Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)
The Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) is a financial aid program assisting students with the costs of post-secondary studies. OSAP consists of funding from both levels of government (the federal and Ontario governments).
- Eligibility for both repayable loans and non-repayable grant funding is determined based on financial need, as defined by the governments via an OSAP application, and is based on a number of factors, including family income
- Repayable loan and non-repayable grant funding is available for both full-time and part-time post-secondary students
- By completing the OSAP application (full-time or part-time) you will be automatically considered for all possible grant and loan assistance available, such as the Ontario student grant
- To review the eligibility requirements for funding, please visit the A-Z List of Programs section of the OSAP website and select the program you are interested in researching
The part-time program assists with education-related costs such as tuition, ancillary fees, and required text-books in addition to transportation costs and childcare costs (if applicable). Repayment of part-time OSAP loans does not begin until 6 months after you cease to be enrolled in part-time or full-time studies.
The full-time OSAP program is designed to supplement (not replace) the financial resources you, and your family (if applicable), are expected to contribute towards the costs of attending post-secondary studies such as tuition, books, and basic living expenses.
- Repayment of full-time OSAP loans does not begin until 6 months after you cease to be enrolled full-time
- There are also programs to help you repay your loans
Ontario students who are enrolling in Advanced Qualification (AQ/ABQ) courses are eligible to apply for consideration of OSAP for Micro-Credentials. To qualify, Ontario students will need to demonstrate financial need as determined by the Government of Ontario via the OSAP for Micro-Credentials application. Applications are submitted via a student’s OSAP account.
Information regarding AQ/ABQ courses can be found via the Continuing Teacher Education website.
To be considered for OSAP, a student must meet the following requirements:
- Be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or protected person
- Meet Ontario residency requirements
- Be enrolled in an approved post-secondary institution and take an approved program which leads to a degree, diploma, or certificate (interest non-degree programs are not eligible for government student assistance)*
- Full-time undergraduate students must be taking at least 60% of a full course load (9 credit units in each term of study) or 40% (in each term of study) if the student has an identified permanent disability. No averaging of course loads is permitted
- Part-time students must be taking 59% or less of a full course load
- Graduate students must be enrolled full-time (100%). Graduate students with a permanent disability may be enrolled part-time (50%)
*An approved program is one which has (a) obtained the Minister’s approval for General Purpose Operating Grants (GPOG) through the Ministry of Colleges and Universities, and (b) there is a full-time equivalent of the program offered by the university.
For further inquiries, please visit the Learn About OSAP page of the OSAP website.
Programs Offered by Queen’s University Not Approved for OSAP
(full-time or part-time)
- Certificate in French for Professionals
- Certificate in International Studies
- Certificate in Media Studies
- Certificate in Mining Technology
- Certificate in Mohawk Language and Culture
- Certificate in Urban Planning
- Online Certificate in Academic Writing
- Continuing Teacher Education Courses offered through Faculty of Education
- Executive Education programs offered through Smith School of Business
- Executive (National) Master of Business Administration
- Graduate Diploma in Immigration and Citizenship Law
- Graduate Diploma in Legal Services Management
- Graduate Diploma in Pain Care
- Graduate Diploma in Professional Inquiry
- Graduate Diploma in Social Performance Management in the Extractive Industries
- Global Master of Management Analytics
- Master of Digital Product Management
- Master of Earth and Energy Resources Leadership
- Master of Financial Innovation & Technology
- Master of Health Professions Education
- Master of Management in Artificial Intelligence
- Master of Science in Healthcare Quality
- Post-Graduate Certificates offered through the Faculty of Education
- Post-Graduate Medicine
- Professional Master of Education
- Professional Master of Industrial Relations
- Professional Master of Public Administration
- Smith Graduate Diploma in Accounting
- Smith Graduate Diploma in Business
You may apply for full-time OSAP for the periods of study normally specified by the post-secondary institution for completion of your program, plus one study period.
- A student in a 1-year certificate program can receive a maximum of 2 years of full-time OSAP assistance
- A student in a 2-year diploma program can receive a maximum of 3 years of full-time OSAP assistance
- A student in a 4-year degree program can receive a maximum of 5 years of full-time OSAP assistance
A student who has reached the study period maximum for their program is not eligible for further full-time OSAP for that program. This means that some students who take less than 100% course load each year, or have failed and have had to repeat courses, may be unable to complete their program before they become ineligible for further full-time OSAP.
- A study period is defined as one academic year
- Periods of study in which a student did not receive full-time OSAP funding from Canada or Ontario are not included
- Students with permanent disabilities are exempted from this policy
To continue to be eligible for full-time OSAP, you are required to achieve passing grades in a minimum required course load and must progress through their program of study. From an OSAP perspective, dropping a course or earning an “F” has the same consequence (a D- or greater is considered a pass).
