Wilfrid Laurier University Graduate Calendar - 2012/2013
Canadian Excellence

Master of Business Administration

The Laurier MBA program stresses the skills and abilities to take effective action and to develop managers, not just people who know about management. Central to this philosophy is the belief that management must be problem and opportunity centred. While it is essential that managers know the theories and concepts of management, it is in the solving of problems that their contribution will be measured. 

The learning environment at Laurier enables students to develop the skills needed to be effective decision makers. The classroom becomes a crucible where students and their ideas are forged through team and individual activities. The interaction of class members and teaching faculty provides the stimulus for personal growth and learning. The presentation and defence of one's ideas, the exchange of ideas, and the critical evaluation by one's peers form an important part of the classroom process. 

The Waterloo full-time program begins in mid-August and continues for 12 months of full-time study. 

The Waterloo full-time program with co-op option begins in mid-August and continues for 20 months (3 terms of study and two terms of co-op).

The Waterloo part-time evening program, offered through late afternoon and evening courses, is structured for students who are already employed in business. The normal load is two courses per term for three terms a year. Students admitted to this program begin their studies in September. 

The Toronto weekend format program (MBA, MBA with CMA option and MBA with CFA option) is offered Friday evenings and Saturdays on alternate weeks. The required components of this program are the same as those in the full-time MBA program. Admission requirements are identical. Students are governed by the general regulations of the university, and any exceptions must be approved by the dean of Graduate Studies. Note that special fees apply to this program. For further details, please contact the MBA Office.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the MBA program is competitive and is based on the following criteria:

  • a four-year bachelor's degree or equivalent from a university or college of recognized standing with a minimum of a second-class honours or a B standing in the final year of the undergraduate program (the equivalent of 10 courses). Additional courses that are completed after the requirements for the bachelor's degree have been met will be calculated into the final year GPA. To be considered for admission, the re-calculated GPA must be at least a B
  • applicants to the part-time Toronto MBA program who hold a BBA or BComm degree with a GPA of at least a B+ in the final two years of full-time study (the equivalent of 20 half-credit courses) may be considered for course exclusions (see "Note" under The Toronto MBA Part-time Weekend Program);
  • applicants to the part-time Toronto MBA program who hold a CMA designation and have a minimum of five years work experience may be considered for course exclusions (see "Note" under The Toronto MBA Part-time Weekend Program);
  • evidence of quantitative skills, normally by the successful completion of the GMAT, or by successful completion (within the last five years) of an undergraduate course in calculus or statistics. All other qualifications (i.e., work experience and GPA requirements) must be met before a course will be considered in lieu of the GMAT. The co-op program requires the GMAT with a minimum score of 600. The GMAT is mandatory for applicants with international degrees earned.
  • normally two years of full-time work experience or six co-op work terms (this requirement is waived for applicants to the full-time MBA co-op program) 
  • letters of reference. Normally one academic and two professional references are required (for the MBA co-op program, three academic references are required)
  • applicants whose language of instruction during the undergraduate degree was other than English must furnish evidence of proficiency in English, prior to admission, by providing one of the following: IELTS (minimum 7); TOEFL (minimum 573/230); TOEFL iBT: minimum score of 89, with minimum skill scores of 21 in each of the skills tests (speaking, writing, reading and listening); MELAB (minimum 90) or CAEL (minimum 70), or completion of the LEAF Pre-MBA program with a minimum grade of 70%. Successful applicants to the program will be required to attend an orientation as part of their entry into the program. Details can be obtained from the MBA office.
Application Deadlines

Waterloo Programs: February 1 for international students, May 1 for all other applicants, though applications will continue to be accepted until the program is full.
Toronto Programs: February 1. 

Program Requirements

The MBA program requires the completion of 20 half-credit courses, consisting of ten required and ten elective courses. As an alternative to completing the 10 electives, students may complete BU680? and seven electives. The BU680? course provides an opportunity to engage in more extensive research, under the supervision of a professor, in an area of special interest to the student. The intent of this research project is to apply the methodology and the knowledge from the core courses in a business setting. Research proposals are restricted to those areas in which the university can provide library and faculty resources. The results of the research project must be submitted to the university in a form acceptable for publication. An oral defence is required before the Major Research Project Committee Members upon completion of the project.

