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MBA in Canada – Best Colleges 2020, Fees, and Eligibility

With the current uncertainty surrounding the H1-B visa program in the U.S., an MBA in Canada has quickly become a promising destination for international students. In 2018, International students in Canada were 5772,415, with an increase of almost 16% over 2017. The overall increase of 73% in the last five years. This article will explore the best MBA colleges in Canada with its fees, eligibility, and average post-MBA average salary.


Colleges in Canada have relatively affordable education, multicultural exposure, world-class resources, and, more importantly, the convenience to get a legal working status. Also, around 96% of international students recommended Canada as a study destination.


MBA in canada best mba colleges


Here is a brief outline of the topics we will cover:


MBA in Canada: Best MBA colleges in Canada

The average salary for the top 10 best MBA colleges in Canada is CAD 94,021. Here is the list of best colleges to pursue an MBA in Canada:

  1. University of Toronto’s – Rotman School of Management
  2. McGill University’s – Desautels Faculty of Management
  3. York University’s – Schulich Schools of Business
  4. Western University’s – Ivey Business School
  5. HEC Montréal
  6. Queen’s Smith School of Business
  7. Alberta School of Business
  8. UBC Sauder School of Business
  9. Concordia University – John Molson School of business
  10. Sobey School of Business


The following table represents the Class Profile and Employment data of the best MBA colleges in Canada:

MBA in Canada: Fee, Class size and GMAT Score range

Here is the table that represents the tuition fee, class size, and GMAT score range of top colleges, if you want to pursue an MBA in Canada:

Learn more about the top business schools in US, Australia, and India.


Do you want to pursue your MBA in Canada? A high GMAT Score can increase your chances to get admitted into top business schools. Start your GMAT Preparation with our free Trial. Get access to free GMAT preparation resources and quality online content.


Next, let us look in detail at the Top five MBA colleges in Canada.


MBA in Canada: Best MBA colleges in Canada #1 University of Toronto’s – Rotman School of Management

The Rotman full-time 2-year MBA Program is one of the largest and most diverse programs offered in Canada. Its campus located in downtown Toronto which is a large commercial and financial hub.

It ranks #3 for Bloomberg Best business schools for an MBA in Canada. The class size of the incoming class of 2021 is 295, with an average GMAT score of 669. The average salary of an MBA graduate (2018-2019) is CAD 92,133. 



MBA Curriculum, Electives, and Majors

The Rotman MBA curriculum is divided into core courses (that are spread out over the first year) and elective courses. Students can choose from up to 90 elective courses and 15 majors in the second year to tailor their MBA program.

Some of the areas of Interests available are:

    • Consulting
    • Global Management
    • Health Sector Management
    • Brand Management
    • Business Design
    • Investment Banking
    • Risk Management and Financial Engineering

Rotman has pioneered the teaching of integrative thinking and business design, which teaches students to go beyond the functional areas of business and consider the big picture. Integrative thinking, according to Rotman, shows how to use models to define and structure business challenges, thus improving your ability to solve complex problems.

Flexible Internship Program

Rotman’s flexible internship program offers students the opportunity to pursue an internship during any of the three different 4-month internship periods after the first year. The three different internship periods are:

    • May-August
    • September – December
    • January – April

Creative Destruction Lab

Those interested in evaluating and building early-stage tech businesses can participate in the Creative Destruction Lab (CDL). Founded by Professor Ajay Agrawal at Rotman in 2012, CDL has expanded to Vancouver (Sauder School of Business), Calgary (Haskayne School of Business), Montréal (HEC Montréal), Halifax (Rowe School of Business) and New York City (Stern School of Business).

Rotman Students work alongside CDL partners to help develop financial models, evaluate potential markets, and fine-tune strategies for scaling. There is a competitive selection process for the CDL course.

Ventures accepted into the CDL program have backgrounds in artificial intelligence, quantum computing, cleantech, and health. CDL incubated companies have created over $3 Billion in equity value. Following are some CDL alumni organizations:

    • Thalmic Labs (Waterloo)
    • Atomwise (San Francisco)
    • Deep Genomics (Toronto)
    • Automat (Montréal)
    • Kyndi (Palo Alto)


MBA in Canada: Best MBA colleges in Canada #2 McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management

Located in downtown Montréal McGill Desautels Faculty of Management’s MBA program is ranked #1 in Canada by Wall Street Journal, and #7 in Bloomberg BusinessWeek ranking 2019 – 2020.

