Admission Information Forms

For those students who have applied to one of our engineering programs, remember to submit all required documentation by midnight (EST) on February 28th.  Applicants who do not submit their Admission Information Forms will be ineligible for admission.  Every year, we have a few applicants who miss the deadline and they are very surprised to find out that we enforce the deadline.  Extensions to deadlines at the university level are very rare.  We need as much time as possible to assess our applicants thoroughly.  We simply cannot afford to delay our admission decisions.  Our first full round of admission offers will be sent out on March 31st.

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At our latest count, we had 11,066 applications to Waterloo Engineering programs this year.  This is fewer applications than we have had in previous years.

As noted previously, we have seen a decline in the number of international applications.  At first glance, the decline in international applications does not seem to be attributable to a single factor.  Determining why prospective international applicants do not apply to a program can be difficult.  We have no easy way of contacting people who considered our programs but did not apply.  We could run a survey on our website but this requires people to visit our website and to answer honestly.

If you are still reading my blog and you decided to apply elsewhere instead of Waterloo Engineering, please let me know what factors played a role in your decision by commenting on my blog.  If there is something we can do better, it would be useful for us to know.  Anecdotal evidence is often better than nothing at all.

Every year we do a survey of applicants that turn down offers of acceptance.  For the 2018 / 2019 admission cycle, the most common reasons cited for turning down a Waterloo Engineering offer were the following:

  1. Campus Life (33.2% of respondents)
  2. Program Offered (32.9% of respondents)
  3. Program Cost (30.3% of respondents)
  4. Campus Location (25.2% of respondents)
  5. Distance from Home (23.6% of respondents)

We did receive some good news in this admission cycle.  Domestic applications to engineering programs remain strong in a highly competitive environment.  Some programs did better than others.  To answer the question that my readers will no doubt ask, I do not anticipate the probabilities of acceptance to differ significantly from the graphs I posted last September.

If you missed out on applying for a Waterloo Engineering program for Fall 2020, applications for Fall 2021 will open next October.  Due to our cohort system where students are part of a class of students that progress through terms of study, we are only able to offer admission to our undergraduate programs starting in Fall terms.  Our 1A term courses are not usually offered in the Winter or the Spring terms.

105 thoughts on “Admission Information Forms”

  1. I am from India and have applied for SE. I have taken IIT JEE preparation courses(which are pre university level physics, chemistry and mathematics) for 2 years along with my regular school from one of the top private coaching institutes in India. Should I mention it in my AIF?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I apologize for the delayed response. I was not able to answer your question prior to the submission deadline. In general, it is always a good idea to mention any unusual courses or extracurricular activities on your AIF.

      Like

  2. Just to verify once again. To submit the AIF, I just click submit on each page right? The chart on the welcome page no longer shows “not submitted” and each page says “SUBMITTED” on the top right hand corner. Thanks in advance!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This sounds correct to me. I unfortunately do not get to see how the system works. I know the AIF system is due for an update. Hopefully, I will get a chance to participate in the update process and test out any revisions in the future.

      Like

  3. Hello Dr. Bishop,
    I had forgotten a major component on my AIF (forgot to add a second-language course taken to the 12 level), and realized only after the 11:59 pm deadline had passed. I made an amendment nonetheless, but will my amendment be considered since it was made a few hours after the deadline?

    Additionally, I am aware that the Faculty of Engineering typically does not consider Euclid marks in the admissions process. However, in the case that an applicant scores exceptionally well on the upcoming Euclid in April, is there any way of letting the faculty know?

    Like

    1. Although the AIF allows changes after the deadline, we ignore them once we have captured the AIF data. It is not clear if your update will have made it through. Since the AIF submission date fell on a weekend, there is a slight chance that the update will have been accepted.

      With respect to Euclid scores, I do a quick check of the top scores when they are published to see if I have overlooked a great applicant. Last year, when I did this check, all of the students with top Euclid scores had already been given offers of admission in the first round of admission offers with the exception of one applicant that unfortunately was flagged for not following the rules on the online interview.

