The Ontario Student Assistance Program ( OSAP ) is a financial aid program that can help you pay for college, offering a mix of grants and loans to help students afford their tuition, books and lifestyle needs.
On this page:
- An introduction to OSAP
- 8 Tips for OSAP Success
- Your OSAP Responsibilities
- Part-Time Canada Student Loan/Part-Time OSAP
- Apply for OSAP
- Get help with OSAP
We recommend you review the OSAP website carefully to understand the application and approval process, and how you will receive your funds. It’s important that you meet all requirements throughout the process.
Take advantage of helpful tools on the OSAP website, including calculators to help you plan.
When you apply for OSAP, there are forms, deadlines, rules, and responsibilities. These tips will help you get started and stay on track.
- Mark your calendar. There are many OSAP dates and deadlines.
- Pay the deposit first. You must pay your Mohawk tuition deposit before applying to OSAP.
- Take your time and read carefully. OSAP is a detailed process. Allow yourself time to avoid delays.
- Budget carefully. OSAP is paid in two instalments. Budget carefully to manage your commitments.
- Apply each year. OSAP is applied for each year. Understand all the rules to avoid surprises.
- Everyone should apply! When you apply for OSAP you will automatically be considered for loans (money you need to repay once you’re done school) and grants (money you don’t have to pay back). If you don’t want to take a loan, you can decline it after your application is approved.
Once you submit your OSAP application, you can no longer edit it. If, however, circumstances in your life change before or during your study period like your income, marital status, family size, access to transportation, etc., you must notify the Financial Assistance department in order to update your OSAP application.
- It’s not too late... You can apply for OSAP even after the start of classes and up to 60 days before the end of your study period.
OSAP Reviews and Appeals
A student may request that their OSAP assessment or bursary eligibility be reviewed if they have a special situation that is not recognized in the standard OSAP or bursary assessment of financial need.
The following appeal outlines and forms will assist you in determining if your situation falls within an allowable review. If you have determined that your situation falls within one or more of the allowable reviews below, print off the cover page, attach all letters and supporting documentation and submit your package to the Financial Assistance Office for review.
All letters must be legible, signed, and dated and your student number must be clearly noted. Letters from third parties must include contact information for the person who is corroborating the situation and making a recommendation.
The deadline date for submission of a review to the Financial Assistance Office (FAO) or Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities, including requests for reconsideration, is 40 days before the end of your study period All required supporting documentation must be submitted by the deadline.
A full list of OSAP forms and appeals can be found on the OSAP forms page and by logging into MyMohawk - Finances - OSAP Information - OSAP Appeals and Forms
OSAP Document Processing
The Mohawk College Financial Assistance Office does not review the following documents, as these are only reviewed by the Ministry:
- Proof of Bankruptcy; determines OSAP eligibility
- Income verification: non-taxable foreign income verifications, student, spousal, parent. Students have 1 year to submit proper documents; risk of grant to loan conversion
- Restriction appeals and income variance reviews
- Exceptional circumstance reviews
- Compliance reviews
It is very important to note that documents are reviewed in the order they are received and can take several weeks to months to process. The Financial Assistance Office cannot escalate or expedite this process.
To ensure your documentation is reviewed as soon as possible, students are strongly encouraged to upload their information directly to their online OSAP application. Instructions are provided to students through their OSAP account so students encouraged to regularly check their OSAP mailbox for updates and further instructions.
Because Money Matters Tip - Apply for OSAP even if you think you won’t qualify!
Lots of students don’t apply because they think their parents make too much or that they won't qualify for some other reason. Don't count yourself out so quickly! You can get an estimate of your OSAP funding in just a few clicks, or jump right into the OSAP application (it only takes about 15 minutes). Check out this video for a step-by-step guide on applying.
Your OSAP loans are an important part of your financial life. While you’re a student we encourage you to learn financial literacy skills so you’re prepared when the time comes to repay your loan. Check out the many helpful resources on Mohawk’s Mo’ Money website.
Everything you need to know about your OSAP loan and/or grant can be found on the OSAP website. It’s the most comprehensive and up to date resource you need. While there, be sure to familiarize yourself with information about eligibility and status, the interest-free period, repayment, and more.
Loans vs grants
OSAP offers student loans with favourable interest terms, but depending on financial need, they also offer OSAP grants. Grants do not have to be repaid and can help relieve financial stress. (If you’re trying to avoid extra debt – you can still apply for an OSAP grant!).