- You must achieve passing grades in at least 60% of a full course load in an OSAP-funded term of study (i.e., at Queen’s, you must successfully complete a minimum of 18 credit units over the fall/winter terms)
- Students with a permanent disability must successfully complete (pass) 40% of a full course load (i.e., 12 credit units over the fall/winter terms)
Dropping to a part-time course load or withdrawing from studies are considered by OSAP as a failure to progress academically. There is an impact to further OSAP eligibility if students do not meet the academic progress requirements as defined by OSAP.
- The consequence of the failure is increasingly severe as the number of failures increase
- Academic probation warning – first instance of not successfully completing the academic progress requirements
- Academic restrictions – second, and any subsequent instance(s) of not successfully completing the academic progress requirements
Students will receive notification and further instructions from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities if they have been placed on either an academic probation warning or an academic restriction. There are appeals if students have experienced extenuating circumstances. Please visit the OSAP Appeals section for a link to the OSAP Review Manual. Instructions for appealing an academic restriction are outlined in the manual.
To apply, you must visit the OSAP website and either register for a new account, or sign into an existing one. You will then be able to access the online application.
- During the application process, you will be asked to provide supporting documentation and to complete the online Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement (MSFAA) if it's your first time applying
The Student Awards Office recommends that you submit your online application no later than July 1 (for a September start date) to ensure sufficient time for funding to be available for September.
- A typical application will normally take two weeks to process (depending on the time of year), while an application which requires special consideration may take eight to 10 weeks to process
|OSAP Application Deadline||Applications must be submitted 60 days before the end of your current study period|
|OSAP Supporting Documentation||No later than 40 days before the end of your study period|
|Submission of OSAP Appeal Documentation||40 days prior to the end of your study period|
|Completion of a Continuation of Interest Free Status Application (If not receiving OSAP for current academic year)||As soon as possible upon completion of the registration process prior to your 6-month grace period elapsing (must be submitted while enrolled in full-time studies)|
The MSFAA is a lifetime loan agreement that will cover Ontario students for the extent of their full-time postsecondary studies.
Your online MSFAA is submitted following the instructions outlined in the “Required Documents” section of your OSAP application.
Students are able to update their scholarship/bursary/award income at any time by forwarding an email (via their Queen’s email account) to the Office of the University Registrar (Student Awards) at email@example.com outlining the adjustment the student wishes to make. Please ensure your name and student ID are noted in your email.
Any questions regarding income reported on an OSAP application can be directed to the Office of the University Registrar (Student Awards) at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (613) 533-2216.
Awards from External Agencies
Undergraduate and graduate students must report all merit- and need-based scholarship/bursaries/awards received from external agencies (not from Queen’s University).
- Do not include high school graduation awards received for performance in high school – only those awards for post-secondary studies
- This should be identified under the section entitled “Income Received During Study Period" in the item labeled “Scholarships, bursaries and/or awards you expect to receive from study start date to study end date”
Awards from Queen’s University
Undergraduate students, including students enrolled in JD Law or Medicine degree programs, do NOT report any scholarships, bursaries, or awards received from Queen's University.
- Queen's University will be reporting all undergraduate scholarships/awards/bursaries to OSAP via another reporting mechanism
- If you include your Queen’s University need-based award on your OSAP application, Student Awards staff will not automatically adjust your scholarship/bursary/award income as staff cannot be certain of your external awards
Graduate students must report their graduate scholarships and awards received from Queen's University (e.g., Queen's Graduate Award etc.). Financial need-based assistance (e.g., General Bursary assistance) is not reported on the OSAP application.
- The Office of the University Registrar (Student Awards) will review the award income of graduate students. If a student does not report his/her Queen’s merit-based awards (reports $0 scholarship/bursary/award income) on his/her OSAP application, and the student has received a merit-based award, the student’s OSAP account will be updated by Student Awards staff to reflect accurate amount of study period scholarship income. The student is subsequently reassessed for OSAP assistance
OMA Medical Stipends
Students in third and fourth year Medicine do not report the OMA medical stipend as a study period scholarship/award on their OSAP application. This award is reported to OSAP via another reporting mechanism which does not impact a student's OSAP Application.
Students receiving donships for the academic year may be required to report the taxable portion of their donship as study period employment income on their OSAP application. Employment income is only reported if the student's employment income from all sources exceeds the employment income threshold (i.e., $5,600 per term).
If you have forgotten your OAN please visit the Forgot Your OAN and/or Password section of the OSAP website to retrieve your OAN or password (you will need your Social Insurance Number and the answers to the challenge questions you created when you submitted your first OSAP application).
