COVID-19 Information for Applicants

Student using laptop on couch

Don't put your future plans on hold. Our 2020 fall semester will be delivered predominantly in alternative and remote format so you can start preparing for your future career. We’re hopeful our 2021 winter semester will be delivered fully or partially in-person, but that decision will be informed by public health and government officials. 

We’re excited to provide a great experience that will include responsive and energetic digital student services and supports. If you want to apply or if you’ve been accepted, take your next step now!  

Apply now Accept your offer

While the fall and winter semesters may not be typical, we hope you’ll join our community. We're proud to continue offering students the high-quality, career-focused programs and services you’d expect from George Brown College. And we’ll be ready to invite you on campus once public health authorities and government indicate that it is safe.

These are challenging times and we know you have many questions. Please check the FAQs below for details.

Planning for a safe and gradual return to campus

We're anticipating a gradual and phased return to campus that will begin when public health authorities and government indicate it’s safe to do so. Any decisions we make are guided by three priorities:

  • Protecting the health and safety of the George Brown College community
  • Upholding the quality of education George Brown is known for, no matter the format
  • Following the guidance and direction of public health authorities and government

Detailed safety plans and protocols are being developed to ensure your health and well-being when access to our campus resumes. 

Learn about our programs

Do you want to study with George Brown College but are unsure which program you want to take? Try our Program Finder, check our Program Availability, and compare your options with our Program Comparison tool.

LEARN MORE ABOUT GEORGE BROWN COLLEGE 

The college is currently closed but you can still discover what student life is like at George Brown. We continue to offer online campus tours and program information sessions. Check out different ways you can learn about us below: 

FAQs

We know you have many questions related to the COVID-19 pandemic and how it will affect your application and learning. We’re working to bring you answers as soon as decisions are made. Please see our FAQs below.

I haven't applied yet and I’m not sure if I should. What should I do?

We encourage you to apply. Our 2020 fall semester semester (starting September 8, 2020) will be delivered predominantly in alternative and remote format, and will provide the high-quality, career-focused education that George Brown College is known for.  Remote learning provides flexibility and can help you make the most of your learning time.

We are hopeful that classes for the 2021 winter semester (starting January 11, 2021), will be delivered fully or partially in-person. However, decisions will be informed by guidelines set out by public health and government officials once available. As decisions are made, we will communicate directly with applicants and students, so that everyone can plan for a safe return to school. 

Don’t put your future plans on hold. We're committed to the health and safety of our students and we’re planning for a slow and gradual return to campus at a time and pace based on direction we receive from the government and public health officials.

We anticipate all aspects of programs will be fulfilled before graduation. The timing of when certain components of a program can be completed may shift depending on guidelines from public health officials.

APPLY NOW

I heard some in-person classes are resuming this summer. Does that affect me?

The 2020 fall semester (starting September 8, 2020) will be delivered remotely for all new students and will provide the high-quality, career-focused education that George Brown College is known for.  Remote learning provides flexibility and can help you make the most of your learning time. 

We are hopeful that classes for the 2021 winter semester (starting January 11, 2021), will be delivered fully or partially in-person. However, decisions will be informed by guidelines set out by public health and government officials once available. As decisions are made, we will communicate directly with applicants and students, so that everyone can plan for a safe return to school. 

On June 10, the Ontario government announced that it is allowing colleges to offer limited in-class instruction this summer to students who were in their final semester when the college closed due to COVID-19 and were unable to complete hands-on clinical or lab work required to graduate. 

We are planning and preparing to provide limited access to a very specific group of students this summer at the Centre for Health Sciences. 

Can I accept my offer and change my mind later?

2020 Fall Semester 

We encourage you to accept your offer. If you decide remote learning isn’t for you, you have until September 21, 2020 to withdraw from a program with a partial refund. 

2021 Winter Semester 

We encourage you to accept your offer. You have until January 22, 2021 to withdraw from a program with a partial refund. 

Accept your offer

Can I defer my acceptance to a future semester?

Domestic students with offers for September 2020 or January 2021 who want to defer to a future intake should contact admissions@georgebrown.ca. Your request will be reviewed based on availability and capacity. International students should contact their admissions officer (as per the contact details on your offer letter) or send an email request to intladmissons@georgebrown.ca

Is there a chance part of the fall semester will be delivered on campus?