It is the student's responsibility to select faculty members to be invited to serve as MRP committee members, who are then approved by the MBA program director. The committee comprises two full-time faculty members in the academic program who are members of the University's Graduate Faculty. One committee member whose research interests are similar to the student's topic serves as the advisor. The second member serves as a "reader", whose responsibility includes, but is not limited to, serving as an evaluator of the completed research paper.

The Waterloo Full-time Weekday Program

The Full-Time Program (offered internationally at alternative venues)

This pilot program provides a broad overview of the major areas of business activities with a particular focus on how they are executed in different international business contexts. The program is delivered in an integrated fashion to reflect the realities of the complex and dynamic business world. Requirements include 10 half?credit required courses and 10 half?credit specified elective courses offered over three terms in three different venues – Dubai, India and Canada .

Term 1 is taught in an integrated fashion, where eight half?credit courses designed to provide a management point of view are completed. Students must complete term 1 before entering term 2. During term 2 to be delivered in India, 5 specified courses that reflect the requirements for doing business in a rapidly developing economy are required, plus registration in BU610* - Applied Business Research.

Term 3 to be delivered in Canada requires an additional 5 specified courses that are reflective of doing business in a mature developed economy plus the continuation of BU610* - Applied Business Research. BU610* - Applied Business Research consists of an applied business research project and a not?for?profit organization practicum component that span both Terms 2 and 3. This project and practicum will be focused on addressing issues related to the different international venue contexts.

Students are required to pay all costs associated with the international components of this program.

Note: No exemptions are granted for prior course credit due to the integrated nature of the program.

Term 1 (Dubai)
BU601, BU602, BU603, BU604, BU605, BU606, BU607, BU609
Term 2 (India)
BU610*, BU643, BU661, BU678, BU699, BU701
Term 3 (Canada)
BU610*, BU622, BU635, BU640, BU641, BU691v
The Waterloo Full-time Weekday Program with Co-op

The program is designed for high calibre graduates of undergraduate programs with no (or very limited) prior work experience that want to develop their organizational and management skills. The program requires the completion of 10 half-credit required courses and 10 half-credit elective courses over three study terms as well as the completion of two work terms. Study terms will alternate with work terms in the following manner:

In Term 1 students will enrol in eight required courses (BU601, BU602, BU603, BU604, BU605, BU606, BU607 and BU609). The courses will be taught in an integrative manner identical to the practice in the current full-time MBA program.

In Term 2, students will undertake a work term.

In term 3, students will enrol in and complete 6 elective courses.

In term 4, students will undertake a work term.

In term 5, students will enrol in and complete 4 elective courses and BU610*.

Note: No exemptions are granted for prior course credit due to the integrated nature of the program.

The Waterloo Part-time Evening Program

Approved Fields for the MBA Program

Field in the Waterloo Program (only; not available in the Toronto program)

The Toronto MBA Part-time Weekend Program

Fields in the Toronto Program (only; not available in the Waterloo program)

Academic Regulations

Requirements for Continuing in and Graduating from the Program
Students' grades are assigned in accordance with the grading system outlined under General Regulations.

All MBA students admitted as of September 1995 must achieve a minimum B- grade in all courses and achieve a B average or higher in order to graduate.

Awarding of Diploma in Business Administration to MBA Withdrawals
Students admitted to the MBA program after September 1994 may request the Diploma in Business Administration if they have successfully completed a minimum of four half-credit MBA courses and BU601 through BU607 and BU609, with a GPA of at least 8.0. Any student who receives the Diploma in Business Administration in this way and subsequently seeks to complete the MBA must reapply for admission to the program. Any students readmitted must meet the MBA requirements and relinquish the diploma before receiving the MBA degree.