105 – University of Waterloo

University program information changes regularly. For the most up-to-date details, view the online application.

Last updated: September 19, 2019

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Special Characteristics

  • Earn your degree from one of Canada’s top universities. Waterloo is consistently ranked among the country’s top 3 universities in the highest quality, best overall, leaders of tomorrow and most innovative categories (Maclean’s national reputational rankings).
  • More than 100 majors and programs – many that are ranked among the top in the world.
  • With our network of 7,000 employers, you will have access to North America’s largest selection of co-op jobs. Explore careers and earn money to help pay for school.
  • With more than 300 start‑up companies connected to the university, Waterloo is one of the country’s leading universities for turning ideas into action.
  • Superior job success after graduation – Waterloo graduates are highly respected.
  • Approximately 30,000 undergraduate students, including 6,500 first‑year students.
  • One of Canada’s largest campus recreation programs as well as 200 clubs to choose from.
  • Located approximately 115 kilometres west of Toronto in a clean, safe, mid‑sized city.

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Co‑op and Regular Systems of Study

At Waterloo, programs are offered through the regular system of study, which follows the traditional September to April school year, and the co‑op system of study, which alternates 4‑month school terms with 4-month paid work terms.

Most programs are offered through both systems of study. Both the co‑op and regular systems of study are available to all students, regardless of citizenship, unless otherwise indicated. To apply to a co-op program, you must check the co-op box on your application.

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Application Deadlines

March 27, 2020, is the application deadline for the fall term (September to December 2020).

Supporting documents, such as transcripts, are due by April 3, 2020.

The following are exceptions for the fall term:

  • Architecture
    • Application and fee due to the OUAC: January 31
    • Supporting documents due to Waterloo: February 28
  • Accounting and Financial Management
    • Application and fee due to the OUAC: January 31
    • Supporting documents due to Waterloo: February 28
  • Engineering and Software Engineering
    • Application and fee due to the OUAC: January 31
    • Supporting documents due to Waterloo: February 28

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Additional Admission Information

Some programs have admission requirements in addition to the Admission Information Form.

After you apply, we will email you and let you know about the next steps in the admission process.

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English-Language Requirements

If your first language is not English and your 4 most recent years of full‑time education prior to the start of your studies at Waterloo were not in an English-language school system, you are required to provide English-language test scores and meet Waterloo’s English-language requirements.

If you meet Waterloo’s academic admission requirements, but do not have the required English-language test score, you may receive a conditional offer of admission to a program such as Bridge to Academic Success in English or English Language for Academic Studies (for Math students). These programs allow you to earn some credit toward your degree while strengthening your English skills.

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Transferring from a College or Another University

If you are transferring from a college or another university, you may be eligible for advanced standing or credit for previously completed courses. Each program has different criteria for granting transfer credits.

Read more about admission requirements and transfer credits.

Depending on the number of credits you receive, you may be classified as a first-year or upper-year student. If you receive 4 academic course units (equivalent to 80% of a first-year course load) or more in transfer credits, you are not normally eligible for co-op programs.

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Submitting Documents

After you apply, we will email you about the next steps in the admission process, including submitting documents, such as transcripts and English-language test scores.

To help speed up the admission process, you can upload your documents to our online student system. Details will be sent to you once you apply.

If your documents are not in English, ensure that you submit a notarized literal translation with the originals to speed up the application process. We also strongly suggest that you find out from your local Canadian Embassy or High Commission how to apply for a study permit and how long the process will take. Immigration details are available on the Government of Canada Immigration website.

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Scholarships and Financial Aid

If you are beginning postsecondary studies for the first time, have an admission average of 85% or higher (including marks for required courses for the program to which you have been admitted) and are admitted to full‑time, first‑year studies at Waterloo, you will receive one of the following scholarships:

  • President’s Scholarship of Distinction: Admission average of 95% or higher.
    • $2,000 entrance scholarship
    • the opportunity for a $1,500 International Experience Award and/or a $1,500 Research Award to be used in your upper years
  • President’s Scholarship: Admission average of 90-94.9%.
    • $2,000 entrance scholarship
  • Merit Scholarship: Admission average of 85-89.9%.
    • $1,000 entrance scholarship

Program‑specific entrance scholarships are also offered, ranging in value from $500 (for 1 year only) up to $100,000 (over 4 years). Some scholarships are available specifically for study permit students.

Read more about Waterloo scholarships and financial aid.

In accordance with Ontario’s Student Access Guarantee, students in need will have access to the resources needed for tuition, books and mandatory fees. Waterloo contributes to this guarantee by providing bursaries, awards and scholarships to help students with their educational expenses. We offer an entrance bursary program to first-year students from Ontario with financial need. The bursaries range in value from $500 to $4,000, and the deadline to apply is April 15. Additional details about the entrance bursary, OSAP and other aid programs can be found on Waterloo’s Student Awards and Financial Aid website.

You are required to seek financial support from all sources, including family, employment, loans and government support programs.

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Guaranteed Residence

If you are a first-year or transfer student, a space in residence is guaranteed if you meet the residence conditions. You must complete the online Residence Community Ranking Form and submit a $500 non‑refundable deposit by 11:59 pm (ET) on June 1, 2020.

Once you have reserved your space in residence, you will receive more information in June about the next steps.

Conrad Grebel University College, located on Waterloo’s campus, is not part of the residence guarantee but provides residence for first-year students. A separate application is required.

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University Colleges

If you are looking for a smaller, close-knit residence or academic home base, then one of Waterloo’s University Colleges may be for you! Located on Waterloo’s campus, each University College is a smaller community with its own character and distinctive programs where you can get involved and contribute. You can live or study at one while earning your Waterloo degree.

Waterloo’s University Colleges are:

  • Conrad Grebel University College
  • Renison University College
  • St. Jerome’s University
  • St. Paul’s University College

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Mature Students

For admission purposes, the University of Waterloo’s definition of a mature student varies by faculty. All faculties require that you present a minimum number of specific Ontario Grade 12 U/M courses (or equivalents) in addition to meeting their definition of a mature student.

Learn more about mature student admission.

If you previously attended university or college, you are not considered a mature student for admission purposes. You will be considered a transfer student and need to meet the regular admission requirements.

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Transfer Credits

For programs in the Faculties of Applied Health Sciences, Arts, Environment, Mathematics and Science, transfer credits will be considered for:

  • Advanced Level (A Level)
  • Advanced Placement (AP)
  • Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE)
  • Cambridge Pre‑U
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) courses

Transfer credits are not awarded for programs in the Faculty of Engineering, except for Architecture, which will consider transfer credits for an elective course up to a maximum of 0.5 units (generally equivalent to a one-term course at Waterloo).

Read more about transfer credits.

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Student Services

Waterloo provides a wide variety of services to help you succeed.

  • The Student Success Office provides peer tutors, success coaches, leadership workshops, services for international students and more.
  • Considered one of Canada’s most accessible universities, Waterloo’s AccessAbility Services provides support for students with permanent or temporary disabilities.
  • Counselling Services and Health Services offer help with study skills, career interests, life difficulties and stress management, as well as access to physicians, nurses and mental health professionals.
  • The Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre offers a wide range of services for Indigenous students, including guidance, connections to financial resources and advocacy for unique needs.

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Contact Information

Office of the Registrar
Waterloo ON  N2L 3G1

Email: myapplication@uwaterloo.ca
Website: www.uwaterloo.ca/future-students
Telephone: 519‑888‑4567, ext. 33106
Fax: 519‑746‑2882

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