Taking courses from other universities

At times, it may be necessary or desirable to take a course at another university, either on their campus during one of your Co-op Work Terms or possibly through distance education. First, you must submit a Letter of Permission Request Form.

Letter of Permission Request Form

You cannot take a course at another university and assume it will count towards your UW degree. To have a course count towards your UW degree, the other university must have approval (or permission) for you to take the course. Hence, before you take the course, you must fill out a Letter of Permission Request Form. This must be done before you enrol in the course. Many universities will not allow you to even register for a course until they receive a letter of permission, however, you must not assume that acceptance will guarantee that the course will be counted towards your UW degree.

Finding an Equivalent Course

You cannot take a core course at another university unless:

  • You failed the course here at UW,
  • You are taking the courses at another university as part of an Exchange Program, or
  • You are taking an Exchange Term at another university, but one or more of the core courses from that Academic Term are not offered at the host university.

For any course, be it a core course or an elective, the following rules apply:

  • To treat a course as an appropriate substitute for a UW course, there must be a 75% overlap of the material covered, and
  • You are not allowed to take a course for which there is a 50% overlap with a course you have already taken.

Once you have found such a course, you must print out a course description of the UW course together with a course description of the substitute course at the other university (an exception to this is if the course appears on the pre-approved list below). Print out a Letter of Permission Request Form (available here) and take the next appropriate step:

ECE Courses

If you are thinking of taking a substitute for an ECE course, submit these forms, together with a Letter of Permission and a cheque for the required amount (indicated on the Letter of Permission) to your Academic Advisor. Your Advisor will verify the appropriateness of the course and pass the form and the cheque to the Undergraduate Advisor/Co-ordinator who, in turn, will forward it to Registrar's Office.

Please note that to cover the full spectrum of ECE 241, this will, in general, require two courses from another university.

Other Courses

If you are looking to substitute another course, for example, a CSE, you must take the course descriptions to an advisor from the department which is offering the substitute UW course. For example, if you are taking a sociology course, the Undergraduate Advisor (or equivalent) from the Sociology Department must verify it is an appropriate substitute for a UW sociology course. Once they approve the course, you must take the form to your Academic Advisor who will verify the appropriateness of the substitution and pass the form and the cheque to the Undergraduate Advisor/Co-ordinator who, in turn, will forward it to the Registrar's Office.

If you are taking a techniques course, you must still submit an appropriate Technique Approval Form.

Pre-Approved Equivalent Courses

The list of course-specific information includes possible pre-approved equivalent courses including courses at Athabasca University.

Courses at Athabasca

All registration of courses at Athabasca is on-line, including the option to paying on-line through credit cards. Processing in this case is faster, or, you can also send them a cheque through snail mail. You will receive the course material through the mail service at which point you can start working on the course. Arranging for an examination can also be done on-line, or if you're in a hurry, fax them a print-out of the examination request form. On this form you may specify that you can have your examination couriered (for a fee) to your location (two weeks instead of three weeks) however it is up to you as a student to first contact one of their envigilation centres (two in Kitchener-Waterloo at the time of writing and at least a dozen in Toronto). You may courier it back. Once it is marked, you may request that a transcript be couriered back to the Registrar's Office at UW.

Note that once you are registered as a student at Athabasca, you are given a login ID and password. Your session allows you to request transcripts, view marks, enrol in courses, etc. From what students have said, the process is exceptionally straight-forward.

Applying While on a Co-op Work Term

If you would like to Request a Letter of Permission while you are on a Co-op Work Term, please:

  • send the Letter of Permission Request Form, together with the cheque, through the postal service to the ECE Department addressed to "Attn: UG Advisor/Coordinator", or
  • fill in the credit-card payment details at the bottom of the Letter of Permission Form and fax the from to the ECE Department with "Attn: UG Advisor/Coordinator".