I will answer this question from different perspectives, being a McGill graduate, someone who had to hire graduates from both schools, and someone who audited courses at Concordia.If I had to choose between the two schools, I would choose McGill again, over Concordia, and take a few select courses at Concordia and Polytechnique through the BCI Agreement, which makes it possible for a student to take a certain amount of courses at other universities in Quebec during your degree.McGill’s program has the reputation of being more theoretical, but that does not mean that it does not prepare you for the workplace.
In fact, the program is setup to allow you to do cutting-edge research with internationally known professors if that’s your thing, or take more practical-project-based courses if you prefer, which is the route I took.Also, all graduates of the program had jobs lined up before graduation, and most top companies recruit on campus – while a Co-Op program might be interesting for job prospects, I didn’t mind that McGill didn’t have one since I had a job lined up before graduation.McGill does not offer a co-op program per se, but the engineering faculty allows a certain number of credits to be credited towards your degree if you take summer jobs in the field.
However, it is not the real “co-op” feel that you will get at Poly or Concordia, which can be a plus if that’s what you are looking for.Also, McGill is the home of many interesting labs, and companies like Facebook are investing in them, mainly for AI related projects.Many McGill professors are also part of MILA (AI / UdeM) and other joint ventures.
McGill also has a strong medicine program, and so it offers computer science and engineering students research opportunities in biotechnology, neuroscience and other health related subjects.It was cited in other answers that Concordia is the only school to offer a Graduate Diploma in Computer Science.This is not exactly true, as most French speaking schools offer similar programs, called DESS.
However, I have heard great things about the Graduate Diploma at Concordia and I would highly suggest to go that route if that’s the type of program that you are looking for.While McGill’s acceptance rate is around 46%, it is very different when it comes to engineering and computer science.The acceptance rate of my class was around 8%, and more than half of the students failed and had to leave the school.
While I have no doubt, as others are saying, that the program at Concordia is one of the best in at the university, doing well at McGill is extremely difficult and on a whole different level – which is partly where McGill gets its worldwide reputation.Most of my classmates were valedictorian and scholarship winners, and the competition is fierce.In that way, and from auditing classes at Concordia and knowing people who took courses in both schools, the courses are more relaxed at Concordia, there is less pressure and the general atmosphere is somewhat better.
Diversity is also a strong point for McGill.McGill’s used to be the most diverse university in Canada, now second to UBC.It was selected to be part of different scholarship programs for foreigners and students in need, like the MasterCard Scholarship program in which I was a mentor.
It is worth pursuing an undergraduate degree at both schools, for different reasons.In general , Canadian universities have a good reputation worldwide when it comes to IT and, with the state of the market at the moment, you will not have issues find a job.
Concordia University ranks among the Top 500 Universities in the world.It may not have prestige like McGill or University of Toronto, but it offers countless things for the students in their university life, personal grooming and how it prepares you for the future.Computer Science is one of the most competitive fields this university has to offer and it is possibly their best department after John Molson’s Business School.
It currently offers 5 types of degrees in Computer Science.Bachelor’s Diploma.Bachelor’s Degree.Graduate DiplomaMaster’s Degree.P.hDThe Graduate Diploma in Computer Science is offered by ONLY Concordia University.Just to give a brief description to what the program is, If you have done a Bachelor’s degree in some other program, like Engineering, and you wish to transition your career in a CS program, then you can do the 1 year Graduate Diploma in Computer Science which covers all the essential things you would study in a Bachelor’s degree and further apply for a Master’s degree in the same field.
This is something I will be looking forward to as Concordia’s best department of CS has a very positive image.The other important thing to note is the acceptance rates of these universities.Concordia University has an acceptance rate in the 80% range while the McGill University is in the 50% range.
Concordia is easier to get into but don’t be fooled, the CS department is the best the university has to offer and the studies are hard as well.McGill is considered the Harvard of Canada, but it is by no means Harvard itself.McGill students have to live up-to the expectations of being in a top school which puts extra stress on a daily basis.
Besides, Concordia has more than 45,000+ students enrolled in its undergraduate programs.With such huge numbers from all over the world, you’re sure to meet alot of people from countries you never went to in the first place.China, India, Pakistan, Australia and many more.
Concordia University’s surrounding has some of the best and affordable restaurants with so many cuisines that you will lose count.The prices are good for a student and you don’t break the bank while eating from outside.
Concordia has a good Co-Op program where you alternate school semesters and work semesters, whereas Mcgill is known to be more theoretical with no co-op.If you want to go to graduate school, Mcgill is better.If you want a degree more geared toward getting a job, Concordia might be better.
IMO, McGill is definitely better in terms of education, skills and reputation.But you may not need that.Just saying, if the plan is to stay within Quebec or even Ontario, it doesn’t matter.
Plan on leaving the country?MCGILL is infinitely better.What an excellent GPA?
Go to Concordia for sure.It honestly just depends on what you want to do afterwards with your life.