Elective courses are a way for you to shape your degree to explore and develop your interests. They also allow you to investigate the central issues, thought processes and scholarly methods found in disciplines outside engineering, which complements your Core Courses. 

You begin the process of selecting electives in your second year, looking ahead to your third and fourth year. In ECE, you are required to take a certain number of electives in these five groups:  

  • 2 Complementary Studies (CS) 
  • 2 Humanities and Social Science (HSS) 
  • 1 Science/Math  
  • 3 Technical  
  • 1 Free  

The Faculty has more information about each of these electives as well as a Guide to Taking Arts & Science courses.   

The Academic Calendar will tell you which electives you need to fulfill your program requirements and give you an overview of the courses available.  

Trouble picking an elective?

Contact the ECE Undergraduate Office for guidance with eligibility, scheduling, enrolment restrictions and more.

Complementary Studies/Humanities and Social Science electives 

Complementary Studies (CS) elective generally falls under the area of humanities, social sciences, arts, management economics and communication.  

Humanities and Social Science (HSS) electives are a subset of CS electives, and you can use them to satisfy CS requirements.  

For courses in CS and HSS elective categories, you are responsible for determining your qualifications, whether prerequisites, permissions or anything else the course requires. 

Not every course is eligible for credit as an CS or HSS elective. To learn more about these two electives, and to see a detailed list of eligible courses, visit the Faculty’s Complementary Studies (CS) page and the Humanities and Social Science (HSS) page. 

Technical electives 

Technical elective is an ECE course that is outside your chosen area of focus. The course must be level 300 or higher.

You may also take one of your three required technical electives from another department, though will need to check before enrolling whether the course is acceptable. This may include an eligible course in Science/Math.

Science/Math electives 

Science/Math elective is listed in the Academic Calendar. This is a list of select courses whose content does not significantly overlap with your Core Courses. 

Free electives 

Free elective is any degree credit course offered by any of the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering or the Faculty of Arts & Science. It can be:

  • Any approved CS/HSS elective on the Office of the Registrar’s list
  • A non-technical or technical course
  • A technical elective from another engineering department

It cannot contain content already offered in courses that you take in your ECE program: for example, you can’t take a basic introductory course in physics, math or computer science. See the Faculty's explanation of free electives.

Note: You must secure department approval for any course outside the ECE curriculum or the approved CS/HSS courses. Contact askece@utoronto.ca with the course specifics to start the approval process.

Ineligible electives

See the Ineligible electives page for a list of ineligible courses.