Masters in Computer Science in Canada: Top Universities, Admission Eligibility, Cost, Scholarships & Job Prospects

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    Aishwarya Bhatnagar

    Study Abroad Expert | Updated On - Feb 24, 2021

    Masters in Computer Science in Canada are of three types- MSc, MACS, and M.Eng. Students can pursue a degree in 1.5- 2 years if enrolled in a full-time program. The cost of pursuing an MS in Computer Science in Canada ranges from 50,000 USD to 62,000 USD. Around 12 Canadian Universities rank among the top 300 universities globally for offering a Masters in Computer Science. Scholarships for international students range from 500 USD to 23,000 USD for pursuing MS in Computer Science in Canada.

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    Over 40 universities in Canada offer MS in Computer Science. Computer Science as a subject ranks among the top 10 subjects in Canada, popularly opted by international students. According to Maclean's Canadian Universities’ Rankings, MS in Computer Science in Canada ranks #1 in program and research reputation. Computer Science postgraduates are offered monthly packages as high as 110,000 USD in Canada by companies like Amazon, CGI, Sterling Turner, etc. 

    Masters in Computer Science in Canada Top Colleges

    The following table shows the top 10 Canadian universities that offer Computer Science, along with the number of international students enrolled and the cost of pursuing the program in Canada. 

    The strong presence of international students in these universities suggests that the universities not only make it to the top ranking list but also are popular among international students. 

    Why Study Masters in Computer Science in Canada?

    • Lower tuition fees and immigration-friendly policies make Canada one of the perfect study destinations for pursuing an MS in computer science. 
    • In the global peace index, Canada ranks amongst the safest countries in the world. 
    • Increasing job scope in various profiles of the computer science industry makes pursuing MS in computer science in Canada a lucrative program. As per JobBank Canada, the rise in the number of employees required is discussed below, the data applies for the years 2017-2026
      • New job openings of 52,300 are expected for web programmers
      • 20,700 new job openings are expected for software engineer
      • 10,100 new job opening are expected for computer engineers

    Such stats and data suggest that pursuing an MS in computer science in Canada will not disappoint an international applicant.

    Are you planning to study computer science in Canada? Here are some relevant courses that may interest you!

    Key Features of Masters in Computer Science in Canada

    Masters in Computer Science ranks among the top 3 in Canada for its wide range of specializations, lower tuition and better job opportunities. The following section elaborates more upon its features:

    • Top 10 popularly opted specializations in Masters in Computer Science are offered in Canada. They are- Artificial Intelligence, Data Science, Data Analytics, Robotics, Human-Computer Interaction, etc. Students interested in the data science field can also opt for Masters in Data Science in Canada.
    • There are 3 types of Masters of Computer Sciences offered in Canada that can be chosen by students according to their career interests:
      • MACS: Master of Applied Computer Sciences, a 16-month research-based course that requires a thesis submission at the end of the course.
      • M.Eng: Master of Computer Science and Engineering, is a 16-month professional graduate course.
      • MSc: Master of Computer Science, is a 2-year course that requires independent research work from the applicant.
    • Computer Science postgraduates are offered a 3 years work extension period through Postgraduate Work Permit Programme (PGWPP) post their study in Canada.
    • Around 7 university-specific scholarships and various externally funded scholarships are offered to international Computer Science postgraduates.

    Masters in Computer Science in Canada Admissions

    Admissions in Canada for international students for master's degree usually take place in 3 sessions, that is, Fall, Winter, and Summer. The duration of a full-time Master's course varies from 16 months to 2 years, which includes coursework of 4 graduate courses.

    How to Apply for MS in Computer Science in Canada: Prospective MS Computer Science applicants can apply via the official website of the respective university in Canada. For some universities, applicants can also apply through provincial common application portals, like ApplyAlberta, OUAC, etc. 

    Masters in Computer Science in Canada Eligibility

    The eligibility criteria for the top 10 universities in Canada are more or less common. While the application requirements vary from university to university. To be eligible to pursue a Masters in Computer Science from Canada, international applicants must fulfill the following criteria:

    • International applicants must have 16 years of education. The break up being 10+2+4, proof of which is mandatory.
    • A bachelor’s in computer science from Canada or its equivalent from any other country, undergraduates of other disciplines related to computer science are also eligible to apply
    • GPA of 3.25 or above on a 4.0 point scale or a CGPA of 7 to 8 on a scale of 10 is required.* The percentile equivalent of the same is 80-85%.
    • Applicant must also have taken the GRE and scores must not be older than 2 years.
    • Admission eligibility also depends upon the strong programming skills of the applicant.