      Like

  4. Hi Mr. Bishop,

    Thank you for keeping us up to date! I have a quick question: Does Waterloo Engineering consider the marks from your top 6 or do they only look at your required course marks? Thank you in advance

    Like

    1. I have addressed this question previously. There is some confusion on the issue because we sometimes use 6 courses and we sometimes use 5 courses. Our applicants come from many different education systems so a one-size-fits-all approach does not always work. Also, it is not really a top 6 since we specify 5 of the 6 courses. It is quite possible that some applicants will have a grade in a 7th course that may be higher than one of the required courses (e.g., ENG4U, MCV4U, etc.).

      Like

  5. Hey Professor Bishop,
    I appreciate you doing an update on admissions!
    I’ve got a quick question. So, I thought that for the ECs section of the AIF, we HAVE to fill out an end date. Due to this, all my ECs in the table now have the same end date. Would it be worth to make an amendment and delete those end dates? I don’t want the impression on my admissions officer that I’ve stopped on all my ECs the day I submitted my AIF.
    Thanks!

    Like

  6. Hi Mr. Bishop,

    If I have completed all of my top 6 courses except for Grade 12 chemistry, will my Grade 11 chemistry mark be used to calculate my average?

    Like

  7. Hello Professor Bishop,

    I was just wondering how many applicants were there last year compared to this year?

    Thanks!

    Like

    1. Last year, I recorded 11,289 unique applicants to engineering programs. This year, I recorded 11,066 unique applicants to engineering programs.

      When counting applications, some assumptions are needed. My numbers exclude the Architecture program which does admissions using a completely different process. I also only count a student once. I remove duplicate applications that can occur when a student withdraws an application and then submits a new one.

      Like

  8. Hi Mr. Bishop,
    For early admissions, if I have five out of my six required courses complete except for Grade 12 chemistry, will my Grade 11 chemistry mark be used to calculate my average?

    Like

  9. Do AIF readers cross reference AIFs? For instance if 2 people from the same school claimed they held the same role in a club do they investigate?

    Like

    1. Sometimes. The other day, I came across brothers who were both on the same (successful) athletics team and were applying for the same program.

      When we discover something that does not make sense to us, we will often dig deeper to find out more information. For example, if there is a new club or a new competition, we will look into it to try to determine its significance. If we came across two applicants who claimed to found the same club, we would likely notice it.

      Like

  10. Hi Professor,
    I was wondering how competitive systems design engineering is looking this year, and in regards to one of your posts, you mentioned syde heavily on ecs; how does the admission process differ from other engineerings?
    Thank you

    Like

    1. Systems Design Engineering is one of two engineering programs where the AIFs are assessed by faculty members within the department. These faculty members often look for extracurricular activities that demonstrate an aptitude for Systems Design Engineering. Hence, extracurricular activities can play a significant role in the admissions process.

      In general, I will say that for competitive programs where all applicants typically have high averages, a few percentage points difference resulting from the AIF score can make a huge difference on the admission decision. For example, if all applicants had a 95% average, a 1% difference on the AIF might mean the difference between receiving an offer and not receiving an offer.

      Like

  11. Hi Dr. Bishop,

    Is there a way to confirm that my application has been submitted on time? Additionally, will rejections be sent out in the early round?

    Thank you.

    Like

    1. If you email our Admissions Officers, they might check if your application was submitted properly for you.

      We always debate about sending out rejections in the early round. There are currently 3,300+ applications that we could easily reject right now for not submitting an AIF. However, if we send out early rejections, we then find that our Admissions Officers get overloaded with questions about the rejections when they need to be assessing applications in the final round. For this reason, we often do not send out rejections until the middle of May.

