Alexander Rutherford High School Achievement Scholarship

This scholarship was named in honour of Alexander Rutherford, who had the distinction of being Alberta’s first Premier and Minister of Education. He was known for his strong support of public education, particularly the University of Alberta and his active involvement in community affairs.

Purpose

To recognize and reward academic achievement of senior high school students and encourage them to pursue post-secondary studies.

Value

Up to $2,500

Eligibility

Apply once your official high school transcript marks are available and when you are enrolled in full-time post-secondary studies. Requirements for high school transcript marks will vary.
       
To receive this scholarship, you must also meet all of these eligibility criteria:

  • Be a Canadian Citizen, a Permanent Resident of Canada or Protected Person under
    Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, (Visa students are not eligible);

  • Be an Alberta resident, and to be considered an Alberta resident the following conditions must apply:
    • one parent or legal guardian must have maintained permanent residence in Canada for at least 12 consecutive months immediately prior to the applicant commencing a program of study;

    • applicant has maintained permanent residence in Alberta at least 12-months prior to commencing a program of study;

    • applicant is not eligible to receive a scholarship with respect to any grade unless the applicant or the applicant's parent(s)/legal guardian were a resident in Alberta throughout the whole of that grade. 
  • Have completed high school on or after September 30, 1980.

  • Be enrolled in a full course load in a designated post-secondary or an apprenticeship program of at least one semester in length.

You may only be awarded the Alexander Rutherford scholarship once.

Selection

A student must have a minimum combined average based on five designated courses in at least one grade. Grade 10, 11 or 12 as calculated from:

  • Alberta Residents
    Courses/marks on an official Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement

  • Completed High School Outside Alberta
    Courses/marks that appear on an official high school transcript attained in another province

Students will automatically be considered for the following awards when they apply for the Alexander Rutherford Scholarship. There is no separate application required for these awards.

Deadlines 

Apply online when your official high school marks are available and when you are enrolled in full-time post-secondary studies. 

Disbursement

Once your enrollment or attendance has been confirmed by your post-secondary institution, Alberta Student Aid will mail a cheque to you within one month.


FAQ - Rutherford Scholarship

Application Process

1.  Can I apply using a temporary Social Insurance Number (999 xxx xxx)?

No. You must have a valid Canadian Social Insurance Number (SIN) before applying for the Rutherford Scholarship.

For Government of Canada information on applying for a SIN, visit:

2.  I am an Alberta resident and I will attend a post-secondary school outside of Alberta or Canada. Can I still apply?

Yes, you can attend a post-secondary school anywhere in the world as long as it is an eligible post-secondary school as defined under the:

Course Eligibility

3.  Should I apply even if I am unsure I meet the required average? 

Yes, you can still apply.

Alberta Student Aid does an automatic assessment of your academic average for all three grades. You may qualify for Grade 10, Grade 11 and/or Grade 12.

4. Can I upgrade or re-take a course through an Alberta high school to have my Rutherford Scholarship re-assessed?

Yes, retakes or rewrites are permitted as long as they are completed before taking a higher level course and before entering post-secondary studies.

Any revised mark or course should first be submitted to Alberta Education in order to be recorded on your official Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement.

In the event of a mark change, log in to your account and upload a letter indicating the appeal with your grade, mark change and course to Alberta Student Aid - Attention: Alberta Scholarships:

5.  Can college preparation or upgrading courses be used in the assessment for the Rutherford Scholarship?

Only upgrading courses that are recorded on an official Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement are accepted. General Education Development (GED) exam marks are not eligible.

6.  Can I take a lower level course after completing the same course at a higher level?

Courses must be completed in order of sequence: Grade 10, 11, 12. Grade 10 Math must be completed before taking a Grade 11 Math and a Grade 11 Math must be completed before taking a Grade 12 Math.

7.  Are International Baccalaureate (IB) courses eligible for the Rutherford Scholarship?

Yes, IB courses can be used as either core or option courses for Grades 10 and 11 and 12.

8.  Can Green Certificate Courses be used towards the Rutherford Scholarship?

Yes, Green Certificate courses are accepted as options for Grade 12.

These courses are not sequential and may be taken in any order. Each Green Certificate course is coded as a 33 Grade 12 level and all credits earned in Green Certificate courses count toward Grade 12 graduation requirements.

The Green Certificate Program allows students in Grades 10, 11 and 12 to participate in an agriculture-related apprenticeship, earn credits and complete the Technician Level of a Green Certificate in any one of nine specializations. It consists of 21 courses in seven primary agricultural specializations.

9.  Is Alberta's Home Education program eligible?

Yes, home education may be eligible as long as your program follows the Alberta Programs of Study curriculum. Students in home education must obtain the following:

  • Course evaluations and recommendations for credits from a high school principal, and
  • An official Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement.

If you have questions about the Alberta Programs of Study curriculum, go to:

10.  Are Open Studies or Unclassified Programs eligible?

Yes, providing you are enrolled in full-time post-secondary studies (60% of what your school considers a full course load), or an apprenticeship program of at least one semester in length.

