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UofT/Waterloo to MIT

  1. May 30, 2011 #1
    Hello Everyone,

    I am in my last year of high school (in Canada) and have been accepted to the computer science program at both UofT and Waterloo. While I am aware that Waterloo is one of the best schools for computer science in the country, I am also aware that UofT has a better reputation abroad. If I plan on applying to MIT for graduate studies which of the aforementioned universities would I be better off attending?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 30, 2011 #2
    Honestly in the end it will depend on your grades and how active you are outside of academia (volunteer work, sports, etc.) MIT will be well aware of the reputations of both schools as well as the difficulty level (especially with Waterloo). Either one you attend it's just going to ride on if you're getting 98% in every course (maybe an exaggeration but you might as well set your sights extremely high if you wish to get into MIT). Don't forget that tuition in Canada is ~$5500-6000 a year. Tuition for grad school at MIT is around $50,000 a year, you might want to consider that in your endeavors
  4. May 30, 2011 #3
    you are the canadian and you are the one that should know, both are well known outside canada and both have had important people come out in the computer science area

    i would just say go to UToronto because Toronto is a city and Waterloo is a ''town'' i plan applying to those 2, UBC, Simon Fraser and UCalgary this semester that comes, UBC being my first option and UWaterloo the last one
  5. May 30, 2011 #4
    grad school don't look for volunteer and sports or any extracurricular anymore unless it is related to your studies, they look for achievement that will make you a better scientist once you go the grad school and bring reputation to the school name and such
  6. May 30, 2011 #5
    Also, if you are going to graduate school for a science/math field at most universities they pay you (TA positions, Fellowships, etc) , not the other way around.
  7. May 31, 2011 #6
    @n1person, that's if you're lucky and end up getting those awards/jobs. Not everyone gets their schooling completely subsidized by these things.

    @nobelium102 Huh... I've been under the impression from the start of my undergrad that extracurriculars were the bread and butter of standing out of the crowd when it comes to professional/grad school applications. Well, even if it isn't a requirement it wouldn't hurt to have some experience under your belt.
  8. May 31, 2011 #7
    I was probably being too general, at MIT and its peer universities, you will usually get paid. (http://www.eecs.mit.edu/grad/support.html [Broken])

    Extracurriculars that graduate schools look at are generally not "volunteer work, sports, etc." unless that volunteer work is related to the course of study. Research experience is very important, but no graduate school will care at all about sports.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  9. May 31, 2011 #8
    I can speak from experience, I go to U of T and I one of the places I am going to apply to next year is MIT. The level of difficulty of the computer science courses are pretty much the same for both U of T and Waterloo. But if you are applying for graduate school, then research experience is very important and U of T is far more well known for research (consistently ranked among the top 10). So it is easier to do summer research at u of t and chances are that the professors who write you recommendation letters are more well known. Also, if you are interested in theoretical computer science, u of t offers enriched cs theory courses + specialist level math courses which are far more challenging than their Waterloo equivalents. So in short Waterloo is great if you want to get a job right after college but U of T is better academically.
  10. May 31, 2011 #9
    I could be wrong, but I was under the impression that most of the research done at UofT was done in the grad program (and so I would not benefit from it anyway). From what I've heard their undergrad courses are exceptionally difficult, since they accept alot of students and need some way to weed them out (yet keep the cash flow intact). As far as I know most (especially American) grad schools don't take this grade deflation into account. So wouldn't I be better off going to waterloo and ending up with a higher GPA?
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