Graduate Studies at University of Waterloo

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Combinatorics & Optimization

Graduate Studies at University of Waterloo

Faculty:Faculty of Mathematics
Field of Study:Applied Mathematics, Other
Thesis Based:Yes
Cost per year:*
National: $10,000

This cost estimate represents the tuition for the first year.


The C&O department has 30 faculty members and 60 graduate students. We are intensely research oriented and hold a strong international reputation in each of our six major areas:
  • Algebraic combinatorics
  • Combinatorial optimization
  • Continuous optimization
  • Cryptography
  • Graph theory
  • Quantum computing
  • Prerequisites:

    These courses are intended as guidelines. Speak to your guidance counsellor to see what courses are offered at your school.
    • A Master's degree in combinatorics and optimization, or in a closely related field, with a minimum 89% average in Master's level coursework.
    • Completion of a master's thesis.
    • It is essential that the application for admission into the PhD program contains evidence of research ability or potential.
    • Students in the PhD program are regarded as being on probation during their first year in the Department, and their performance during this first year determines whether they are allowed to continue in the program. In particular, failure in any one course, or an unsatisfactory performance in the comprehensive examination, automatically results in a review of the student's progress by the Department Graduate
    • Committee. PhD students' progress will be reviewed at least once per year.
    • A student who is enrolled in the Master of Mathematics (MMath) program in the Department of Combinatorics and Optimization and wishes to continue in the PhD program has to apply for admission into program. In exceptional cases, a graduate student enrolled in a MMath (Thesis) program in the Department of Combinatorics and Optimization may, through the Graduate Officer and with the consent of the Supervisor, petition the Graduate Committee to be transferred into a PhD program. The guidelines for such a transfer are
      as follows:
    • The student has been enrolled in the MMath (Thesis) program for at least two terms.
    • The student has made considerable progress in the research project (of the type that would warrant the MMath degree) and is committed to carrying the project to completion in a PhD program.
    • The student gives a seminar presentation of the work carried out so far, and answers related questions to the satisfaction of an examining committee consisting of the supervisor and two other faculty members.
    • Students applying to the PhD program who hold a Master's degree from another university may, in some cases, be admitted initially into the MMath program. In such cases the
    • Graduate Committee will decide, within three terms, whether to transfer the student into the PhD program.
    • Application Notes : Application materials:
    • Supplementary information form
    • Transcript(s)
    • References
    • Number of references: 3. Type of references: normally from academic sources.
    • English language proficiency (ELP) (if applicable)
    • * We make every attempt to provide accurate information on prerequisites, programs, and tuition. However, this information is subject to change without notice and we highly recommend that you contact the school to confirm important information before applying.

      Modified on September 30, 2022