Calculate Your OSAP Eligibility with the OSAP Calculator

May 7, 2024
9 minutes

Getting a postsecondary education is expensive. The government of Ontario recognizes this and wants to help eligible students pay for college or university through the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). If you qualify for aid, you can use the OSAP calculator to estimate how much financial aid you can receive. Knowing how much OSAP funding you qualify for can help you budget for the school year and determine if you’ll need additional financial aid. 

Keep reading to see if you qualify for OSAP and to learn how to use the OSAP online calculator to estimate the amount of financial support you could receive. 

What is OSAP?

The Ontario Students Assistance Program (OSAP) is a financial aid program designed to help postsecondary students pay for college or university. OSAP offers funding through two different channels:  

  • Grants: awarded money that you don’t have to pay back 
  • Student loans: borrow money that you need to pay back when you finish school 

When you apply for OSAP, you’re automatically considered for both grants and loans. If you get approved for an OSAP loan but decide you don’t want to use it, you can decline it after your OSAP application is approved. 

How much assistance can you get with OSAP?

The amount of money you can receive through OSAP depends on the following factors: 

  • Cost of education. The amount you need to cover tuition, books, child care, personal living expenses, and supplies and equipment
  • Course load. Are you enrolled as a full-time or part-time student?
  • Program hours. This only applies to students in micro-credential programs. These are courses that are shorter than a part-time or full-time program.
  • Financial situation. Based on factors including family income, family size, and if you have dependents.

You may qualify for additional funding if you are:

Who is eligible for OSAP?

OSAP is available to Ontario residents of any age who are: 

  • Canadian citizens 
  • Permanent residents 
  • Protected persons 

If you don’t meet the academic requirements or you have enough financial resources to support your educational costs, you won’t qualify for OSAP. You can check out the full list of factors that will make you ineligible for OSAP here

What will OSAP cover?

You can use OSAP funding to help pay for: 

  • Tuition 
  • Books and equipment
  • School fees
  • Living expenses (only for full-time students)
  • Child care (for full-time and part-time students)

What is the OSAP calculator?

The OSAP calculator, also known as the OSAP aid estimator, is used to help you estimate how much you could get to pay for your secondary studies. Knowing how much you might receive in aid can help you create a more accurate budget and inform you if you need additional funding from other sources. 

You can access the OSAP calculator here, and the entire estimation process takes about five to 10 minutes to complete, and you’ll need the following information: 

  • Name of your school and program  
  • Dates the program starts and ends
  • Cost of tuition and books
  • Your parent’s or spouse’s income (the tool will tell you if you need this information)

The calculator walks you through the estimation process, one step at a time. 

How to understand your OSAP calculator results

After answering a series of questions about the school and program you plan to attend, when you graduated high school, marital status, and financial situation, the OSAP calculator will provide you with an estimate of how much you can receive in grants (money you keep) and loans (money you repay) and provides an overall total. 

Remember, these numbers are just estimates. You will receive the actual amount after you complete your application. 

Using the OSAP calculator, you can also estimate how much your monthly loan payments will be when you leave school if you take on the loan. 

The tool also provides a breakdown of school-related costs based on the information you provided. Costs include: 

  • Tuition 
  • Fees
  • Books and supplies
  • Travel and living 

How to apply for OSAP 

To apply for OSAP, you’ll need to: 

1. Sign up for an OSAP account 

Register for an OSAP online account. Make sure to have your Social Insurance Number handy to create your OSAP account. Write down your OSAP access number and password for future reference.

2. Complete the OSAP application 

Fill in the OSAP application online. It typically takes 15 minutes to complete. You will need the following information: 

  • Information about your school and program
  • Tax information
  • Parent or spouse’s SIN (if applicable)
  • Parent or spouse’s tax information 

3. Submit your application 

Now it’s time to submit your application by the deadline. 

  • If you’re a part-time student with study periods of 21 weeks or more or a full-time student, you must apply no later than 60 days before the end of your study period. 
  • If you’re a part-time student with a study period of 20 weeks or less, submit your application no later than 40 days before the end of your study period. 
  • If you’re in a micro-credential program, submit your application by the end of your study period. 

4. Upload your documents

Check to see if you need to upload signed documents or additional support documents to complete your application. 

Tips to maximize financial assistance for postsecondary 

When applying for OSAP or other financial assistance, consider the following tips to maximize your eligibility:

  • Provide accurate information. When filling out any application for financial aid, whether it’s OSAP or other student funding, make sure your information is accurate. This will help ensure your funding estimates are accurate. If you provide inaccurate information and receive more money than you’re eligible for, this can restrict your access to future OSAP funding.1  
  • Explore additional funding options. If the amount of OSAP funding you qualify for isn’t enough to cover your needs, you can call your school to see if they have additional funding programs. Many universities and colleges offer scholarships or bursaries. You can also visit the National Student Loans Service Centre online for additional student aid options, budgeting resources, and information on repayment assistance.  
  • Apply for private scholarships. Every year, millions of dollars in scholarship money goes unclaimed simply because students don’t apply.2 Don’t let an opportunity pass you by. Seek out scholarships from sources outside of your school. Even if you don’t think you’ll get it, consider applying. You might surprise yourself. ‘

Don’t miss out on OSAP

The purpose of OSAP is to help eligible students cover the costs associated with postsecondary education. Using the OSAP calculator, you can estimate the amount of financial aid you’ll receive. With this information, you can begin budgeting for your academic year and determine if you need to find additional Canada student loans or grants to cover your financial needs. If you’re an Ontario resident and you’re planning to go to college or university, don’t miss out on this opportunity. Visit the OSAP website for more information and to see if you qualify.


  1. OSAP, "Overpayments & funding restrictions." Accessed April 26, 2024. 
  2. Scholarships Canada, "Small Scholarships, Big Rewards." Accessed April 26, 2024. 

May 7, 2024
9 minutes