FAQs - General Information

What is Co-operative Education?

Co-operative Education is an academic program that integrates study terms with paid, discipline-related work terms. Students connect classroom concepts with real-life situations, gaining marketable skills and a deeper understanding of their discipline.

What are the eligibility requirements to join the program?

Students must have a minimum cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 2.5 and have completed between 24 and 75 credit hours at the time of application. Undergraduate students usually apply for entrance to the co-op program at the beginning of their second year but can apply at the beginning of their third year if they have not completed more than 75 credit hours. Graduate students apply in September of their first year. 

Which Acadia degrees offer co-op?

The specific degrees offering co-op can be viewed by clicking on the link below:



How many co-op work terms will I need to complete to graduate with the Co-op Option?

For graduate students, the program requires either one (MSc in Math) or two (MSc in Computer Science) 4-month work terms. For undergraduate students, three 4-month work terms or a 12 or 16-month internship is required.


When do I complete co-op work terms?

For undergraduate students entering co-op at the beginning of second year, the first work term will begin the Summer following second year. For students entering co-op at the beginning of third year, the first work term will either be during the Winter term of third year or the Summer following third year. The scheduling of work terms will be determined in consultation with a Co-op Coordinator.


What is Entrepreneurial Co-op?

All undergraduate students have the option to complete a work term by starting or operating their own business in lieu of working for an employer. Students can develop or implement a new product or service or work toward growing an existing business. They will receive valuable mentorship from an industry expert, entrepreneur, or consultant. In addition to the eligibility requirements for a regular Co-op work term, the following apply to Entrepreneurial Co-op:

  1. Students must have completed at least one regular Co-op work term
  2. Students must have completed BUSI 2773 (non-business students are required to request special permission from the course instructor to waive the BUSI 1703 pre-requisite)
  3. Students must submit a proposal (3-page minimum) to their Co-op Coordinator for approval. Using the appropriate format and model (learned about in BUSI 2773), the proposal must describe the product or service being developed or offered, the industry and market being entered, the objective of the venture, the strategy to be taken during development or implementation, and how remuneration and/or funding will be generated
  4. Students can complete more than one Entrepreneurial Co-op work term and a continuation of an existing business will be considered


What happens once I've joined co-op?

All co-op students participate in mandatory professional development workshops and receive one-on-one mentoring and support from a designated Co-op Coordinator to help prepare for co-op work terms.

Four months in advance of a scheduled co-op work term, students will be given access to the Acadia Co-op Portal to view and apply to various co-op opportunities sourced by the co-op office.


Do I receive credit while on a work-term?

Each work term is considered an academic course and is noted on a student’s transcript with a Pass or Fail grade. Undergraduate students starting their first Co-op work term during or after the summer of 2020 will receive 2 credit hours for each Co-op course completed (up to a total of 6 credit hours, counting as two elective courses towards graduation requirements). Undergraduate students who have started their first Co-op work term prior to the summer 2020 term, will receive 3 credit hours upon completion of their third Co-op work term (counting as one elective course towards graduation requirements).

Graduate students do not receive credit towards graduation requirements.


Is there a difference between entering co-op in your second year versus in your third year?

Students are encouraged to enter the co-op program at the beginning of their second year as it provides more scheduling options. Students entering in their third year often lose the ability to complete a fourth optional co-op work term.


What are some of the benefits of the co-op program?
  • Co-op students have the option to work in different areas of their discipline to discover what their work preferences are. Students are often considered by employers for full-time hire after they graduate!
  • Acquire a deeper understanding of course material through real-world experience.
  • On average, Acadia Co-op students earn $10,000 per work term. University education is expensive. Co-operative Education allows students to earn money as they progress through their degree.
  • Access opportunities only available to co-op students. Employers are coming directly to Acadia to hire co-op students. Co-op opens doors to provincial/federal government, companies and not-for-profit organizations.
  • Complete work terms anywhere in Canada. We have employers from across the country, allowing for the chance to travel. Sometimes, international opportunities arise as well.
  • Network with professionals and establish connections. 80% of full-time jobs are never posted. Who you know is important!
  • Develop excellent job search, resume, cover letter, and interview skills. Through attending professional development workshops hosted by the Co-op Office, constantly updating your resume and cover letters, as well as interviewing, students will harness their professional development skills by the time they graduate. This gives them a strong competitive advantage over other students who have not had experience and guidance from a Co-op Coordinator.