      Like

  12. Hey sir, I have applied to mechanical engineering. I’m predicting a 92-93 avg overall in may, however due to an exentuating circumstance (explained on aif), my first physics tests took such a huge drop that it is practically impossible to recover the mark. I’m afraid that the highest mark I will be able to get in that class will be a low 70, whereas all my other grades are 90+.
    My question is, I’m running out of time, so would it be fine to do physics online, while also completing it in class (so I don’t loose out on what’s being taught in class)? Is there any private school, or method out of day school that Waterloo would rather have me take?
    What are my options at this point, I am afraid that otherwise, my mark would take almost a 4 percent fall, for a situation that was out of my control.

    Like

    1. If you explained the extenuating circumstances on your AIF, you likely have nothing to be worried about. Just focus on completing your Physics course to the best of your ability. If you feel that taking an online course in parallel will help, you are welcome to do so.

      Like

  13. Hello Professor,
    Would it be possible to know how many applicants applied to Computer Engineering, and how many acceptances are sent out? Thanks

    Like

    1. We do not disclose the number of admission offers sent out. We do send out more offers than spaces available. We carefully monitor trends to try to avoid missing our targets. Last year, we admitted too many Computer Engineering students but thankfully, the incoming class still fit in our classrooms. We will send out slightly fewer offers this year.

      With respect to the number of applicants, the number is quite large. I do not recall the exact number of applications and I am not at my work computer to look it up. However, I can tell you than 1,549 applicants completed an AIF for Computer Engineering this year. This is essentially the size of the applicant pool for Computer Engineering since students that do not complete an AIF are ineligible for admission.

      Like

  14. Hello professor,
    I just would like to know when students from outside of Ontario such as Alberta could receive an early admission this year? Do students have to complete at least 3 required grade 12 courses in order to be considered for early admission? Could grade 11 scores be used as the reference for the missing required courses? The reason I am asking is that most universities in the west such as U of A and UBC only give the students until May 1, 2020 to make a decision on taking the offer or not or penalties are pending.
    Regards,
    Lucy

    Like

    1. Our first large round of admission offers will happen in late March. All applicants will be eligible for an offer of admission in the first round provided they have successfully completed all requirements of the application process. Grade 11 course marks will be used when corresponding Grade 12 course marks do not yet exist.

      Like

  15. Hello Professor,
    If I have not completed grade 12 english yet but have completed my other top 6 courses, will they use my grade 11 english mark to calculate my average? If it was taken in the summer will that matter?

    Like

    1. If you have not yet completed Grade 12 English, we will use your Grade 11 English mark to calculate your average until we have a midterm grade for your Grade 12 English course. Since your Grade 11 English course was taken in a summer term, we may apply an adjustment to your average if conditions warrant doing so.

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      1. If I had a full courseload in grade 11, does taking english in the summer still warrant an adjustment to my average?

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      2. Adjustments are used in any situation where we perceive that an applicant has boosted their admission average by taking a course outside of regular day school. There exist ways to boost your average while taking a full course load. Adjustments are rare but not impossible in the situation in which you described.

        Like

  16. Professor wrote “There are currently 3,300+ applications that we could easily reject right now for not submitting an AIF.”. Wow! Is that typical to have the pool of applications reduced so significantly? How does that compare to previous years?

    Like

    1. I checked my data and it appears that a slightly larger percentage of applicants did not complete their AIF this year.

      By the end of February, it is not uncommon for many applicants to receive an offer of admission to engineering programs at another university. Some of these applicants might choose to abandon their application to Waterloo Engineering, particularly if the University of Waterloo was not their first choice school.

      There may also be a few applicants who received less than ideal grades at the end of their first semester of Grade 12. These applicants may now perceive their grades to be too low to meet our requirements for admission.

      Like

  17. Hello Professor,
    I just wanted to ask whether OUAC 105D (Outside Ontario, but Canadian citizens) compete with OUAC 101’s or International students (OUAC 105F). In other terms, are 105D’s in the same “admission pool” as OUAC 101’s, or separate?
    Thanks!

