Admission Requirements and Procedures

mpacs student

General admission requirements

  1. A four-year Honours undergraduate degree (a variety of disciplines are permitted; Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS) graduates are not granted advanced placement) with a minimum average of at least 75% in the final 20 courses.
  2. The Admissions Committee reserves the right to require additional preparation for students without significant academic background in PACS or a related discipline. This additional preparation may involve completion of a required e-learning course or module, undergraduate course(s) or other appropriate requirements.
  3. Previous experience in the field, while not required, will be looked upon favourably.
  4. References and an interview will be required for entrance into the program.
  5. Applicants whose first language is not English must meet minimum English language proficiency as determined the UWaterloo graduate Faculty of Arts requirements.
  6. Deferrals for admission and delayed entries will not be permitted.
  7. Full-time and part-time studies are available. Part-time students will be obligated to complete their requirements within five calendar years from the date of their initial registration.

Alternative admission requirements

PACS may grant alternative admission to a limited number of mature students who do not meet the regular academic admission requirements of a four-year bachelor’s degree or equivalent. Standardized graduate entrance examinations are not equitably accessible and appropriate as the basis for such admission. Therefore, the Admissions Committee will be guided by the followingalternative admission standards:

  1. Minimum eight years of field experience related to peace and conflict issues. In order to show an appropriate level of academic and intellectual capacity for the program, the applicant will be asked to submit copies of reports, documents, manuscripts, or creative media that they may have prepared in relation to their field experience.
  2. Evidence of successful participation in post-secondary education as documented by transcripts and other records.
  3. References will be asked to comment on the applicant’s academic and intellectual capacity and on the applicant’s ability to do graduate work in English.
  4. Applicants will be interviewed to assess the potential of their success in graduate studies and their contribution to the program.
  5. Some applicants may be required to complete a specified qualifying program of PACS or related courses deemed helpful to prepare them for their proposed program of studies.
  6. Probationary admission may be granted for a specified time to confirm the applicant’s ability to succeed in the program.
  7. Applicants whose first language is not English must meet minimum English language capability as determined by normal Waterloo graduate Faculty of Arts requirements.

Application Procedures

All applicants to graduate programs at the University of Waterloo apply through the same process. For general information on applying to graduate studies at Waterloo (including application requirements and deadlines, FAQs, and international admissions) visit the admission web page at the Graduate Studies Office website.

Once the application fee is paid, applicants will be asked to upload the following information:

  • Transcripts from all post-secondary institutions you have attended.
  • A current resume or Curriculum Vitae.
  • A five to eight page (1,500 - 2,000 words) writing sample that highlights your research and writing ability.
  • A Supplementary Information Form - You will be asked to answer four questions of up to 500 words per answer. These questions are:
  1. Why are you interested in this particular program? How will it prepare you for your long-term goals?
  2. Elaborate on the relevance of the academic and work experience that you bring to the program.
  3. Describe an experience related to peace or civil society development that was particularly meaningful to you and how it relates to this program.
  4. What else would you like us to know as we evaluate your application?
  • Three references, at least two of which must be academic references and at least one of which must be a professional reference. Referees will be contacted directly.

Upon its discretion the admissions committee may ask applicants for additional information.

In addition to this application, short-listed applicants to the Masters of Peace and Conflict Studies program will typically be invited to participate in a phone or in-person interview, to further assess suitability for the program.

For more information, please contact: