McMaster University

McMaster University | Hamilton, Ont. | Founded 1887


McMaster University

Although its steel- and manufacturing-based economy gave Hamilton its “Steeltown” moniker, students need not be deterred by images of an industrial wasteland. McMaster is actually a green campus with ivy-covered buildings blending in with modern glass and steel. Located near lakefront conservation areas, pedestrians rule the school grounds, as cars are not allowed beyond the parking lots located along the campus perimeter. Students are as enthusiastic and engaged as the forward-thinking professors, thanks to the university’s innovative teaching methods. In particular, the inquiry approach—a form of self-directed, problem-based learning—originated with the well-respected medical school, and universities around the world, including Harvard, continue to use Mac as a model. Students can take a break at the on-campus planetarium or the art gallery. President Patrick Deane lays out the school’s priorities: maximizing the undergraduate experience, building stronger community connections and driving research excellence. “We must serve our community by cultivating human potential in rapidly changing circumstances,” Deane says. “We must teach our lessons and gather our data, not only in lecture halls and laboratories, but also in the streets, shops and clinics, and the very landscape we inhabit.”

READ: Where to find the best place for a nap and more on campus

Standout Programs

Justice, Political Philosophy and Law: Offers a cross-disciplinary range of courses exploring the world’s political and legal landscape; includes an experiential course in final year. Grads can go on to careers in law, politics, education, human rights or public policy.

Engineering and Management: This five-year program gives students the skills of an engineer combined with business fundamentals; students learn to solve complex industry problems with an interdisciplinary team approach.

•  Honours Integrated Science: With only 60 spaces each year, the program offers a highly personalized education. Students interact with peers and profs across the faculty of science; includes lab and field work research.

Cool Courses

The History of the Future: Examines the relationship between technology, imagination and the future, while investigating how technology has historically shaped ideas about the future and how those ideas about the future shape subsequent technology.

Engineering Profession and Practice: Working in groups, students design devices to assist disabled members of the community.

Minimum entering grades Tuition Number of students Residence spaces Graduation and retention rates
Engineering: 89%
Arts: 75%
Science: 85% to 90%
Commerce: 82.5%
$7,451 Undergraduates: 24,440
Graduates: 4,196
3,780 (3,590 reserved for first years) Graduation: 80.3%
Retention: 90.3%

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