Guidance counsellors play an important role in helping students make an informed decision about their study options. To support you in your connections with students, we've highlighted the benefits of studying math and computer science in the Faculty of Mathematics. We've also included lots of helpful links and resources summarizing information important to students in the application process.
Why Choose Mathematics and Computer Science at Waterloo
Students have lots of great options when it comes to their studies. Knowing the differences between universities and their academic excellence and student experience is a great way to help students narrow down their choices.
At Waterloo, we have national and international recognition for our Faculty of Mathematics and our mathematics and computer science programs.
- The only Faculty of Mathematics in North America.
- The largest centre for mathematics and computing in the world.
- #1 in Canada for computer science and mathematics (Maclean's 2021).
- Ranked top 50 in the world for mathematics and top 23 in the world for computer science (QS World Rankings).
We have 23 undergraduate programs for students to choose from. Research each of our study options to discover program descriptions, courses, professional designations, student stories, comparable programs and how to apply.
Co-op and careers
All of our mathematics and computer science programs can be combined with a co-operative education (co-op) option - with some programs requiring co-op for degree requirements. Co-op allows students to earn two years of paid work experience, the chance to develop their resume and make employer connections.
Mathematicians and computer scientists are needed in all industries and our students and graduates can be found in a variety of organizations like insurance, technology, science, health, banking, finance, economics and more.
Many co-op opportunities lead to full-time jobs before or shortly after graduation. Common jobs for students and graduates are:
- Accounting Associate
- Business Analyst
- Client Specialist
- Data Scientist
- Insurance Associate
- Project Manager
- Research Assistant
- Software Engineer
Co-op vs. regular
Students who are not interested in participating in co-op can look at studying programs that offer a regular option. Students in our regular programs will have their summers off and will complete their studies in four years. They can take advantage of hands-on experiences to grow their resume.
Admission averages can vary depending on the progran of interest. They can range from high 80s to mid 90s for Honours Mathematics, Math and Business and Computer Science programs. Check out our admission requirements.
It is recommended that students take computer science, if available in their school, as all mathematics and computer science students are required to take computer science as part of their degree requirements.
Six grade 12 U and/or M courses including:
- Advanced Functions
- Calculus and Vectors
- Any 4U English
- One other 4U course
All other students
Students that are studying outside of Ontario can search our admission requirements to find courses and grades relevant to their curriculum of study and their mathematics and computer science programs of interest.
Repeated courses and non-day school courses policy
Students that repeat a required course or take a course outside of their regular day school, may jeopardize their chances of being admitted to the Faculty of Mathematics. Students should take all their courses in regular day school and do well in their first attempt.
Students pursuing their high school studies fully online through their school or school board will not be penalized. If students take individual online courses through their school or school board, they will not be penalized. We will review all other online courses on a case-by-case basis. Find more information on our repeat and non-day school course policy.
It is strongly recommended that students participate in our math contests because we use these results to make math scholarship decisions for students who have applied to programs in the Faculty of Mathematics, including computer science.
While the contests are used primarily to award scholarships, a strong score can be an asset to a student's application. For students whose grades and Admission Information Form scores are on the borderline of receiving admissions, a good score could result in them receiving an offer. A missing score or bad score will not be used. Contest results can only be used to support a student's application.
You may find additional helpful information in our frequently asked questions.
The Centre for Education in Mathematics and Computing (CEMC) offers a number of free math and computer science resources to help students improve their mathability including problem of the week, courseware, and contests. Many of our resources are available for teachers too.