Applications & Admissions

1. CHECK ELIGIBILITY

Minimum Academic Requirements
4-year Undergraduate Degree or Equivalent

Applicants for the M.Sc in Computing Science must have a four-year undergraduate degree or equivalent. Undergraduate programs completed should be similar to our B.Sc. Specialization in Computing Science program. Normally three-year degrees do not meet the university requirements. If an applicant is admitted to our graduate program, they may have to take some of our undergraduate courses to complete background requirements. Successful applicants will be advised about their background requirements prior to registration.

Applicants for the Ph.D. in Computing Science must have an M.Sc. degree in Computing Science or a related field. Deficiencies must be addressed by taking appropriate undergraduate courses.

Further information on minimum background admission requirements for both the M.Sc and Ph.D programs can be found in Programs & Admissions . Information for Students from Other Disciplines can be found in the M.Sc. Programs page.

 

Undergraduate Degree or Equivalent - In Progress

Students may begin applying for graduate programs even if they are nearing completion but have not yet finished their degree. During the online application process, transcripts would be submitted up until the current semester.

 

GPA

A 3.0 GPA is typically the minimum GPA for acceptance in an MSc or PhD program. However, we may consider slightly lower GPAs in exceptional circumstances or due to small discrepancies in international GPA conversion rates. 

Meeting the 3.0 GPA minimum requirement does not guarantee admission. Our department admissions process is highly competitive and the Admissions Committee often selects students with a 3.5 GPA or higher. 

Students are responsible for converting their GPA into the 4.0 scale used at the University of Alberta. AGPA is calculated using the last two years of post-secondary study or the last 60 credits. If your GPA is not calculated using a 4.0 scale, please see our Frequently Asked Questions for more information on how to convert your GPA.

We do not pre-screen applications or make preliminary evaluations of applications. It will be up to the Admissions Committee to review your complete application and scores to determine if you are a suitable candidate for our graduate program.

English Language Test

English is the primary language of instruction and communication at UAlberta. All applicants must be proficient in English prior to admission.

International applicants must be able to demonstrate English Language Proficiency at the time of application (see below for a special note on the Duolingo English Test as an ELP alternative during the COVID pandemic).

Proficiency is demonstrated by:

• Possession of a degree or its academic equivalent from an institution recognized by the University of Alberta and where the language of instruction is English. Proof that the instruction for the degree was in English will be required (see Recognized English Language Countries/Institutions);

Or

• A satisfactory score on one of the following approved English language examinations (see below for a special note on the Duolingo English Test as an ELP alternative during the COVID pandemic):

Exams Effective for
Fall 2023 Admission
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT, in-person or special at-home edition) * Total score of 100 with a score of at least 21 on each of the individual skill areas (internet-based) or equivalent
Academic International English Language Testing System
(IELTS)
Revised to:
6.5, with at least 6.0 on each test band
Canadian Academic English Language Assessment
(either CAEL [paper] or CAEL CE [computer])
Overall 70 with at least 60 on each subtest
Pearson Test of English Academic
(PTE Academic)
61 with a minimum band score of 60
Note: These are minimum scores required by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. Some departments require higher scores.

If you need to complete one of these English language examinations, you should do so as soon as possible and arrange for the results to be sent to the department to which you are applying.

 

• Applicants may demonstrate English Language Proficiency through confirmation of sufficient English language coursework at the secondary school level from select countries (ie. Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden & Switzerland). See English Language Proficiency: Secondary School Coursework.

Note : Departments and the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research (FGSR) reserve the right to require further demonstration of English Language proficiency.

Special Note: Duolingo English Test as an ELP alternative

If you are in a region impacted by Pearson, IELTS, or TOEFL test centre closures due to COVID-19, the Duolingo English Test will be made available to all applicants to undergraduate and graduate programs as an additional option to demonstrate English Language Proficiency. This option is currently available until Winter 2024 admission. Minimum Duolingo English Test scores required by University of Alberta are as follows:
• 120 for English Language Proficiency, with no subscore below 100

Graduate programs in which proficiency in spoken English is especially important may have a higher than minimum English language proficiency requirement. For these programs, the following minimum Duolingo English Test scores are required:
• 140 for Spoken English Proficiency, with no subscore below 120

Notwithstanding the above, graduate programs reserve the right to require a further demonstration of English language proficiency.


