Centre for Environment and Sustainability

Admission Requirements

Eligibility

The MES is an interdisciplinary degree program, accepting students with a variety of degree backgrounds. It is an intense, accelerated program that requires exceptional learning abilities and drive. You should have a strong foundation in a discipline, with a keen interest in and a commitment to learning information and approaches from other disciplines and fields. You will need flexibility and willingness to acquire new skills, including new concepts, ideas and principles that define and inform other disciplines. A basic level of skill in writing, numeracy and scientific reasoning is assumed. You also need to have strong leadership skills, creativity and an ability to work cooperatively in teams. Academic excellence is a priority for the program, along with 'real-world' experience, so each application will be considered with these two priorities in mind.

Entrance Average

Applicants are required to be in their final year or have completed a four-year baccalaureate degree in any discipline (BA, BSc, BESc, BES, BMSc for example), from an accredited university and achieved a minimum 78% average in the last two years of study. Applicants with averages below the required 78% (but with at least a 75% average) will be considered if strong evidence of relevant work experience is presented.

Calculation

The average is calculated using all course results from the last two full years of study or equating to 10 full courses or 20 half course credits. Applicants in their final year of undergraduate studies may apply using an incomplete transcript. In these cases, the same calculation will be made using the grades that are presented on the transcript at the time of application.

Application using an incomplete transcript (degree in progress)

An incomplete transcript will have all degree courses and grades listed with the exception of the final term of study, where the courses are listed but the final grades are pending completion of courses. At the time of submission, the transcript provided must show some final year grades (first term or semester). Offers of Admission based on incomplete transcripts will be Conditional, based upon the delivery and satisfactory assessment of the final official transcript.

Applicants with multiple degrees (completed)

Submission of all post-secondary transcripts is required. Admission is based on the most recent 10 full credits or equivalent.

Completed bachelor's degree and currently taking university courses

Submission of all post-secondary transcripts is required. Admission is based on the most recent 10 full credits or equivalent.

Application Documents and Fee

Below is a list of documents required to complete an application submission to the MES Program. Documents are submitted electronically, using the on-line application system. An application is not considered complete until all documents have been submitted along with the on-line application and the application fee. Instructions for fee payment are included in the on-line application.

Domestic Applicants (Canadian Citizens)

Copy of academic transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended

Copy of diploma for post-secondary programs completed outside of Canada

2 reference forms from academic referees (see Referees)

Statement of Academic intent (see Statement of Academic Intent)

List of 6 employment and/or volunteer positions (see Employment List)

Application fee (100.00 CDN)

Permanent Residents of Canada (P.R. Card required)

Copy of academic transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended

Copy  of diploma for post-secondary programs completed outside of Canada

2 reference forms from academic referees (see Referees)

Statement of Academic intent (see Statement of Academic Intent)

List of 6 employment and/or volunteer positions (see Employment List)

Copy  of Permanent Resident Card, front and back

Current English Language Proficiency Score when English is a second language (see Language Test Scores and Exemptions)

Application fee (100.00 CDN)

International Applicants (Study Permit required)

Copy of academic transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended

Copy  of diploma for post-secondary programs completed outside of Canada

2 reference forms from academic referees (See Referees)

Statement of Academic Intent (See Statement of Academic Intent)

List of 6 employment and/or volunteer positions (See Employment List)

Copy of national photo identification (passport photo page or national identification/citizenship card)

Current English Language Proficiency Score, when English is a second language (see Language Test Scores and Exemptions)

Application Fee (100.00 CDN)

Letters of Reference (forms)

Applicants will provide the contact information for their referees on the on-line application. Referees will receive an Email from Western and access to the Reference Form. The form will be completed on-line and sent directly back to Western, from the referee. Use of this system is preferrable to receiving letters sent by post. The form is easy to use, contains questions specific to the program and delivery is faster and more convenient for both the referee and the applicant. Should a letter by post be submitted, it must arrive sealed in an envelope bearing the school stamp or its original envelope Applicants are expected to monitor the system for submission of their reference forms. Applications will be considered incomplete until all references have been received.

Who Can be a Referee?

Faculty members encountered in classroom settings during the last two years of degree studies are preferred for reference letters. Postdoctoral Fellows, Teaching Assistants, Lab Assistants/Technicians and PhD students are not recommended to serve as referees for MES program application.

Alternative Referees

Only applicants returning to studies after an absence of three or more years may provide employer/supervisor references, in lieu of academic references. When possible, academic references are preferred. The length of time away from studies is determined by the degree completion date on the most recent transcript record. Reference letters should be written specifically for the purpose of application to the MES program. General or outdated letters of reference are insufficient, as are generic references from Human Resources.

Letters sent by Post

Use of the on-line system is preferred over the receipt of letters sent by post. The form is easy to use, contains questions specific to the program and delivery is faster and more convenient for both the referee and the applicant. Should a letter by post be submitted, it must arrive in sealed condition, in an envelope bearing the school stamp or signature over the seal. General or outdated letters of reference are insufficient, as are generic references from Human Resources.

