As the job opportunities in information and communication technology (ICT) sector are increasing, bachelor's in computer science in Canada is becoming a popular choice among students. According to Canadian ICT Sector Profile 2018 published by the government, the ICT sector experienced a growth of over 4.6% in its workforce, employing a total of 6,52,000 workers in 2018.
A bachelor's degree in computer science is mainly concerned with the use of computation technology in the processing of information. Offered as BSc, BASc, and BA, bachelor's in computer science in Canada can take three to four years to complete. Few of the Canadian universities offer a co-op program that allows students to earn industry-relevant experience along with their degree.
|Type of Degrees||BSc, BASc, BA|
|Duration||3 to 4 years|
|Types of Programs||Major, Minor, Specialist, Co-op|
|Admission Process||Based on Grades of Senior Secondary School|
|English Proficiency Requirement||TOEFL: 90 to 100;
|Average Tuition Fee||30,000 USD per annum|
|Average Salary||60,000 USD per annum|
Bachelor of Computer Science in Canada: Types of Programs
Bachelors in computer science in Canada is offered as a major, minor, specialist and co-op program. Specialist and co-op program options are available only in a few selected universities in Canada.
Major/Minor: Students can choose from a variety of computer science courses as a major or a minor to study in Canada. A few of the popular ones are data science, software engineering, operating systems, parallel programming, artificial intelligence, etc.
Specialist Program: A specialist program in computer science offers computer science courses in combination with courses from other related disciplines such as an information system, entrepreneurship, etc. Some universities offer students the flexibility to choose these additional courses while some have a fixed curriculum.
Co-Op Program: Students opting for a co-op degree in computer science have to enroll in a compulsory internship from the second or third year of their degree. Most of these internships are paid and helps students in gaining work experience.
Top Universities in Canada for Bachelors in Computer Science
As per THE Ranking 2020, following are the top universities in Canada offering an undergraduate degree in computer science:
- University of Toronto: Considered as one of the most prestigious universities of Canada, all three campuses of the University of Toronto offers an undergraduate degree in computer science in Canada. Students can choose computer science as a major, minor or specialist course while pursuing a Bachelor of Science Honours degree at this university. A co-op computer science program is also offered at the Scarborough campus of UofT.
- University of Waterloo: With more than 70 courses taught by over 80 professors, University of Waterloo is one of the best study destinations for computer science. Its co-op program allows students to work for two years in a paid internship. Professors and graduates of the university’s computer science department have started more than 800 spin-off companies.
- University of British Columbia: A 4-year BS in CS is offered by UBC with options of enrolling for honors and co-op programs. Computer Science program is offered at both campuses of the University of British Columbia: Vancouver and Okanagan.
- University of Alberta: Advantage of studying bachelor's in CS at the UAlberta is that you can apply for a science internship program in the third year of study. This provides an opportunity to not only gain experience in the field but also earn some money. Students can opt for a bachelor's in computer science with specialization, honors or general degree.
- University of Montreal: Offering computer science as both a major and a minor, the University of Montreal also provides cross-disciplinary degrees in this field including Bachelor's in Bioinformatics, Bachelor's in Mathematics and Computer Science and Bachelor's in Physics and Computer Science. However, the entire curriculum of this university is in French, hence you should opt for this university only if you are proficient in the French language.
Out of 79 universities offering an undergraduate degree in computer science in Canada, 26 were included in the top 1000 institutions list of QS News Ranking 2020 edition. The table provided below lists the top 10 Canadian universities offering a bachelor's degree in computer science, according to the ranking given by QS News and Times Higher Education:
|University||QS World Ranking 2020||THE Ranking 2020||Types of Degrees Offered|
|University of Toronto||11||23||BSc: 4 years|
|University of Waterloo||22||40||BSc: 4 years|
|University of British Columbia||28||43||BSc: 4 years|
|University of Montreal||51-100||31||BSc: 3 years|
|University of Alberta||101-150||101-125||BSc: 4 years|
|Simon Fraser University||101-150||251-300||BSc, BA: 3 years|
|Queen's University at Kingston||151-200||251-300||BSc: 4 years|
|McMaster University||201-250||101-125||BSc, BASc: 4 years|
|University of Ottawa||201-250||176-200||BSc, BASc: 4 years|
How to Apply for Bachelors in Computer Science in Canada?
Bachelor of computer science is offered by almost all the highest-ranked universities in Canada, each having slightly different admission procedures. However, mathematics must be studied as a compulsory subject at the senior secondary level to be eligible for admission.
Where to Apply: Every university has its own application system via which it accepts applications for undergraduate programs. Some of the institutes located in Quebec, Ontario, and Alberta may accept application through SRAM, OUAC and ApplyAlberta portal respectively.