For more information about English Language Proficiency, see English Language Requirement in the University Calendar.


GRE

The GRE (General) is NOT required for application to our graduate programs, however it is highly recommended for applicants who have received their degree outside of Canada. It is also beneficial for applicants who do not have a degree from a well-known North American university or with a lower GPA.  

If you would like to upload your GRE, please do so in your GARS application. Electronic scores are not required.

Below are the minimum scores of strong applicants who choose to write the GRE: 

GRE Minimum Scores

 

 Minimum score - Quantitive  155
 Analytical writing section  4.0

*GRE At-Home will be accepted for the 2023 Fall Intake due to ongoing complications from Covid-19. Prospective students should clearly indicate whether it's an "At-Home" or "Test-Centre" score.

2. MEET DEADLINES

Important Dates

Fall 2023 Admission

We have only one intake per year in the Fall term. We do not admit in Winter, Spring or Summer terms.

 

Fall 2023 Graduate Admission Deadlines
Application Opens
Application Closes
Program
DISCONTINUED INDEFINITELY DISCONTINUED INDEFINITELY MSc Course-Based
Oct 15, 2022 Jan 31, 2023 - 11:59pm * MSc Thesis
Oct 15, 2022 Jan 31, 2023 - 11:59pm * PhD
Oct 15, 2022 Jan 31, 2023 - 11:59pm * MSc (Thes) / PhD - Statistical Machine Learning
Oct 1, 2022 Mar 1, 2023 - 11:59pm MSc - Internetworking (MINT)
Oct 1, 2022 Mar 31, 2023 - 11:59pm MSc - Multimedia

 

*Applications will begin being evaluated starting January 2, 2023. Applicants who submit all materials by January 31, 2023 at 11:59 MST will be given full consideration. Late applications may be considered at the discretion of the graduate admissions committee. 

3. PREPARE APPLICATION

Transcripts / Marksheets

Please do not send paper copies of transcripts/marksheets to apply. Only electronic PDF copies of transcripts/marksheets are required to be uploaded to an online application. These are considered to be unofficial documents.

All applicants must provide transcripts or individual semester-wise marksheets for all post-secondary education completed, including undergraduate and graduate studies, even if studies have been discontinued or if courses were completed but not part of a program.

If an applicant is currently active in their program and it is not yet completed, we only require up-to-date transcripts or individual marksheets at the time of application, from the start of their program to the current semester.

Acceptable transcripts/marksheets must include the following criteria:

  • Issued to the student by the post-secondary institution OR a transcript/marksheet/student record obtained from self-serve web system of the post-secondary institution and must include URL and print date
  • PDF format
  • Clear and fully legible
  • Both front and back pages scanned
  • Full name of applicant
  • Name of post-secondary institution
  • Academic program
  • Grading scheme / scale legend
  • Names and numbers of courses
  • Year and term of attendance
  • Grade received
  • Credits received

Transcripts provided to support a degree that has been conferred must cover the entire period of the degree.

No transcript information may be left out, altered or added. This means that all grades, comments, dates, and discussion must be included.

For further information visit the Faculty of Graduate Studies Research, Application Requirements for Academic Documents.

If you are admitted, the most updated official transcripts must be uploaded to your GSMS application. If admitted, FGSR will notify you to submit these documents. You will only have to mail official documents if you are admitted.

Up-to-date official transcripts are defined as transcripts of all studies dated or issued in the fall/winter session of the year of application (if currently registered) or after the last term completed (if not currently registered). Since recent or current undergraduate or graduate studies may not have been completed, up-to-date transcripts may not include new entries or grades.

