Protection of privacy

Under the authority of the University of Waterloo Act, 1972, the University of Waterloo gathers and maintains information used for the purposes of admission, registration and other fundamental activities related to being a member of the University community and to attending a public post-secondary institution in the Province of Ontario, Canada.

Information submitted by applicants during the application process is needed to verify qualifications and determine eligibility for admission. That information, as well as any other information placed in the student record will be protected, used and released in compliance with Ontario’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (R.S.O. 1990, c. F.31) and the University of Waterloo’s policies (e.g., Policy 46 - Information Management).

Application and admission information will form part of the student record and will be used to admit, register and graduate students, record academic standing, administer awards and financial aid, authorize library access, and administer and operate academic, athletic, recreational, residences, alumni and other University programs. As an authorized Designated Learning Institution (DLI), and in accordance with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) compliance reporting requirements, the student's Unique Client Identifier (UCI) number will be recorded to the student record.

Information will be shared with other universities for those students who are in the process of applying to or who are cross-registered or who are enrolled in joint degree, cotutelle or other similar programs offered jointly by the University of Waterloo and another university or universities.

The University also collects specific and limited personal information on behalf of the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association and the Graduate Student Association. This information is used for membership administration, elections, annual general meetings and the administration of student benefit plans and is disclosed to the two organizations and external plan providers solely for those purposes. Students should contact the office of either group if they have any questions about this matter.

Faculty or Institution of enrolment, programs of study, sessions registered, awards based on academic merit, degrees received, and dates of convocation is considered public information and is released upon request to authenticate students’ current or past status at the University of Waterloo. Students who prefer that such information not be released are to advise the Registrar’s Office or Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA) in writing, as appropriate.

Co-op students’ grades, résumés, co-op work histories and citizenship status (only provided to federal government offices, employers, or third parties contracted to act on their behalf) will routinely be provided to prospective co-op employers as part of the interview process to facilitate co-op work term employment.

Information on admission, registration, academic standing and graduation may also be disclosed and used for statistical and research purposes by the University, other post-secondary educational institutions and the provincial and federal governments.

The Income Tax Act (ITA) requires that the University of Waterloo request and include students’ Social Insurance Numbers (SIN) in annual Information Returns filed with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) regarding T2202 and T4A tax documents. The Tuition and Enrolment Certificate (T2202) is provided annually to each full-time and part-time student and includes tuition fees and enrolment information of students, such as the months of full-time or part-time enrolment. The Statement of Pension, Retirement, Annuity, and Other Income (T4A) is provided annually to students who receive scholarship, bursary and certain other non-employment income. The SIN is also included on Revenu Quebec’s RL-1 tax document that is provided to students resident in Quebec. Students’ SIN may also be used by the University to support processing of financial aid, which may include providing information to provincial or federal government offices or third parties contracted to act on their behalf; details on this use are provided in the financial aid application process. Questions pertaining to the collection, use, and disclosure of SIN by the University of Waterloo should be directed to The Centre.

The University of Waterloo is required to disclose personal information such as Ontario Education Numbers, student characteristics and educational outcomes to the Ministry of Colleges and Universities under s. 15 of the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act, R.S.O. 1990, Chapter M.19, as amended. The ministry collects this data for purposes such as planning, allocating and administering public funding to colleges, universities and other post-secondary educational institutions and to conduct research and analysis, including longitudinal studies, and statistical activities conducted by or on behalf of the ministry for purposes that relate to post-secondary education. Further information on how the Ministry of Colleges and Universities uses this personal information is available on the ministry’s website. Further information on the collection and use of student- level enrolment-related data can be obtained from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities website (English or French) or by writing to the Director, Postsecondary Finance and Information Management Branch, Postsecondary Education Division, 438 University Avenue, 5th Floor, Toronto, Ontario, M7A 2A5.

Questions by an individual regarding the collection, use, disclosure, access, and correction of their personal information in any specific instance should be addressed to the University Faculty, administrative office, or service responsible for such collection and use. Questions of a general nature regarding the processing of personal information by the University, should be directed to the Secretariat, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1. The Secretariat can be contacted by email at See also University of Waterloo Policy 46 - Information Management.

Records Management

All documents submitted to support admission become the property of the University and will not be returned. Documents submitted by students are retained for the duration of their studies. See Policy 46 - Information Management and WatClass, the approved classification scheme and retention schedules for University of Waterloo.