from india ... i had completed my bachlors in fashion technology in may 2018. I want to go canada for post graduation in management And designing field .so iwant to know which are the best universities for my further studies .. i will be very thankful to you if u help me in this .. because i'm very confused

Carleton University
Ottawa University
Windsor University
Manitoba University
Alberta University
Simon Fraser University
I have short listed this assuming that u are an average student consideing all aspects such as studies, exposure, methods.
If u want to reply pleases text me

Hi, I’m from India. I’ve applied for Sheridan College in Toronto for a bachelor in Computer Science.
I was recommended this college by an agent, so I immediately agreed for it. But now I’m in two minds for the same. I’m not sure if the reputation of this college and most other universities that I look up to are not vacant up to next September.
I scored 91% in Non Medical in 12th and a 10 CGPA in 10th. Should I look up to this college? Please help me!

Hello Shaifali, if you are looking for a career in Computer Science apply at Waterloo University, Ontario, it is one the best in the field. Sheridan college is not an university but a community college. I hope this helps.

Hi I am aisha from Canada. I have recently been accepted into the biomedical science bachelor program at York and ryerson both in toronto. I am confused as to which one to choose! I would be highly appreciative of your input as to which one is a better choice with respect to the program itself. For me commute is no problem to either of these universities. Thank you:)

Ryerson is far more capable and great when compared with York so go for it.

Hi,I am Boshir.From Bangladesh. I Want to Take a Bachelor's Degree from Computer Science? Which the best Canada university would be better? Please suggest .

Hi Boshir, you can find out the highest ranked Canadian universities for computer science by checking our latest rankings by subject for computer science, with the results narrowed down to show only Canadian universities.

Hello my self Yash Vyas from ahmadabad Gujarat , India I am pursuing bachelor degree in commerce field , I a m planning for canda pls suggest me best collages or Universities for PGDM in banking and financial . That's give me good education and placement too , you suggestions are too important for me , waiting for your prompt reply..

Hello Sabrina. I am looking for a university that offers a good masters degree in business administration and also marketing to be precise. Pls suggest some good universities in canada and also the work ex. required if any.

Hi Samip, you can view our most recent subject ranking for business & management studies here (the results can be narrowed down to show only Canadian universities). I am not sure about work experience required, but this information should be on each university's official website. :)

Hii,sabrina my name is swapnil j samudre, i am from india currently pursuing my Bachelor of degree in computer science and engineering final year 2018 May passout, i would like to do my post graduate studies in canada in Information system security/cyber security/Computer networking or an MS degree program and the University/Institute which recommended by you should be in top 300 QS world ranking.Kindly suggest me University/Institute and courses. Thankyou.

Hi Swapnil, you can view our latest rankings by subject for computer science here (the results can be narrowed down to show the strongest Canadian universities for this subject).

Hello Sabrina, I do content and copy for a digital agency. Is there any University in Canada that offers something along this line for master programme?

Hello Sabrina, Thanks for your content. I work with a digital marketing agency as senior executive content and copy. I wish to know if there is a university that offers master's degree along this line. Thanks

western University is a really good place to educate your self in canada.

Hi Sabrina , can you hopefully give me universities which allow dentistry of international students in Canada

any recommended schools when it comes to graduate architecture programs?

Hi Ahmed, we don't have a ranking dedicated to graduate architecture programs, but you can view our latest architecture ranking here (the results can be narrowed down to show only Canadian universities). 

Hi Sabrina , My name is Zain Khalid and I want to study in Canada for Bachelor Degree in Majors Accounting and Finance. I Have done A Levels and scored 3A*s. Kindly Guide me which universities offer January or Winter Intake? and which universities offer higher international scholarship. Assistance from you would be extremely helpful.

Hi, myself Amrit Kaur. I m pursuing M.Sc(physics) and I wanna do PhD in Canada. Can u suggest me the right advice regarding this ?? I shall be very thankful to u . Plz give me the essential requirements and information regarding PhD .
Thank you.

Hi Amrit, please take a look at our article on studying a PhD in Canada. Hope it's helpful!

Hello am Hans from Tanzania ,I 'd like to get the list of medical schools in UK offering total scholarship to African students

Hi Hans, please take a look at our lists of medical scholarships and scholarships for African students

Hi, my name is Nkeke Delphine, Cameroonian and Holder of a Master's Degree in Translation with a 3.35/4. Please could u help me with the relevant information for a PhD in the same field of studies. Can I be granted a scholarship too?. I really desire to further my studies to the PhD level. Thank you

Hi Nkeke, if you'd like study your PhD in Canada, we have advice on how to do so here. We also have a list of scholarships to study in Canada here. :)

please can I get cheaper universities in canada

Hi Rosemary, I'm not sure which Canadian universities have the lowest fees, but you can find a range of scholarships to study in Canada here.

Hello, my name is Gabriel from Nigeria. I really have found this site useful and wish to make maximum use of it. I am a graduate of English/Literature with a CGP of 3.35(second class lower) . however I wish to further my education in CANADA and I kindly request of you can help me with information tailored to my want. I wish to run a graduate program on English/literature in any of the most affordable college and city in Canada. Kindly help me with a list of such schools especially once with part time schedule as I intend to work and support my education.

Hi,my name is Josephine from Nigeria,I have completed my first degree in Accountancy/Education and I graduated with a second class lower division,I really want to do my masters in Canada but all the scholarship programs am seeing requires second class upper,am a lesbian and at such my parents don't want to have anything to do with me,please am hoping you will help me in any way possible,I heard Canada is a country that cares about the safety of the LGBT community so I know I will enjoy studying there,please help me.Thank you.