No longer accepting applications for a qualifying term in Fall 2019 (transfer in Winter 2020). 

If you are currently an undergraduate student at the University of Waterloo and wish to apply to a program in the School of Public Health and Health Systems (SPHHS), you will be applying for an internal transfer.

If you are currently an undergraduate student at another university or college you will need to apply for an external transfer. Find out how to apply here.

Programs offered

The School of Public Health and Health Systems offer Honours undergraduate programs in Health Studies (BSc) and Public Health (BPH).

Students should note the following program and/or faculty-specific questions before proceeding.

Arts, Environment, and Recreation –  Have the necessary prerequisites been taken in high school and, have these previously been strong subjects, and if Psychology or other Arts courses did not go well in Arts what would be different about the Health Studies or Public Health program where those same subjects are required?

Science, Engineering, Math – Have the necessary prerequisites been taken in high school and, if BIOL and/or CHEM courses did not go well, what would be different about Health Studies where those same subjects are required?

Part of your decision-making will require a target program. Please review the program options, listed in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Co-op is not guaranteed with a transfer to SPHHS. Students registered in a co-op program (Satisfactory standing or higher) in the term immediately before transferring may be able to maintain their co-op status. This should be discussed with an advisor during a qualifying term.

Transferring to School of Public Health and Health Systems

Step 1: Why do you want to transfer to SPHHS?

A good answer would be, "I have taken Health courses, find the subjects interesting, and a Health program fits with my future career goals."

A bad answer would be, "I have been required to withdraw, need to continue studies at Waterloo in any BSc, so I'll try to transfer to Health Studies."

Step 2: Determine admissibility to SPHHS

Students must review the high school admissions requirements (select the attending or recently graduated from high school option) for the program(s) of interest. If required courses are missing, they must be completed. Options include:

  • Independent Learning Centre
  • Adult Learning Centre
  • UWaterloo courses, where appropriate (e.g. CHEM 120 with minimum grade of 60 in place of Ontario chemistry; ENGL 109 with a minimum grade of 60 in place of Ontario grade 12U English).

Step 3: Review UWaterloo academic record

The UWaterloo student record is assigned a greater weight than any previous academic records. A reasonable background in Health is required.

Grades in all completed courses required for your desired degree program will be taken into consideration.

Transfer requirements


Average on at least five courses required for target program (incl HLTH)

Average HLTH courses (min two)

Required courses (min 60%)

BSc Health Studies



CHEM 120

BPH Public Health




  1. If your current grades would not meet the transfer requirements, then a non-degree term or qualifying term of courses will be needed. Course selection is determined by the target program’s required courses and will be determined in your meeting with an SPHHS advisor.
  2. Transfer is dependent upon space in the target program and is not guaranteed. Admission requirements are minimum requirements and higher averages may be required depending upon number of spaces available.

Step 4: Submit webform and meet with an advisor

These conversations cannot be handled easily via email because there are normally many questions, requiring some discussion. Complete this transfer information form to indicate your interests. An SPHHS academic advisor will contact you to follow up.

IMPORTANT: Deadline for transfer information form submission is May 16 - for Fall qualifying term

We are unable to know in advance how many qualifying term spaces will be available to internal transfer candidates. Please complete the transfer information form and we will contact you after the deadline with more information. Contact an SPHHS academic advisor if you require more information.


Questions about degree programs in Public Health and Health Systems or in other departments in Applied Health Sciences? Wondering if this is the right degree for you?

Attend a drop-in with an SPHHS academic advisor to discuss admissibility, the transfer process, and future course plans. If you feel it's the right program, you can submit your request via the web form and an advisor will follow up after the deadline.