Updated: Jun 8, 2021
The brief answer is... You don't.
There is no definite way of knowing if a program is right for you until you take classes towards that program. If you are not sure, it seems like a huge investment to apply for a program that costs time, to pay the admissions fee (money upfront), to order transcripts, and to fund the classes with thousands of dollars (of your own money, student loans or scholarships) towards a program that you are unsure of.
However, there is a way to take a few classes without ascribing to a program. Most institutions would allow you to take some courses as a "special student, non-degree or open studies student". The advantage of going through this route is that you do not have to submit transcripts and wait for the tedious admissions process. Plus, you can be part-time, not commit to any program and get courses that are transferable. If you do not meet the requirements for certain programs you want, you could take the courses for your intended program while upgrading your post-secondary requirements. Yet, there are some disadvantages. This option might bit more expensive and your chances of qualifying for scholarships are slim. Plus, you get unwanted pickings for classes as students in programs usually have first dibs.
The Female Settler has got you covered on a few funding options if you are interested in taking courses as a "special student, non-degree or open studies student." Check out below the various funding opportunities that might be available for you to take a few courses outside of a program. If you do not find a grant for your province, check back later as we update this list daily. You can also subscribe below to keep abreast of our latest content.