For security reasons, your OAN or temporary password cannot be provided over the telephone, email, or via fax.
If you are not able to access your OAN (or password) from the Forgot Your OAN and/or Password tool, you can visit the Ontario Financial Aid Office at the post-secondary institution (university or college) closest to your current residence. You must present your (a) Social Insurance Number card (or proof of SIN) and (b) a piece of government-issued photo identification (i.e., driver’s licence or passport).
If you are outside of Ontario or are unable to visit an Ontario post-secondary institution you must complete the Request for an OSAP Access Number (OAN) form (PDF, 285.5 KB) (or Request for a Temporary OSAP Password form (PDF, 285.5 KB)) and send it to the Ministry of Colleges and Universities. The Ministry will send you your OAN (or password) by mail.
Receiving Your Funding
It’s important that you keep your address and contact information up to date on both your account on the OSAP website and your account with the National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC). In addition, you must keep your bank account information up to date with the NSLSC.
Once your OSAP application is submitted you are provided with an estimate of your OSAP funding. OSAP entitlements begin to process mid/late June for the upcoming academic year. You will be notified of your OSAP funding entitlement via an email directing you to check your OSAP account or by paper notification as per your direction on your application.
OSAP Tuition and Fee Deadlines
If you have been assessed to receive OSAP assistance, you will receive an automatic deferral on your fall term tuition and Student Assistance Levy (SAL) to September 30 and your winter term tuition and Student Assistance Levy (SAL) to January 31.
- Undergraduate students receiving OSAP will automatically receive a waiver of service charges up to 40% of their overall OSAP entitlement conditional on students processing their first OSAP instalment
- Changes to an OSAP assessment will also change the amount of the service charge waiver (e.g., reducing course load, opting out of ancillary fees, etc.)
- OSAP information is received regularly from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities and updated on SOLUS to provide the most recent OSAP information
Before any funding can be disbursed to you, the following steps must be completed:
- Submit your online Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement (MSFAA) (following the instructions outlined in the “Required Documents” section of your OSAP application)
- Upload all required OSAP supporting documents into your OSAP application (or submit directly to the Student Awards Office)
- The Student Awards Office must confirm your full-time enrolment (prior to each disbursement)
- Please ensure you are enrolled full-time in each term of study you have applied for full-time OSAP
- Confirm your income (if applicable) as directed by your OSAP application
All, or a portion of your OSAP funding, will be redirected to Queen’s to be applied to your tuition and mandatory fees.
- The amount of your OSAP to be remitted to Queen’s will not exceed the value of your term tuition and mandatory fees unless you have a balance outstanding from a previous academic term. Any remaining OSAP will be deposited to your personal bank account
- The cost of residence is not included in the OSAP amount remitted to Queen’s. You are responsible for paying for residence fees either from your own resources, or from any remaining OSAP that is deposited to your personal bank account
- Please wait until the OSAP payment has been applied to your Queen’s SOLUS student account before making an online payment for any remaining balance of fees outstanding (if applicable). Log onto your OSAP account at Ontario.ca/osap and view your Funding Summary for details of what is being redirected to Queen’s, or you can review your Account Activity on SOLUS
Students may choose to receive only the grant(s) for which they are eligible and decline the Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan. This option is available only for students completing an OSAP Application for Full-Time Students. Contact the Student Awards Office for information on the option to decline your OSAP loans.
You may be eligible to pursue the options in the OSAP Appeals guide, below, to maximize your OSAP funding.
- The Ministry of Colleges and Universities recognizes a limited number of extenuating circumstances and exceptional expenses as grounds for a reassessment of a student's OSAP funding entitlement
- All allowable appeals are outlined in the OSAP Appeals Guide
- If you meet the eligibility criteria and wish to file an appeal(s) please submit the appropriate documentation (as outlined for each appeal in the OSAP Appeals Guide) to the Student Awards Office for consideration (unless otherwise stated). Only allowable appeals can be considered by the Student Awards Office
- All appeals must be received by the Student Awards Office (including all required documentation) 8 weeks prior to the end of your study period
- All completed appeals are reviewed within 2-4 weeks by the OSAP Appeal Committee in the Student Awards Office. The Student Awards Office will notify you of the outcome of your appeal via an email to your Queen's email account
It is a requirement of the Ministry of Colleges and Universities that the full amount of any academic fee refund, for students receiving OSAP assistance, is to be forwarded to the National Student Loans Service Centre (NSLSC) and applied against the student's outstanding OSAP student loan debt, or to the Ministry against any excess amounts of financial assistance owing.