- A very good Score (and I mean, very good score!). Keep this in mind for each and every exam - no matter how small it is (say, partial of any incourse, assignments etc) : because every single point counts. Don't let any get away!
- Good language proficiency score (TOEFL / IELTS / others). For example, if you have score less than 6.5 out of 9 in IELTS, probably you will be able to find 1 or 2 university only to apply all over Canada! Overall, 7 is a good score. Nobody requires more than 7.5. For TOEFT iBT, 93 out of 120 is a good score, nobody requires more than 100. Usually there is an university criteria for this, but sometimes there is an added department requirement (for example, an university might ask for at least 80 in toefl ibt, but a certain department in that university might ask for 90!). Check both requirements. Check whether you need GRE or not (usually its not - but in some cases its an added advantage). Also, if you are in a rush (might be because if your deadline is close), sending TOEFL score quickly can sometimes be very problematic. British Council or IDP in Bangladesh provides a DHL service for IELTS scores (they will charge you 1500 taka per address for score sending), which is very fast.
- Excellent reference letters from your teachers/employer (including your supervisors), probably three in total. Reference letters are critical to an application, yet they are probably the most overlooked part of the application process. All applicants being considered for a competitive program are already first class, so the letters can help to distinguish you from a pack of outstanding applicants by highlighting your uniqueness. The following tips will help guide you to solicit reference letters that stand out. The object is to convince the reader that the candidate is superior and to render the candidate unique and memorable.
[I] Choose your referees wisely. You have more control over this part of the process than you think. Think of the reference letter as an integral part of the scholarship application package that will present an accurate and complete picture of your achievements and research potential. Your referees should be familiar not only with your academic abilities, but also with your personal interests and background and how those relate to and enhance your ability to carry out the proposed research.
[II] Provide your referees all the information they need to write a strong letter. The more information a referee has to draw from, the better the case for support he/she can make for you. And as an added bonus, discussion around your research proposal can help you clarify your own goals and objectives for the project. Supply a referee with the following information: your CV; your proposed course of study and area of research; a comprehensive draft of your research proposal; your academic record; and a personal statement that includes career goals, interests, and extracurricular activities. Finally, it is vital that the referee knows the selection criteria and weighting (if applicable), the required format and length for the reference letter, where to send it, and the deadline for submission. Always follow up to ensure the letters have been submitted and acknowledge the referee’s support. The most effective reference letter is evidenced-based.
[III] Ask that the adjudication criteria be specifically addressed in the reference letter. Relating your achievements, skills, and research directly to the adjudication criteria strengthens your case for support. Ideally, a reference letter should specifically address your academic excellence, research potential, publication record, oral and written communication skills, and your interpersonal and leadership abilities. A referee should be able to support his/her claims with specific, concrete evidence and comment on your academic achievements in order to indicate your research potential. A reference letter also provides an opportunity to emphasize extraordinary achievements in light of where you are in your program and your research career. To assist your referee, provide information to highlight these relationships.
[IV] Ask the referee to highlight the strengths and explain any weaknesses pertaining to your experience and/or your research. It is helpful if a referee can explain any shortcomings openly and honestly and point out any associated improvements you have made. Mention to your referee that your application is to a competitive scholarship and that you will be judged against a high-caliber pool of applicants. The bottom line: What gives you the edge over others being considered? What makes you memorable? Adjudication committees look for the extra excellence of a student when considering their evaluations. Unique qualities and skills, such as communication and leadership abilities, can be demonstrated through participation in extracurricular and community activities, and volunteer service. Most committees look at what you have already accomplished, but even more so, your potential to accomplish more in the future. If you want best recommendation letters, let the faculties know who you are for a while, be ostentatious if necessary, but not in a negetive sense of course. Start volunteering in institute's various works, or get involved in research with them. Show them your potentiality.
