Because today, even your fridge is full of software
Whether you want to create a VR training program for surgeons, the next innovative OS, or tomorrow’s fleet of autonomous vehicles, software engineers have endless career options in today’s tech-enabled world.
At Waterloo, you won’t just write code. You’ll also analyze software architecture, apply algorithms, understand digital hardware systems, and design human/ computer interfaces. Plus, you’ll learn how to work in teams and manage projects, all while being taught within one of the best universities in the world for software engineering (Shanghai World University Rankings 2021).
Then, during your co-op, you’ll put those skills to work at leading companies or hot new startups. When you graduate, you’ll be ready to create reliable, affordable, and faster software for all kinds of different purposes.
- Dream big. Use computer programming and engineering problem-solving to create usable, reliable, and efficient software. Apply your skills during co-op terms at some of the biggest tech companies in Canada and Silicon Valley, or create your own tech start-up.
- Study in a high-tech hub. The Waterloo region is home to Google, Shopify, and more than 1,500 other technology companies, providing lots of co-op and career opportunities.
- Offered as a co-op program only
- Graduate with a Bachelor of Software Engineering
- Offered by the Faculty of Engineering and the Faculty of Mathematics
Why Waterloo Engineering?
What will you learn?
During your first year, you'll take a mix of foundational courses in computer engineering, computer science, and math. In upper years, you'll mostly take software engineering courses.
Learn more about the courses you'll take for your Software 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
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.
Sample co-op job titles
- Tools and automation engineering intern
- Data scientist
- Mobile developer
- Software developer
- iOS developer
- Production engineering
- Algorithms engineering
Sample co-op employers
- Mozilla Corporation
- Waterloo Regional Police Service
- Element AI
What can you do with a Software Engineering degree?
Graduates often pursue careers in software engineering and development, consulting, and more. They commonly work for financial institutions, technology companies, and software corporations.
- Software Engineer – Microsoft
- Software Development Engineer – Amazon
- Software Developer – Electronic Arts (Canada)
- Software Engineer – Google
- Innovation Specialist – Telus
- Web Development Engineer – Amazon
- Senior Software Engineer – Uber Technologies
Possible professional designation
Learn about the future of careers in engineering.
Student life, including Women in Engineering
Student design teams
Have fun and develop hands-on experience through one or more of our 25+ student-led design teams! Teams include rocketry, concrete canoe, robotics, solar car, submarine racing, autonomous vehicle, Space X Hyperloop, Formula Motorsports, Engineers Without Borders, and more.
You’ll meet people with similar interests and goals, benefit from networking with experts in the engineering profession, and develop some great skills for your résumé.
Engineering Society (EngSoc)
EngSoc is run by students for students and provides many social and academic events and services to make your experience as a Waterloo Engineering student the best it can be.
Benefit from mentoring for first-year students or get involved and meet other students through an annual conference, semiformal, career fair, charity events, community outreach, and much more!
Hack the North
As a Waterloo Software Engineering student, you’ll have the opportunity to apply to participate in competitions such as Hack the North. This hack-a-thon is the largest in Canada and hosted annually at Waterloo.
Our campus is packed with opportunities to get involved – no matter how unique your interests. Between our 250+ student-run clubs, sports and recreation, student government, and events, student life at Waterloo has something for everyone.
Women in Engineering
Women in Engineering (WiE) supports female students and engineers while encouraging the next generation of women to pursue careers in engineering. Regardless of gender, orientation, or background, you’re welcome to join this inclusive community to participate in outreach events as well as mentorship and volunteer opportunities.
Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (WiSTEM) is a student-run club that welcomes all students (regardless of gender) to promote equality in STEM. Opportunities include skills workshops, discussions, homework help, and guest speakers.
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)
Grade 11 U Introduction to Computer Science and Grade 12 U Computer Science are recommended as helpful background for the program.
Admission averages: Individual selection from the low to mid-90s
Not studying in Ontario? Search our admission requirements.
Complete the Admission Information Form once you've applied. You will be asked to explain your programming experience.
Participation in a programming contest, such as the Canadian Computing Competition, is helpful to include on your AIF.
You’re also encouraged to write the Euclid Mathematics Contest as good background; however, this will not affect your application to Software Engineering.
How to apply
Apply directly to this program on your application.
- Visit our Software Engineering program website.