Cooperative education is an opportunity to get a head start on one’s career. It assists students develop key skills, explore career options, and graduate with 12-16 months of workplace experience. The coop program enables graduating students in achieving a competitive edge, while seeking positions, within the industry.
The co-op program gives the student a chance to:
Students, who successfully complete the specified number of co-op work terms, receive a Cooperative Education Designation on their degree. This special designation signals to future employers that such students are not only well educated, but experienced and committed too.
How does the co-op program work?
Cooperative education combines academic instruction and practical experience allowing students to develop work skills and gain experience while obtaining a formal education.
The Work-Study sequence in Computer Science consists of eight Study terms interspersed with three Work terms and one optional 4th Work term. The first Work term occurs during the summer (May-August) term of Year 2. The optional 4th work term is for those students who have not secured full-time employment upon completion of their 8th study term which can also serve as a bridging Work term towards full time employment with the employer. Students are expected to complete their degree in Summer of Year 4 and graduate in the fall.
The Cooperative option is only available to full-time students registered in the B.COSC programme.
If a student completes the first two semesters of first year studies with a minimum of 70% in each of the first year courses COSC 1046, 1047, 1056, an overall average of 70% in Year 1 (based on 30 credits) they will be eligible to join the co-op program. To continue in the co-op program a student will be required to maintain 70% average in computer science courses as well as in the overall average throughout their study terms.
In exceptional circumstances, students who do not fulfill all of these requirements will be considered on a case by case basis. Interviews will be held in the fall term of second year to evaluate each student's readiness for the co-op option. Successful applicants must agree to make academic transcripts available to potential employers.
Applying from High School
Canadian High School students can register directly for Computer Science Co-op through Ontario University Application Centre, and select the LCI application code.
Applying after Admissions at Laurentian
If the students did not apply for co-op directly from high school, they can apply after arriving at Laurentian provided their first work term coincides with the established work-study pattern for the program. Students typically are expected to apply for co-op at the beginning of the first year of studies in order to fulfill all coop program related requirements.
If a student has never participated in co-op before and wants to apply for the first time, please complete the online signup application form.
Co-op Program Fees
As a partial contribution to offset some of the overall program costs, students participating in co-op pay a program fee. As an undergraduate co-op student, he/she has to pay an administrative fee for each work term. These non-refundable fees are set by the University and approved by the Board of Governors. Co-op Students are also responsible for tuition and incidental fees related to their study terms and costs related to a course taken while completing a work term.
Work Term Employment
Most students begin their first work term while completing their second year of academic studies. Work terms begin in September, January or May, and normally follow a predetermined work-study pattern.
Every effort is made by the Department (through its Coop Officer) to find a sufficient number of work term positions for all students enrolled in co-operative education, but the department does not guarantee a suitable work term opportunity. The placement process is competitive and dependent on market conditions as well as on academic performance, skills, motivation, maturity, attitude, and potential of a student.
It is also the responsibility of a student to secure an available position through successful participation in the competitive interview process and one’s own job search activities.
If a student is unable to obtain suitable employment, he/she is expected to continue with the academic program on a full-time basis.
Co-op Regulations and Requirements
To successfully complete the co-op option of the academic program, students will be required to adhere to following regulations.
· Students must enroll in full-time academic studies
· All the work terms must be completed prior to the final academic term.
· If a student is offered a job after an interview, he/she must reply within 48 hours, or by the specific deadline given.
· Only one job offer may be declined.
· Students must pay the cooperative education program fees
· To graduate with the co-op designation, a student must successfully complete three or four placements. These grades will appear on the student's academic record as non-credit courses COSC 0001, 0002, 0003, 0004.
· Co-op students returning from a Work-term must submit a report describing the nature of the Work undertaken and the experience gained during the Work-term. A grade of S (satisfactory) or U (unsatisfactory) is assigned based on the report and the employer's assessment. A template for work term report can be found here: work term report template
· Withdrawal from the cooperative education program will not be approved while a student is on a work term.
Benefits of Cooperative Education to Employers
As a Laurentian co-op employer, you will be able to:
Availability of Co-op Students
The recruitment period for co-op students begins one semester before their scheduled work term. It is strongly advised that the employers begin recruiting within the first few weeks of this period as this is when the largest amount of students will be available for consideration. Please contact the co-op officer (email@example.com) for the resumes of the students.
Included in this document are suggestions intended to guide employers through the co-op work term process that might assist employers in planning and getting the most out of a co-op student.
The salaries are not determined by the Cooperative Education Office, but rather are an indication of salaries offered to students by employers. The actual salary a student receives is determined between the student and the employer during the recruitment process that varies between $10- $18/hr.
Private companies in Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec are eligible for a tax credit equal to a percentage of the student's salary. For a tax credit letter, please email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Quick links to Work Term Forms