Best Places for Continuing Education in Ottawa

5 Best Places for Continuing Education in Ottawa

People pursue higher education for different reasons, whether it’s to access better job opportunities or simply to learn new things to improve their quality of life. 

If you’re thinking of going back to school, this list of the best places for continuing education in Ottawa is for you. 

But before we move on to that, let’s first take a look at the estimated costs of tuition fees, books, and supplies for continuing education. 

How much does continuing education cost in Ottawa?

Depending on the course, continuing education may cost around $13,000 to $27,000 each year. This price includes tuition, books, supplies, and other fees.

To give you a better idea, below is a table showing the estimated annual cost for each. Please take note that rates can change from one institution to another. 

Types of ExpensesEstimated Annual Cost
Tuition$13,000 - $22,000
BooksUp to $800
Supplies (program-related materials)$500 - $3,000
Other school fees$200 - $1,300

The Best Places for Continuing Education in Ottawa

We used the following criteria to help us get the best for this list:

Accreditation – We considered schools that have accreditation from regulating boards.
Faculty credentials  – We chose educational institutions with teachers or instructors that have solid credentials.
Programs offered – We looked for institutions that provide a wide variety of courses and programs.
Students’ feedback – Included in this list are schools that received generally positive feedback from current and former students.

1. Carleton University

Carleton University's homepage
COURSES & SERVICESUndergraduate Programs, Graduate Programs, Housing and Dining Services
ADDRESS 1125 Colonel By Dr, Ottawa, ON K1S 5B6, Canada
CONTACT DETAILS+1 613-520-2600
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Criteria Ratings 
Accreditation★★★★★ (5/5)
Faculty Credentials★★★★★ (5/5)
Programs Offered★★★★★ (5/5)
Students’ Feedback★★★★✩ (4/5)

Carleton University was first built for veterans of the Second World War. Today, it has become one of the nicest places to pursue continuing education in Ottawa. 

It offers programs and courses for all kinds of students and has a special department  for people who are continuing education to improve their credentials. 

We like that you can choose from various certificates and professional programs. Some of its unique offers include social media strategy and real estate development.

If you’re working in the HR department, the courses on human resources might work for you. For executives, you might find its project management and mini-MBA program interesting and useful. 

Another thing we like about the university is that it has programs for organizations, too. And the best part is that it can customize programs for your company and its needs.

It’s also nice that it provides financial assistance to help students fund their education. Its housing, parking, and dining services, on the other hand, give extra comfort to resident students.

There are, however, no price guides provided, so you might need to first inquire to get details on its rates. Despite this, we think that Carleton University is a good place to pursue further education.


  • Offers various courses
  • Located in the capital
  • Tailored programs
  • Provides financial options
  • Housing, parking, and dining services


  • Communication can be improved
  • Closed on weekends

Customer Reviews

A large university with the community feel of a small one

“Great large university that has the community feel of a smaller university. The tunnels are awesome for when it’s cold or rainy. I actually switched from Ottawa U to Carleton and much prefer the overall vibe of the campus. The campus also has an annual butterfly exhibit in the greenhouse and many options for clubs and extracurricular a to join! The campus is conveniently situation on the Otrain line and close to Hogs back and Mooneys Bay. Being by the river is another huge plus!” — Teah Lizee, Google Reviews

Growth-oriented educational culture

“Growth-oriented ambitious educational culture. Many new facilities. Quality is emphasized. Students are valued and respected. An excellent managerial attitude with serious potential to become the best in town. Numerous internationally-renowned professors.” — Karim I, Google Reviews

2. University of Ottawa

University of Ottawa's homepage
COURSES & SERVICESUndergraduate Studies, Graduate Studies, Professional Development Institution, Bilingual Studies and Language Learning
ADDRESS 75 Laurier Ave. E, Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada
CONTACT DETAILS+1 613-562-5700
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Criteria Ratings 
Accreditation★★★★★ (5/5)
Faculty Credentials★★★★★ (5/5)
Programs Offered★★★★★ (5/5)
Students’ Feedback★★★★✩ (4/5)

The University of Ottawa is the largest bilingual university in the world today, with courses offered in both English and French. 

It currently has many programs for undergraduate and graduate students, which can get overwhelming. But to help in selecting courses, it offers support through mentoring services and academic advising. 

We like that the institution can help enhance your expertise and knowledge to make you a more valuable member of the workplace. Some of its programs include project management and workplace writing.