    Like

    1. Canadian citizens always compete for domestic spaces, regardless of how they apply. It is always a challenge to compare an applicant from another province or country against students from Ontario but we have mechanisms in place for doing so. We realize that an applicant with a 95% average in one jurisdiction is not directly comparable to an applicant with a 95% average in another jurisdiction. We use adjustments and other assessments to level the playing field to the best of our abilities.

      Like

  18. Hello Professor,

    You have mentioned a few times that grade 11 marks will be used for missing grade 12 courses; does this imply that my advanced functions mark will be used to project my calculus mark?

    On another note, I am a mechanical engineering applicant and I found grade 11 physics to be harder than grade 12 physics, as a result by grade 11 mark was not stellar (86, despite an honest effort). I am taking grade 12 physics right now and doing very well, would my grade 11 physics mark be a reason for me to not receive an offer, or does one outlier not influence the chance of an offer so much? I am wondering because mechanical engineering is heavily physics-based and I am under the assumption that a good mark in grade 11 physics matters a lot.

    Thank you so much for keeping us all updated with the admissions process and answering our questions!

    Like

    1. We can only use the marks we have available to us. If we do not have a Grade 12 mark, we will predict one using the best information available to us. During the early admission round, this may mean that we use a Grade 11 mark in Physics to predict a Grade 12 mark in Physics.

      By the time we do our final round of admission, we will hopefully have midterm or final marks for all of your Grade 12 courses.

      Averages are generally more important than individual course marks. If a mark is really poor, it can be a consideration in our admission decisions but this does not happen as much as you might expect.

      Like

    2. Hello Professor Bishop,

      As you have probably heard, Ontario schools are closing for 2 weeks after the March break. I was wondering if this has any impact to admissions.

      Thank you for taking time to answer all our questions!

      Like

      1. I do not believe the closures will have any impact on the admissions process itself. We have taken steps to prepare our university community to work at home, if necessary.

        For the latest updates on how the pandemic is impacting the university and our operations, I refer everyone to our Coronavirus website.

        Like

  19. Hi Professor, I was wondering whether the larger programs with more applications (CE, Mech and Mechatronics) have a single reviewer/assessor of AIFs?….seems like a huge workload, otherwise. You mentioned that the CE program received 1549 AIFs, could you please reveal how many AIFs were received for Mechanical Eng? Will this greater number of AIFs impact the number of early acceptances given out in these larger programs? Thanks very much for all the information you provide and your thoughtful replies.

    Like

    1. It is a huge workload. With the exception of BIOMEDE and SYDE which use a department specific review process, all AIFs are reviewed by one of three people. I am the one currently with the largest workload. In total, I have slightly more than 3000 AIFs to review. I hope to finish the reviews by the end of next week.

      I do not have the AIF statistics easily accessible at my home so I cannot provide exact AIF numbers for the other programs. I knew the CE number since it is one of the AIF databases that I am reviewing this term. The ME and MECTR AIF numbers are also quite high. These AIFs are being reviewed by another member of our team.

      Like

  20. Hello Professor,
    As the coronavirus continues to spread around, some universities closed in US. In case of a potential university closure in Ontario, are you planning to send out the offers earlier than Mar31st?
    Thanks

    Like

    1. I do not expect the dates of our admission rounds to change. Our plan is to send out the early round of admission offers by the end of March. The remainder of our offers will be sent out in early May.

      Like

  21. Hi Mr. Bishop,

    Thanks for the admission content that you have on your blog! I was wondering how you decide the students selected for admission in March vs May.’s round of admission.

    Thanks!

    Like

    1. We use the same selection criteria for both rounds. The only thing that changes (potentially) is the grade data that we use. If we receive newer grades by May, we will update our admission scores appropriately.

