If you accept (or have accepted) your Offer of Admission to Waterloo but need to begin your undergraduate studies next September 2023, you may request to defer your admission. Deferrals will be available to September 2023 only (winter and spring deferrals are not available).

If you’re unable to begin your university studies this year, you can request a deferral to start in September 2023. Decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis. Due to the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the information on this page is subject to change without notice. 

The deferral form will be open from July 1 to August 31, 2022*

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*Extended deferral deadline for international students: September 27

The deadline to apply for a deferral has been extended to September 27 for international students who do not receive their study permit in time to join us this fall.

Our experience indicates it's in the best interest of your academic success that you begin your classes and lectures the first week. Since the first week is a short week, you could catch up if you were to begin on September 12, but we would not suggest arriving later. Please understand that our terms are only a few months long and the academic material moves along very quickly. Missing more than a week of lectures may make it difficult to catch up in your classes while also adjusting to university life.

How do I request a deferral?

  1. First, you must accept your Offer of Admission from Waterloo on the Ontario Universities' Application Centre (OUAC) website by the deadline stated on the offer.
  2. Next, you must meet all conditions outlined on your Offer of Admission by the deadline specified on that offer.
  3. Request a deferral of admission.
    1. The maximum deferral period is one calendar year (three academic terms).
    2. On the form, you'll be asked to explain your reasons for requesting the deferral and to summarize your plans for the deferral period.

You may not pursue college or university studies during the deferral period. You may take high school courses for personal interest.

When will I find out about my deferral?

Each request will be considered on an individual basis. Decisions on deferral requests will normally be made in July and August after all conditions outlined on an offer of admission have been met.

What happens when I want to start studying?

You will not be required to reapply through the Ontario Universities' Application Centre (OUAC) next year. We’ll send you a new offer of admission in advance of when you plan to start your studies. You’ll need to accept this offer in Quest by the date indicated on the offer of admission.