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Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of Science
September 5, 2015

Canadian Excellence

Information for Applicants

Successful applicants to Laurier graduate programs in psychology are a diverse and well-qualified group. Students of this caliber have many choices when selecting a graduate program. Here are some of the reasons why Laurier may be right for you.

Why Laurier

Outstanding Research

Faculty members in Psychology at Laurier have received multiple research awards including Canada Research Chairs. The department has facilities for animal research, child observation, focus group sessions, computer-based research, on-line data collection, and more. Research published by faculty and graduate students regularly appears in top peer-reviewed journals in every field.

Faculty Mentorship

At Laurier, students work closely with faculty on research projects in a supportive, collegial environment. Students work with a primary advisor for their Masters and PhD, and doctoral students additionally work with two different faculty members (from any area) for their comprehensive research projects. Faculty members mentor students in specific techniques and research methodologies, and help them develop an independent line of research leading to first-authored publications.

A Strong Community

As a smaller, student-centered graduate program, graduate students at Laurier benefit from a tightly-knit community of faculty and peers. Students frequently collaborate together on research, enjoy "brown bag" seminars and journal clubs, and socialize outside of the department. The department offers several opportunities each year to relax and have fun in a less formal environment.

Living in the Waterloo-Kitchener Region

Waterloo is a student town and as such has more entertainment than one would expect of a city of its size. The section of University Ave between WLU and the University of Waterloo has lots of restaurants, bars, coffee shops, etc, often with student-friendly prices. About a 10 minute walk from Laurier is the "uptown" area of Waterloo (King Street) with shopping, cafes, bars, restaurants and a movie theatre. Uptown Waterloo has got a small-town charm to it - the houses are about three storeys, trees line the streets and it is very clean and safe. Waterloo Park is also just around the corner of Uptown and Waterloo and is a large and very well cared for green spot; great for walking and picknicking (it's even got a little zoo!). In general, Waterloo is a very pretty city - green and alternative, you're more likely to find a eco-cafe than a country bar.

Apart from the area immediately around the universities in Waterloo, about half an hour by bus there are two Farmer's markets which are quite famous outside the local area. The produce there is local and cheap, especially in the summer. Kitchener is about twice as big as Waterloo and has a lot of events going on all the time, from art festivals to regular symphony performances and it has two theaters. There are also a number of walking and biking trails throughout Waterloo and Kitchener for outdoor activities. Finally, Waterloo is only an hour and a half away from Toronto, a vibrant urban center.

The price of living is decent (about 450/month for a room and $800/month for an apartment). There are plenty of housing opportunities around the university (check out the GSA website for housing posts) but a bit further away is of course cheaper. Getting around is no problem as Waterloo has many bus lines and a buss pass is included in the student membership. The closest mall, department stores, and Cineplex are at Conestoga mall, about 15 minutes by bus (or 30 minutes walk) north from Laurier.

Learn More - Contact Us!

If you would like to learn more about a psychology graduate program at Laurier, we invite you to get in touch with us! You can reach our graduate administrator, Rita Sharkey, at this email: Another good way to get a feel for a specific program is to email a graduate student or two in that program, especially a student that works with faculty members whose research interests you. You can also get in touch with faculty directly, to express interest in a program, to ask questions, or to schedule a campus visit.

Apply Now

Application deadline:January 15 (for students wanting to be considered for financial support). Applications will be accepted until the program is full. Please note that we do not require the GRE, though inclusion of GRE results can contribute to the admission process. Apply online now.

Specific admissions criteria will vary from program to program. Visit the program links to the left for more information. General admissions policies for Laurier graduate programs are described below.

For admission to one of our Masters programs, a student must typically have completed a BSC or BA honours degree in psychology with a minimum B average in the last 2 years of study. (Over the last several years, however, the average fourth-year undergraduate GPA of entering students was in the A- range). A student with a degree in a program other than psychology, a combination of psychology and another subject, or a general degree may be admitted if evidence justifying admission is offered. However, a program of appropriate preparatory studies may be required of such applicants.

For admission to our of our PhD programs, a student must typically have successfully completed a Masters degree program in psychology, with a minimum GPA of A-. A student with a Masters degree in a program other than psychology may be admitted if evidence justifying admission is offered. However, such students may be required to successfully complete some lower-level courses before they are admitted to the PhD program.

Beginning in February, an admissions committee reviews each application. During this process, the committee may interview promising candidates by phone or in-person. We usually make offers of admission in mid- to late-February. We maintain a rank-ordered wait-list in case one or more admitted applicants decline our offer of admission.