      Here is a simplified summary of our selection process:

      In the early round, we have minimum thresholds for admission scores that guide our decisions. If your admission score is one that would have scored in the top 80% of last year’s class and we have not yet hit our goal in terms of admission offers for the early round, an admission offer is given. The early round can terminate either because we run out of qualified applicants (which is the case for less competitive programs) or because we run out of admission offers (which is the case for more competitive programs).

      In the final round, we use the same admission scores (perhaps with updated grade data) but we eliminate the constraint on the admission score. We simply give out offers until we hit our goal for final round admission offers. Once we run out of admission offers to a particular program, we consider the remaining applicants for their 2nd choice program if spaces are available.

      Like

      1. Professor Bishop,

        I have a quick question that has bothered me a bit lately: does engineering do individual selection in the early round too? In a sense, would this year’s early admission selection process, in particular, be slightly different given that the AIFs and interviews will be considered?

        Finally, I was just wondering whether the extra early admission offers this year will be extended predominantly to 105s or whether they be distributed evenly. But, I understand it’s likely you cannot disclose this data.

        Thanks so much for your time!

        Best,
        Michael

        Like

      2. Yes, we do apply individual selection in both rounds. In the early round, we do not simply take the top admission scores. If we find an applicant with something that concerns us, we may skip over this applicant in the early round. The applicant would be reconsidered in the final round. This being said, it is often the case that applicants with the highest admission scores are selected for admission offers. The admission scores take into account admission averages, adjustments, AIF scores, and interview scores.

        The extra admission offers in the early round will be distributed proportionally to our applicant pool. In other words, if we increase domestic offers by 20%, we will attempt to do the same for visa offers.

        Like

  22. Hi Professor Bishop,
    I recently just started an online course, which I didn’t report on my AIF, as I have just started it, and the AIF was due 2 weeks ago. My question is, would it make sense to make an amendment on the AIF by adding this course? Will this course even be looked at? Or do I just need this course to be on OUAC for Waterloo to look at it?
    Thanks!

    Like

    1. While our system does not prevent you from amending your AIF after the deadline, all AIF data has already been captured for the purpose of assessment. An amendment to your AIF would have no effect on the assessment of your application. If we receive a course grade for a course that was not previously reported, we will take it into account if there is value in doing so.

      Like

  23. We were asked for an alternate programme in AIF so is it like this that if I get rejected from SE(my first choice) then I am automatically considered for CE(alternate choice)?

    Like

  24. Hi Professor,

    I realized that I put down the wrong start date for my employment and it does not match the amount of time I said I’ve worked in one of my essays (off about 3 months). Would an inconsistency like this be a red flag to the admissions team?

    Thanks

    Like

  25. Hello Professor,

    Thank you for writing such an informative blog. I was wondering how many AIFs were submitted for management engineering? Does it seem that the competition for management engineering has increased?

    Thank you so much!

    Like

    1. I do not wish to disclose the number of AIFs for all programs. However, I hope to answer your question about competition levels in a different way in a future blog post sometime this week.

      Like

  26. Hi Professer Bishop,
    I am from Saskatchewan and go to a school that has significantly less grade inflation(Centennial Collegiate) than other schools in Sask. How much data do you have on Sask. schools right now and do you consider different school or do you have one adjustment factor for all of Sask.

    Thanks!

    Like

    1. Our adjustment factor is calculated for the entire Province of Saskatchewan as we do not have enough data to calculate a factor on the basis of individual schools. We only use the adjustment factor if our data suggests that it holds reasonably well for all applicants from the province. This is not always the case.

      It is also important to understand that out-of-province applicants do not directly compete against Ontario applicants. The average adjustment in Ontario is different from the average adjustment applied to applicants outside of Ontario.

      In practice, adjustment factors do not have as much of an impact on admission decisions as individuals might suspect. Top applicants from high adjustment factor schools regularly get admission offers. The factors simply prevent us from admitting weaker applicants from high adjustment factor schools.