- Transcript from register building of results or B.Sc (and M.S. if available), most probably 2 copies for each degree, including the degree certificate sealed in the same envelop. Usually this takes a whie to get it all in your hand. Current price is Tk 500 for each transcript for each degree from DU registrar building, and additional 500 Tk will include you in emergency list. Although in emergency list, you might need more than one month to get it in your hand. Be very polite with the officials - there are lots of cases of fraustration due to delay you will probably hear - but all could be simply avoided just by being polite and having patience. Give them reasonable amount of time to do it, and don't go at the last moment and don't act like you went there to buy a candy from the store instantly. Somethimes they might even ask you to type it by yourself - and they will just check whether it is alright or not, and sign on it. This procedure is usually faster than letting them type the whole thing. Ask them to include the attached copy of relevant certificate along with the transcript. Otherwise you might need to get a attachted copy of your certificate (50 tk fee) and envelope it officially (another 400 tk fee) - which is not necessary if you just include the attached copy of relevant certificate along with the transcript in the same envelope (in that case, its free). If you need to include the syllabus (if your university asks for it), you can also get it attachted and include in the same envelop.
- Nicely and clearly written letter of intent. If you don't know what it is - check these out - Writing the Statement of Purpose or Writing a Successful Letter of Intent for Graduate School or| Guide to the Application Process or The Statement of Purpose/Letter of Intent/Graduate School Essay
- Application fee (usually within 40\$ - 180\$, depending on the university) for online application
- You have to submit within a pre-specified time (deadline) in each year. Unually for the september term, they require to reach all the materials in their hand by January. After deadline, they don't accept anything. But end of december is vacation for the X-mas : therefore you probably need to send them all the documents before X-mas break to be safe.
- A Curriculum Vitae or CV (sometimes its good idea to send it - even if they don't mention it). Here is how you should write it: Curriculum Vitae and example Preparing the Curriculum Vitae Preparing a Curriculum Vitae: Proven Success Strategies
- Some universities expect the prospective graduate students to contact supervisors of their choice - while others prohibit this. Check the relevant website to get idea of their process. If it is not prohibited, then its highly recommended that you contact them. This part is very tricky. Browse through web pages of the faculty members of your department of interest. Make sure you carefully read all their background, projects and activities. You want to find a professor as your supervisor that has active projects which you really like to work on, professor’s field of work fits your knowledge and experience, professor is very likely to provide you with funding for your researches due to his latest grants and projects and finally also it is very important that the professor is active and working in latest technologies or fields of science so that the education you receive will be a great asset to you and your future job finding. After you find your professors (try to find more to increase your chance), it is time to contact them, usually via email. Send them emails about how interested you are in their projects and show them that you are a very good fit for their projects, you have all the proper knowledge and background and you are very hard-working and enthusiastic. Always attach your resume/cv and letter of intent to your email for their convenience. If they are interested to accept new students, they will refer to your documents that you have provided to the department. This is why it is very important that you complete your application documents in the department files first, but if you are in a hurry, sometimes you can approach with incomplete application. Follow up with your request. Try to contact the professors once a week to remind them of you application and show that you are interested. Just try not to be annoying. Remember that professors are usually busy people and if you contact them many times without getting an answer first, that may have negative effects on your application. Try to always maintain a very good attitude towards them and don’t act selfish or greedy, but it is actually good to be confident about your background. Also it is always good to show that you are a flexible and respectful person. When contacting professors, try to contact one or a maximum of two in one department. You don’t want them to find out you are interested in all of them!! It is better if they feel you are specifically interested in them. But contact as many professors in different universities or departments as you can. Usually you will have to apply separately to different departments of one university. When contacting professors, you could ask for their advise on knowledge in their field of work too, showing that you are also contacting them to gain more than just an admission, but science and information. If you are knowledgeable enough to maintain a professional conversation and they are interested in the subject, not only they can help you a lot, but what you gain is their attention and they will easier remember you and become interested in you. Remember that many people apply for admission and unless you stand out, you won’t have much chance to get admission unless you have a super background. So try to showcase yourself very well without being annoying. You can communicate with the department secretary as well for application related questions, don’t ask those things from your professor unless you have to.
One very helpful point you may have is a friend or relative in the department, university or city you are applying for. They can sometimes do magic *** ! They can follow up for you and help you with your communications with the university. They are especially good because they already live there and know how to be more effective. You can also try and make friends there through the university student listings. I found students very helpful to people who like to apply. You may find a new friend that helps you out very well, especially if they are students of the same professor you are applying to.
