Frequently Asked Questions

Recent changes to the Co-op Program

What specific changes are being made to the Co-op programs, and how will they affect us as students?

These changes are being made in order to redistribute student caseloads across programs so that students in all programs receive equal opportunities to engage with their assigned Coordinator and Career Advisor. 

How will the redistribution of students among Co-op staff work, and what criteria will be used to determine these assignments? 

Staff who have lower student caseloads are now opening up their timetable to be able to see students who are coming from programs that have historically had high caseloads.  This will offer all students equal opportunities to engage with their assigned Coordinator and Advisor. 

Can we expect any disruptions or delays in the support provided to us during this transition period?

No delays or disruptions are expected as all the work is occurring behind the scenes administratively. The only change you will notice is that you may have a new Co-op Coordinator assigned to you and that you will no longer need to do anything for access to co-op jobs every semester.

Why can't I see the co-op jobs on myExperience right now?

In the first week of each semester all students who meet all program requirements will be given access to the co-op jobs automatically. If you are still not seeing the co-op jobs by the second week of classes, contact your Coordinator.

I can see co-op jobs for next year on myExperience – am I able to apply to these now or do I need to wait?

If you see a job on myExperience then it is open for applications. Check the deadline and the method of application as some jobs may direct you to the organization’s website to apply.

How do I know who my Co-op Coordinator is?

There are 3 ways to find out:

1. All students will receive an email from their Co-op Coordinators at the beginning of each semester. 

2. Go to the "Contact Us" page of your faculty co-op program and look for your Co-op Coordinator by your last name.  

3. Your Co-op Coordinator is listed in myExperience on your dashboard when you first log in under “Experiential Learning Overview”

My Co-op Coordinator is listed under mine and another faculty Co-op Program’s "Contact Us" webpages. Does that mean they have knowledge and expertise of roles and recruitment practices in many industries?

Yes, your Co-op Coordinator has a breadth of knowledge of recruitment practices, skillsets required and roles that are in demand across various industries. They can direct you to resources identifying key skills needed for entry level and more experienced longer term career positions. They have a network of employers they are connected to where they learn the latest recruitment information that they then share with you. Your Co-op Coordinators offer support through career coaching and counselling based on your individual interests. 

I have other questions about Co-op – who should I contact?

Contact anyone from your faculty Co-op program to ask any general questions that you may have regarding your participation in Co-op. 

How can I quickly access support from my Co-op program?

  • All Co-op programs have drop in hours. Check your co-op program’s website under “Contact Us” for the schedule and the Zoom link if they are being hosted online.  
  • All Co-op Advisors & Coordinators have appointments posted on myExperience.

Applying to Co-op

What are the CGPA requirements to join Co-op?

Each program has different CGPA requirements. View your faculty program's CGPA requirements here.

I do not yet have a CGPA, can I still join Co-op?

If this is your first semester at SFU, you can still apply to Co-op. However, you must meet your faculty's CGPA requirement in the semester before you begin your job search.

I am a transfer student. When can I join Co-op?

You should ideally apply to Co-op as soon as possible.  Because you are transferring credits to SFU, you should get involved in Co-op as soon as you come to campus.

I have more than 75 credits/units. Can I still join Co-op?

Please complete a Work/Study Plan to see if you have space in your degree for the required number of work terms, and then contact your faculty's advisor. The Work/Study Plan sheet can be found on your Co-op program's website on the "Forms" page.

I have just started at SFU and only have a few credits. Is it too soon to apply?

No, it is not too soon to apply. You should apply to Co-op two semesters ahead of when you want to do your first work term, so you will have plenty of credits by the time you start working.

Do I have to be in full time courses to apply to Co-op?

Co-op is for full-time students. You should be in 9 units or more in your study terms.

Do I have to submit a separate application to be a part of International Co-op?

No. Students who have been accepted into the Co-op program have access to all job postings –international or local. Visit the International Co-op website for more information about finding an international work term position.

Co-op Positions

Can I do a Co-op work term outside the Lower Mainland?

Yes.  Co-op positions are available throughout BC, across Canada and all over the world. To find out about job postings in your country of choice, check out the International Co-op website. If you have any questions, you can make an appointment to speak with a Co-op Coordinator or Advisor from your faculty.

Are students guaranteed jobs?

No. Co-op is a competitive program where students apply and compete for jobs. The more effort you put into the job search and job search preparation process, and the more positions you apply for, the more interviews you are likely to get. Likewise, the more interviews you do, the more likely you are to receive a job offer. Co-op staff are available to assist you in all stages of your Co-op work search, and special preparation for your job search is done through the Co-op workshops process, which helps you tailor your resume, cover letter and improve your interview skills. Aside from preparation, the more flexible students are with regard to the work experience they would like to gain and the locations they can work, the more likely they are to secure a position.

Why do students complete 3 work terms?

One work term provides a student with just 4 months of work experience. It is to your benefit to have at least 1 year of work experience upon graduation, as well as the related contacts and references this provides. At this time, with the completion of 3 work terms on an alternating basis with study terms, Co-op is noted on the graduation diploma. This is the model of the Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning (CEWIL) Canada, which is used by universities in Canada.

Is there a minimum or maximum number of work terms a Co-op student can do?

Students must complete 3 work terms throughout their undergraduate degree to obtain their Co-op designation. Masters and post-baccalaureate diploma students complete 1 or 2 work terms, though requirements vary between faculties.

What are the average pay rates for a Co-op position?

Undergraduate students in Co-op can anticipate pay rates of $16.75/hour and up, depending on employer and position.

Masters students can earn anywhere from $18 - $25/hour, based on employer rates of pay.

Can I find/create my own work term opportunity?

Yes. This is called a Student-Developed Work Term. In addition to applying for positions on myExperience, you are welcome to search for your own work term. Please meet with your faculty's Co-op Coordinator for further details.

Can I apply to job postings that are outside of my faculty or major?

Yes. Students are not limited to positions from their faculty. We encourage students to apply for any jobs they find interesting and are suited for.


When do I pay the application fee? Just once?

The application fee is a one-time fee. You won’t pay the Co-op practicum fee until you secure a Co-op position. The application fee must be paid before your next course registration date, or the end of the semester – whichever comes first.

How much is the Co-op tuition?

You can find the Co-op practicum tuition in the SFU Student Calendar under the "Tuition" heading (click on either the Domestic or International Student tab).


Am I still considered a full-time student during a Co-op work term?

Financial Assistance

You are considered a full-time SFU student in some cases by the university when doing a Co-op work term. Students receiving student loans or scholarships should always check with an SFU Financial Aid Advisor to confirm their full-time student status for purposes related to financial assistance.

Tax Forms

For T2202A tax related purposesfull-time student is defined separately by the Canada Revenue Agency. See explanation at T2202A.

What kind of workload is expected for a student beginning in Co-op?

The amount of work required for the job application and interview stages is comparable to taking one course. Keep this in mind when registering for courses for your job seeking semester. The workload decreases substantially after you’ve secured your first work term.

Can non-Canadian students participate in Co-op?

Yes. International students must obtain a Co-op work permit (this is different from an off-campus work permit). There are also some limitations, as International students cannot apply for government-funded positions or some positions in the Federal government.