      Like

  27. Hi Professor,
    I’m an international applicant to BIOMED and my country’s education system combines advanced functions, calculus, and vector as a whole Math subject. So how would you calculate the average if I’ve had Maths, Chemistry, Physics, and English already?

    Like

    1. There are many different school systems and grading systems that we must assess. When we are faced with an unusual grading system, our admission officers ask for more information from applicants and schools so that we can make an informed assessment of the course content and grades. Our officers evaluate your transcripts and attempt to predict how your grades would compare to an applicant in Ontario.

      Like

  28. Hi Professor Bishop,
    As my school here in Vancouver, BC is a linear school system and not a semester based one, none of my grade 12 courses will be “completed” until June. Does this mean I will be considered using my Grade 11 grades or my Term 1 & 2 Grade 12 grades? Thank you!

    Like

  29. Hi Professor Bishop,
    I am an applicant from Ontario who recently got accepted into McGill engineering. The deadline to accept the McGill offer is May 1st. I am considering requesting early consideration to get an offer from Waterloo before the McGill deadline.

    However, I have three questions regarding early consideration. If I request early consideration,:
    1. will it reduce my chances of being accepted into software engineering?
    2. will I still be considered for the upcoming March round of acceptance? (I assume so, but just to make sure)
    3. will I still be considered for my alternate choice, computer engineering?

    Thanks

    Like

    1. Applicants should not request early consideration until after the first round of admission offers. We hope to have our early round admission offers out by the end of March.

      If an applicant does not receive an early round offer, an applicant may request early consideration. A request for early consideration requires proof of an offer with an early acceptance date. Applicants are considered for both their primary and alternate choice programs.

      Like

  30. Hello Professor Bishop,

    I am currently a grade 12 student living in Vancouver, BC. Since my school is a semester system and the second semester just started, I don’t have my interim grades for my second semester courses yet. However, with the recent situation with the coronavirus, schools are now closed and we don’t know when we will be back at school. This is most probably going to cause a delay in interim marks being given out, which is a problem for me personally since I am taking two of the prereqs (Chemistry 12 and Calculus 12) in this semester. I heard that if an applicant doesn’t have a grade 12 mark for a course, Waterloo will use the grade 11 mark for admissions. However, my grade 11 marks put me at a disadvantage compared to the current marks that I am getting in grade 12. Does this mean that the chances of getting accepted during the March 31st round will be significantly less for me and I will have to wait for the May round?

    Thank you so much!

    Like

    1. I do not believe that the closure of schools will have any effect on our early round admissions. During the early round, we do not normally have any grades for 2nd semester courses. The one possible exception might be applicants studying in jurisdictions where the school year starts much earlier and ends much earlier.

      Like everyone else, we are paying careful attention to the news. We will do our best to adapt to the situation to try to ensure that applicants from a particular jurisdiction are not disadvantaged.

      Like

  31. Hello Prof,

    If the admission committee asks for an additional document during March end, and I submit it within an hour, does that mean I’ll still be considered for early admission decisions?

    Like

  32. Hello, Mr.Bishop. I was just wondering whether deferrals will happen in the early round because I have heard you say that rejections will come out in May but you didn’t mention deferrals?

    Like

    1. In the past, we have been reluctant to send out offers to second choice programs in the first round.

      This year is a highly unusual year. For this reason, we made a few exceptions. A very small number of applicants will be receiving deflection offers in the first round. These applicants are clearly strong applicants but due to the highly competitive nature of some programs (SE and BIOMEDE), we know we will be unable to provide these applicants with an offer to their first choice program.

      My team has almost finished the early round selection process. Once this completes, it will take us some time to prepare the offers. I am not sure when the offers will become public but it will likely be sometime next week. There will likely be applicants on Reddit and other sites telling you that they have an offer. Please note that not all offers come out at exactly the same time. There is an Admissions Officer that must prepare the offer on our system. This process takes time. If I could provide better guidance, I would.

