2018-19 Program Updates

January 2019

Gender Neutral Marker on Applications

Introducing a 3rd Choice – a Gender ‘X’ Marker on applications for:

  • Students applying for loans and grants or scholarships
  • Individuals who don’t identify as male or female will be able to choose from 3 options:
    • Male
    • Female
    • X

The addition of a third marker will help ensure students have access to identity markers that better reflect how they self-identify. The Gender ‘X’ Marker was officially released on Jan 22.

Student Aid System Security Changes

On Jan. 22, Student Aid integrated with the MyAlberta Digital ID system to make it easier for students to access online government services. The MyAlberta Digital ID replaced the Secure Identity and Access Management System (SIAMS) previously required for students to login to their Student Aid accounts.

What is MyAlberta Digital ID?

MADI is a digital government identity security system that allows Albertans to create one account for seamless access to participating services across government.

For more information about MyAlberta Digital ID, go to:

2018-19 Academic Year

Alexander Rutherford Scholarship Application

Adjustments to the wording to provide more clarity around residency requirements and application timelines.

Canada Student Loan Program Changes

Increase to the Income Thresholds used to calculate eligibility for:

  • Canada Student Grants for Full-Time Students,
  • Canada Student Loan Assessment for Student Contribution & Spouse/Partner Contribution

Increase to the Income Thresholds used to calculate eligibility for Canada Student Grants for:

  • Part-Time Students,
  • Persons with Permanent Disabilities, and
  • Services and Equipment for Persons with Permanent Disabilities.

New Grants

  • Skills Boost Top-Up to the Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students
  • Canada Student Grant for Part-Time Studies
  • Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students with Dependants
  • Canada Student Grant for Part-Time Students with Dependants

Reporting Income | Expected Earnings
Addition of “Current Year” income on the application. Grant eligibility can be calculated based on your expected earnings for this year (as a student), instead of your earnings for the previous year (Line 150 of your tax return). 

Living Allowance Increased

There is an increase to the living allowances used to calculate eligibility for the 2018-19 school year. This amount is used by Alberta Student Aid as part of the calculation of your total costs.

Loan Agreements

There are separate loan agreements for Alberta student loans and Canada student loans. You need to complete the loan agreements for the types of funding you will receive.

Loan Agreements and How You Get Them
Alberta Student Loans: print from your Alberta Student Aid account
Canada Student Loans (full-time): complete online using the MSFAA# that is emailed to you
Canada Student Loans (part-time): mailed to you

If you have more questions about loan agreements and how to complete them, go to:

Special Independent Status

Students who have 'special independent status' will no longer need to provide a Schedule 1 for Parental Information.
'Special independent status' can be granted if your parents are deceased or you have a legal guardian.

Students with Permanent Disabilities

Reporting Assistive Services and Equipment Costs

If you are receiving a Canada Student Grant for Services and Equipment for Students with Permanent Disabilities, you must submit estimates and quotes for both equipment and assistive services and technology.
Previously, you only needed to provide an estimate of equipment costs.

Learning Assessment Fee Increased

The maximum funding allowed for a Learning Assessment Fee has increased from $1200 to $1700. If you have a diagnosed Learning Disability, up to 75% of the cost of the service may be reimbursed, up to a maximum of $1700.