The McGill MBA program offers students the ultimate flexibility in program length with 12, 16, 20, and 28-month options.

The Desautels MBA program boasts of an 85% employment rate within 3-months of graduation and average median starting salaries of CAD 87,661. The average signing bonus is CAD 10,857. 


MBA in Canada McGill Desautels Faculty of Management best colleges


Redesigned MBA Curriculum with a Student Centric Approach

The McGill MBA program has been redesigned to provide students a global perspective to help shape tomorrow’s world leaders. Experiential learning, case studies, real business projects, and international study trips are an essential part of the McGill MBA experience.

The McGill MBA curriculum can be divided into four distinct phases:

    1. Laying Foundations
    2. Integrating Disciplines
    3. Specializing
    4. Experiential Learning

The 1st phase consists of a Base Camp program that ensures all candidates have the required quantitative skills in Business Math and Financial Accounting. The 2nd phase consists of core courses structured around different disciplines. Integration modules (in the 2nd phase) help in combining all the learnings from the core courses and enhance the learning experience.

The 3rd phase is where you can start tailoring the MBA program to your own professional and personal learning objectives. Students can choose courses from 5-key subject areas and can choose to graduate with up to 2 specializations from the following key subject areas:

    1. Global Strategy & Leadership
    2. Entrepreneurship
    3. Business Analytics
    4. Marketing
    5. Finance

The 4th and final phase is where students can choose from different experiential learning opportunities such as:

    • 10-day international study trip
    • Internships
    • International Exchange
    • Practicum

Personalized Career and Employment Resources

The McGill MBA program hosts more than 100 firms on their campus every year for both students and firms to explore various career opportunities. Additionally, the Desautels MBA program has full-time career coaches, specific stream advisors, and dedicated professional development programming to help students become successful in the job market post-MBA.

Some of the resources provided include:

    • Self-awareness and strengths-based psychometric assessments
    • Industry and Functional overviews
    • Skills-based workshops for resume and interview preparation as well as structured thinking and communication.


MBA in Canada: Best MBA colleges in Canada #3 York University’s Schulich School of Business

The Schulich MBA program flexibility allows students to switch between full-time or part-time status. Students can choose to study at any of the two campus options located in downtown and uptown Toronto.

89% of Schulich MBA students were hired within 3-months of graduation. 140 companies hired students from the Schulich MBA program. CAD 91,500 was the average starting salary and the signing bonus offered to students was CAD 16,250.



Schulich School of Business: MBA Curriculum

The MBA curriculum includes 33 credits of course courses. The core equips students with a common background and capabilities for effective management of public, private, and non-profit sectors. In addition to core courses, students are required to complete 27 credits of electives, which allows for a deeper exploration of an area of focus.

Strategy Field Study and Specializations

Students also participate in the strategy field study as the capstone of the program. The strategy field study is a 2-term consulting project where the student team conducts a strategic assessment of an organization and its environment. The student teams then present their recommendations to senior management.

Students can choose from over 15+ areas of specialization. Following are some of the more popular specialties offered:

    • Finance
    • Business Consulting
    • International Business
    • Strategic Management
    • Health industry Management
    • Marketing


MBA in Canada: Best MBA Colleges in Canada #4 Western University’s Ivey School of Business

The Ivey MBA is a one-year, full-time program that starts in March. The Ivey MBA program, like HBS, is delivered using the case study method. Students go through over 300 cases in a year, which helps mirror the challenges and complexities of real-world business in the classroom.

MBA-in-Canada-Ivey-Business-School -Top-colleges

Learning by Doing and the Case Method

The Ivey MBA program focuses on learning by doing. The case method, which forms the mainstay of the Ivey MBA program, encourages students to think of business challenges outside of the traditional function-based approach. This enables students to take a big-picture view and become comfortable with making decisions when faced with uncertainty.

Team-Based Learning Approach

Students work in teams to refine their individual assessments of a case, ideas, and plan of action and then participate in a class discussion where they debate and learn from diverse perspectives of other individuals and teams. The Ivey MBA classroom is the ultimate training ground to practice your business leadership skills and apply your theoretical business knowledge.

Strong Employment Statistics and Career Management Team

The average salary for an MBA graduate (2019) is CAD 92,000, with a signing bonus of CAD 15,000. The career management team at Ivey is ranked #1 by its recruiting partners, and career coaching is built into the curriculum of the MBA program.

The career management team helps students in building a solid resume, preparing for interviews, and networking effectively. This helps students find hidden career opportunities and plan their career strategy.


