After High School

The main options for someone after graduating high school are:

  • Work
  • Travel
  • Study

Each of these choices include a vast range of possibilities and getting help with navigating through them is a good idea.

If you are unsure what education to pursue after grade 12, you should talk to your counsellor.


Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) is the provincial gateway to help Albertans plan and achieve educational and career success!

ALIS provides information for:

  • Career planning 
  • Post-secondary education and training 
  • Educational funding 
  • Job searches 
  • Labour market trends 
  • Workplace issues

The website is organized by target audience and includes useful information, strategies and suggestions to help visitors plan for careers, learning and work.

Finding Work

Choosing Your School /Program

  • Attend university fairs:  
    • OOP - Out of Province Institutions Oct 24 at Big4
    • ELAA - Alberta Post Secondary Institutions - ELAA Nov 8 at HWW
  • Attend lunch time presentations at school.
  • Look for Open Houses and community events.
  • Student for a day opportunities.
  • Attend scholarship presentations in the school
  • Explore your options online

Things to Consider When Choosing a Post-Secondary School

  • Home or away
  • Cost
  • Duration
  • Transferability 
  • Outcomes (employability, etc.)
  • Class size
  • Facilities
  • Extra-curricular
  • Student Satisfaction data
  • Guaranteed residence

What Not to Consider

Prestige of the institution

  • There are a number of reasons why American schools, even the famous ones, are not generally a good idea for the next stage in your education.
    • Cost is much higher, but education quality is about the same (speaking generally). 
    • The name on the degree is not as important as the the numbers on your transcript. 
    • There is value to being a big fish in a small pond. 
  • Although Canadian schools all cost significantly less, the other factors remain true for the famous Canadian schools as well. 
  • This doesn’t mean that you should definitely not attend a prestigious school, but it does mean that you need to consider the option very, very carefully before you decide.

Preparing to Apply

Once you have selected programs and schools that offer the education you are looking for, you will need to do 3 things:

  • Check the admission requirements carefully
    • In general, I suggest students consider applying to 3-5 institutions, but how many you apply to is affected by this point.
    • There is no point in applying to programs and schools that will definitely not admit you. By looking at prerequisite subject requirements and admissions averages, you can ensure that you have a reasonable probability of success. 
  • Check the deadline! Different schools have different ones.
  • Get your supporting material ready.

Get your supporting material ready

  • Official high school transcripts are ONLY issued by the province of Alberta.
  • myPass must be used to order official transcripts.
  • Unofficial transcripts are available through Student Services.

Setting Up a myPass Account

With your Alberta Student Number (ASN) you are now ready to create a myPass account. You can find your ASN on CBE report cards from previous years, and in PowerSchool.

Applying to a Post Secondary Institution

Once you have chosen the schools you wish to apply to, you need to do 2 things:

  • Figure out how to apply
    • Alberta schools – nearly all post secondary schools (and certainly all of the universities) use Apply Alberta 
    • Ontario and British Columbia schools – both of these provinces have similar online postsecondary application services for universities and other institutions.
    • Other schools in Canada and international. Apply directly 
  • Find the money to pay for it.

Applying Outside of Canada

If applying to post-secondary institutions outside of Canada, please contact the institution directly to be connected to an advisor. Your Guidance Counsellor will be more than happy to assist with The Common Application.

Applying For Residence

Apply for residence early. Many universities guarantee residence for first year students. Many universities offer different levels of meals plans while living in residence.

Financing Your Education

Sources of money:

  • Personal resources (includes family)
    Not much to say about this, but I do want to point out that the ability to make money after two years of post-secondary can be highly beneficial. Similarly, if you can alternate periods of earnings and periods of study you can significantly reduce your need for loans.
  • Loans – Student loans
  • Scholarships, grants, bursaries 
  • Entrance awards – Check for them at the schools you’re considering 
  • Scholarships – ditto 
  • Make sure you’ve thoroughly completed your profile in Yconic and Scholarships Canada
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