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Programs : Brochure
McMaster University EXC
Hamilton, Canada (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms:
Program Terms: Semester 1,
Semester 2,
Year (Sem 2 & Sem 1)
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Partner University Homepage: Click to visit
Program Details: - unrelated header
Program Details:
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Minimum Mark:
70%; Credit
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Agreement Scope:
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Program Type:
Exchange Semester/Year
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2019 Ranking:
Program Description:
Program Description:


McMaster University 
Location: Hamilton
Year Established: 1887
Student Population: 30,100

*Please Note - November application only* This exchange university only accepts applications once per year for both semesters of the following Canadian academic year. You should apply at the November deadline for the following semester 2/ Canadian fall semester and/or semester 1/ Canadian winter semester. Students interested in exchange commencing in semester 1/Canadian winter semester need to apply three semesters prior to their intended commencement.
Commonly referred to as MAC, McMaster University’s main campus is located in the Ainslie Wood neighbourhood of Westdale, Hamilton, next to the Botanical Gardens. It is a member of the so-called U15, a group of research-intensive universities in Canada.
The “McMaster Model” is the university’s policy for a student-centred, problem-based, interdisciplinary approach to learning, which has been adopted by several universities worldwide.
Unique Characteristics
During the 1960s, McMaster University’s Medical School pioneered “Problem-Based Learning” (PBL) tutorials.  More than 80 per cent of medical schools in Canada and the United States have since implemented this system in their curriculums. The university also operates the McMaster Nuclear Reactor, an open-pool type materials test reactor (MTR) used in the study of nuclear science and energy since 1959. The reactor produces 25 per cent of the world’s iodine-125, an isotope used in nuclear medicine to treat prostate cancer.
Hamilton is a port city located at the west end of scenic Lake Ontario. It is home to the Royal Botanical Gardens and the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum. Its diverse environment attracts many TV and film productions. It is within commuting distance of Toronto.

Canada - McMaster University - building

Academic Information

Course Catalogue 
Information about units of study at the host university

Subject Area/s:

Arts and Social Sciences



Exercise and Sports Science



Exclusions: Social Work, Multimedia Studies
Teaching Periods: Semesters/Terms
Term 1: September - December
Term 2: January - April

*Please Note - November application only* This exchange university only accepts applications once per year for both semesters of the following Canadian academic year. You should apply at the November deadline for the following semester 2/ Canadian fall semester and/or semester 1/ Canadian winter semester. Students interested in exchange commencing in semester 1/Canadian winter semester need to apply three semesters prior to their intended commencement.

Credit (Full-Time Load/Semester):

University of Sydney

Host University


15 credits

The above full-time load is indicative only.
Applications for academic credit are assessed by the relevant University of Sydney faculty/department based on: study load, contact hours, assessment requirements and level of study.
Grading System
The university uses letter grades from A+ through F, based on a 12-point scale. 
More information on the host university's grading system

Transcripts Issued by Partner
Transcripts will be available at the end of your exchange period


Language of Instruction
Classes at the host university are taught in English


What is the host city like?
Find out more information about the host city

The host university offers limited on-campus accommodation, but can also recommends alternative housing options

Cost of Living
Use this guide to estimate living expenses associated with studying overseas.

Students are required to obtain health insurance valid during their exchange.

Useful Information

For Exchange/International Students
Specific information for exchange students provided by the host university

Semester/Term Dates
Access the University's calendar

International Student Services organizes a special Welcome Orientation session for new exchange students before the start of semester

Support Services 
International Student Services provides assistance to exchange students

Information from the host university
Information from the Embassy of Canada in Australia

Student Experiences

Conan Omori
Bachelor of Engineering, Semester 2, 2014
Host City Highlights
Art Crawl is a local event held every month where pubs and bars will have specials, live music, and you can visit galleries. Supercrawl is an annual event held in September. It is an extremely popular event with live music, food, and art exhibitions. Hamilton is well known for its waterfalls, and while generally small, there is plenty to see. Cootes Paradise is a nature reserve at the back of the university where you have the opportunity to see many wild animals such as beavers, coyotes, and squirrels.
Uni Life
McMaster is a smaller university, so it has a great sense of community. It isn't strange for you to have mutual friends with most people on campus. The MIX (McMaster International and Exchange) club was the perfect way to meet fellow exchange students and locals. Events were organized and run frequently, and so all the exchange students knew each other. The MIX group truly made the exchange experience as fulfilling as it was. There are plenty of clubs available at McMaster, and as everyone lives on or near campus, there is a heavy involvement in all of them. The best way to meet local students was living in residence, and joining a couple of clubs. As I said before, everyone is friends with everyone, so meeting new people is never too hard. The area around the university is also all student housing, so attending house parties was a regular event and the perfect way to meet new people.
For engineering classes, they were very similar to classes here at Sydney. The quality of teaching was excellent. There was more of an emphasis on regular weekly or fortnightly assignments rather than a couple of big assignments throughout the semester. For engineering, students will generally take 6 courses rather than 4 at McMaster, so contact hours may be slightly less if you take 4 courses.
If you live in residence, a meal plan is mandatory. There are quite a few food options available on campus, and the food is generally quite good. While still good, it would have been nice to have more variety. The convenience of always having food ready for you, however, was a big plus. Around the university there are a few supermarkets which are a short walk or bus ride to. There are also cafes and restaurants in the area called Westdale which is a 5 min walk from the university.

Living on campus was a great experience. It is the more expensive option but I highly recommend it as it’s a great way to meet people, and everything is sorted for you. Otherwise there are plenty of off campus accommodation available. Joining the MIX Facebook group and marketplace is the best way to find housing. As an exchange student you will get your own room, either in an apartment style (with flatmates but still individual rooms), or just a standalone room in the residence. If you do live on residence for one semester, you will be charged an extra sum of money for staying only half the year.
Money Matters
Canada has comparable prices to Australia, so don't expect any major price differences. Be aware that tax is not included in the price of anything, so account for that when buying items, it'll be more expensive than listed.
Getting Around
Being a student at McMaster, transport on the local Hamilton buses are free. Ontario also has a longer distance service called GO transport. This is the best way to get to Toronto or other major cities. Presto is their equivalent of Opal cards and may be worthwhile buying one to get around.

Traveling is possible any time of year, but may prove more difficult during winter months where transport options may be cancelled or delayed. Bus travel is by far the cheapest option on Greyhound, Megabus, or Bolt Bus. Traveling in winter I could book accommodation or transport the night before without any worry of things being booked out.
Top tips
I was initially hesitant going to McMaster as it wasn't one of the bigger or more well-known universities in Canada. However my experience there exceeded any expectations I had. The amazing sense of community they have at that university is so inviting, and you'll feel like you have friends everywhere you go at the university. I cannot recommend this university enough for exchange.
Some tips are:
1. Join the MIX Facebook group before you arrive and ask questions there. People are extremely helpful and more than happy to answer your questions
2. Sort out units early, as finding matches can be difficult
3. Apply for residence early to secure your first preference

Mcmaster University

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