Our history

School of Accounting Finance building at dusk

The University of Waterloo has pioneered in the development of academic programs specifically designed for students intending to pursue professional careers in accounting in Canada.

In the late 1960s, in a creative initiative for mathematics students intending to pursue careers in accounting, the Faculty of Mathematics at Waterloo developed a Bachelor of Mathematics (BMath) co-op option that provided the academic course credits and work experience necessary for the Chartered Accountants (CA) and Certified Management Accountants (CMA) professional designations.

By the mid 70s, a similar option was made available to Honours Economics students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in the Faculty of Arts.

Then, in the early 80s, as a result of both an increasing interest in studying accounting at the university level and the perception of the need for a centre in Canada in which academic research and a comprehensive program of education in accounting could be pursued vigorously, the University of Waterloo's School of Accounting and Finance was established in the Faculty of Arts.

In 2003 the undergraduate program in accounting was relaunched as a five-year integrated Bachelor of Accounting and Financial Management (BAFM) program leading directly to the Master of Accounting (MAcc) and taking advantage of the School's strength in both accounting and finance.

Today, this professionally accredited School of Accounting and Finance, in conjunction with the Faculties of Arts, Mathematics, and Science, offers undergraduate and graduate accounting and finance programs designed specifically to meet the need for a multi-faceted education to provide our students with the right mix of competencies, professionalism, and practical experience they need to be leaders in their chosen careers.

At present, the School of Accounting and Finance's 65 full time faculty teach a co-op undergraduate enrolment of more than 2,000 BSFM, BAFM, Bachelor of Computing and Financial Management (BCFM), BMath, and BSc students and approximately 275 graduate students in the Master's (MAcc) and Doctoral (PhD) programs.