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Geography (MSc)

Geography (MSc)

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Our Master of Science (MSc) in Geography is a two-year program offered by the Waterloo-Laurier Graduate Program in Geography. The collaboration between our universities makes us the third-largest graduate geography program in Canada, and our program is enhanced by a number of research centres and groups, including the Laurier Institute for Water Science, the Cold Regions Research Centre and the International Migration Research Centre.

You can benefit from the breadth and depth of the expertise of our faculty and your fellow graduate students in this rich intellectual environment. Our joint program allows you to explore a range of research interests, from the analysis of pressing social and environmental problems to theoretical questions of philosophical and technical importance.  

The MSc in Geography program is perfect if you want to develop expertise in the science sub-disciplines of Geography with an emphasis on environmental science and geomatics. You’ll gain expertise and skills through a combination of formal coursework, research and teaching assistant positions, field and laboratory experimentation, and independent research leading to the completion of your thesis.

We also offer Master of Environmental Studies and Master of Arts in Geography programs.

Program Options

This full-time program can be completed in two years. You’ll complete a required seminar course and four one-term courses, and write and defend a master’s thesis.

Are You an International Student?

More information can be found on the International Applicants page.

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Contact Us:

General Inquiries

T: 519.884.0710 x2325

Margaret Walton-Roberts, Graduate Coordinator

T: 519.884.0710 x2967

Faculty and Staff


  • Winners of major external awards (OGS, QEII and Tri-Council) may be eligible for top-up funding which includes the Dean’s Graduate Scholarship (total value exceeds $10,000). 
  • Eligible domestic students admitted to study on a full-time basis receive an average of $14,500 a year. This support may be made up of teaching assistantships, internal/external scholarships, and/or faculty-funded studentships or research assistantships.
  • A list of all funding opportunities available to Laurier graduate students, including information about OGS, QEII and Tri-Council, is available on our graduate funding webpage.

Research Focus

Faculty teaching in the MSc in Geography program support a wide range of research interests in two fields of specialization: Environmental Science and Geomatics

  • Environmental Science: ecosystem characteristics and processes and the movement of mass (materials, water, carbon and nutrients) and energy among the hydrosphere, lithosphere, biosphere and atmosphere; geomorphology; ecosystem science and management; field studies and modelling in hydrology and water chemistry; cold regions research; cryosphere research; wetland studies; climatic change processes and impacts; applied aspects of physical geography.
  • Geomatics: spatial data handling from acquisition by remote sensing, aerial photography, and global positioning systems; storage, manipulation, display and modelling by geographic information systems; spatial pattern analysis and spatial applications of multivariate statistical procedures; spatial optimization and spatial data models.


  • A four-year honours undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in Physical Geography, Environmental or Earth Sciences, Geomatics, or a related field.
  • A minimum B average.
  • Applications are reviewed by the graduate program committee, which considers all prior university grades, a statement of research interest, a writing sample and letters of reference.


MSc graduates have secured employment as research technicians in academia, resource specialists with government agencies (Yukon Government) and environmental consulting firms and companies (Geomorphic Solutions, EDI Environmental Dynamics, Hoskins).

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