Canadians place great importance on learning, and have developed a first-rate education system with exceptionally high standards. The country spends more on education (as a percentage of GDP) compared to the OECD average, and is the second highest among G-8 countries. Canadian teenagers consistently rank among the best in the world on international tests of reading, science and math – a testament to the outstanding quality of Canadian schools. A Canadian degree, diploma or certificate is well regarded in business, government and academic circles around the globe.
Canada has ranked as one of the top ten places to live in the world since 1994 according to the United Nations (UN) and the Economist Intelligence Unit. In the UN survey, Canada earned particularly high marks for its access to education, high life expectancy (due to universal health care system); and low crime and violence rates. In addition, Canada’s largest cities — Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal — have been recognized as world class cities in which to live and work, for their cleanliness, safety, cultural activities, and attractive lifestyles.