There are also courses for digital transformation and second language skills, which are important things to learn in today’s increasingly competitive professional landscape.  

Another thing we like is that the institution offers group training, which allows students to foster social skills that will prove valuable in the workplace. Unfortunately, this special service has restricted details, and only registered members can access them. 

We commend the University of Ottawa for providing guides for its fees. It’s nice that the website also gives you an estimate of the costs, which include administrative fees, incidental fees, and other expenses.

We appreciate that it has a parking service, which is powered by an app called HotSpot. This additional service will provide more convenience to students with personal vehicles.


  • Offers many programs
  • Academic support
  • Funding and financial options
  • University fee estimate
  • Group training
  • Parking service


  • Limited details on some services
  • Closed on weekends

Customer Reviews

Excellent and beautiful

“An excellent and beautiful university. It was founded in 1848 as the College of Bytown by the Mary Missionaries. Currently, this public university has more than 3,000 staff members and more than 34,000 students.  Almost 70% of the classes are given in English and the rest in French. It has residences for the students, a Bioscience complex, Advanced Research complex, Faculty of Engineering, Campus Boutique, Morisset Library, Languages Institute, Music School, Minto Sports Complex, Fitness Centre, Matt Anthony Field, Faculty of Education and many other facilities and things.” — Teacher David de la Peña, Google Reviews

A very cosmopolitan university

“Largest bilingual university in the world (you can almost smell the bilingualism – nearly everything is written in French and English respectively…even the bathroom signs) with a large campus that is very close to downtown Ottawa, (generally) friendly staff, and a plethora of services to facilitate successful learning experiences (many areas to study, frequent events, and many resources to aid student life). UOttawa is a very cosmopolitan university that hosts students from all across Canada and the world!” — Ivan Biketov, Google Reviews

3. Algonquin College

COURSES & SERVICESUndergraduate Programs, Graduate Programs, Apprenticeships, Student Support Services, Residence and Housing
ADDRESS 1385 Woodroffe Ave, Nepean, ON K2G 1V8, Canada
CONTACT DETAILS+1 613-727-4723
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Criteria Ratings 
Accreditation★★★★★ (5/5)
Faculty Credentials★★★★★ (5/5)
Programs Offered★★★★★ (5/5)
Students’ Feedback★★★★✩ (4/5)

Algonquin College is one of the nicest options you have for continuing education. Founded in 1967, it has been providing post-secondary education for years. 

We like that it offers various courses for all kinds of students. Its programs range from 4-year degrees to 1-year graduate certificates, which makes it more flexible to different continuing education needs. 

Its advanced diploma has programs like Respiratory Therapy and Marketing Communications Management. So, if your job or interest is related to these fields, you might want to consider taking them.

Its graduate certificate programs, on the other hand, are good for working professionals. Included here are courses like accounting and financial practice.

We appreciate that the institution has apprenticeship programs, too, as well as co-op programs that allow its students to have formal academic training while getting paid. 

We also found its tuition fee estimator very useful in computing costs. The financial aid, which includes work-study programs and scholarships for students, is commendable as well.

Also worth noting is its customized viewbook, which lets you browse through the website according to your preferences. 

The housing services for people who plan to be resident students are also a nice addition so they can live comfortably while pursuing their studies. 


  • Wide selections of courses
  • Apprenticeship
  • Co-op programs
  • Financial aid
  • Tuition fee estimator
  • Housing services
  • Custom viewbook


  • Some programs can be pricey
  • Closed on weekends

Customer Reviews

This college is awesome

“This college is awesome. Dozens of self-study rooms, modern equipment and enthusiastic professors ever seen!” — Nguyễn Nam, Google Reviews

Get your money’s worth

“A wonderful School. Amazing co-op programs, great instructors, and teachers. You’ll definitely get your money’s worth for your education and make lifelong friendships along the way.— Sonu Singh, Google Reviews

4. Ottawa-Carleton District School Board 

Ottawa-Carleton District School Board's homepage
COURSES & SERVICESEarly Learning, Elementary, Secondary, Continuing Education, Adaptive Program, International and Indigenous Languages, Literacy Basic Skills, Outdoor Education Centers, Summer School Programs, Literacy Numeracy Support Programs
ADDRESS 440 Albert St, Ottawa, ON K1R 5B5, Canada
CONTACT DETAILS+1 613-239-2325
Criteria Ratings 
Accreditation★★★★★ (5/5)
Faculty Credentials★★★★★ (5/5)
Programs Offered★★★✩✩ (3/5)
Students’ Feedback★★★★✩ (4/5)

The Ottawa-Carleton District School Board is the 7th largest in terms of the school population in the province of Ontario. 

