Canadian Grading System |

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An Ultimate Guide to Canadian Grading System

As you someone who wants to go to Canada but afraid of the different education system. If you are a study abroad aspirant but unsure of the Canadian grading system and the different education system. Then you are on the right page. In this blog, you will know about Canadian grading system along with the GPA scale used in various institutes. Moreover, the assessment of GPA and grades in the nation.

Let us dive in together to know the average GPA in Canada and the types of it.

What Are The Different Types of Grading Systems in Canada?

Canada is known for its well-established grading system to evaluate the academic performance of the students pursuing education. The grading system used in Canada depends on the level of education, province, territory and of course the institute. In this section, you will learn about some commonly used grading systems in Canada.

Percentage Scale

It is one of the most widely used grading system of Canada. The post-secondary education follows the percentage scale to analyze the performance of the students. It calculated on the basis of their percentage in each course.

Although, the average grade in Canada to pass is 50%, while many colleges may need a higher grade. However, anything above it will justify the question “What is a good GPA in Canada?” The percentage scale calculates the final grade of a student by converting it to a letter grade or GPA.

For example, a student with a 75% score in a course would receive a B grade or a GPA of 3.0, depending on the institution.

Letter Grades

The Canada grade system is most commonly used in elementary and secondary schools. The performance of a students is marked on the basis of letter grade they have achieved. These are denoted as A, B, C, D, or F.

Every letter grade is associated with a percentage range. It varies by province or school.

An “A” grade, for instance, will be near the range of 90–100%, whereas a B grade can be equivalent to 80-89% range.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

The Grade Point Average (GPA) system, similar to percentage scale. The GPA scale Canada is commonly used in post-secondary institutions.

In this system, every letter grade is assigned a numerical value from 0 and 4.0. It is then weighted on the basis of the course credit value. Then the weighted grade point values for each course will be added. Further, it will be divided by the total number of credits earned to get the GPA.

For instance, a student's weighted grade point value for a 3-credit course would be 9.0, if they finished it with a B grade (which is usually equivalent to a grade point value of 3.0). A student's weighted GPA would be 3.0 if they complete 15 credits at a total weighted grade point value of 45.0.

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Numeric Scale

Some schools and province uses numeric scale as the preferred Canadian grading system. It numerically marks the students from either the scale of 1 to 4 or 1 to 5.

The specific grading scale varies by the institute they have enrolled in. Also, higher the number, higher the grade. In addition to this, the passing grade is generally set at 50% or more.

For example, on a 1 to 4 grading scale, a score of 3 corresponds to a B grade or a GPA of 3.0.


Sometimes, the Pass/Fail grading system is used. In this system, students only know whether they have passed or failed the course or subject.

Moreover, there is no letter grade or numerical score assigned. The students who have “P” assigned means they have passed the course. On the other hand, those failing receive an F grade. This system is used for courses which are not included in a student's GPA calculation.

Know More: Canada Education System

In this section, you got to know the different types of grades in the Canadian grading system used by several types institutes. Next, let us know the scales of grading.

Grading Scales Used in Canada

Before jumping on the grading scales used in Canada, let us know “What is GPA in Canada?”. GPA stands for Grade Point Average. In Canada, it is calculated by assigning each letter grade a numerical value (e.g., A+ = 4.0, A = 3.7, B+ = 3.3), summing these values for all courses taken, and dividing by the total number of courses. This provides an average that reflects a student’s overall academic performance on a 4.0 scale.

Canada Grading Scale 1: GPA Out of 4.0

Mostly, the Grade Point Average (GPA) scale of 4.0 is used by Canadian institutions. Most of the students are familiar with this scale. It assigns a numerical value to letter grades, which are A, B, C, D, and F. Each of them is correlated to a specific grade point.

Canada Grading Scale 2: GPA Out of 9.0

The less common scale of GPA Canada university uses is 9.0 scale. Although, it provides a broader range of values to differentiate between various performance levels, it may use different letter grades and its points compared to the 4.0 scale. However, the calculation method remains similar.

Top Universities in Canada and Their GPA Requirements

The Canada grading system differs by the university and province. So, this section has the list of top institutes across Canada and their GPA requirements.

