About the Graduate Diploma in Design

The Professional Master of Engineering (MEng) degree with a Graduate Diploma in Design (GDD) is an exciting program offered by the Department of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering at the University of Waterloo. 

It is a coursework program available to graduate engineers, qualified working professionals or internationally trained engineers on a full or part-time basis. The unique feature of the GDD is the mandatory three (3) course engineering design component. 

The Design Methods course introduces you to design terminology and methods, and culminates with a design project. This is followed by two (2) design project courses.

Ideally you will work in teams and collaborate with an industrial sponsor to design or re-design a product, system or process. The student can choose to work independently and to propose a project based on a student-discovered need or a student developed promising technology.

Learning to discover, formalize and communicate a valid opportunity is a key educational objective of this course. You will receive mentoring, oversight and advice from both world renowned faculty and accomplished practitioners during a series of design workshops and design reviews.

Students and their partner industries may choose to promote their design experiences by writing design cases, published through the Waterloo Chair in Design Engineering (WCDE)  design case studies Group, for future educational use.

*NEW* Design Graduate Diploma: Co-op Option

First year GDD Students interested in integrating a 4-month co-op work term (similar to a paid internship) into their diploma program may apply for the co-op option.  Learn more about important dates, the acceptance process, and program integration.

Admission Process

The Graduate Diploma in Design requires that candidates complete two (2) design project courses, ME681: Design Project 1 and ME682: Design Project 2.  Admission into these courses requires permission of the instructor, and follows an admission process described below.  A candidate may submit an application for admission at any time.

The candidate must submit the following to the Graduate Administrator:

  • A Letter of Intent expressing why the candidate would like to take the Design Project courses and the Graduate Diploma in Design
  • A design project portfolio of completed design projects including a summary of challenges encountered and lessons-learned.  This can be submitted as a presentation format set of slides
  • A list of design project theme areas of interest to them
  • Resume

The candidate may be invited for an interview with the course instructor.  The interview will consist of a one-on-one discussion and review of the candidate’s background, knowledge and design project experience.  A design aptitude test may be administered before or during the interview.  The student will have an opportunity to ask questions about the design project course structure and format at this time. Remote interviews can be scheduled upon the request of the applicant.

Students who are not successful will be notified as such, and will be encouraged to continue to develop experience and expertise in developing a design project portfolio of projects.

Application Deadlines

  • GDD (non coop) - Fall term course add/drop deadline
    • Interviews - until end of September 
  • GDD (coop 4 & 8-stream) - Week 3 of Fall lectures, application deadline
    • Applicants must complete aptitude test in week 2 fall lecture of ME 680

Degree Requirements

Students must complete the degree requirements of the general MEng program. To add the Graduate Diploma in Design, four of the eight graduate level courses required must include the three mandatory courses and one specific course.

Mandatory courses:

Course Instructors
ME 680 Advanced Design Engineering

O. Nespoli

S. Lambert

ME 681 Advanced Design Engineering- Design Project 1* O. Nespoli
ME 682 Advanced Design Engineering- Design Project 2* O. Nespoli
*Mandatory Courses must be taken in sequence  

Specific Courses (1 from the following list):

Courses Instructors
ME 538 Welding Design, Fabrication & Quality Control

N. Tam
N. Zhou

ME 555 Computer-Aided Design S. Bedi
B. Khamesee
ME 559 Finite Elements Methods K. Inal
N. Chandrashekar
ME 561 Fluid Power Control A. Khajepour
E. Toyserkani
ME 566 Computational Fluid Dynamics For Engineering Design C. Devaud
F.S. Lien

Centre for Career Action Graduate Student Workshop Calendar

Contact Information

For more information about the MEng program in the department of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering please look through our main website.

For answers to specific questions, please feel free to contact us:

Ms. Allison Walker: Graduate Administrator, MEng and Recruitment, Graduate Studies.
Tel: (519) 888-4567, ext, 33341. E-mail: a22walker@uwaterloo.ca

Prof. Oscar Nespoli, P.Eng: Full-time Faculty
Tel: (519) 888-4567, ext, 84420. E-mail: oscar.nespoli@uwaterloo.ca

Dr. Steve Lambert: Professor.
Tel: (519) 888-4567, ext, 84728. E-mail: steve.lambert@uwaterloo.ca