 
Canadian Graduates
  • Scan and upload transcripts from all post-secondary institutions that you have attended in Canada.
  • If the transcript is issued in French by a Canadian institution, then no English language translation is required.
US Graduates
  • Scan and upload transcripts from all post-secondary institutions that you have attended in the US.
  • If the transcript is issued in a foreign language, include all transcripts in original language and English translation, issued by the institution or a certified translator.
International Graduates
  • Graduates from Pakistan & India:
    • Scan and upload individual semester-wise marksheets from all post-secondary institutions attended in India & Pakistan. Consolidated transcripts will not be accepted. If your university does not supply these required documents, please send a message through the GSMS Applicant Portal and we will make a note on your application.
    • English as Medium of Instruction: No translation of transcripts required.
    • Foreign Languages: Include all individual semester-wise marksheets in original language and English translation, issued by the institution or a certified translator.
  • All other international graduates:
    • Scan and upload individual semester-wise marksheets or transcripts from all post-secondary institutions that you have attended internationally.
    • English as Medium of Instruction: No translation of transcripts required.
    • Foreign Languages: Include all semester-wise marksheets or transcripts in original language and English translation, issued by the institution or a certified translator.
English Translations

Applicants who received their post-secondary education from an international institution where the medium of instruction was not English, must submit individual semester-wise marksheets or transcripts translated into English. English translation of individual semester-wise marksheets or transcripts must be provided by the issuing institution or by a certified translator.

Translations must be literal word-for-word, presenting the same order of information and format as the original. No information may be left out, altered, or added. This means that all grades, comments, dates, and discussion must be included. 

We do not accept documents notarized by a notary public or endorsed by a lawyer, professor or judge.

Degree / Certificate

Please do not send paper copies of degrees and/or certificates. Only electronic PDF copies of degrees and/or certificates are required to be uploaded to an online application. Official documentation is only required if you are accepted into the program.

 
Undergraduate Degree or Equivalent - In Progress

If an applicant is currently active in their program and has not yet completed it at the time of application, they must submit a PDF version of their transcripts/individual marksheets up to the current semester.

Undergraduate Degree or Equivalent - Completed

If an applicant has completed their degree program, they must submit a PDF version of their degree and/or certificate if applicable with their application.

A Degree Certificate must accompany transcripts that DO NOT clearly indicate:

  • that a degree has been conferred/awarded/granted; and
  • the date on which the degree was conferred.
    • Degree certificates must include the date of issue, registrar's signature, and a post-secondary institution stamp or seal.

You may have an interim transcript that does not yet indicate that a degree has been conferred and the date that degree was conferred. However, FINAL transcripts from all North American and many international institutions will include this information, in which case there is no need to submit a Degree Certificate.

For further information visit the Faculty of Graduate Studies & Research, Application Requirements for Academic Documents.

 

English Translations

Applicants who received their post-secondary education from an international institution where the medium of instruction was not English must submit degrees and/or certificates translated into English. An English translation of degrees and/or certificates must be provided by the issuing institution or by a certified translator.

Translations must be literal word-for-word, presenting the same order of information and format as the original. No information may be left out, altered, or added. This means that all grades, comments, dates, and discussion must be included. 

We do not accept documents notarized by a notary public or endorsed by a lawyer, professor or judge.

Curriculum Vitae
Submit an up-to-date curriculum vitae (CV). Must include all post-secondary education history.
Letters of Reference

Applicants must submit three reference names and emails for their application to be completed.

An email with a secure link will only be sent to your referees after you submit and pay for your FGSR/GSMS application. Referees must then upload a PDF letter to the online application system.

Two of the referees should hold academic positions at an institution from which you graduated. If you have lost contact with your former professors or you are not able to obtain two academic references, then it is up to you to determine the best references to list under your circumstances.

Reference letters must be written in English and include the following criteria or they will not be accepted:

  • Referee's full name, title, email address, signature (ink or digital acceptable)
  • Student applicant's full name
  • PDF format
  • Up-to-date for current application year
  • Submitted directly from referee
  • Official letterhead of referee's institution/company

Reference letters missing any of the above criteria will be rejected. If not corrected and resubmitted properly, an application may be rejected in its entirety due to reference letter non-compliance of the above stated criteria. If an applicant wishes to update or change reference information, they may submit up to three additional references as needed.

