Visit the Student Life section of this website for more campus lingo.
Undergraduate studies are the first level of university studies – what you apply to after completing high school.
Undergraduate programs lead to Bachelor's degrees – Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BSc), etc. – and students pursuing an undergraduate degree are called undergraduate students.
This website is for students interested in undergraduate studies. If you're interested in Graduate Studies – e.g., Master's (MA, MSc) and Doctoral (PhD) programs – please visit the Graduate Studies website.
The Undergraduate Calendar provides official information about courses and programs and related policies and regulations for students and applicants, as well as general information about the University.
The course listings and academic programs/plans described in the Calendar represent Senate-approved requirements and electives for completion of degree requirements.
An entry program is the type of program you'll apply to. The University of Waterloo offers 47 entry programs at the undergraduate level. You must be enrolled in an entry program before you can select a major, minor, option, or specialization.
Your major is the main focus of your studies and is also referred to as your program/plan; it will appear on your undergraduate degree. Each faculty specifies the requirements for majors, including the number and type of courses, in the Undergraduate Calendar. In some programs, such as Chemical Engineering, your entry program is also your major. In other programs, such as Honours Arts, you select a major, such as History, at the end of your first year.
A minor is the (optional) secondary focus of your studies; it will also appear on your undergraduate degree. Each faculty specifies the requirements for minors, including the number and type of courses, in the Undergraduate Calendar. To fulfill the requirements for a minor, you use your elective courses that are not required for your major.
An option or specialization is a specified combination or grouping of courses which gives you the opportunity to add an additional area of study to your major. The area of study may be in another academic subject or in a career-oriented area and will also appear on your undergraduate degree. Generally, options and specializations require fewer courses than a minor.
A course not specified as one that you must take for your major. For some majors, you must choose your electives from a specific list; in others, you may choose from any courses offered which you're qualified to take.