Your optimal future starts here.
Focus on problems where resources need to be allocated effectively in complex, dynamic, and uncertain conditions.
You'll start with a solid foundation in math, including combinatorics, linear optimization, modeling, scheduling, forecasting, decision theory, and computer simulation. On top of that, you’ll add courses in economics, business, and management science, in addition to the ability to gain paid work experience through co-op.
After first year, you'll choose one of two specializations: Operations Research or Business.
When you graduate, you’ll have all kinds of career options. You might enhance scheduling for airline crews and sports games, improve production and distribution efficiency for manufacturing companies, increase service quality and efficiency in healthcare administration, or develop sophisticated tools for finance and investments.
Mathematical Optimization admission requirements
To be considered for entrance scholarships in the Faculty of Mathematics, you must write one or both of the contests. If you complete both contests, we'll use the results of the contest in which you performed best.
First-year Mathematical Optimization courses
You may select advanced-stream courses for algebra, calculus, and computer science if you meet the requirements.
September to December
January to April
After first year
Most of the required courses you’ll take will be combinatorics and optimization courses, with additional courses in mathematics. With your remaining classes, you can choose electives from many of the 100 subject areas at Waterloo.
Sample upper-year courses
Apply to Mathematics and choose Mathematical Optimization as your major
Earn a Bachelor of Mathematics in Mathematical Optimization
Co-op = relevant paid work experience
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.
First faculty of mathematics in North America
Offered by the Faculty of Mathematics
Waterloo is an international leader in Mathematics
Customize your Bachelor of Mathematics degree
In upper years, you'll select Business or Operations Research as your specialization. You can also add additional areas of expertise to your degree by including one or more of the minors available to all Waterloo students.
What can you do with a degree in Mathematical Optimization?
Waterloo Mathematical Optimization graduates commonly pursue careers in software development, business analysis, and operations. They often work in financial institutions, consulting companies, universities, and more.
- App Software Developer - Bank of Montreal
- Business Analyst - ThoughtWorks Canada
- Business Technology Analyst - Deloitte & Touche LLP
- Health Information Analyst - Ministry of Health Services, British Columbia
- IT Architect - Scotiabank
- Institutional Analyst - University of Waterloo
- Manager, Business Operations - Fortune Metals Inc.
For more information on potential careers, check out our page on careers in business.
Your choice: 4 years or 5
Choose co-op and gain two years of career-relevant work experience. Or choose the regular system and graduate a year earlier.
Learn from top researchers
There’s no better place to study optimization than Waterloo, home to the world’s largest concentration of combinatorics and optimization professors.