      Like

  33. Hello, Professor! I was just wondering if you and your team are well on your way to rolling out early admission offers on March 31st? Also, just out of curiosity, is there a specific time 101 applicants should expect to receive their offers? Thank you very much for your help and guidance throughout this process.

    Like

    1. I do not know exactly when all of the early round admission offers will be communicated to applicants. My hope is that they are all out by sometime on March 31st as planned. I have been pretty consistent in my messaging that our goal was to have all early round admission offers out by March 31st. I did not specify an exact time as I never know when this will happen. My work ended last night. I have passed on the offers to the team that communicates them. The actual communication may be earlier (or possibly later) due to the fact that our team is working under very unusual circumstances.

      My admissions office is currently a quiet corner in my basement. My admissions team is working at their homes throughout the K/W region. Communication is a bit slower than normal since we are all communicating via e-mail.

      Like

  34. Hi Professor Bishop,
    I understand that they look at an applicant’s overall average. My average is looking at a 93 but physics (a required course) is a mid 80. Will the admission officers look into that? Will it have a significant effect on the probability of an offer?

    Thanks!

    Like

    1. Admission offers do not come out all at once. Non-Ontario Secondary School offers must be entered by hand by an Admissions Officer. It is possible that some early round offers have been released. This does not mean that all early round offers have been released. My assumption would be that the majority of the early round admission offers will come out tomorrow.

      Like

  35. Hello Professor,
    First, kudos to you and your staff for the diligent review of all applications in a timely manner under stressful conditions. I was wondering about foreign student acceptances and targets: If foreign student acceptances fail to meet set targets due to travel restrictions, visas, Covid-19 (all real concerns), will the 2020 engineering cohort shrink or will domestic acceptances increase? Has this issue been discussed?
    The world has certainly changed in a few short weeks.
    Regards,
    Barb

    Like

    1. Thanks!

      It is difficult to predict the future. There are scenarios where foreign students will be less likely to attend the University of Waterloo and also scenarios where foreign students may be more likely to attend. There are too many variables to consider. Our plan is to continue with admissions as normal until we have greater clarity. Behind the scenes, I am sure various situations are being analyzed and discussed by university administrators.

      The good news is that there is still quite a bit of time between now and September 2020. There is also hope that social distancing can work to flatten the curve. We are slowly starting to see the positive results of measures taken in China with the gradual re-opening of Hubei province in China. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that all countries do their best to curtail the spread of Covid-19.

      Every year, we have foreign students who accept offers to Waterloo Engineering but these students are unable to travel to Canada due to visa issues. We plan for a certain percentage of these cases to occur. The good news, from an applicant perspective, is that applicants may defer their admission by a year when such problems occur. I think we have about 30 students who deferred to this year for various reasons. I do foresee a potential increase in the number of students who choose to defer their admission offers to Fall 2021. However, it is difficult to predict how large the increase will be.

      We do not currently have any plans of changing the blend of visa and domestic applicants. If necessary, these discussions will occur in late April prior to the final round of admission. One contingency plan already in place is that we will be creating wait lists for engineering programs. We have done this successfully in the past for certain programs.

      Stay safe and flatten the curve!

      Like

  36. Hi Mr Bishop,

    Will there be any more offers coming out today, on March 31st? Also, I have received an offer that needs to be accepted by May 1st, but I am waiting on a response from UW before I accept/decline. What would your advice in this situation be?

    Thank you for your efforts!

    Like

    1. Our prepared response is the following:

      “The Engineering Admissions Committee will be doing the large bulk of our offers in late March/Early April. If you do not receive an offer in this first round of admission then your application will be reviewed again in May. We will not be making any further offers of admission between our first and final round of offers. Please note that accepting offers at other universities will not affect your offer at Waterloo.”

      In other words, if you are happy with the offer you already have for another university, feel free to accept it. If you receive an offer from us in early May and you prefer our offer over the one you have already accepted, you will be able to decline the other offer and accept ours. My understanding is that the system allows this to happen.