Statement of Purpose & Abstract
M.Sc. Applicants

M.Sc. applicants are required to submit a statement of purpose in the GSMS application.  The statement of purpose has a 4500 character limit in total (includes spaces, etc.). 

 
Ph.D Applicants

Ph.D applicants are required to submit a statement of purpose to the GSMS application and an abstract of their M.Sc Thesis in GARS. Your statement of purpose should outline your research goals in relation to the research being done by the Computing Science faculty member(s) listed on your application. The statement of purpose has a 4500 character limit in total (includes spaces, etc.).

 

NOTE: Going over the 4500 character limit will not prevent you from submitting your application, though the extra text in your application will be stricken out like this. If there are words stricken out, they will be visible to the faculty reviewers though it is unlikely they'll review beyond anything crossed out. It is up to the applicant whether or not to trim down their statement to the 4500 limit. 

 

Research & Supervision
M.Sc Applicants

M.Sc applicants are NOT required to have a supervisor prior to admission. They have the opportunity to investigate our 14 different research areas, and various projects happening in each of these areas, during the first six months of their program. Supervisors of interest can be listed on the applicant's Statement of Purpose and/or selected from the dropdown selection menu on the GARS application.

 

Ph.D Applicants

Ph.D. applicants are required to select a research area and name up to 3 professors as potential supervisors when applying. Ph.D. applicants are encouraged to contact potential supervisors directly through our people directory to discuss funding and supervision. Students will only be admitted if a professor agrees to supervise.  

English Language Proficiency

English is the primary language of instruction and communication at UAlberta. All applicants must be proficient in English prior to admission.

International applicants must be able to demonstrate English Language Proficiency at the time of application (see below for a special note on the Duolingo English Test as an ELP alternative during the COVID pandemic).

Proficiency is demonstrated by:

• Possession of a degree or its academic equivalent from an institution recognized by the University of Alberta and where the language of instruction is English. Proof that the instruction for the degree was in English will be required (see Recognized English Language Countries/Institutions);

Or

• A satisfactory score on one of the following approved English language examinations (see below for a special note on the Duolingo English Test as an ELP alternative during the COVID pandemic):

Exams Effective for
Fall 2023 Admission
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT, in-person or special at-home edition) * Total score of 100 with a score of at least 21 on each of the individual skill areas (internet-based) or equivalent
Academic International English Language Testing System
(IELTS)
Revised to:
6.5, with at least 6.0 on each test band
Canadian Academic English Language Assessment
(either CAEL [paper] or CAEL CE [computer])
Overall 70 with at least 60 on each subtest
Pearson Test of English Academic
(PTE Academic)
61 with a minimum band score of 60
Note: These are minimum scores required by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. Some departments require higher scores.

If you need to complete one of these English language examinations, you should do so as soon as possible and arrange for the results to be sent to the department to which you are applying.

 

• Applicants may demonstrate English Language Proficiency through confirmation of sufficient English language coursework at the secondary school level from select countries (ie. Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden & Switzerland). See English Language Proficiency: Secondary School Coursework.

Note : Departments and the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research (FGSR) reserve the right to require further demonstration of English Language proficiency.

Special Note: Duolingo English Test as an ELP alternative

If you are in a region impacted by Pearson, IELTS, or TOEFL test centre closures due to COVID-19, the Duolingo English Test will be made available to all applicants to undergraduate and graduate programs as an additional option to demonstrate English Language Proficiency. This option is currently available until Winter 2024 admission. Minimum Duolingo English Test scores required by University of Alberta are as follows:
• 120 for English Language Proficiency, with no subscore below 100

Graduate programs in which proficiency in spoken English is especially important may have a higher than minimum English language proficiency requirement. For these programs, the following minimum Duolingo English Test scores are required:
• 140 for Spoken English Proficiency, with no subscore below 120

Notwithstanding the above, graduate programs reserve the right to require a further demonstration of English language proficiency.