Currently, it has 143 schools, 113 of which are elementary, 25 secondary, and 5 secondary alternate sites. The total also includes special education sites and an adult high school.

We like that it provides various programs that are offered throughout the year. Although most of its services are focused on elementary and secondary students, it also has courses for adult learning.

One of these is English as a Second Language (ESL). This is great for both aspiring teachers and people who need to hone their English competencies. 

There is also a course on literacy and basic skills, which is good for those who are looking for jobs with limited working experience. 

We appreciate that the school board offers an adaptive learning program, which gives adults with physical and developmental disabilities the chance to continue their education.

Its cooperative education curriculum, on the other hand, allows one to gain formal training while earning. We think this is also commendable, being that the school opens its doors to the working class. 

The school board, however, offers relatively fewer programs compared to others on this list. Nonetheless, we still think that it’s a good starting point to upskill and improve your competency. 


  • Decent array of programs
  • Partnerships with educational networks
  • Special education
  • Adaptive learning program
  • Co-op programs


  • Focused on elementary and secondary education
  • No price guides for programs offered

Customer Reviews

Very nice and helpful

“The teachers here are very nice and helpful with school work. I’m also very grateful that this school has open arms to all religions,races and cultures. I highly recommend this school to kids and parents.” — Sir Adam, Google Reviews

OCDSB is a great start

“Started ESL classes in September 2021.  I had a wonderful teacher, Ms Glynis Saylor.  OCDSB is a great start to learn English for immigrants landing in Canada.  Thumbs up to Glynis Saylor.” — Marli Bhyat, Google Reviews

5. Dominican University College

Dominican University College's homepage
COURSES & SERVICESUndergraduate Programs, Graduate Programs, Interest Courses, Specialized Courses, Homeschooling
ADDRESS 96 Empress Ave, Ottawa, ON K1R 7G3, Canada
CONTACT DETAILS+1 613-727-4723
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Saturday 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Criteria Ratings 
Accreditation★★★★★ (5/5)
Faculty Credentials★★★★★ (5/5)
Programs Offered★★★✩✩ (3/5)
Students’ Feedback★★★★✩ (4/5)

Dominican University College offers a decent number of programs for undergraduate and graduate students.

However, you must know right off the bat that its academic courses are focused and limited to Philosophy and Theology. So if you’re not into these fields, this college definitely isn’t for you.

Some of the degrees it offers include Master of Arts in Philosophy and Doctorate in Theology. It is also nice that it has interest-based courses that cover topics like current issues in ethics.

We commend the college’s certificate programs for students who want to gain some knowledge about philosophy or be trained to be religious educators in the future.

It also has specialized courses, but unfortunately, these are only offered in French. 

Another thing that caught our attention is the school’s homeschooling services. These provide comfort to students who prefer taking classes from home and allow them to focus more on their studies. 

We like that Dominican University College offers financial aid to eligible students. This, however, is limited in scope. 

We appreciate that the bilingual institution has a price guide on its website. Also worth noting is its relatively cheaper tuition fees, which is great for students with financial difficulties.

Despite offering limited courses, we still think that this is a nice place for lifelong learning.


  • Decent number of programs
  • Specializes in Philosophy and Theology
  • Cheaper tuition rates
  • Convenient location
  • Bilingual
  • Tuition fee guide
  • Small faculty-to-student ratio
  • Financial aid
  • Homeschooling


  • Limited programs to choose from
  • Limited bursaries

Customer Reviews

Cannot recommend any higher

“My favorite place to spend time in the entire city. Great community of people to talk to and every class I have taken has been very enjoyable. Cannot recommend this school any higher.” — Jack Donohue, Google Reviews

A hidden gem in Ottawa’s academic sphere

“A hidden gem in Ottawa’s academic sphere. A close-knit community of students, professors and colleagues, coming back each semester feels like coming home.” — Matthew Van Abbema, Google Reviews

FAQs about Continuing Education in Ottawa

We hope that we have helped you narrow down your choices with the list we prepared. 

Want to find more schools in the metro? Here’s a list of the best private schools in Ottawa that might interest you.