      Liked by 1 person

  37. Hello Prof. Bishop,

    I was wondering if offers will be coming out today(March 31st) as predicted? There seems to be no/very few people who received admission today.

    Thanks,

    Sejune

    Like

    1. It looks like most offers were sent out a day earlier than expected. Our processing went smoothly so we finished earlier than expected. There are some offers coming out today but the total number of offers not yet processed is small.

      Like

  38. Hello Prof Bishop,
    I was just wondering whether all the engineering offers have been sent out? Thanks for all your hard work!

    Like

    1. Some early admission offers to students are still being processed. However, the majority of the early admission offers have now been processed according to my latest report. It looks like most OSS offers were sent out a day earlier than expected. Our processing went smoothly so we finished earlier than expected.

      Like

      1. I do not think so. I suspect a few offers may be coded tomorrow as well. Our admissions team is working as fast as they can. The Non-Ontario Secondary School admissions take a significant amount of time to code.

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    1. I cannot predict the actual percentage of offers as I do not know how many total offers we will make this year. The number of offers made to applicants depends on a number of factors. I do not feel I can make an accurate estimate at this time.

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    1. I am comfortable with saying that we exceeded our target for sending out admission offers. It is safe to say that more than 50% of our admission offers for Fall 2020 have been sent out.

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    1. This was a planned change that we made based on an extensive analysis of previous application data. We conducted a formal study to see if increasing our early admission offers would have any negative effect upon the quality of students admitted to our programs. It turned out that our predictions of grades are highly reliable. In our study, we found that we could safely increase the number of offers given out in the first round of admissions without running into a situation where a weaker applicant was chosen over a stronger applicant at the time of the final round.

      One of the side effects of giving out more offers early is that it reduces the number of applicants who must wait anxiously to receive an offer in May. The change also significantly reduces the number of applicants who are forced into accepting an early offer at another university.

      This year’s change was initially intended as a pilot project to verify the results of our study. Unfortunately, we will not be able to conclude much about the change this year due to events happening around the world. The global pandemic has made this an atypical year for admissions.

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  39. Hello Professor,

    I would like to confirm if the 50% implies that 50% offer of every engineering program has been sent out or 50% of total engineering seats? For example, have there been more than 50% of offers sent out for management engineering?

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  40. Hello Professor,

    I was wondering if there is a more likely chance to get accepted into EE with a low 90 average for this may round? Considering EE seems to be less competitive this year.
    (with average adjustment, good aif, and good interview)

    Thanks for the helpful information!

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    1. Students with lower averages are much more likely to be admitted in the final round than in the early round. It is quite possible that you were close to receiving an offer in the early round of admissions if you did well on your AIF and your interview. Don’t give up hope!

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  41. Hi Sir,

    I recently got accepted to Geological Engineering. However, this is my alternative program. Does this mean I got rejected form my first choice program? Or is there time needed to assess the first choice.

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    1. We considered every applicant for their first choice program. In cases where we felt it was appropriate to do so, we provided admission offers to a select group of students for their second choice (alternative) program.

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  42. Hi sir,
    I hope you are doing well!
    Will the AIF and interview be weighted more given the situation around COVID-19 and the fact that students may not have bee able to achieve as high of a mark for midterms.

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    1. Other than being very busy, I am doing well. I have been falling behind on answering comments on my blog as this is a very busy time of the year for our admissions team.

      We have no intention of adjusting our weightings at this time. The weights are hardcoded into the database systems that we use. However, a higher admission score does not guarantee that one applicant will be chosen over another applicant with a lower score. Our individual selection process allows us to examine grade data, AIF assessments, interview assessments, and adjustments holistically when making decisions about admission offers. We attempt to ensure that applicants will fit into our programs and be successful in them. While no process is perfect, we believe our process is better than most.

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