    *Note: Scores may vary in some cases, depending upon the country of origin of the applicant.

    Documents Requirements

    The required documents when international applicants are making applications with universities offering MS in computer science in Canada are listed below. Usually, documents are requested post-admission offer letter is released. The list of documents that must be submitted along with the application are:

    • Transcripts of high school and college
    • Marksheets and degrees along with the date of conferral
    • Statement of Purpose (SOP) or a personal essay of 2 pages, that talks about the career goals, areas of interest for research and the applicant’s skills and qualifications.
    • 2-3 letters of recommendation are mandatory for submission. At least 2 academic recommendations affirming the applicant’s ability to conduct independent research.
    • Standardized Test Score of GRE must be officially sent to the respective university. It is recommended for international students willing to pursue a Master's or Ph.D. from any Canadian University. The average score required for admission consideration is 260 out of 340.
    • Proof of English Language Proficiency: Tests required to study in Canada by international students are mentioned in the table below. These tests are valid for 2 years from the test date:
    Test Name Minimum Required Score
    TOEFL iBT: 86
    PBT: 575
    IELTS 6.5 - 7.0
    PTE 61 - 66
    MELAB 85% or higher

    The above-mentioned scores are mere approximations, the applicants must check the admission and score requirements before proceeding with the application.

    *Note: Some universities also accept CAE/CPE or CanTest/CAEL along with other tests or in lieu of the above-mentioned tests.

    Admission Decisions at Canadian Universities: Admission decisions are usually released within 40 days of application submission from Canadian universities for admission to the Masters in Computer Science program. Application evaluations are holistic, this is the reason why admission offers are released within this timeframe.

    Masters in Computer Science without GRE in Canada

    A total of 16 universities offer a master's degree in Computer Science in Canada without demanding GRE scores as part of the admission requirements.

    • There are no additional conditions to suffice the non-requirement of GRE.
    • Canadian Universities demand GRE from international students as their educational background is from outside Canada.
    • Some universities do not mention minimum GRE scores but require them for a holistic admission application evaluation.

    Following is a list of those universities which do not require GRE, to grant admissions to international students in MS in Computer Science in Canada:

    What is the Cost of Studying Masters in Computer Science in Canada?

    The annual cost of studying an MS in Computer Science in Canada is 47,779 USD for an M.Eng/MSc degree which is comparatively cheaper to MS in Computer Science in the USA (average 55,000 USD). Students willing to pursue MACS will have to pay around 61,133 USD due to a higher tuition fee requirement since it is a professional course.

    Pre-arrival Costs

    Initial Expenses for Students Applying for an MS in Computer Science in Canada include a few payments are made on or before or along with the admission application, which is one-time. Such as application fees, visa fees, fees for tests required to study in Canada The following is a list of those aspects of an admission application that come under this category:

    Expenses  Cost (in USD)
    Pre-Departure to Canada
    GRE Test Fee 205
    University Application Fee 114
    Visa Application Fee 235*
    Health Insurance 607
    Official Financial Statement 10,000
    Post-Arrival Immediate Expenses in Canada
    Hotel Accommodation 200 - 800
    Meals  45 (per day)
    Airfare 1,400

    *150 USD for a study permit, 85 USD for biometric.

    Masters in Computer Science in Canada Fees 

    The annual expenses that a student needs to pay while pursuing a Masters in Computer Science approximate to 37,778 excluding the one-time fee payments. The tuition fee for MS in Computer Science varies depending upon the choice between MS/M.Eng or MACS. The following table shows the tuition fee for various universities in Canada for studying Masters in Computer Science, for one academic year. Given below is a graphical comparison of the annual tuition fees of popular universities:

    Annual tuition fees by University

    Cost of Living in Canada

    Payments made by international students are on a monthly basis for subsistence in Canada. Some of the commonly estimated range of various costs of living in Canada include:

    Expenses  Cost (in USD)
    Off-campus Accommodation 7,728
    Local Transportation  980
    Food & Beverage 3,700
    Personal & Miscellaneous


    Overall a 4% increase in the tuition fee was recorded for the recent admissions, in comparison to 2017 admissions.