University GPA Requirements
University of Toronto Between 3.6 - 4.0
The University of British Columbia An average of 3.7
University of Waterloo Between 2.7 to 4.0
McMaster University 3.7 or higher
McGill University A minimum of 3.2
University of Calgary GPA of 3.3
University of Montreal 3.3 out of 4.3
University of Alberta A minimum of 3.5

Also read: Cheap universities in Canada

GPA and Grade Assessment in Canada

The assessment of GPA and grade differs in Canada's grading system, refer the tables below to know the respective description.

GPA Description
Above 4.0 Excellent
Above 3.5 Very Good
Above 3.0 Good
Above 2.5 Satisfactory

Let us know the depiction of grades and the students performance.

Letter grade Description
A Excellent
B Very good
C Good
D Average
E/F Unsatisfactory

Here, the performance of students as per different GPA and grade is depicted so that they can know how they performed. In the next section, you will know the way to convert grade to GPA in Canada.

How to Convert Grades to GPA in Canada?

The conversion of grades to GPA is not a complex process. Moreover, if you study in Canada, then it is important to know the steps to convert it. This section answers the question , “How to calculate GPA Canada?” which aspirants eagerly want to know.

Step 1: Convert the Grades to Numerical Values

Know the GPA scale Canada through the table below. Some Canadian university grading system has 4.3 scale while others have 4.0 scale.

Grade Numerical Value
A+ 4.0 or 4.3
A 4.0
A- 3.7 or 3.9
B+ 3.3 or 3.7
B 3.0
B- 2.7 or 2.9
C+ 2.3 or 2.7
C 2.0
C- 1.7 or 1.9
D+ 1.3 or 1.7
D 1.0
F 0.0

Step 2: Figure out weighted GPA

You need to multiply the numerical value of the grade received by the credit hours of the course. Use the formula below.

Weighted GPA = Credit Hours × Numerical Grade Value

Step 3: Total Weighted GPA Points

Once you get the weighted GPA using the above formula, it is now time to sum up the GPA of every subject together.

Step 4: Sum the Credit Hours

The next step is to add up the credit hours of every subject.

Step 5: Calculate GPA

You now have to divide the total weighted GPA points by the total credit hours to obtain your GPA. Use the formula below to reach this step of the calculation.

GPA = Total Weighted GPA Points ÷ Total Credit Hours

Step 6: Round off

You can now round off the number to nearest decimal. The rounding off will vary by the institute.

Different Canadian institutions may have slight variations in their GPA scales or use different grading systems.

The grading system in Canada plays a vital role in determining student's academic progress. It provides an objective, consistent, and fair method of evaluating academic achievement and encourages learners to strive for excellence.

Grading System in Canada Vs. USA

The Canada grading system is similar to that of the USA as Canada is also a North-American country. The difference between both the countries is the passing percentage. In Canada, students passes their exam at 54%. On the other hand, the scholars studying in the USA needs 59.99% to pass the exam.

Grade Quality Points Percentage (%)
A+ 4.0 94.00-100
A- 3.6 90.00-93.99
B+ 3.3 87.00-89.99
B 3.0 83.00-86.99
B- 2.6 80.00-82.99
C+ 2.3 77.00-79.99
C 2.0 73.00-76.99
C- 1.67 70.00-72.99
D+ 1.3 67.00-69.99
D 1.0 63.00-66.99
D- 0.6 60.00-62.99
F 0.0 ≤59.99

Grading System in Canada vs UK

There are two types of bachelor’s degree in the United Kingdom. These are ordinary degree and an honours degree. The grading system these UG degrees are very different from Canada’s degree in terms of grading and percentage.

In Canada, grades are given for a percentage range. Also, each grade is assigned a unique GPA. On the other hand, in the UK, a “Degree Description” is provided. The descriptions of the ordinary degree and the honours degree are different. The table below depicts the UK system of marking the performance.

Marks Degree Description
Honours Bachelor’s Degree Ordinary Bachelor’s Degree
≥70 First Class Distinction
60-69 Upper Second Class Merit
50-59 Lower Second Class Pass
40-49 Third Class Pass
0-39 Fail Fail

In conclusion, you got to know the Canadian gradding system. Also, you got an answer of what is GPA in Canada? However, the different GPA scale are mentioned and how the Canadian grading system is different from the USA and the UK. Moreover, the top universities along with their requirements were given. However, the GPA system is most prominent among all the other Canadian grading system.

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