Early Round Admission Offers

We have finally reached the end of March. I have just received word that all early round admission offers have been processed for engineering programs at the University of Waterloo. This includes both NOSS (105) applicants and OSS (101) applicants. Congratulations to all of the applicants who received early round admission offers!

I also wish to congratulate our admissions team on completing the early round of admissions on schedule despite very difficult circumstances. The admissions team has been working remotely since last March. The team has been working some very long hours to ensure that we could finish on time. When working off-campus, members of our team have slower and less reliable connections to our university computers which can make our work more challenging. It is also more difficult to quickly meet to discuss applications.

If you are an applicant that has not yet received an offer of admission, you are likely disappointed and perhaps a bit surprised. It is important to remember that approximately 50% of our available spaces are filled in our final round of admission. It is quite normal for many highly qualified applicants to not receive offers of admission during our early round. During our final round of admission in mid-May, many applicants will be offered admission to their programs of choice. We will also consider applicants for their alternate choice programs during our final round of admission.

Often applicants ask why they did not receive an offer of admission. In most cases, the answer is simply that we have large applicant pools filled with highly qualified students. We simply do not have enough spaces available to offer all qualified applicants early acceptance into our programs. In a few cases, we may be waiting on updated grade information or a language proficiency test score to make an informed assessment. There were many outstanding applicants that did not receive an early offer of admission.

Applicants should keep in mind that it does not matter when you receive an offer of admission. The only advantage to being selected early is that it alleviates some stress. All admitted students are considered for scholarships during our final admission round.

I will leave you today with a photo of some early flowers in my garden. We have had an early Spring in Kitchener/Waterloo and it is starting to show.

12 thoughts on “Early Round Admission Offers”

  1. Hello Prof. Bishop,
    I hope you’re doing well. I wanted to ask how long it usually takes to receive a decision after requesting early consideration because of other offers expiring on May 1st.
    Thank you!


    1. We will be considering all applicants requesting early consideration immediately after our deadline (April 15th) for requesting early consideration passes. We will try to turnaround decisions as soon as we can.


  2. Hello Professor!
    I’m wondering if a program switch is impossible with this year’s admission cycle (2021 Fall) and if possible, will it be similar to the past where people with offers enter a waitlist in June?
    I have an offer to Management, but System Designs seems way more interesting to me now. Would it be almost impossible to switch due to competitiveness and lack of space?
    Thank you.


    1. We do not intend to use waitlists this year. We expect our programs to be full. Last year, we created waitlists due to the uncertainty of admissions during a pandemic. This year, we do not expect the same level of uncertainty to exist.

      Transferring between engineering programs while studying at the University of Waterloo is challenging and rarely possible. When transferring is possible, it often requires delaying graduation by a year. You should only accept an offer of admission if you are willing to stay in a program to completion.


  3. Hello Professor Bishop Sir,
    Hope you are doing fine!!
    Sir I wanted to ask when we apply for Early admission consideration because of offer of letters from other universities expiring by May 1st, 2021. So when we can receive a decision for our application after applying for early admission.
    Thank you!


      1. Thank you very much Professor Bishop Sir for your early answer to my question.
        Sir I have just one question left that I wanted to ask. Sir will all early admission requesting applicants will get their
        application decision or some of us will get reply in May 2021 only .
        Once again thank you very much sir,
        Have a nice day!


      2. If an admission offer can be given to an applicant requesting early consideration, we will do so. There has to be a high probability that the applicant would receive an offer of admission in our final round.

        We do not give out refusals until the middle of May. While this leaves the door open for a final round admission offer, an applicant requesting early consideration that does not receive an admission offer next week is strongly advised to accept an offer to a competing university program.


  4. Hello Professor Bishop,
    I’ve applied for early consideration and I was wondering if decisions will still come out early this week?
    Thank you!


    1. Yes, these decisions will come out early this week. The decisions were made yesterday. It is simply a matter of communicating them. The OSS decisions will come out at one time. The NOSS decisions will come out individually due to the way they are coded. These decisions will include both admissions to first choice programs and admissions to second choice programs.


  5. Hello Professor Bishop,
    I really appreciate you and the admission team’s hard work!
    Has any out of province student received an offer under early consideration?
    If I don’t receive an offer early this week, my application isn’t considered for the main round. Is it correct?
    Thank you.


    1. More out-of-province applicants requested early consideration. This is typically the case. Out-of-province applicants are often subject to earlier acceptance deadlines. For this reason, the majority of offers due to early consideration are given out to out-of-province applicants. We selected 84 NOSS (105) applicants and 24 OSS (101) applicants for admission offers based on early consideration. The 84 NOSS admission offers will be coded as soon as possible.

      Early consideration applicants that do not receive an admission offer by the end of this week are strongly recommended to pursue other offers. While it is possible to receive an admission offer in the final round, there is likely a reason preventing admission at this time. Unless our data changes, an offer is highly unlikely.

      For our most competitive programs, there will certainly be some disappointed applicants. Admission to programs such as SE can be highly competitive. Outstanding applicants are not always successful.


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