- A department where you can find a supervisor who works on a topic which matches your interest
- An university which has higher rank: Selecting your university base on ranks is just one crude way. Please look for the major raking institute's sites for better understanding:
[I] Academic Ranking of World Universities http://www.arwu.org/ARWU2010.jsp
[II] Webometrics http://www.webometrics.info/top12000.asp
[III] HEEACT – Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World http://ranking.heeact.edu.tw/en-us/2009/TOP/100
[IV] Times higher education http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/world-university-rankings/2010-2011/top-200.html
[V] Top universities: http://www.topuniversities.com/university-rankings/world-university-rankings/2009/results
- An university that gives a lot of fund: Usually, 'higher rank uni' = 'guaranteed or better fund' = 'more competitive' = 'better prospect in job after you finish'. From Bangladesh, funding is definitely a good motivation.
- A department where your seniors are in (who knows that your background is good enough to offer you an admission)
- A city where your relatives/friends live
- An university that requires quality which matches your criteria
- An university, where you think you have better chance of getting admission
- A department which is not very hard compared to your background
- An university where deadline is still there to apply
- An university where there is no application fee for Bangladeshi students! (For example, try UBC, UofA, etc)
Name of the Program
|University of Calgary||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|The University of British Columbia||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|Simon Fraser University||MSc in statistics and actuarial science||Actuarial Science|
|Simon Fraser University||MSc in statistics and actuarial science||Statistics, General|
|University of Victoria||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Victoria||MA in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Manitoba||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of New Brunswick||MSc in mathematics/statistics||Mathematics, General|
|University of New Brunswick||MSc in mathematics/statistics||Statistics, General|
|Memorial University of Newfoundland||Master of Applied Statistics||Statistics, General|
|Memorial University of Newfoundland||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|Acadia University||Master of Science in Mathematics and Statistics||Mathematics, General|
|Acadia University||Master of Science in Mathematics and Statistics||Statistics, General|
|Dalhousie University||MSc in Statistics||Statistics, General|
|Brock University||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Mathematical Statistics and Probability|
|Carleton University||MSc in applied mathematics with specialization in biostatistics||Applied Mathematics, General|
|Carleton University||MSc in applied mathematics with specialization in biostatistics||Biostatistics|
|Carleton University||MSc Mathematics (Probability and Statistics)||Mathematical Statistics and Probability|
|University of Guelph||MSc in mathematics and statistics||Mathematics, General|
|University of Guelph||MSc in mathematics and statistics||Statistics, General|
|McMaster University||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Ottawa||MSc with Biostatistics Specialization||Biostatistics|
|University of Ottawa||MSc in Mathematics with Specialization in Biostatistics||Biostatistics|
|University of Ottawa||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Mathematics, General|
|University of Ottawa||MSc in Mathematics with Specialization in Biostatistics||Mathematics, General|
|University of Ottawa||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Statistics, General|
|Queen's University||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Algebra and Number Theory|
|Queen's University||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Analysis and Functional Analysis|
|Queen's University||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Applied Mathematics, General|
|Queen's University||MSc in Mathematics and Statistics||Mathematical Statistics and Probability|
|University of Toronto||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Waterloo||Master of mathematics in statistics-biostatistics||Biostatistics|
|University of Waterloo||Master of mathematics in computer science (statistics-computing)||Computer Science|
|University of Waterloo||Master of mathematics in statistics-computing||Statistics, General|
|University of Waterloo||Master of mathematics in statistics-finance||Statistics, General|
|University of Waterloo||Master of mathematics in computer science (statistics-computing)||Statistics, General|
|University of Waterloo||Master of mathematics (MMAth) in statistics||Statistics, General|
|The University of Western Ontario||MSc in epidemiology and Biostatistics||Biostatistics|
|The University of Western Ontario||MSc in Biostatistics||Biostatistics|
|The University of Western Ontario||MSc in epidemiology and Biostatistics||Epidemiology|
|The University of Western Ontario||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Windsor||MSc in mathematics and statistics||Mathematics, General|
|York University||MA in Mathematics and Statistics||Mathematics, General|
|York University||MA in Mathematics and Statistics||Statistics, General|
|McGill University||MSc in epidemiology and biostatistics||Biostatistics|
|McGill University||MSc in epidemiology and biostatistics||Epidemiology|
|McGill University||MSc in mathematics and statistics||Mathematics, General|
|McGill University||MA in mathematics and statistics||Mathematics, General|
|McGill University||MA in mathematics and statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Regina||MA in statistics||Statistics, General|
|University of Regina||MSc in statistics||Statistics, General|
- Normally with a student visa you are only able to work on campus. You can apply for jobs in library, campus restaurants and other university facilities that hire students. Recently students in Canada are allowed to apply for work visas along with their student visas so that they are able to work off campus. In this case students can find more jobs and are able to easier support themselves.
