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Top 9 Colleges in Ottawa, Based on Rankings and Reputation

Ottawa – the capital city of Canada, is one of the most favourite destination for international students and local students to study in Canada. Being the political heart of Canada, this city attracts lots of tourist from within Canada and the other parts of the world. Ottawa is also known to be a bilingual city. Hence, most Colleges in Ottawa programs are bilingual – which means the language of instruction will either be in English, French or both.

Located on the south bank of the Ottawa River in the eastern portion of Southern Ontario, bordering Gatineau and Quebec cities, Ottawa is known to have some of the best colleges in Canada in terms of the quality of education offered by this institutions. These higher academic institutions integrate an interdisciplinary approach to research that led to important discoveries and innovations and to recognition and awards.

In this article, we’ll be listing out best 10 colleges in Ottawa based on their reputation and rankings by different bodies and institution in Canada, and student reviews.


1. Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology

Established in 1967, Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology is a public-funded college in Ottawa and one of the best Research Colleges in Canada. With a main campus in Ottawa and two other campuses in Perth and Pembroke, the college offers bachelor’s degrees, diplomas, and certificates in a range of disciplines and specialties.

Algonquin college programs are arts and technology based programs, with the aim of teaching its students more on applied theory and practical experiences in their respective disciplines. This college in Ottawa has over 19,000 full-time students in more than 180 programs; including 155 Ontario college programs, 18 apprenticeship programs, 16 co-op programs, 6 collaborative degree programs and 6 bachelor’s degree programs. Some of these programs are taken through collective partnerships with the University of Ottawa and Carleton University.

The institution is also an affiliate member of Polytechnics Canada, a national association of colleges, polytechnics and institutes of technology in Canada.

Location: 1385 Woodroffe Avenue, Ottawa ON, K2G 1V8


2. Collège La Cité

Established in 1989 in the city of Ottawa, Collège La Cité which is commonly referred to as La Cité is the largest French-language college in the province of Ontario. In 2011, La Cité was ranked first among the 24 colleges in Ontario. The ranking was selected based on the following criteria:

  • student satisfaction
  • graduate employment rate
  • quality of learning experiences
  • usefulness of the skills and knowledge acquired
  • and overall quality of services of each college

This college in Ottawa has also earned for itself different reputations and rankings by different institutions, one of which is the second best college in terms of overall quality of facilities provided to its students by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.

More than 90 programs are offered in La Cité to more than 5,000 students from Canada and international students, including hundreds of scholarships and entrance awards provided by this college to its students.

Location: 801, promenade de l’Aviation Ottawa ON, K1K 4R3



3. Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

Established in 1929 by the Parliament of Canada, The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada is a regulatory college charged to oversee the medical education of specialists in Canada. The Royal College is a nonprofit organization concerned with setting national standards for medical education and continuing professional development in Canada for 80 medical specialties. Hence, the College is neither a licensing nor a disciplinary body. Rather, it’s a regulatory authority that helps ensure that the training and evaluation of medical and surgical specialists and two special programs maintain certain standards of quality in Canada.

All physicians and surgeons with the exclusion of family physicians in Canada (except Quebec), must be certified by the Royal College in Ottawa before they obtain a provincial or territorial licence to practise.

Location: 774 Echo Drive, Ottawa ON, K1S 5N8



4. Herzing College

Herzing college is a privately-owned college, located on the east end of Ottawa in the St. Laurent Shopping Centre. With its several campuses located in the US and Canada, this college has solely placed it focus to meet the demand for Healthcare, Business, and Technology professionals in the nation’s capital city.

This college in Ottawa is equipped with computers designed to facilitate the learning experience. It has a resource library, a student lounge, and its laboratories and classrooms are designed to engage students through hands-on learning.

Courses offered at Herzing college are career-focused courses, taught by committed and enthusiastic professors who bring a blend of practical industry experience and valued academic credentials into every classroom.

Location: 1200 St. Laurent Boulevard, Box 225
St. Laurent Shopping Center, Suite 408
Ottawa ON, K1K 3B8



5. Augustine College


Augustine College is an unaccredited, private, Christian liberal arts college in Ottawa. Established in 1997, this college has given its students a thorough introduction to the western civilization from a Christian viewpoint for more than two decades, offering them more knowledge and understanding of the modern world

Since 2014, when the college surrendered its corporate charter for financial reasons, it operates on an unincorporated basis. Also, course credits from this college are not recognized by other universities.

Their program is viewed by most students as a preparatory year between high school and university devoted to the study and understanding of western civilization in accord with the Gospel.

Location: St. Peter & St. Paul’s Anglican Church
152 Metcalfe St, Ottawa
ON, K2P 1N9



6. Willis College

Established in 1866, Willis College is a private college in Ottawa focused in helping its student earn skills in Business, Healthcare, and Technology to start a new career. For over 150 years, this college has provided adult career counseling and skills-based programs – employment-ready education to a diverse group of students, including international students, earning for itself several partnerships and accreditations.

Willis College offers 15 different post-secondary diploma programs at two campuses in Ottawa and Arnprior, Ontario providing co-op placements for most of the programs. The programs are also industry-recognized certifications.

Location: 1200 St. Laurent Blvd
St. Laurent Shopping Centre, Suite 20
Ottawa ON, K1K 3B8



7. Algonquin Careers Academy

Algonquin Careers Academy is a private owned college in Canada. With colleges in Ottawa and Mississauga, this academic institution has been changing lives by providing its students with high quality, industry-focused, career training diploma programs. All of the programs offered at Algonquin Careers Academy are combined in-class education with practical hands on training, providing co-op placements with the opportunity to meet prospective employers, explore careers, and gain valuable in-field experience before graduation.

For more than four decades, this college has helped its students earn skills in Healthcare, Business, Legal Studies and several online programs, securing various industry specific accreditations and professional partnerships for itself.  

Location: 1830 Bank street, Ottawa ON, K1V 7Y6



8. Academy of Learning Career College Ottawa West

Established as a franchise system in 1987, Academy of Learning Career College is a private college in Canada initially specialized in computer and business skills training for adult learners, based on Integrated Learning System (ILS) – a self-directed, multisensory learning experience – as its primary method of delivery.

With over 30 years of experience and several locations in Canada, Academy of Learning Career College has continued to help its students achieve excellence in their respective careers through programs and courses continuously being developed to ensure that they learn the necessary skills, which will enable them to enter into the marketplace and better their professional lives.

Location: 1600 Merrivale Road, Suite 217, Ottawa ON, K2G 5J8



9. Labour College of Canada

The Labour College of Canada is a union-made education program in Ottawa established by the Canadian Labour Congress. The programs offered at LCC are provided through the Canadian Labour Congress, for active union members that supports critical thinking and collaborative learning in a flexible format. After the college went through some restructuring in 2016, the new LCC Certificate Program became more accessible, affordable, and more relevant to today’s unions and the labour movement as a whole.

Some of the benefits of the LCC Certificate Program are:

  • It helps students build their leadership skills by providing them with leadership tools
  • Strengthens their critical thinking skills
  • Fosters empowerment, self-confidence and new networks of labour leaders
  • Examines working class struggles and human rights issues that affect all workers

Location: 2841 Riverside Drive Ottawa ON, K1V 8X7