On this page:

2021-22 Academic Year

The Government of Alberta is committed to supporting students. Learn more about our response to the pandemic and financial impacts for students.

All information is updated to include the rebranding of the Canada Student Loans Program to the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program.

Applying for Student Aid

Students must log in to register, apply, and check their application online at studentaid.alberta.ca.
Student Aid recommends you apply at least two months prior to the start of school:

  • Starting school on or after August 1, 2021 - apply on the 2021-22 application
  • Starting school on or before July 31, 2021 - apply on the 2020-21 application

Alexander Rutherford Scholarship Application

The 2021-22 Alexander Rutherford High School Achievement Scholarship online application will be available in early August.

Alberta Scholarships and Awards

All scholarship and award applications will be available in early August.

Alberta Student Aid Changes

Unless otherwise indicated, the changes to Alberta Student Aid program, systems, and policies are for the upcoming loan year (August 1, 2021 to July 31, 2022).

Alberta Student Grant for Full-time Students (ASG-FT)
Effective Sept 21, 2021

All funds available for the Alberta Student Grant for the 2021-22 loan year have been allocated. Students continue to be eligible to receive all other Alberta and Canada student grants and the maximum loan amount available for each year they are in school, if applicable.

Note: Grant funding will be restored in late spring 2022 for the 2022-23 loan year.

For more information, see Alberta Student Grants.

Successive Short-Term Programs Policy
Reinstated as of December 2, 2021

A student who receives funding for two successive short-term programs (each less than or equal to 12 months), or switches between short-term programs during a study period, is not eligible for funding for a third short-term program for a 12-month period.

Learn more about academic progress.

Open Studies Policy
Definition as of December 22, 2021

Students who are not enrolled in a specific program of study, and are enrolled in studies referred to as 'open studies' or 'qualifying year' may be eligible to apply for or receive funding when they:

  • enter studies following an undergraduate degree, in order to satisfy prerequisite requirements for a specific graduate program, or

  • cannot enter into an undergraduate program major, and are enrolled in the relevant program courses.

Learn more about program eligibility.

Income Thresholds

The income thresholds as determined by the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program are increased in the 2021-22 school year. These income thresholds are used to help determine the student’s eligibility for the:

  • Canada Student Grant for Full-time Students (CSG-FT)
  • Skills Boost Top-Up to the Canada Student Grant for Full-time Students (CSG-TU)
  • Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students with Dependants (CSG-FTDEP)
  • Alberta Student Grant for Full-Time Students (ASG-FT)

For more information see, Income Thresholds for Canada and Alberta Eligibility.

Living Allowance Increase

There is an increase to the living allowances used to calculate eligibility for the 2021-22 school year. This amount is used by Alberta Student Aid as part of the calculation of your total costs.

Move to Paperless

Students with a spouse/partner who do not have a Social Insurance Number (SIN) will need to provide one of the following reasons when completing the full-time application:

  • Spouse lives outside Canada
  • Spouse not eligible for a SIN
  • Spouse has not applied for a SIN

This additional information allows those students whose spouse/partner lives outside Canada to apply online. This change will reduce the number of paper applications.

Canada Student Financial Assistance Program Changes

There are a number of program changes that will increase eligibility for funding in recognition that many students and families will struggle to save for this school year, and may have reduced part-time or summer employment opportunities.

Canada Emergency Benefits for COVID-19

The Government of Canada's emergency support benefits for students continue in the 2021-22 loan year. These do not need to be reported on the application and will not be used as a resource.

Doubling of Canada Student Grants

The following Canada Student Grants will continue to be doubled in the 2021-22 loan year.

  • Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students
  • Canada Student Grant for Part-Time Students
  • Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students with Dependants
  • Canada Student Grant for Part-Time Students with Dependants
  • Canada Student Grant for Students with Permanent Disabilities

There are no changes to the following grants:

  • Skills Boost Top-Up to the Canada Student Grant
  • Canada Student Grant for Services and Equipment for Students with Permanent Disabilities

For more information, see the Full-time Grants and Part-time Grants sections.

Federal Student and Spouse/Partner Contributions

The Canada Student Financial Assistance Program will consider contributions from parents and spouses/partners to help determine your eligibility for Canada student loans and grants. The Canada student loan assessment for expected student and spousal contributions was waived in the previous loan year.

There are no changes to the Alberta expected student contribution or the federal parental contribution. Alberta does not have a forced spouse/partner contribution.

For more information, refer to:

Canada Student Loans | Weekly Maximum Amount

The maximum Canada Student Loan that can be issued is 60% of the student’s Canada calculated need, up to a maximum of $210 per week. This is reduced from the one-time COVID-19 maximum amount of $350 per week in the 2020-21 loan year.

Canada Student Loans | Interest Will Not Accrue
Effective April 1, 2021

Interest on Canada student loans is waived until March 31, 2023. This means interest will not accrue during this period for full-time Canada Student Loans as well as part-time Canada Student Loans.

Students with Permanent Disabilities | Learning Assessment Fee Increase
Effective July 14, 2021

The Canada Student Grants program’s partial coverage of the cost of a Learning Assessment is increased from $1,700 to a maximum of $3,500 per loan year.

Designations Waiting Period Exemption

Alberta Student Aid implemented a one-year waiting period for designating new schools, or new locations of existing schools in 2020. This policy was recently revised to allow for requests for exemption. The new exemption process reviews requests on a case-by-case basis.

Past performance and compliance history are taken into account for existing Private Career Colleges that request exemption from the Institution Designation Waiting Period for new campuses.

Moving Up Funding Policy | Discontinued

Alberta Student Aid will no longer change a student’s disbursement schedule and move up student funding. Previously, students had the option of requesting their funding was moved up from a later study period to their current study period to help them meet their short-term financial needs.

Determining Family Income | Change to Definition

The definition previously considered whether the student was legally responsible for their child, and not whether they were financially responsible for their dependant. The terminology the student is 'legally responsible' is now replaced with the wording, the student is 'financially responsible'.

For more information, see Student Resources.

Additional Resources

To view the 2020-21 What's New as a PDF, download.

Please continue to visit this section to ensure you are getting up-to-date information. Information is subject to change.