For more information about English Language Proficiency, see English Language Requirement in the University Calendar.


4. APPLY ONLINE

Application Fees

Effective December 16th, 2022, FGSR will be waiving the Graduate Application Fee ($135) for students applying from Iran. This fee waiver will be extended to all completed applications received between December 16th, 2022 - January 31st, 2023

This process will be applied automatically in your GSMS application when you make an application.

 

Fall 2023 Admission Fees

Fall 2023 Admission Fees
Online Application System Fee
FGSR / GSMS $135 CAD
GARS No cost

Application fees are non-refundable. Payments can be made using a valid credit card only. We accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discovery Card.

 

Fee Increase

Please note that as of Sept 1, 2021, the fee for all applications to graduate programs has increased from $100 CAD to $135 CAD.

 

Fee Exemptions

The University of Alberta is no longer offering any fee exemptions, however the Department of Computing Science was able to dedicate some funding to support application fee waivers for a small number of students from underdeveloped countries.

For more information including criteria and how to apply, please visit 2023/24 Fee Waiver Application for Computing Science Graduate Program.

Submit Application

NOTE: As of July 2021, the general Course-Based MSc in Computing Science is no longer offered and has been discontinued indefinitely. Other course-based programs such as MSc in Multimedia (MM) and MSc in Internetworking (MINT) are still available.

 

We utilize TWO online applications systems to receive applications from prospective students:

  1. FGSR/GSMS is the University-level application system also referred to as the Faculty of Graduate Studies & Research/Graduate Studies Management Solution 
  2. GARS is the Department-level application system also referred to as the Graduate Application Review System  

TO APPLY FOR:

  • M.Sc - Thesis
  • Ph.D
  • M.Sc, Ph.D - Statistical Machine Learning

use the green buttons below to submit an application to BOTH FGSR/GSMS and GARS online systems:

  Apply to FGSR/GSMS

  Apply to GARS

 

TO APPLY FOR:

  • M.Sc Internetworking (MINT)
  • M.Sc Multimedia

use the green button below to submit an application only to FGSR/GSMS online system:

  Apply to FGSR/GSMS

 

If you intend to be considered for more than one graduate program, you will need to complete individual applications for each program. 

 

Technical Issues

Our application forms require the latest version of Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Safari. We recommend clearing your browser cache before initiating our application forms.

FGSR/GSMS - For technical issues please send a message through the Applicant Portal for assistance.

GARS - For technical issues please send a message to support@gars.ualberta.ca for assistance.

Specializations

The Department of Computing Science offers the following specialization programs:

 

M.Sc - Statistical Machine Learning (SML)

Applicants for the Masters of Science (M.Sc) - Statistical Machine Learning should apply to the Masters Thesis-based program. You can indicate your interest in SML in your application when you choose your area of interest. We are not able to admit students directly into the SML program at the time of admission to the CS graduate program. Whether a student is eventually admitted into the SML program is conditional on their ability to find a supervisor in SML after arriving on campus. Applicants must submit an application for M.Sc - Statistical Machine Learning on both FGSR/GSMS online system and GARS online system.

 
Ph.D - Statistical Machine Learning (SML)

Applicants for the Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D) - Statistical Machine Learning should apply to the Ph.D program. Students are accepted into the Ph.D - Statistical Machine Learning (SML) program at admission time or, with their supervisor's support, can apply to transfer to the Statistical Machine Learning program if their thesis will be in an area related to statistical machine learning. Applicants must submit an application for Ph.D - Statistical Machine Learning on both the FGSR/GSMS online system and GARS online system.

 
M.Sc - Internetworking (MINT)

Please see program requirements and application procedure for more information. Submit application for Masters in Internetworking (MINT) on FGSR/GSMS online system only.

 
M.Sc - Multimedia

Please see program page and application procedure for more information. Submit application for Multimedia on FGSR/GSMS online system only.

