Checklist for new graduate students

Welcome to the University of Waterloo! We are very pleased that you have chosen to pursue your graduate studies in the Department of Chemistry. This page lists important action items to complete prior to, and within, your first week on campus.

If you have any questions, please contact the Graduate Coordinator.

Paying your tuition fees

You will be able to see the amount that you owe for each term, using the Finances tab in your Quest account. You will either pay the fees owing outright through your bank, or if you are an MSc or PhD student, you may choose to fill out a Promissory Note in your Quest account to indicate that your tuition will be paid by your Graduate Research Studentship (GRS) and/or awards.

Stipend and TA payment

In order to receive direct deposit payments from your Student Account (GRS stipend, awards, scholarships, etc.) you must enter your Canadian banking information into your Quest account.

In order to be paid through Workday (Teaching Assistantship), graduate students, when invited by Workday, are required to provide and upload the below information:

  • TD1 tax credit information: Online through Workday self-service.
  • Direct deposit information: Online through Workday self-service.
  • Up-to-date address information: Online through Workday self-service.

Important details on how to provide this information can be found on the HR website on the Information specific to graduate students page.

Returning students who have submitted this information previously are encouraged to access Quest/Workday to review their data for accuracy. Instructions on how to view your personal information can be found in the Employee self-service work instructions. If your banking information has changed, you will need to submit updated banking information.

Please direct any questions to HR Help or call 519-888-4567 ext. 35935.

Please ensure that Quest/Workday are up-to-date with a Canadian mailing address. No funds can be distributed without this.

Meet your supervisor

If you are an MSc or PhD student, it is likely that you have been corresponding with your supervisor(s) via email prior to your arrival on campus. If you have not met your supervisor in person, please do so now. Please see the online faculty and staff directory. Your supervisor will be able to advise you on many topics, including which courses you should register for, where your office will be, and how to get keys. After you have met with your supervisor, please contact the Graduate Coordinator.

Health & Safety

Health & Safety training is mandatory for all MSc and PhD students. Please go to the Safety Office's Training page, and complete the online WHMIS and Laboratory Safety courses. Both courses must be completed prior to any lab or TA assignments. It is necessary you review the Health & Safety package provided to you upon your arrival.


The WatCard is your student identification card at the University of Waterloo. Your card can be used for signing out library books, photocopying, and it can also be used in some restaurants. To obtain your card, follow the information on the New student WatCard form. You will need to provide your Waterloo student ID number in order to be issued a WatCard. If you are an International Student, be sure to bring your passport with you. Please be aware that a WatCard cannot be issued to you until you are matriculated (i.e., you have accepted your offer of admission and satisfied any and all conditions in your offer letter) and have paid your fees.

Pick-up your keys

To request a departmental (office/lab) key, please email Barbara Levai-Sharpe the following:

  1. Completed and dually-signed University of Waterloo Key Request - Required Training Form (PDF).
  2. Key permit building and room number.
  3. Expected date of issue and date of return (approximate).

To determine the mandatory/suggested training requirements, please visit the Safety Office's Training page and review the Determine required training section. Another great resource is the Safety information page on the Chemistry website.

If you are in the QNC building, please speak to your supervisor regarding access.

How to log on to a UWaterloo computer

All communications from the university will be to your university email address. An email address and account are provided to all students for the receipt of official communications and your participation in an academic program at UWaterloo. You may set-up your email address once you have become matriculated.

Please see the Information Systems and Technology (IST) website for instructions on how to connect your mobile device to the wireless service on campus.

Register for your courses

Course registration is done through your Quest account. Simply follow the prompts within Quest to register. If you receive any error notifications when you are trying to enroll, you may be able to fill out a Course Drop/Add Form to override the error notification. In order to determine whether you need to complete the aforementioned form, contact the Graduate Coordinator for further assistance.

Mailing list

After activating your university email address, please provide it to the Graduate Coordinator.

Teaching Assistant (TA) information

The Department of Chemistry holds a Teaching Assistant Workshop for all graduate student TAs at the beginning of the term. This workshop is completed on LEARN. The Teaching Assistant Workshop is mandatory for new graduate students in the Department of Chemistry. You will only need to complete the Teaching Assistant Workshop once, and you will receive a certificate of attendance that you will need to keep as proof of attendance for any future assignments.

Chemistry Graduate Studies

Review the Chemistry website's Graduate students section for information on new student resources and current student program resources.

We look forward to meeting you!