How to apply

Admission Requirements

Check that you meet the Canadian or international admission requirements for the Department of Biology.

Before completing an application, you are strongly advised to establish contact with potential supervisors. It is a good strategy to identify whether the potential supervisors with whom you wish to undertake research have available positions and can fund your research assistantship. Applications may not be circulated unless potential supervisors have been contacted beforehand.

The Department of Biology requires students to have 3 references.  We would prefer to have 3 academic references, but it's acceptable to have 2 academic references and 1 work supervisor reference if necessary.

Application deadlines

  • Application forms and supporting documents are due by the deadlines outlined in the table below.
  • Students who meet these deadlines will be eligible for consideration for any major awards and scholarships (OGS, Tri-Agency Scholarships and internal UWaterloo awards) to which they have applied.
Starting Semester Application Deadline
Fall (September - December) February 1st
Winter (January - April) July 1st (previous year)
Spring (May - August) October 1st (previous year)

** For Domestic students (Canadians and Permanent Residents) applications will be considered after these deadlines, although this may impact your eligibility for major awards and scholarships in your first year.

If you have any questions, please contact the Admissions Coordinator, April Wettig ( Please ensure you provide your full name and uWaterloo student number.  The volume of correspondence is very high so please be patient.  

Apply Online

Once you have satisfied the above points, carefully follow the instructions to complete the online application.

After you apply

Once you have submitted your online application and have paid the non-refundable fee of $100, the Graduate Office will email you within a few days with instructions to access your Waterloo Quest self-service account. The application materials required for Biology will be listed on your Quest account for you to upload. Visit the Graduate website for helpful tips.

If you are not able to upload your application materials on Quest according to the procedure outlined on the Graduate Studies site, then contact Please include your full name and uWaterloo student number.

You can find information about the application process on the discover graduate website.

You can find more information about student funding and the graduate program on this website. 

Please see the Student Accounts web site for instructions on arranging your tuition fee payment.

Wondering what comes after Graduate School?  

Career View Mirror is designed for science students to benefit from the advice and experience of uWaterloo science alumni. Explore science alumni profiles that include traditional and non-traditional science occupations!