Wilfrid Laurier University Undergraduate Academic Calendar - 2011/2012
Canadian Excellence

Co-operative Education Option

Associate Director of Co-operative Education
Karen McCargar, BA, ext. 4105

"Co-operative education," a form of work-integrated learning, is a model of education that integrates and alternates a student's academic learning with workplace learning in fields relevant to the student's academic and personal goals. All full-time honours students in the Faculty of Arts may apply for the Co-op Option.

Both work and academic terms are full-time and follow a formalized sequence. Faculty of Arts co-op students complete two work terms of at least 10 weeks each, in approved employment related to their discipline or career goals. Students begin the first work term after completing at least four academic terms. Normally work terms will be completed during the summer after Year 2 and Year 3, although work term requirements may also be fulfilled through full- or part-time positions scheduled during an academic year.

Students prepare for the job search by attending workshops and individual counselling sessions.

Each work term is developed in collaboration with the employer and approved by the Department of Co-operative Education as a suitable learning environment that will engage the student in productive work. Students apply to employers with whom they are interested in working. Employers are encouraged to interview on campus. Although employment cannot be guaranteed, every effort is made to ensure that suitable employment is available for students admitted to the option.

The student's performance in the workplace is supervised and evaluated by the student’s employer. Co-op staff members monitor each student's progress during the work term. The co-op curriculum supports student learning goals, personal evaluation and reflection; students are required to set goals each term and write work term reports. Students are normally compensated by their employers for work performed, but occasionally may be eligible to accept a volunteer position.

A co-op fee is payable in each academic term of Year 2 and Year 3. 

To obtain the co-op designation, students must complete all the requirements of both their academic program and the option. For a complete description of the academic program, refer to the academic program requirements of the departments offering honours programs.

Students completing the option will have the notation "Co-operative Option" appended to their transcript and noted on their degree. No academic credit is given for participation in co-op.

Additional Information
Application Procedure

The deadline for applying for admission to Arts Co-op is the second Monday of classes in September of Year 2. However, students are encouraged to apply for admission to co-op during the winter term of Year 1. Enrolment in co-op is limited, and the admission process is highly competitive.
Application procedure includes:

  1. completion of an online application,
  2. full-time registration in an honours program, 
  3. submission of a rιsumι,
  4. an admission interview.

In order to qualify for an admission interview in September of Year 2, applicants must obtain a minimum GPA of 7.00 overall in Year 1 or a minimum GPA of 7.00 in their honours discipline courses and a minimum GPA of 6.5 overall in Year 1. Selection of candidates is based on their academic record, performance during the interview, recent work experience, and recent volunteer service and extracurricular activities. Admission decisions are made in September. Students on study permits may apply to and be admitted into co-op programs at Laurier. Note, however, that there may be a limit on the number of spaces available to international students.

For further information, contact:
Department of Co-operative Education
Wilfrid Laurier University
192 King Street North
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3C5
Telephone: (519) 884-0710 ext. 4484