5. MONITOR APPLICATION

Pending Action Required
FGSR/GSMS Applicant Portal

All applicants should monitor their FGSR/GSMS application for any actions required by logging in to the GSMS Applicant Portal.

After your application has been received, it will be placed in queue for document compliance screening according to the application submission date. Applicants will not be able to view any pending actions required at this stage.

Once document compliance screening has been completed, any documents requiring attention will be marked as incomplete / action required. Applicants must log in to the GSMS Applicant Portal to complete requested action. After all required documents have been received and are deemed acceptable, the application will be put up for review.

Document statuses will show as:

  • PENDING: Document has been received and is awaiting review by admissions staff.
  • INCOMPLETE / ACTION REQUIRED: Document has been reviewed and deemed unacceptable. Required actions will be noted with further detail such as delete, replace or add documents like degrees and/or certificates, correct versions of transcripts or marksheets or include English translations if needed. Applicants must upload the requested document, after which the document status will change from incomplete to pending. Please allow 5 - 7 business days for your document status to be updated.
  • COMPLETE: Document has been reviewed and deemed acceptable. Status will change from pending to complete. Due to high volumes of applications received, it may take 6 - 8 weeks for documents to be reviewed and deemed acceptable.

 

GSMS Document Status Definitions
Document Status What It Means 
Pending Document awaiting review by dept; student can delete or replace document
Incomplete / Action Required Applicant must delete, replace, or add requested document
Complete Document reviewed and accepted by admissions staff
 

Any applications with incomplete documentation not submitted by the final deadline will be rejected.

 

Technical Issues/Errors

Applicants may message admissions staff directly through the GSMS Applicant Portal with questions or concerns. For technical issues or errors with the GSMS Applicant Portal please contact grad.webadm@ualberta.ca .

  

GARS Applicant Portal

For technical issues or errors with the GARS Applicant Portal please contact support@gars.ualberta.ca. 

Application Status

Applicants can determine their application status on the GSMS Applicant Portal. Official notification regarding the final outcome of student applications will be communicated through the GSMS Applicant Portal.

We review applications and make admission decisions on a rolling basis from February to April.

Please note that due to large volumes of applicants who apply each year, we are unable to provide individual feedback as to why an applicant was not accepted.

6. ADMITTANCE

Send Official Documents

Sending official documentation is only required for applicants who have been offered admission. Applicants who have received a conditional offer of admission may also be asked to send official documents.

An official document (transcripts, degree certificates, etc) is issued by the institution awarding the degree and has been certified by an authorized official of that institution.

If official transcripts cannot be obtained, applicants should supply certified true copies of official transcripts and certified statements confirming degrees awarded and academic standing achieved. Certification of transcripts and degrees must be effected by imprinting them with the official seal of the institution or by endorsing them by hand with the original signature of the responsible university officer (eg, Registrar, Admissions Officer, President). Photocopies that are not certified in this way are not acceptable for official admission purposes.

Copies of transcripts certified by a notary public are only accepted in exceptional circumstances and never from a North American institution.

 

For authentication purposes, official documents must be sent directly from the post-secondary institution to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research at the following address:

Faculty of Graduate Studies & Research
2-29 Triffo Hall
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada T6G 2E1

 

If you have questions related to sending official documents to FGSR please contact grad.admissions@ualberta.ca.

Obtain Study Permit

To study in Canada, you must obtain a study permit from the nearest Canadian Embassy, High Commission, or Consulate.

Depending on your country of origin, you (and your spouse and children) may also need to obtain a visitor visa. You will need to apply for these documents before you arrive in Canada.

To apply for a Study Permit, you will need to wait for your official letter of admission from the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research and a letter of financial support provided by the Department of Computing Science.

We suggest that you contact your nearest Canadian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate for more information immediately after submitting your application. Please visit Application to Study in Canada, Study Permits.

For questions related to your study permit, visa, or any other immigration-related matters, please contact International Student Services at advising@international.ualberta.ca.