- You can work as a Research Assistant (RA) for your professor or supervisor and receive money. The money can be somewhere around 1000\$ per months and more. This job usually lasts as long as the project needs researching.
- You can work as Teacher Assistant (TA) and help teachers in their duties such as solving problems for students, correct their exams and etc. The payment for this position is dependent on how many units you receive as a TA, which normally depends on the number of units for that course. You may be paid about 200\$ per month per unit or some where around \$25 per hour which in that case they will assign you a fixed hours for your duty. You can apply for TA-ship of more than one course and get units as many as five.
- There are fellowships and scholarships that you can apply for. Eligible students can receive these scholarships who are always students with high educational standing. There might be some other conditions for different scholarships. Like for some scholarships you have to be working on a project or in industry to receive it. Or some other require you to be a Canadian citizen. Scholarships are paid per semester and start from 500\$ to over 10000\$ Canadian. There is always a competition to receive these scholarships and they are limited. So one may not receive them so easily. Also another important thing is that universities always pay students a limited money per year, let’s say this limit is about 24000\$/year. If you get scholarships that increase your yearly salary over this limit, then they will cut your income from somewhere else, like your RA.
- There are bursaries that students can apply for. Bursaries are usually paid to under paid students, those who don’t already have enough income. People must fill a form claiming their situation and lack of money and they may receive a money per semester of about 500\$ and more. It’s not much, but better than nothing. Don’t lie in your forms just to get more money than you need, there are students that really need it and the resources are limited. And obviously, there will be penalty if you get caught red-handed!
- One important thing that you should know when moving abroad is the cost of living, not for the admission but for yourself. Try to find out this researching in the web so that you are prepared for what you might face in the country you are moving to. I can give you some information about the cost of living in Canada, although it is very dependent on where you live and what school you go to:
- For under-graduate studies, the tuition fees are usually pretty high, somewhere between 6000\$ to 8000\$ or more Canadian dollars per semester (4 months) and it is even worse for non-immigrant students. But for post-graduate programs it is much cheaper somewhere around 1500 CAD or more and usually doesn’t change if you are not an immigrant.
- For a place to live, you can apply for a dorm room. That’s usually the cheapest option you can get. In Vancouver it can be about 500 CAD per month or higher. But then you will have to live in the university which some people may not like. The off-campus rental starts from 600 CAD to over 1000 CAD depending on where you live in the city and what you rent. You can always significantly reduce the rental cost by sharing the residence.
- The cost of food usually starts from a minimum of 200 CAD per month, unless you really eat very little and always cook at home (Grocery probably bought from superstore and/or safeway in relatively cheap prices), which is no fun!
- For transportation, you can use public transit services and if you get monthly passes, it could start from 65 CAD per month and over. The cost of owning a car beside its purchase price are its insurance which is over 120 CAD per month and fuel which nowadays is over 100\$ per month, plus the maintenance. Having a car is very desirable in a vast country like Canada. If your university provides free passes (like UBC provides U-pass), then you don't have to pay any thing - its a free ride to anywhere!
- You should normally get services such as electricity for where you live, which would be about 60\$ per month.
- At least 30 CAD if you prefer to maintain a cell phone (say, rogers or fido) and call in your home country once in a while. It might be a good place to suggest that long distant relationships will have your bill go way up!! However, use of pc-to-pc calls in those circumstances could save a lot! Land phone is also another option for local calls.
- The Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials (CICIC)
- Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada's Web site
- Study in Canada
- High Commission of Canada to Bangladesh
- Canada Visa
[The subject material of this article is too general for any particular university - usually its wise to go through specific university official sites for more precise and specific information. This was written based on my personal experience when I went through the entire admission process (blended with some other blog materials relevant to this subject materials - thanks to all of those as well), yet I did not want it to be too restricted on a few universities only. However, on the other end, this is basically written for those who are trying to apply in canada for graduate admission from Dhaka university in the statistics related fields.] (LAST UPDATED ON Sept, 2010)