February News and Plans

Just a short update on progress for our 2016 admissions.

  • Applications are still coming in (until March 1), but it’s looking like we will have between 1,000 and 2,000 more than last year, so admissions will be a bit more competitive than last year.
  • Plans are in progress for our open house on March 19.
  • As described in the overview of the process, the Admission Information Form (AIF) reading is in full progress and we’re getting ready for the first round of offers.  We will accept AIFs until March 18.  Any submitted after February 5 might not be reviewed in time to have any impact on the first round of offers, but they will have their full consideration for the big round of offers in May.
  • For the first round, some offers for Ontario applicants (Form 101) will come out in late February.  Some for other applicants (Form 105) will probably come out in early March.  We can’t give specific dates, it depends on how things go.
  • With the increasing applications, I’m thinking that we will be fairly conservative with the first round and maybe only give away about 25% of the spaces.  It’s easier to be thorough and fair to everyone if we hold back most of the offer decisions until early May.  Most of the applications we consider in February will be deferred until May for a final decision, when we can see the whole picture.

16 thoughts on “February News and Plans

  1. Hello professor,

    I wanted to change one of my courses, but it has not gone through yet. I already submitted my AIF with the original course, so I’m not quite sure what to do.
    The course is not a prerequisite to any program that I applied to.

  2. Hi prof, thanks for this blog!
    I was wondering if there’s any indication on the AIF form that tells us whether or not our application has been reviewed? Thanks

    Also, is there approx. 25% of offers for every individual program as well? Ie. for software, there will be around 25/100 early offers? Thanks

  3. Hi Professor,
    Regarding admission and the first round of offers I have a few questions:
    1) Are the “Circumstances” sections of the AIF being taken into account for applications in the first round or will the first round likely be based solely on the grades? Also, how exactly are these sections taken into account in the process and by whom?
    2) You’ve mentioned before that if a grade 12 course is not yet completed you will take the equivalent grade 11 course for the time being. What does this mean for grade 12 Calculus? Will you take the Functions grade from the previous year?
    3) Since the sixth mark that is used to calculate average is the highest U or M course for that student, if only required courses have been taken up to this point will you take the highest course for the previous year?
    4) I don’t know if you have any idea of this, but overall are the applications on the same, higher, or lower caliber than the previous year given that they have increased in volume?

    Sorry for so many specific questions, but I’ve been dreaming of going to Waterloo for years now and my nerves are getting the better of me now since my marks are only low 90s this year.

    • 1) We usually don’t consider the Circumstances section until May when more of the Grade 12 results are available. The information is used by me and the other decision-makers to put the grades in context. Beyond that, it’s a case by case analysis and decision.
      2) In Ontario, the Calculus mark (if not available) is replaced by the current Advanced Functions mark.
      3) we don’t use a sixth mark in the first round, only the 5 required courses (or grade 11 equivalents)
      4) We don’t have any information on the calibre, but I would expect that it is similar to previous years, just more applicants.

  4. Hi Professor Anderson,
    With the increased number of applicants, do you think it is feasible to add more spots?
    Is the AIF only read once, or will it be read again for the May round if amendments are made?

    Thank you and have a nice day.

    • No we can’t add more spots, we’re already operating at maximum capacity. More spots require more faculty, staff, offices, co-op employment support, classrooms, labs, teaching assistants, residences, and more government funding (since the tuition paid by Canadians only covers a fraction of the actual costs).
      The AIF is read only once, but any amendments are reviewed just before May to see if they have any significant impact.

  5. Hello Professor,

    Will the competition for Management Engineering be significantly higher this year? Should an applicant with high 80s (35 IB predicted) just give up and not apply? Approximately how many applicants are applying per spot this year?

    Thank you!
    A slightly disheartened student

    • I don’t think that it’s substantially different, but it’s hard to know at the program-level until May. If you give up and don’t apply I can guarantee you won’t get an offer! We always encourage people with decent grades to apply and see what happens. Some people are pleasantly surprised.

  6. Hello Professor,

    I applied to software engineering through OUAC and dedicated my entire AIF towards my interest in software. I’ve already submitted my AIF and now I want to switch over to mechatronics as my first choice. Currently, I have mechatronics as my second choice but, I fear that I may get accepted into software. Is there any way to change my first choice even if my AIF is targeted towards software engineering?

  7. Hello Professor,

    Does my course load affect my chances of getting into a program? For instance, if I choose to take 6 courses instead of 7, will that reflect poorly on me?

    Thank you.


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