The 2020 fall semester will be delivered predominantly in alternative and remote format.

We anticipate a gradual, phased return to campus, which will begin when our public health authorities and government indicate that it is safe to do so. Detailed safety and logistic plans are currently being developed to ensure that we can return to campus safely when access becomes available.

What will the 2020 fall semester look like?

Full-time programs for the 2020 fall semester will be delivered predominantly in alternative and remote format.

There are some full-time programs that require extensive access to campus facilities or clinical settings in order to meet learning outcomes. Unfortunately, these programs can’t be delivered in alternative format and are suspended for the 2020 fall semester.

Most programs will be a combination of real-time (synchronous) and pre-recorded (asynchronous) delivery and will use a combination of online tools, such as Blackboard, Microsoft Teams and Zoom. There will likely be online tools that are specific to various programs. Your professors and/or program coordinator will provide details as the start of the semester approaches. 

Find program contacts below if you have questions about the fall semester: 

Centre for Arts, Design and Information Technology 

Centre for Business

  • School of Human Resources and School of Management - espeers@georgebrown.ca 
  • School of Marketing - to be confirmed
  • School of Accounting & Finance - to be confirmed

Centre for Community Services & Early Childhood 

  • School of Early Childhood - to be confirmed
  • School of Deaf & Deafblind Studies - to be confirmed
  • School of Social & Community Services - to be confirmed

Centre for Construction & Engineering Technologies 

  • School of Engineering Technology and School of Architectural Studies -iain.mcnab@georgebrown.ca 
  • Angelo DelZotto School of Construction Management -  to be confirmed
  • School of Apprenticeships -  to be confirmed

Centre for Health Sciences 

Centre for Hospitality & Culinary Arts 

  • Chef School programs - cwalker@georgebrown.ca 

Chef School program delivery 2020 fall semester

School of Hospitality and Tourism Management

Centre for Preparatory & Liberal Studies

Continuing Education 

What will the 2021 winter semester look like?

We are working on a gradual and phased approach to in-person learning to ensure we maintain the health and safety of everyone on campus. 

While full-time programs for the 2020 fall semester will be delivered predominantly in an online format, we are hopeful that classes for the Winter 2021 term (starting January 11, 2021), will be delivered fully or partially in-person. However, decisions will be informed by guidelines set out by public health and government officials once available. As decisions are made, we will communicate directly with applicants and students, so that everyone can plan for a safe return to school.

How will I get the hands-on learning I expect from college?

Providing hands-on opportunities for students to develop skills is a vital part of how we deliver learning at George Brown. But protecting the health and safety of our community is of the utmost importance during this unprecedented time for the college, the province and the country.   

We're anticipating a gradual and phased return to campus that will begin when public health authorities and government indicate it’s safe to do so. When that can happen, providing access to our labs and opportunities for hands-on learning will be our highest priority. 

What about programs with work integrated learning (FIELD PLACEMENTS, CO-OP, INTERNSHIPS, ETC.)?

Many of our employer partners are considering how they can host work-integrated learning and co-op placements remotely. Students can contact their program coordinator to confirm the status of work-integrated learning opportunities.    

We are waiting for further direction from the government about timing, but we anticipate that all aspects of programs will be fulfilled before graduation. Please note that the timing of  certain program components may shift depending on guidelines from public health officials. 

Can I apply for Academic Upgrading?

Intake for the Academic Upgrading program is now closed until the week of July 27. New applications will be reviewed after July 27. Academic Upgrading courses will be available online only for the 2020 fall semester.   

Please note that ACE Distance, Mature Students Assessment Preparation (MSAP) and Choices will be running during the summer. Please contact Ron Greenberg RGreenberg@georgebrown.ca if you have any questions. 


Financial Aid and Tuition

Will changes due to COVID-19 affect OSAP eligibility?

OSAP (Ontario Student Assistance Program) applications for 2020-21 are now open. You can visit ontario.ca/osap for more information and to submit your application. To learn more about OSAP and George Brown Financial Aid, visit georgebrown.ca/apply/financial-aid/osap.

This section will be updated if and when more information becomes available from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities.