Making Changes to My Application

11.  I need to make changes to my original application, what do I do?

You should notify Alberta Student Aid of any changes such as:

  • Change of address
  • Delaying post-secondary study, or
  • Change in choice of educational institution

You can submit documents using the Upload Electronic Document option in your personal account.

Log in to your Account:

OR contact the Alberta Student Aid Service Centre

Receiving Your Scholarship

12.  How many Alexander Rutherford Scholarships can I receive?

You may only receive this scholarship once.

13.  When do I find out if I will be receiving a Rutherford Scholarship?

Once your official high school transcript marks are available (around Mid-August) and your application has been processed, you will be notified in writing of the results of your assessment.

Note: Alberta Student Aid must confirm your full-time enrolment at a post-secondary school before your award can be paid.

14.  How will my post-secondary enrolment be confirmed? 

There are two ways in which enrolment is confirmed:

Apply for the Rutherford Scholarship 
AND have an existing Alberta student loan. 

 Apply for the Rutherford Scholarship 
 AND do not have an Alberta student loan.

Your school can automatically confirm your enrolment for the Alexander Rutherford Scholarship.

Note: Your school/program and dates of study cannot change during the current funding period.

Alberta Student Aid will send a request directly to your school and ask them to confirm your enrolment when your application is processed:

  • before you start post-secondary studies - your school will be asked to confirm enrolment by the end of your first month of studies.

  • after you start post-secondary studies – your school will be asked to confirm enrolment one month after the date your application is processed.

Your school will be given 30 days to confirm your enrolment. When Alberta Student Aid does not receive confirmation within 30 days, a confirmation of enrolment form will be sent to you to take directly to your school. The completed form must be submitted to Alberta Student Aid within 30 days.

Confirmation of your enrolment must be received before your cheque can be issued. Student Aid will mail a cheque to you approximately 1 month after confirmation is received.

15.  What happens to my scholarship if I withdraw from post-secondary study, or become a part-time student?

If your enrolment has not been confirmed prior to withdrawing or switching to part-time studies, your application will be cancelled.

Lost Cheques

16. My cheque is lost or I have misplaced it. How do I get a replacement?

Call the Alberta Student Aid Service Centre to request a stop payment and ask to have a replacement cheque sent to you. 

If you find or receive your original cheque after requesting a replacement, you must return it to Alberta Student Aid. For telephone and address info, visit:


Course Requirements

Use the charts below to understand course requirements and take note of the changes to the award amounts you may be eligible for depending on the year you completed high school.

COVID-19 Pandemic Support - Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, schools may have assigned a credit for some elective courses, meaning students will be missing numerical grades on their official transcript. Typically, students without numeric grades are not eligible for the Alexander Rutherford scholarship. However, Alberta Student Aid assigned a 90% grade to Unassigned Credit (UCT) courses completed in the 2019-2020 school year to help students meet the scholarships eligibility criteria.

High School - Graduated after April 1, 2008

Grade 10 Grade 11 Grade 12
  • Average of 75.0% to 79.9%
    in five courses - $300*

  • Average of 80% or higher
    in five courses - $400
  • Average of 75.0% to 79.9%
    in five courses - $500*

  • Average of 80% or higher
    in five courses - $800
  • Average of 75.0% to 79.9%
    in five courses - $700*

  • Average of 80% or higher
    in five courses - $1,300

Average is calculated from 5 designated courses
*Option/Career and Technology Studies (CTS) may also be considered (See below).

One of:
  • English 10-1, 10-2
  • Français 10-1 or 10-2
One of:
  • English 20-1, 20-2
  • Français 20-1 or 20-2
One of:
  • English 30-1, 30-2
  • Français 30-1 or 30-2
At least two of:
  • Mathematics 10C
  • Science 10
  • Social Studies 10-1 or 10-2
  • A language other than one used above at the Grade 10 level.
At least two of:
  • Mathematics 20-1, or 20-2
  • Chemistry 20
  • Physics 20
  • Science 20
  • Biology 20
  • Social Studies 20-1 or 20-2
  • A language other than one used above at the Grade 11 level.
At least two of:
  • Mathematics 30-1, 30-2 or 31
  • Science 30
  • Social Studies 30-1 or 30-2
  • Biology 30
  • Chemistry 30
  • Physics 30
  • A language other than one used above at the Grade 12 level.
Any two courses with minimum three credit value at Grade 10 level (1000 or 4000 series) including those listed above and combined option and introductory CTS courses. Any two courses with minimum three credit value at Grade 11 level (2000 or 5000 series) including those listed above and combined option and intermediate CTS courses. Any two courses with minimum five credit value at Grade 12 level (3000, 6000 or 9000 series) including those listed above and combined option and advanced CTS courses.

