Follow your passion for Arts — and be business savvy, too
Honours Arts and Business is where the things you’re passionate about intersect with business. Pick one of 29 majors — a subject you’re curious about or something you’ve always loved — then layer on business classes that teach you the practical skills employers look for.
Want your degree to be even more customized? Add on a second honours major or a minor. Choose the regular system of study and finish in four years, or add 20 months of serious work experience to your résumé through co-op. You’ve even got the option of studying abroad.
International exchanges in 25 countries
Include minors and options as part of your degree
Ontario students: six Grade 12 U and/or M courses including
- any Grade 12 U English (final grade of at least 70% is required)
Admission average: Low 80s (co-op and regular)
We recommend completing the Admission Information Form once you've applied.
Not studying in Ontario? Search our admission requirements.
Mathematics of Data Management is recommended if you're interested in majoring in Anthropology; Economics; Psychology; Political Science; Sexuality, Marriage and Family Studies; Social Development Studies; or Sociology.
If you plan to major in Economics, Calculus and Vectors is also recommended, however you can choose to take a first-year calculus course to acquire additional background.
Choose from 29 majors
An Arts advisor can help you understand the options available to you as a new student and in choosing the major that suits your interests and goals.
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Questions? Ask a student!
Contact an Arts student ambassador to learn about their experience.
Ask them questions such as why they chose their program, what the classes are like, and how you can get involved on campus.
First-year courses and beyond
September to December
January to April
*The Arts First requirement consists of two first-year courses that are capped at 25 students: ARTS 130 - Inquiry and Communication and ARTS 140 - Information and Analysis. Instead of listening to a lecture and trying to capture notes, Arts First courses will have you and your classmates working together to respond to a challenge posed by the instructor.
After first year
About 40% of your time will focus on your honours major while 30% of your courses will be in business. With your remaining classes, you can choose electives from many of the 100 subject areas at Waterloo.
Customize your degree
Co-op = relevant paid work experience
In our co-op program, you'll normally alternate between four-month school terms and four-month paid work terms throughout your degree. With thousands of employers hiring Waterloo co-op students each year, you can explore careers by applying to jobs related to your major.
Related link: Learn about Nicole's co-op experience on our Beyond Ideas website.
Sample co-op job titles
- Legal Office Assistant
- Entrepreneurship Programmer, Trainer, and Coordinator
- Junior Marketing Writer/Proofreader
- Human Resources Trainee
- Marketing Communications Associate
Sample co-op employers
- Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP
- Waterloo Region Small Business Centre
- Microsoft Canada
What can you do with a degree in Honours Arts and Business?
With expertise in both business and your major, you'll have the skills and knowledge needed for a career in an incredible range of areas such as business, government, marketing, project management, communications, law, human resources, public relations, and more.
- Donor & Member Relations Coordinator - Toronto International Film Festival
- HR Coordinator - PepsiCo Canada
- Economist - Ontario Ministry of Finance
- Business Communications Manager - BlackBerry
- Team Lead - BMO Money Market Operations
Learn about the future of careers in business.
Common questions about the program
Can I change my major after I apply? Can I do a double major?
When you apply to Waterloo, you'll indicate a major that you'd like to pursue. (A major is the subject you'd like to be the focus of your degree.) You’re not committed to this major – and you don’t need to solidify the major(s) you want to explore in first year until June, which is when you'll select courses for the term starting in September. You’ll begin your major in first year even though you don’t officially choose it until the end of first year. We recommend that you explore two majors in first year to keep your options open.
As an Honours Arts and Business student, you can do a major and minor (you can do a double major if you want to take more than the 40 required courses for your degree). Not sure what a major or minor are? Check out our guide to university terminology. Advisors in the Faculty of Arts will be able to help you with choosing courses and potential majors.
Can I switch to co-op if I change my mind?
If you’re even slightly interested in including co-op work terms as part of your degree, you should apply to co-op when you apply to Waterloo. You’ll automatically be considered for the regular system of study if you aren’t accepted for co-op, but the admission ranges are often very similar between the two systems of study. If you’re in good academic standing it is possible to switch into co-op later in your studies, but it's not guaranteed as decisions are based on how many spaces are available in co-op and how far through your degree you are.
Apply directly to Honours Arts and Business on your application
Offered by the Faculty of Arts
Earn a Bachelor of Arts in your major
Ready to learn more?
- Contact Samantha Boehmer, our Arts Recruitment Co-ordinator, who can answer any questions about the program
- Subscribe to our newsletter to get tips and advice from current students
- Related program
29 Arts majors
Pick one of 29 majors in humanities, social sciences, languages, fine arts, or performing arts. Then round out your degree with courses in other subjects that spark your interest.
14 business courses
Through your business courses, you'll gain an in-depth understanding of accounting, management, economics, marketing, entrepreneurship, ethics, and communication.