We encourage you to accept your offer and we hope to welcome you soon to the George Brown community.

Are there changes for the 2020 fall semester tuition deposit?

In recognition of the financial pressures caused by COVID-19, we have reduced the minimum tuition deposit fee for the 2020 fall semester by 50 per cent. This reduced deposit fee does not affect your tuition amount.

Students who wish to register for the fall semester will now be expected to pay the following non-refundable deposits by June 22:

  • Domestic students – $250 deposit (previously $500)
  • Returning international students – $2,000 deposit (previously $4,000)

Please note: New international students are still required to pay the full first semester fees to accept their offer and confirm their registration.

*NEW* Are there changes for the 2021 winter semester tuition deposit?

In recognition of the continuing financial pressures caused by COVID-19, we have reduced the minimum tuition deposit fee for the winter semester by 50 per cent. This reduced deposit fee does not affect your tuition amount. 

New students who wish to register for the winter semester will now be expected to pay the following non-refundable deposit by Wednesday November 4, 2020. Please refer to your Registration/Invoice Letter for specific instructions. 

  • Domestic students – $250 deposit (previously $500) 

Please note: New international students are still required to pay the full first semester fees to accept their offer and confirm their registration.

Will there be tuition reductions because programs are delivered remotely?

While the format for the fall semester will be different, we remain committed to helping you build the skills and experience you need to kick-start your career. Tuition fees support the cost of academic program delivery, including instruction, assessment and administration, all of which is still taking place. These fees also support the many student support services that are now being delivered online, including virtual counselling sessions, tutoring, career advising, Accessible Learning Services and more. Tuition is not specific to location or mode of delivery.  With this in mind, we will not be offering discounts for the fall semester. This applies to both domestic and international students. George Brown remains committed to helping students successfully complete their programs, and we will continue to ensure that learning outcomes are met while programs are being delivered through alternative and remote format. 

Is there a tuition payment plan for the 2020 fall semester?

We recognize that COVID-19 has presented challenges for students, including unanticipated financial pressures, and so we have established a tuition payment plan for the 2020 fall semester.

The payment plan is available to new and returning domestic students and returning international students.

Students can pay their 2020 fall semester tuition in full on August 21, or in three instalments, due on the following dates:

  • First instalment — August 21, 2020
  • Second instalment — September 21, 2020
  • Third instalment — October 21, 2020

How to sign up for the tuition payment plan 

Students can sign up for the 2020 fall semester tuition payment plan on STU-VIEW. The form will be available July 27 – September 21. Students must be registered for fall courses to qualify.

*NEW* Is there a tuition payment plan for the 2021 winter semester?

We recognize that COVID-19 has presented challenges for students, including unanticipated financial pressures, and so we have established a tuition payment plan for the winter 2021 semester. 

The payment plan is available to new and returning domestic students and returning international students. 

Students can pay their winter 2021 semester tuition in full on December 11, 2020, or in three instalments, due on the following dates: 

  • First instalment — December 11, 2020 
  • Second instalment — January 22, 2021 
  • Third instalment — February 22, 2021

How to sign up for the tuition payment plan 

Students can sign up for the winter 2020  semester tuition payment plan on STU-VIEW. The form will be available November 16, 2020  – January 22, 2021. Students must be registered for winter programs to qualify. 

Will student grants or awards in the upcoming school year be impacted by COVID-19?

Student grants and awards are expected to go ahead as usual. Please refer to the college’s Awards and Scholarships page for more information on applying for bursaries and scholarships.

*NEW* Is there a withdrawal/refund policy for international students?

For most international students enrolled in the 2020 fall semester, the standard George Brown College withdrawal/refund policy will apply, before or after Day 10 of the program. See standard policy at georgebrown.ca/international/accepted-students/withdrawal-and-refund-policy.

However, George Brown will have an exceptional policy in place for those students only who have received Stage 1 approval-in-principle and are waiting for final Stage 2 approval.  Students who begin their studies with a Stage 1 approval-in-principle, but are later refused a study permit at Stage 2, including after George Brown Day 10, will be eligible for a full refund of their pre-paid tuition fees, less a $100 withdrawal fee, upon submission of the refusal document from IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) to the college. This exception will be in place until December 11, 2020.

