Chemical Engineering

Design a sustainable future

Waterloo chemical engineering student wearing goggles works in a lab

Health, energy, and environment. Global sustainable solutions through Chemical Engineering.

In one of the world's top Chemical Engineering programs (ranked 89th globally in the QS World University Rankings 2023), you’ll enhance your knowledge of physics, chemistry, biology, and math to transform raw materials into useful products. You'll also design and control complex physical and chemical processes.

Chemical engineers design, implement, and supervise industrial processes where matter undergoes change, including in the pharmaceutical, energy, or plastics industries, among others. They also play a major role in the emerging field of nanotechnology, with applications in the development of new eco-friendly advanced materials and devices.

Through North America's largest co-op program, you can apply your transferable skills in a wide range of jobs that support the transition to sustainable energy, combat climate change, maximize food production, enable a circular economy, enhance health care, and more.

During your six co-op terms, you'll be able to create an impressive résumé, explore potential career areas, and earn money to help pay for your education. You’ll graduate ready for a career in renewable energy, agriculture and food processing, biotechnology and biomedical, pharmaceuticals, environmental remediation, and more.

Program highlights

An experiential approach. Learn to conduct investigations in the areas of fluid mechanics, bioprocesses, electrochemistry, and more using our hands-on labs.

Benefit from multiple perspectives. Combine your knowledge of physics, chemistry, biology, and math with engineering design and problem-solving skills.


  • Offered as a co-op program only
  • Graduate with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Chemical Engineering with an option for specialization
  • Offered through the Faculty of Engineering

Chemical Engineering at Waterloo

Part of Canada's largest engineering school, the Department of Chemical Engineering at Waterloo is home to more than 1,200 students, faculty and staff, with thousands of alumni worldwide.

What will you learn?

During your first year, you'll take a mix of engineering, math, biology, chemistry, and physics courses. In upper years, you'll learn to design batteries, optimize and control chemical and biological processes, and design separation processes.

Learn more about courses you'll take for your Chemical Engineering degree.

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Questions? Ask a student!

Ask a Faculty of Engineering student about their program, classes, getting involved on campus, and more!


Co-op = relevant paid work experience

Waterloo's co-op program, the largest in North America, is an amazing way to explore potential careers, learn to interview for jobs, graduate with up to two years of valuable experience – and make money!

Sample co-op job titles

  • Analyst
  • Research assistant
  • Materials scientist
  • Process specialist
  • Quality project coordinator
  • Project manager
  • Supply chain assistant

Co-op work-study sequence

Starting in first year, you'll normally alternate between school and work every four months, integrating your classroom learning with real-world experience. You can return to the same employer for a couple of work terms to gain greater knowledge and responsibility or work for different employers to get a broad range of experience.

Your first work term will be halfway through first year (January to April 2025).

Year September to December (Fall) January to April (Winter) May to August (Spring)
First Study Co-op Study
Second Co-op Study Co-op
Third Study Co-op Study
Fourth Study Co-op Co-op
Fifth Study Study -

or after first year (May to August 2025).

Year September to December (Fall) January to April (Winter) May to August (Spring)
First Study Study Co-op
Second Study Co-op Study
Third Co-op Study Co-op
Fourth Co-op Study Co-op
Fifth Study Study -

There are two options for co-op sequences. You can request your preference if you receive an offer of admission.

Learn more about co-op →


megaphone icon"The great thing about Chemical Engineering is that it's a really broad field of study, so there's lots of room to explore and refine your studies to something that you're really passionate about."Chukwunonso Moneme, Chemical Engineering student

Admission requirements

Ontario students: six 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 mid- to high 80s

Complete the Admission Information Form once you've applied.

Not studying in Ontario? Search our admission requirements.


How to apply

Apply directly to this program on your application.