Admission Requirements for International Students: Following are the general requirements for admission to a bachelor's degree in computer science in Canada:
- Completion of senior secondary school (minimum grade requirement varies with the university)
- Mathematics as one of the compulsory subjects in a senior secondary school; some universities may have additional subject requirements such as physics, English and chemistry
- Official transcript of high school and senior secondary school
- English translation of official documents
- Proof of English/French language proficiency
Language Proficiency Requirements: The majority of the universities and colleges in Canada offer bachelor's in computer science in English. Hence, international students are required to demonstrate proficiency in the same. IELTS or TOEFL scores can be submitted as proof of English proficiency. Minimum eligibility score for undergraduate admission to top Canadian universities is:
Many universities offer English Languages Programs (ELP) for eligible students who are not able to submit the above scores. Also, applicants from a country where English is the first language are not required to submit proof of English proficiency.
However, few of them have French as a primary medium of instruction. Students applying for such universities must submit proof of French language proficiency. One of the following certificates can be submitted to demonstrate proficiency in French language:
- TFI: International French test
- DELF: Diploma in French language studies
- DALF: Advanced French language diploma
- TCF: French general knowledge test
- TCFQ: Test of knowledge of French for Quebec
- TCF DAP: Test of knowledge of French
- TEF/TEFaQ/TEF Canada: French Assessment Test
Bachelors in Computer Science in Canada: Tuition and Living Cost
Ranked between 101 -150 by 2020 edition ranking of QS News, Simon Fraser University has the lowest annual tuition fee of 14,990 USD among the top ten ranked universities. University of Toronto, which is ranked at 1st position, by both QS News and Times Higher Education, has an annual fee of 42,430 USD for bachelor's in computer science.
In addition to tuition fees, students interested in studying bachelor's in computer science in Canada also have to bear other charges such as books and supplies, residence, transportation, etc. Books and supplies cost around 918 USD. Other expenses including living costs of Canada differ for each province. Thus, students should take into account all sorts of expenses before applying for a university or college.
Scholarships for International Students
Students, enrolling in a bachelor's in computer science in Canada, are eligible for all scholarships available for students of other undergraduate programs. Some of these scholarships are offered by the university or college itself and some by external funding agencies such as NGOs, the Canadian government, embassies of student’s respective home countries, etc.
Mostly, scholarships for international students in Canada are offered on the basis of their academic record of previous school and performance in the present institutes. Need-based scholarships are rarely offered to students coming from outside Canada.
Few of the undergraduate scholarships offered by some of the top-ranking universities:
|University of Toronto||Scholars Program, President’s Scholars of Excellence Program,||5,345 USD - 7,635 USD|
|University of Waterloo||President’s Scholarship of Distinction, President’s Scholarship, Merit Scholarship||764 USD - 1,527 USD|
|University of British Columbia||International Major Entrance Scholarship, Outstanding International Student Award||Based on the availability of funding|
|University of Alberta||International Entrance Leadership Scholarship, International Student Scholarship||3,820 USD - 6,876 USD|
|Simon Fraser University||Undergraduate Scholars Entrance Scholarships, H.Y. Louie and Lohn Entrance Award,||3,821 USD - 7,641 USD|
|Queen's University at Kingston||International Admission Scholarships and Awards, Principal's Scholarship, Excellence Scholarship||1,146 USD - 6,876 USD|
|McMaster University||Engineering Honour Award, B.Tech. Entrance Scholarship, Faculty of Engineering Entrance Scholarships||764 USD - 1,910 USD|
Job Opportunities after Bachelors in Computer Science in Canada
An undergraduate degree in computer science opens the door for a career in information technology, software development, analytics, web technologies, and more. This degree also offers employment prospects in some of the high paying jobs in Canada. The average annual salary of a worker employed in the Information and Computer Technology sector is 60,000 USD which is approximately 50% higher than the average Canadian’s salary.
Following are some of the high paying jobs available for CS graduates in Canada with less than one year of experience:
|Designation||Job Profile||Average Pay (annual)|
|Software Developer||Development of computer applications||42,000 USD|
|Software Engineer||Help software designers in compiling the different program functions into one||47,000 USD|
|Web Developer||Building a website||34,000 USD|
|Programmer Analyst||Designing, coding, and testing of new programs||38,000 USD|
|Front End Developer/Engineer||Managing projects||37,000 USD|
Students opting for bachelor in computer science have the opportunity of landing jobs at some of the most prestigious organizations such as iQmetrix, IBM Canada Ltd., CGI Group Inc. and
Amazon.com Inc. With the right set of skills and education, it is possible to secure an annual package as high as 100,000 USD.
The software and computer sub-sector of ICT has experienced an economic growth of 7.7%, from 2012 to 2018. There has also been an 8% increase in the workforce of this sector. Thus, studying a bachelor's in computer science in Canada offers immense job opportunities. Career options are available in other fields as well, like forensic science, security systems development, technical writing, banking, bioinformatics and tomography.