In Stage 1, IRCC will determine the applicant’s eligibility for approval-in-principle based on the Letter of Acceptance, financial sufficiency, family ties to Canada and evidence to leave Canada when no longer have a valid status. Students approved for Stage 1 approval-in-principle can begin to count the time studied towards Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) eligibility.

In Stage 2, IRCC will process the remaining missing documentation, such as biometrics, police certificate clearance (if required), medical exam (if required) and verification of any information changed since Stage 1 approval. Once an applicant is approved at Stage 2, a study permit approval is issued.

While there will likely be a high rate of study permit approval at Stage 2, some applications can also be refused at that stage as well.

For more information about the two-stage study permit approval process, visit canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/news/2020/07/minister-mendicino-announces-changes-to-facilitate-online-learning-for-international-students.html.


International students

Will international students still be accepted for the fall semester?

Yes, we are accepting international applications, but please note that programming for the 2020 fall semester will be delivered remotely.

I HAVE AN OFFER LETTER FOR FALL 2020. SHOULD I APPLY FOR MY STUDY PERMIT AND VISA NOW?

Yes, you should apply online for an initial study permit with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) as soon as possible to ensure that your application is approved-in-principle.

IRCC recently announced a new measure for international students starting a program in the fall semester who submit a study permit application before September 15, 2020.

The new measures include: 

  • providing priority study-permit processing for students who have submitted a complete application online, to ensure that permits are processed as quickly as possible.
  • allowing students to count the time spent pursuing their studies online abroad toward their eligibility for a post-graduation work permit, if they have submitted a study permit application and if at least 50 per cent of their program is completed in Canada. 
  • providing reassurances to international students who cannot submit all of the documentation needed to complete processing of their applications, and who choose to pursue programs through distance learning, by implementing a temporary two-stage approval process. 

The temporary process will allow applicants to count the time spent studying online abroad towards their post-graduation work permit once they receive an approval-in-principle, as long as they are able to satisfy all requirements and receive the full approval of their study permit application at a later date. As services begin to reopen, applicants will be required to submit remaining documents and receive an approved study permit before being allowed to travel to Canada.

CAN I BEGIN MY PROGRAM FROM MY HOME COUNTRY WITHOUT A VALID STUDY PERMIT OR STUDY PERMIT APPROVAL? HOW WILL THIS AFFECT MY ELIGIBILITY FOR POST-GRADUATION WORK PERMIT PROGRAM (PGWPP)? 

Yes, you can begin your online program outside of Canada without a valid study permit or study permit approval-in-principle. However, international students are required to have the following in relation to their studies contributing to Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) eligibility: 

  • a valid study permit or, 
  • a study permit approval-in-principle or, 
  • implied status for study permit. 

If students begin their program online without a valid study permit, study permit approval-in-principle or implied status for study permit, the study time will NOT be counted towards PGWPP eligibility.  

In addition, international students are responsible for ensuring they have a valid study permit when their program transitions to in-person or in-class delivery.

I have been approved for a study permit, but am unable to travel to Canada. Can I begin my program online in fall 2020? Will this affect my eligibility for PGWPP?

For students with a valid study permit or study permit approval, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced the following:

  • Eligibility for the PGWPP will not be affected for students who begin their studies in fall 2020, and whose in-class courses are moved to an online-only format as a result of COVID-19. 
  • International students in this situation may begin their classes outside Canada and may complete up to 50 per cent of their program while outside Canada if they cannot travel to Canada sooner. 
  • These students will not have time deducted from the length of their work permit for any period of study completed outside of Canada up to December 31, 2020.

For more information, please see the IRCC website.

*NEW* Is there a withdrawal/refund policy for international students?

For most international students enrolled in the 2020 fall semester, the standard George Brown College withdrawal/refund policy will apply, before or after Day 10 of the program. See standard policy at georgebrown.ca/international/accepted-students/withdrawal-and-refund-policy.

However, George Brown will have an exceptional policy in place for those students only who have received Stage 1 approval-in-principle and are waiting for final Stage 2 approval.  Students who begin their studies with a Stage 1 approval-in-principle, but are later refused a study permit at Stage 2, including after George Brown Day 10, will be eligible for a full refund of their pre-paid tuition fees, less a $100 withdrawal fee, upon submission of the refusal document from IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) to the college. This exception will be in place until December 11, 2020.

In Stage 1, IRCC will determine the applicant’s eligibility for approval-in-principle based on the Letter of Acceptance, financial sufficiency, family ties to Canada and evidence to leave Canada when no longer have a valid status. Students approved for Stage 1 approval-in-principle can begin to count the time studied towards Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) eligibility.

In Stage 2, IRCC will process the remaining missing documentation, such as biometrics, police certificate clearance (if required), medical exam (if required) and verification of any information changed since Stage 1 approval. Once an applicant is approved at Stage 2, a study permit approval is issued.

While there will likely be a high rate of study permit approval at Stage 2, some applications can also be refused at that stage as well.

For more information about the two-stage study permit approval process, visit canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/news/2020/07/minister-mendicino-announces-changes-to-facilitate-online-learning-for-international-students.html.

How will remote delivery learning schedules work for students in different time zones?

Whether course delivery is synchronous (in real time) or asynchronous (completed in student’s own time) is up to your program coordinator.

Once you’ve registered for your courses, connect with your program coordinator for details of remote delivery learning schedules.

Can I travel to Canada at this time?

If you have a valid study permit or were approved for a study permit on or before March 18, 2020, you’re exempt from the travel restrictions to Canada.

If you’re travelling by air, you need to pass a health check conducted by an airline before you’ll be allowed to board your flight. Anyone who shows symptoms of COVID-19 will not be allowed to enter Canada by air.

When you arrive in Canada, your health will be assessed before you leave the port of entry. You must have a plan to quarantine for 14 days when you arrive in Canada. This is mandatory, even if you have no symptoms.

Should I travel to Canada if I am exempt from travel restrictions even though my program has been suspended/cancelled for the fall 2020 semester?

We encourage students whose programs have been suspended for the fall 2020 semester NOT to travel to Canada now, and instead wait and travel closer to the new, deferred program start date.

Please note: Your entry into Canada is at the discretion of the Canada Border Security Agency (CBSA) officer at the port of entry (airport or land border), even if you are considered exempt from travel restrictions. In addition, you will not have health insurance coverage from the college for the period that you are not registered in your program and you are NOT legally allowed to work on or off campus in Canada before your program begins.

Can I work off campus this fall if my fall semester program has been suspended/cancelled and I’m in Canada?

No, you cannot work off campus if you are not currently studying and registered in an academic program. One of the requirements of the off-campus work eligibility criteria states that you must have started studying. Therefore, you are only eligible once your program begins/starts.


Student supports and resources

*UPDATED* Will there be a new student orientation?

Yes. Our online orientation events kick off August 4 and run through September. Find all the details at georgebrown.ca/current-students/orientation.

If you've received an offer from George Brown and you're still deciding what you want to do this fall, you're invited to join orientation events that are open to everyone. Find them on our orientation events calendar.

How can I connect with students across the college?

While we’re off campus students can still connect with other students in the following ways:

Remote learning is new to me. Where can I find support?

Check out our Online Learning site for tips and resources on how to be a successful remote learner. It offers five modules you can complete at your own pace.

Students can also find academic support at our Tutoring and Learning Centre (TLC). The TLC offers online services including real-time chats.

And our Library Learning Commons staff are available online to help students with research questions.

 I have a disability and I'm worried about remote learning. Where can I find support?

Students can register with Accessible Learning Services for academic supports. Accessible Learning Services provides academic, career, and well-being supports online or by phone. 

Will I have to buy special software or equipment for a remote program?

Students can connect with their program coordinators to confirm remote technology requirements for their courses. 

All full-time students have access to AppsAnywhere. You can find information at georgebrown.ca/current-students/websites-apps-and-technical-support/appsanywhere


Student residence

Will spaces in student residence be available for the 2020 fall semester? 

In order to promote health standards and practices, the residence will be open at a reduced capacity for 2020 fall semester. The residence has emailed all students, including applicants, those on the waitlist and current tenants, regarding the residence’s position for the 2020 fall semester. If you need more information, please email info@georgebrownresidence.ca

We have contacted everyone, including all applicants, those on the waitlist, current tenants and those who were accepted earlier in the term, regarding the residence's position for 2020 fall semester.