Statement of Academic Intent

The Statement of Academic Intent provides an opportunity for applicants to freely express their interest in the program while providing information useful to determining the suitability of the candidate for entry into the program. The evaluation of your statement will focus on both content and the effective expression of your interest in the program as it relates to your particular goals and aspirations. Attention will be paid to writing skill and style in terms of organization, cohesive and concise articulation of thought, clarity of expression, and proper use of grammar and punctuation.

Guidelines for Writing a Statement of Academic Intent

Applicants are encouraged to use the following list of topics as a guide for organizing the content of their statement:

  • how the candidate anticipates the program will assist in meeting future career goals
  • how the MES program relates to previous academic studies
  • how previous work experience might prove to be useful
  • how the MES program could expand on personal interests

Required Format

Page header: each page: YOUR FULL NAME_STATEMENT_MES2015

Style: original prose format, written specifically for the purpose of application to the MES Program

Length: 500 - 750 words. Statements not within the word limits will not be reviewed. Page headers are not included in the word count.

Format: 12-point font, double-spaced on numbered pages (example: page 1 of 2) (.rtf) (.doc) or (.pdf) formats are preferred. Scanned copies of other types of files are accepted.

Employment List

An employment list is a brief and simplified version of your employment and volunteer work history. Do not submit a resume or CV in place of an Employment List. Resumes and CVs will not be reviewed.

Number of Entries

You may list up to 6 employment or volunteer positions or a mix of both. Your complete list will not exceed 6 entries in total. Should you have a long employment history, select the most recent employment and the most relevant employment/volunteer positions. Entries exceeding the number limit will not be reviewed

Required Format

Page Header: Your Full Name_Employment List_MES2015

Submit in (.rtf), (.doc), or (.pdf) format the following list of information for each employer:

  • Employer Name (Company or Volunteer Organization):
  • Start and End dates: mm/yyyy to mm/yyyy
  • Position Title:
  • Official Language of Business:
  • Full address of company or organization:

English Language Proficiency Scores

When English is a second language, an English Language Proficiency Score may be required (see Exemptions). The scores required for MES program admission exceed the standard university requirement for graduate level studies.

Why ELP scores are important

Students in the MES Program are called upon to exercise their communication skills frequently within the classroom (daily) and through written assignments, group work and oral presentations. A strong command of the English language in all areas (oral, reading, writing, listening, comprehension) is required for success in this dynamic fast-paced environment. Students must be prepared to complete reading and writing assignments within short time frames as well as contribute productively to discussions in class without advanced or comprehensive exposure to materials presented. Group work and participation in class demands strong listening skills and comprehension of the language at an advanced level.

An acceptable test score is one that meets or exceeds the minimum standard of achievement and is no more than two years old at the time of application.

The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

TOEFLiBT, internet based version minimum overall score of 94 includes:

  • Read and Listen minimum score 22
  • Speak minimum score 26
  • Write minimum score 24
  • Western’s ID for electronic submission: 0984

TOEFL-CBT Computer-based test (electronic version) minimum acceptable score 240

  • Reading minimum score 22
  • Listening minimum score 22
  • Structure/Writing minimum score 26

TOEFL-PBT Paper-based test minimum acceptable score 587

  • Reading minimum score 56
  • Listening minimum score 56
  • Written Expression minimum 61

The International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) of the British Council

Minimum overall score: 7 out of 9, with no individual score (reading, listening, speaking writing) less than 6.5.

The Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB) of the University of Michigan

Minimum score of 80 on each section and an overall score of at least 85.

The Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL Assessment)

Minimum score of 60.

Culture Works

Successful completion of the High-Advanced level. Click here for information regarding a conditional offer of admission, pending CultureWorks completion. Official proof of graduation required.

Fanshawe College ESL Program

Graduation from Level 5, Advanced Academic Preparation, with a minimum 80% in all components. Official proof of graduation required.

Exemptions

Other formal evidence of graduate level proficiency in English may be considered in lieu of a test scores, in certain circumstances, outlined below. The university reserves the right to request a test score from applicants in these circumstances at a later date, as a condition of acceptance into the program. A decision will be made at the discretion of the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for exemption.

Education

Applicants with degrees from post-secondary institutions where the language of instruction is English are exempt from providing a score (at the time of application), provided the applicant attended the institution for at least two full years of academic study. An additional letter from the post-secondary institution stating that English is the language of instruction is advised, unless this information is included on the transcript.

Employment

Applicants having lived and worked in settings where the language of business communication is exclusively in English are exempt from providing a score with their application. Notation of this experience should be included in the Statement of Academic Intent, and in an additional letter included in your submission from the employer confirming English as the language of business used during your employment.

On-line Application Assistance


Carefully read on-line account instructions and record and retain your on-line application identification information to re-enter the application system to check or add items. The MES Program does not have access to your application ID and cannot provide you with assistance related to application access or other technical issues. Contact information for on-line application technical assistance is provided at point of application. 


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