    Masters in Computer Science in Canada with Scholarships

    Out of 33 universities in Canada, almost 6 universities offer scholarships directly to international students while pursuing a Masters in Computer Science. The scholarship amount offered by universities offering MS in Computer Science starts from 500 USD and can go up to 23,000 USD. Some universities either require an additional application along with the admission application or automatically consider the students for a scholarship. Given below are popular university-specific scholarships in Canada for international students

    University Scholarship Award (USD) Eligibility
    University of Calgary Entrance Scholarship 23,000 1st year MS Computer Science applicant
    Offered for two years
    University of Waterloo David R. Cheriton Graduate Scholarships 10,000 Meritorious International Students pursuing MS computer science
    University of Manitoba Graduate Fellowships

    Stephane Durocher 

    Students enrolled in MS computer science

    Offered to one graduate student for 2 years
    University of Northern British Columbia Computer Science Entrance Award 1000 Meritorious International Students
    UBC International Major Entrance Scholarships 
    Outstanding International Student Award
    Varies Meritorious International student pursuing MS Computer Science
    University of Fraser Valley WowAuto Scholarship 500/year A student must be enrolled in MS Computer Science

    Looking for more scholarships to pursue MS computer science in Canada, click here

    Jobs after Masters in Computer Science in Canada

    Post MS in Computer Science in Canada, international students usually apply for a PGWPP within 90 days of course completion, to work in Canada, rather than leaving for their home country. Given below is a graphical image representing the salaries of alumni of CS/IT from popular computer science colleges in Canada

    Salaries of CS/IT Alumni of Popular Universities

    Salary of Computer Science postgraduates who are professionally experienced, get in hand salaries starting from 92,000 USD. Popular Jobs in Canada post completion of MS in computer science are given below along with the minimum salaries offered to them:

    Designation Minimum Average Annual Salary (USD)
    Software Engineer 36,000
    Software Developer 33,000
    Java Developer 35,000
    Network Administrator 31,000
    CAD Designer 25,000
    IT Manager 41,000
    Senior Web Developer 39,000

    Popular companies like Amazon Can, CGI, Scotiabank, Sterling Turner, etc. recruit Computer Science postgrads from various Canadian universities. The starting salary for Computer Science postgraduates is the lowest in Montreal- 49,223 USD, while it is the highest in Vancouver- 103,750 USD. According to the recent survey by Canadian universities of 2016, it was found that Computer Science graduates are the highest paid in Canada.

    Pursuing a Masters in Computer Science in Canada proves to be a boon for international students in terms of education quality, a wide variety of specializations to choose from, research experience, better job opportunities, good in-hand salary, work experience and finally applying for immigration to Canada as a skilled worker. With an overall increase in enrollment of 10.6% for Computer Science admissions for 2016-17, it is estimated that a multi-fold surge in enrollments for the same will be witnessed for the upcoming admission sessions.


    Ques. What are the top universities offering Masters in Computer Science in Canada?

    Ans. University of Toronto, McGill University, University of Waterloo, University of Montreal, UBC are some of the top-ranking universities in Canada offering MS in Computer science.

    Ques. How much does it cost to pursue masters in computer science in Canada?

    Ans. A masters in computer science in Canada will cost you as per the choice of degree. MEng in Computer Science and MS in Computer Science costs an average of 47,000 USD. However, MASc in Computer Science in Canada will cost you around 60,000 USD.

    Ques. What is the eligibility for masters in computer science in Canada?

    Ans. International applicants for maters in computer science in Canada are required to have a bachelor's degree in a relevant field with a percentile score of 77-79%. Along with this, you are required to fulfill English language proficiency requirements by providing a TOEFL score of around 92 and an IELTS score of around 6.5.

    Ques. Which are the cheapest universities for pursuing masters in computer science in Canada?

    Ans. Some of the cheapest universities for pursuing masters in computer science in Canada are MUN, University of Saskatchewan, University of Calgary.

    Ques. Is Canada good for masters in computer science?

    Ans. With around 12 universities ranking among the world’s top 300 universities in the world for computer science, Canada offers world-class education. It is also one of the largest growing economies in the world, hence offers amazing opportunities to graduates. Many multinational IT firms are also housed in Canada that makes it easier for graduates to find a job. 

    Ques. What jobs can I get with masters in computer science in Canada?

    Ans. Some of the popular job roles for computer science graduates are Computer & Information Systems Manager, Software Development Engineering, Computer System Analysts, Software Developers, and Computer Network Architects.

    Ques. Are there scholarships for pursuing masters in Canada?

    Ans. There are plenty of scholarships available for international students planning to pursue master’s in Canada.