Compared to the other systems of education in the world, Canada has a unique grading system. Institutions can use a system similar to GPA scoring or just a simple letter grading system. This tends to differ between various regions of the country as well as the institutions of higher education. It is worth noting that the GPA system used in universities in Canada tends to be different compared to that of universities in the USA. For example, some universities have a GPA out of 4.0 while others may have one out of 9.0.

If you are considering applying to any universities or colleges in Canada, it would be helpful to have an idea of what the grading system entails. The information related to grading in individual regions of Canada will be detailed in this article.

Canadian Grading System by Regions

The Grading System in British Columbia

The following system is implemented across high schools, post-secondary colleges, and universities in the region of British Columbia. It should be noted that, while this serves as the general system, each university tends to have its modifications.

Canadian universities that follow this grading system in British Columbia include the University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University, University of Victoria, and University of Northern British Columbia.

Grade Percentage (%)
A 86-100
B 73-85
C+ 67-72
C 60-66
C- 50-59
F 0-49
I (Incomplete assignments) 0-49
W Student has withdrawn from the course
P Student has passed but no grade available


The Grading System in Manitoba

Institutions in the region of Manitoba tend to use a system that relies on a system similar to student GPA scoring. The use of percentage are less common compared to other regions.

GPA Description Equivalent Letter Grade
4.5 Exceptional A+
4 Excellent A
3.5 Very Good B+
3 Good B
2.5 Satisfactory C+
2 Adequate C
1 Marginal D
0 Failure F


Universities in this region include the University of Manitoba, the University of Winnipeg, and Université de Saint-Boniface.

The Grading System in Alberta

In the state of Alberta, academic grading predominantly involves using letter grades (A through D). Typically, the institutions or individual lecturers will determine the best way to convert the letter grades into percentages or grade points. These will vary between different faculties of the same university. As an example, an A+ grade could translate to a GPA of 4.0 in one university, while it could translate to 4.3 in other parts of the region. Some universities in Alberta may use a 9-point grading scale as well.

Examples of universities in the Alberta region include the University of Calgary and the University of Alberta.

Letter Grade Grade Points Approximate Percentage
A+ 4.3 90-100%
A 4.0 85-89%
A- 3.7 80-84%
B+ 3.3 75-79%
B 3.0 70-74%
B- 2.7 65-69%
C+ 2.3 60-64%
C 2.0 55-59%
C- 1.7 50-54%
D 1.3 0-49%


In addition, the universities can follow letter grades such as:

  • IEA – Insufficient evidence available to designate a specific grade for the student.
  • AMP – Academic malpractice. The student was either placed in the wrong class through an academic error.

The Grading System in Quebec and New Brunswick

The grading scales of Quebec tend to have the most similarities with the systems in other territories in Canada. There are several variations, of course! But the general system is detailed below. Universities that follow the Quebec style include McGill University, the University of New Brunswick, and Concordia University in Montréal.

Letter Grade Grade Points Qualification
A+ 4.33 Excellent
A 4.00 Excellent
A- 3.66 Very good
B+ 3.33 Very good
B 3.00 Very good
B- 2.66 Good
C+ 2.33 Good
C 2.00 Good
C- 1.66 Passable
D+ 1.33 Passable
D 1.00 Passable
E 0.00 Fail


It is also essential to note that the passing mark in most institutions in Quebec tends to have a passing mark over 60% compared to 50% in other regions. This comes down to the lecturers’ discretion.

The Grading System in Ontario

Seeing as Ontario is the center of the government and houses Canada’s administrative hubs, this is where all forms of grading systems in Canada were decreed official. Universities in the Ontario region include the University of Ottawa, University of Toronto, Queen’s University, and the University of Guelph.

Letter Grade Numerical Grade Percentage
A+ 10 95-100
A 9 87-94
A- 8 80-86
B+ 7 77-79
B 6 73-76
B- 6 70-72
C+ 5 67-69
C 4 63-66
C- 4 60-62
D+ 3 57-59
D 2 53-56
E 1 50-52
F 0 0-49


The Grading System in Saskatchewan

Of all the territories in Canada, institutions of higher education in Saskatchewan offer the simplest of grading systems in Canada. The general method across all faculties and institutions is the use of percentages to allocate grades for students. Universities in the region include the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina.

Percentage Letter Grade Description
90-100 A+ Exceptional
80-89 A Excellent
70-79 B Good
60-69 C Satisfactory
50-59 D Barely acceptable
0-49 F Unacceptable


So there you have it! As described above, the grading systems tend to be decided by each particular region or territory of Canada, so there are differences between each. Universities do incline to change their systems so it would be helpful to stay updated by checking the official websites as well.


We hope that this article on the grading system in Canada was helpful. Feel free to check out the Programs in Canada for more information on programs that are available in Canada.

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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