MBA in Canada: Best MBA Colleges in Canada #5 HEC Montréal

HEC Montréal offers a 1-year full-time MBA program with a fully integrated learning approach. According to HEC Montreal, “The MBA program’s teaching approach is founded on the exchange of expertise, actively enhancing your skills, building your experience, and expanding your network.”



Business Consulting Project

The program includes a hands-on business consulting project that helps students gain practical experience. The MBA program’s small class-size is said to enhance faculty and student interaction. The average age of the MBA program class is 31 years, with an average work experience of 7 years, which is higher than the other MBA programs in this article.

The HEC Montréal program boasts of a 91% placement rate and average starting salaries of CAD 96,444 (2017). Graduates of the HEC Montréal report an average wage increase of 28%. The MBA program consists of 3 phases:

    • Acquire Business Fundamentals
    • Develop Individual Competencies
    • Apply Knowledge and Skills

Some Employers of HEC Montréal MBA graduates include:

    • Accenture
    • Deloitte
    • Google
    • Pratt & Whitney
    • Proctor & Gamble
    • Ubisoft
    • Telus


Why an MBA in Canada? Top 5 Reasons to Pursue an MBA

Following are the top 5 reasons to pursue an MBA in Canada:

    1. Canadian Post Graduation Work Permit Program
    2. Affordable Tuition Cost (as compared to U.S. MBA Programs)
    3. Several Internationally Ranked MBA Programs
    4. High Average Salaries Post-MBA
    5. Multicultural and Diverse Society

MBA in Canada: Canadian Post Graduation Work Permit Program

Once you graduate from an eligible program from a designated learning institution (DLI) in Canada, you become eligible for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP). The validity of the work permit depends on the length of your study program.

If your program is less than two years, your PGWP validity will be the same as the length of your study program. If your MBA program two years or more than you may receive a PGWP that’s valid for 3 years.

Besides the PGWP, Canada has one of the most straight forward and transparent points-based permanent residency programs (PR), which allows Canadian MBA graduates to settle in Canada after graduation permanently.

Learn more about Post-MBA Work visa and Immigration.

  • Affordable Tuition Costs & High Quality of Life

While an MBA is an expensive proposition as compared to other master’s degree programs considering the tuition costs, an MBA in Canada continues to offer a solid RoI over the course of a professional career.

Even more so, the tuition cost of top MBA colleges in Canada is significantly lower than its U.S. counterparts.  The tuition fee of a top-ranked Canadian MBA program is around CAD 56,167 (excluding the other cost like living, books, etc.)


Here are few Tips to make your MBA pocket friendly in 2020. 

  • Internationally Ranked MBA Programs

While it may not have as many top-ranked business schools, Canada boasts of several MBA programs that rank highly in international MBA program rankings. Several of the programs featured in this article rank in the top 100 Global MBA program rankings and place well into industries such as Finance, Consulting, and Technology, etc.

However, your post-MBA career goals and program fit are much more important factors in evaluating an MBA program than just going by MBA rankings.

Check out the top 50 business schools for an MBA Global Ranking. 


  • High Average Post-MBA Salaries

An MBA in Canada provides solid RoI with average starting salaries of CAD 94,021+ post-MBA. This, combined with an employment rate of 85% and greater for the top MBA programs, bodes well for aspirants who want to stay and work in Canada post their MBA.

Learn more about factors affecting your Post MBA Salary in 2020. 

  • Multicultural and Diverse Society

Canada officially adopted a policy of multiculturalism in the early 1970s. And immigration is considered as both economically and socially crucial to the nation. Thus, Canada provides a safe and welcoming environment for immigrants and actively works on policies that actively engage immigrants in Canadian society.


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Following are a few more articles you may like:

MBA in Canada: FAQs

How long is MBA in Canada?

The duration of an MBA program ranges between 1 to 2 years.

What is the difference between a 1-year and a 2-year MBA?

One-year MBAs are usually more intensive and rarely include the option of an internship. Also, a 1-year MBA requires more focus and clarity of career goals and may not be suitable for individuals looking to make a career or industry change.
Here is an article on how to choose between the two.

Is an MBA worth it?

Yes. Getting a master’s in business administration can open the door to the top hierarchy and new opportunities. However, an MBA is only worth the effort, time, and money you invest.
Here is an article where we try to answer this question by doing a cost-benefit analysis based on a few factors.

What are the different types of MBA specializations?

There are five different types of MBA specialization:
1. Finance
2. Marketing
3. Human Resource
5. Operations

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