I am thinking to apply to a graduate program in computer science (Research Masters or PhD), but I am not sure how often universities accept applications.

For example I know the University of Toronto does so each December (so only once a year). But I wonder if other places (anywhere in NA or Europe) have different patterns.

  • Probably specified on the Universities' websites...
    – Solar Mike
    Feb 14, 2019 at 8:16

2 Answers 2


In the US there is no general system. Most universities will have deadlines for admission once or twice a year with a few having more. They are matched to the normal Fall and Spring semester system used in most (not all) universities. However, most students enter in the Fall with deadlines for application likely sometime in the Summer or possibly the Spring.

But each university will operate on its own schedule so you need to check.

Another consideration is when you need to apply for positions like Teaching or Research Assistant. Those might possibly be once a year even if the admission deadlines are twice. So, check about that also. Likewise scholarship and grant funding can have separate schedules.

Narrow down your search to a few universities and look at the details for those.

  • In math, in the U.S., currently, deadlines for beginning Fall term are late Fall of the previous year. Feb 14, 2019 at 4:13

Germany does not have a general system.

To start a PhD theses, there is not an admission in most places, but you need look for job ads for "Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiter" and secure one of these or obtain some funding otherwise (e.g. through a scholarship).

Most Master programs, however, do admit in spring and autumn (studies start about mid April and mid October). Note that a Masters degree is required to start a PhD in Germany (with very few exceptions).

  • Does germany follow the 3 year license 2 year master pattern like france does?
    – Makogan
    Feb 14, 2019 at 15:39
  • I don't know what "3 year license" means, but master programs are 2 years.
    – Dirk
    Feb 15, 2019 at 18:52
  • In France the system is, study for 3 years, that gives you a "license" diploma (which is mostly useless), then you can do a masters (2 years, equivalent to a bachelors in the US/Canada). You could then, optionally do a Doctorate. i.e A bachelors in the US is comparable to a masters in France, form what I have been told.
    – Makogan
    Feb 15, 2019 at 19:38
  • I am not sure if this information is still accurate. Most countries in Europe adopted a "three years bachelor + two year master" system (read up about the Bologna process and the European Higher Education Area…). The bachelor is considered a university degree but only a masters qualifies you to pursue a research career and allows to start a PhD.
    – Dirk
    Feb 15, 2019 at 19:51

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