Information for

International Development at Waterloo

Become a catalyst for change. Help those who are less fortunate. Create new ways to assist other countries and people by learning to solve problems at the local level.

During an 8-month overseas field placement, you'll gain the knowledge, skills, and perspectives to create positive change in a developing area of Africa, Latin America, or Asia, where there are issues of economic inequality, social injustice, and environmental change.

As an alternative to the international placement, you can choose to stay at Waterloo and complete an in-depth project relating to international development. You'll complete a 3‐week community service experience in Canada or internationally.

By taking environmental studies, social sciences, business, and language courses, you'll strengthen your adaptability and thinking skills. These skills are essential when designing development projects that are ethical, environmentally sustainable, culturally responsible, and scientifically accountable.

    About the program

    • Available as a regular program only
    • Starts in first year so apply directly to this program on your application
    • Earn a Bachelor of Environmental Studies in International Development
    • Offered by the Faculty of Environment
    • Waterloo's Development Studies program is ranked in the top 100 worldwide (QS World University Rankings 2016)

    Admission requirements

    • Ontario students: 6 Grade 12 U and/or M courses including
      • Any Grade 12 U English (final grade of 70% is required)
      • Recommended courses: at least one Grade 12 U Science or Mathematics course; at least one Grade 12 U course in a second language
    • Admission average: Low 80s

    First-year courses


    September to December

    INDEV 100 - Introduction to International Development
    PLAN 100 - The Evolution of Planning
    GEOG 101 - Geography and Human Habitat
    ECON 101 - Introduction to Microeconomics
    1 elective

    January to April

    INDEV 101 - Issues in International Development
    ENVS 195 - Introduction to Environmental Studies
    ECON 102 - Introduction to Macroeconomics
    2 electives

    What other courses will you take?


    International Development graduates have found careers working for various non-profit organizations both domestic and international, education and research, policy development, and more

    Recent graduates

    • Program Development Consultant, Oxfam Canada
    • Officer, Institutional Partnerships, Right to Play
    • Program and Grant Officer, World Vision International
    • Assistant Farm Manager, Nith Valley Organics
    • Financial Inclusion Outreach Worker, The Working Centre
    • Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Raising the Village
    • Teacher, Umulqura Learning Center
    • Tour Manager, Free the Children

    Further education

    While the full range of further education depends on your individual interests, these are common areas our graduates pursue.

    • Political science, public policy, global governance
    • Business and international affairs
    • Development practice, environment and resources studies
    • Planning, environmental engineering, GIS

    Learn more about International Development