Wearable Technology Program

New specialization for grads

Person pointing at fitbit

Be a wearable tech citizen scientist

We need you and your smart device to make Calgary a leading 'smart' city. With the help of our citizens, the University of Calgary and The City of Calgary will use wearable technology to create a data set to help Calgary become a leading smart city, helping to improve the planning and engineering of the pathways in our communities. The data will also help researchers create new standards for sleep, exercise and activity levels. 

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Study wearable technology

The University of Calgary is now offering a specialization in wearable technology for national and international students enrolled in a thesis-based MSc or PhD level program.

Wearable sensor technology is one of the fastest growing fields in the world and there is a growing demand for professionals in the field. