Bursary Program

The Canadian Federal Government offers 5-week French Immersion language bursaries for study in Quebec and other provinces through its program « Explore ».


Explore program federal bursaries cover the costs of tuition fees, books, room and board. In order to be eligible for these bursaries, students must be Canadian citizens and be registered as full time students during the year preceding or following the Explore program. Students who have just completed high school (Grade 12) can apply for these bursaries. The program is also open to students who do not qualify or who do not receive bursaries and wish to cover expenses on their own.

Living Arrangements

Explore programs are offered in all Canadian provinces. In some Explore programs students stay in university residences while in others they live with host families. Students frequently find that they are exposed to more French through the latter living arrangement – i.e. through staying with a French-speaking family wherever this option is available. Students should also note that while the larger urban settings such as Montreal or Quebec City offer a wider range of cultural experiences, there is much more English spoken in these environments than in those in smaller cities where students stay with families.

University Credit

Credit for these programs is not automatic since there are university credited and non-credited Explore programs, depending on their nature. University credited programs are typically more structured along the lines of regular university courses. That is to say that their focus is usually both written and oral (vs just oral) and that students must typically write a substantial (2 or 3 hour) final exam at the end of the course. Students who are interested in receiving credit for this program should check the Explore website for a list of the programs which offer university credit, prior to making their program selection and consult with the U of S French section coordinator and advisor at the time of application and program selection, if they require assistance. It is also worth noting that most of these programs require students to write a placement test which determines which language course students should take. In some cases, students who have passed their previous French course with some difficulty may be placed in a course equivalent to the last level they took and may therefore not receive credit for essentially doing the same course over again. Many students opt for the non-credit option because they prefer a less structured immersion experience. Students wishing further information on this issue should contact the French Section Coordinator and Advisor at the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultural Studies at the time of application and / or subsequent to their placement test.

Application Deadlines

Students should check the Explore website for the exact deadline which is usually sometime in February. Typically students begin to apply for these programs sometime in early December and are asked to identify their destination preferences at that time. Recipients of language bursaries are decided through draws held in April.

For more information, visit the Explore website at: http://www.jexplore.ca/