Your eligibility is based on citizenship, where you live, family income, and more. Take time to understand how these requirements affect you.
Report a change to your status
If there are changes to your program, the number of courses you take, your income, or anything else that might affect your OSAP loan or grant amount, you must report the change to OSAP, not to Mohawk College.
To avoid unnecessary interest, be sure you understand your student status and payment obligations. If your study plans change or you drop a course and lose your full-time student status, your eligibility for OSAP may change and require prompt or additional repayment. Visit the OSAP website to learn about retaining your interest-free status.
Repaying your OSAP loan
You must start paying back your OSAP loans six months after the end of your study period.
- During this six-month period, the federal portion of the loan is interest-free.
- The provincial portion starts accruing interest immediately at the end of the study period.
You can save interest payments if you are able to start your repayment right away. Review everything you need about loan repayment.
Defaulted OSAP loans
A loan in default can interfere with your eligibility for further financing and may result in penalties. If, for any reason, your student loan should fall into default, learn about your options.
Under some circumstances, you may be eligible for repayment assistance. (Based on family income, employment income, etc.) Read more on the National Student Loans Servicing Centre website.
Academic progress and OSAP eligibility
In addition to the minimum academic requirements, students are expected to progress through the successive years of their program of study.
Frequent or multiple program switches, dropping from a full course load to a part-time course load, withdrawing from a program, repeating a program and/or taking multiple programs at the same level of study may be considered lack of progress and lack of academic direction on the part of a student which could affect your OSAP funding.
The chart below lists the impacts of not meeting the government's minimum required academic progress while receiving OSAP:
|FAILING TO MEET ACADEMIC PROGRESS STANDARDS FOR...||MEANS YOU...||REMEDY:|
|1 period of study||Are placed on OSAP probation for 12 months (1 year) but remain eligible for OSAP funding.||Succeed in all following academic periods to maintain OSAP eligibility.|
|2 periods of study||Lose your OSAP eligibility for a minimum of 12 months (1 year).||Maintain outstanding student loans in good standing with the lending institution during the 12-month period.|
|3 periods of study||Lose your OSAP eligibility for a minimum of 36 months (3 years).||Maintain outstanding student loans in good standing with the lending institution during the 36-month period.|
|4 periods of study||Lose your OSAP eligibility for a minimum of 60 months (5 years).||Maintain outstanding student loans in good standing with the lending institution during the 60-month period.|
|5 periods of study||Lose OSAP eligibility.||Must repay all outstanding student loans prior to obtaining new loans.|
Because Money Matters Tip - Check out the NSLSC website
In addition to the OSAP website, students should also visit the National Student Loans website, which includes a variety of helpful planning tools, information on repayment of student loans and links.
Part-time and Continuing Education students may be eligible for government assistance. The Part-Time Canada Student Loan (PTCSL), commonly referred to as Part-Time OSAP, helps students studying on a part-time basis.
Apply at the Ontario Student Assistance Program's (opens new window) website
Part-Time Canada Student Loan (PTCSL) or most commonly known as Part-Time OSAP provides assistance to students studying on a part-time basis.
Part-time OSAP Process
1. Apply online at OSAP(opens new window)
2. Upload required documents directly to your OSAP account
At the end of your application, upload all required documents to your OSAP account including proof of income.
3. Receive your assessment
When your application has been processed, you will receive an e-mail noting your PT OSAP assessment and to let you know your loan is ready.
4. Mohawk will confirm your enrolment to release your funding
Financial Assistance will confirm your enrolment electronically and your funding will be released via online disbursement. Funding will be directed to cover any outstanding balance on your Mohawk student account and the remaining funding (if any) will be directed to your bank account. Part-time paper loan certificates will no longer be required to receive funding.
5. Make sure your fees are paid
Check your MyMohawk account to make sure your OSAP shows up and to ensure your fees are paid by the deadline.*IMPORTANT* You must re-apply for part-time OSAP each semester (i.e. fall, winter, and spring/summer as semester requires a new application).
Review deadline: Financial Assistance must receive any review request no later than 40 days before the end of your study period.
For more information, visit the OSAP (opens new window) website.
Apply for OSAP on the OSAP application web site.
Part-Time Student OSAP Application
Apply for OSAP as a part-time student on the OSAP application web site.