Minimum admission requirements for graduate studies in Psychology

Note: Because the number of applicants always far exceeds the number of available spots, meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission. (This is particularly true of the Clinical Psychology program.)

Note: Due to budgetary constraints, we are extremely limited in our ability to admit international students this year. International students who are interested in applying should contact potential supervisors to determine whether they would be willing to cover portions of the graduate funding package through grant money.

For complete application procedures, including required documents, go to Application procedures.

We typically evaluate applicants' preparedness for graduate studies based on the following:

  1. the Ontario University Application (OUAC) form.
  2. the online Supplementary Information Form (SIF) (i.e. personal statements regarding background for the intended area of study).
  3. a Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General Test score (see Note 1).
    Exception: The Master of Applied Science (MASc) program in Developmental and Communication Science does not require the GRE. 
  4. normally an Honours Bachelor's degree or its equivalent in Psychology with a first-class cumulative average (minimum 80%) over the last two full-time academic years (see Note 2). If your degree is from a non-Canadian university, please see International admission equivalencies for equivalencies to a Canadian 4-year Honours Bachelor's degree and a first-class cumulative average.

  5. letters of recommendation (3 academic required).
  6. an English Language Proficiency (ELP) test score (see Note 3).
  7. a match of interests between the student and a potential faculty supervisor.
  8. an interview, in some cases.


  1. The scores on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General Test must include Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing. GRE Psychology subject scores are not required.

  2. Those with a Three-Year Bachelor's degree in Psychology (i.e. General level), or any Bachelor's degree with a Major other than Psychology, will require further studies at the undergraduate level before applying to graduate studies in Psychology at the University of Waterloo. Two options for further studies include the following:

    • apply for admission to the Honours Bachelor's program in Psychology, or

    • apply for admission to Make-Up Psychology, which is a subcategory of Post-Degree Studies.  

      Note: Neither of these options guarantee admission to graduate studies at the University of Waterloo or elsewhere, and an Honours Thesis is strongly recommended.

  3. You must provide proof of competency in English unless you are exempt from testing. For information concerning eligible ELP examinations, scores, and exemptions, see English language proficiency (ELP).

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Last updated: June 7, 2019

Quick links for future graduate students - Department of Psychology

Associate Chair of Graduate Studies (Jonathan Fugelsang)

For information regarding the graduate program email:

Quick links for future graduate students - University of Waterloo