Information for

Computer Engineering at Waterloo

At a glance

  • Available as a co-op program only
  • Starts in first year so apply directly to this program on your application
  • Earn a Bachelor of Applied Science in Computer Engineering
  • Offered by the Faculty of Engineering

About the program

Computer engineering draws upon Waterloo's strengths in electrical engineering and computer science. You'll gain experience with all aspects of computers, from chips and wiring through to software, networks, and communications.

Use our labs to develop software that allows mobile wireless devices to communicate securely. An annual design symposium gives you the opportunity to show your fourth-year project to the public - as well as potential employers and investors!

More than 1,000 technology companies, including BlackBerry and Google, have offices in the surrounding community, providing many opportunities for co-op work terms or your career.

Female student using electronic equipment in lab

As an Engineering student in the world's largest co-op program, you'll graduate with 2 years of work experience, earn money to help pay for your education, and be able to try out different career areas.

Admission requirements

  • Ontario students: 6 Grade 12 U and/or M courses including
    • Advanced Functions (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • Calculus and Vectors (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • Chemistry (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • Physics (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
    • English (ENG4U) (minimum final grade of 70% is required)
  • Admission averages: Individual selection from the low to mid-90s
  • An Admission Information Form is required
  • Not studying in Ontario? Search our admission requirements database

First-year courses

September to December

CHE 102 - Chemistry for Engineers
ECE 100A - Electrical and Computer Engineering Practice
ECE 105 - Physics of Electrical Engineering 1
ECE 140 - Linear Circuits
ECE 150 - Fundamentals of Programming
MATH 117 - Calculus 1 for Engineering

January to April

ECE 100B - Electrical and Computer Engineering Practice
ECE 103 - Discrete Mathematics
ECE 106 - Physics of Electrical Engineering 2
ECE 124 - Digital Circuits and Systems
ECE 155 - Engineering Design with Embedded Systems
MATH 119 - Calculus 2 for Engineering

What other courses will you take?


By alternating school terms and paid co-op work terms throughout your degree, you can explore new career areas and types of employers as your career interests evolve.

Sample co-op positions

  • Mobile Software Developer, Five Mobile Inc
  • Internet Application Developer, Inc
  • Web/Mobile 3D Engineering, Sensidea
  • Solution Developer, T4G Limited
  • Developer, Xtreme Labs Inc
  • Test Automation Developer, BlackBerry
  • Service Desk Analyst - Client Services, Toronto Transit Commission

Co-op work/study sequences

  Fall Winter Spring
First year School Co-op School
Second year Co-op School Co-op
Third year School Co-op School
Fourth year Co-op School School
Final year Co-op School  

Fall = September to December, Winter = January to April, Spring = May to August
School = 4-month school term
Co-op = 4-month co-op work term

There is a second work-study sequence where co-op starts in the spring of first year.


As a graduate, you might design control systems for automated production lines, create software for digital telephone switching systems, develop an operating system for a client with specific needs, or plan and supervise the installation of computer networks.

Recent graduates

  • Software Developer, Google
  • Senior Mobile Developer, CIBC
  • Network Designer, TELUS Corporation
  • Spacecraft Operations Engineer, Canadian Space Agency
  • Hardware Engineer, Apple Inc.
  • Software Engineer, Cisco Systems Canada
  • Engineering Manager, LinkedIn
  • IT Specialist, IBM Canada
  • Firmware Engineer, Millson

Possible professional designation

Learn more about Computer Engineering