High School - Graduated before April 1, 2008

  Before 1999 1999 to 2006
Change to Award Value
April 1, 2006
Change to Grade 12 Course Criteria

Average

80.0%+

80.0%+

80.0%+

Grade 10 $300 $400 $400
Grade 11

$500

$800 $800
Grade 12 $700 $1,300

$1,300

*Two Grade 12 options
of five credits each

Notes:

  • French and Français are not the same course and not interchangeable.
  • A course cannot be repeated after a higher level course has been taken in the same series.
  • Average marks are not rounded up when calculating eligibility for scholarships.
  • The value of the scholarship is calculated on the overall average in five designated courses as listed under each grade level.
  • Courses listed in the "Coursework in Alberta Accredited Schools" section and the "Private Music Study" section of an official Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement are acceptable (excludes Driver’s Education)
    • Only marks obtained before the start of post-secondary study can be used.
    • Courses with a 'Pass' on a high school transcript are equivalent to a 50% mark.
    • CALM course can be taken in any grade, but the final mark will be calculated in Grade 11.

Career and Technology Studies (CTS) Courses


Grade 10 & Grade 11 | Groups of up to two:

  • Three one-credit CTS modules can be combined and used as an elective course at the Grade 10 and Grade 11 level, or 
  • One-credit CTS modules and one and two-credit option courses can be combined to total three credits.

Grade 12 as of April 2006 | Groups of up to two:

  • Five one-credit CTS modules can be combined and used as an elective course, or
  • One-credit CTS modules and one to four-credit option courses can be combined to total five credits.

To be combined:

  • All courses must be from the same level e.g. Introductory, Intermediate or Advanced, and
  • Courses can be from different subject areas, e.g. computer courses with welding courses, and
  • Marks will be calculated and the total average combined will be used for Grades 10, 11 and 12.

How to Apply

Submitting Your Application for the Alexander Rutherford Scholarship

Apply Online

To apply online, you must create a personal account and verify your identity with Alberta Student Aid. For instructions, see:

Always have access to your account information!

Student Aid recommends you use your personal email address, rather than your school email address, to create/verify your Alberta Student Aid account.

Providing Parent / Guardian Access to Your Application & Information

Your parent(s)/guardian may want to assist with aspects of your student aid/scholastic awards. You can complete a Consent to Disclose form or assign a Power of Attorney available in Applications and Forms.

Rutherford - How to Apply


Step 1:
 Student Aid recommends you apply when:

  • Your official high school transcripts are available.
  • You have completed any high school upgrading credit courses you are taking - because you can only apply once - and you will want to submit your highest marks.
    Note: Your high school upgrading credit courses must appear on an official Alberta High School Transcript of Achievement.
  • You are planning on attending full-time post-secondary studies between August 1, 2021 and July 31, 2022

AND

  • You have completed high school on or after September 30, 1980.

Tip!  High school transcript mark requirements vary. 


S
tep 2: Login to your Alberta Student Aid account and choose the Alexander Rutherford High School Achievement Scholarship in the Apply section.

Information you need to complete your application:

Personal Information

  • Social Insurance Number (SIN)
    Your SIN will be validated with the Government of Canada before your application is reviewed

  • Alberta Student Number (ASN)
    • Your ASN can be found on your Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement
    • If you do not have an ASN, you can request one:

School Information

  • Post-secondary school you are going to attend
  • Start date
  • High School you attended

Receiving Your Rutherford Scholarship

You will be notified in writing of the results of your assessment once Student Aid confirms your grades/marks on your final official high school transcript. If you are eligible, Student Aid will send a request to your post-secondary school, asking them to confirm your enrolment:

  • Apply before start of post-secondary studies
    A Confirmation of Enrolment request is sent to your school by the end of your first month of study.

  • Apply during/after post-secondary studies
    A Confirmation of Enrolment request is sent to your school one month after your application is approved.

Once your school receives the request for Confirmation of Enrolment, they have 30 days to respond. If Student Aid does not receive confirmation within 30 days, a confirmation of enrolment form will be sent to you to take directly to your school. The completed form must be submitted to Student Aid within 30 days.

Student Aid will mail a cheque to you approximately 1 month after your school confirms your enrolment. 


High School Transcript Marks

In Alberta

  • Only marks recorded on an official Alberta Transcript of High School Achievement are accepted. 
  • You are not required to submit a transcript. Student Aid will receive your official marks from Alberta Education.

Border Communities

Students attending the following high schools do not have access to Alberta Diploma marks. These students should refer to out-of-province below.

  • Holy Rosary High School
  • Lloydminster Comprehensive High School

Upgrading Courses

  • Upgrading high school credit courses appearing on an official Alberta High School Transcript of Achievement are accepted. General Education Development (GED) exam marks are not eligible.

  • Consider completing your upgrading high school credit courses before applying - because you can only apply once - and you will want to submit your highest marks.

Out-of-Province

Eligible students who complete high school outside of Alberta must submit a copy of an official transcript of their high school marks for that province.

For more information on how to request high school transcripts from another province, visit:

You can log in to your account and upload your official transcript.

Alberta Student Aid will review the courses/marks to determine whether Alberta Education curriculum equivalencies and the Rutherford scholarship requirements are met.

Submit a Mark Change

In the event of a mark change, log in to your account and upload a letter indicating the appeal with your grade, mark change.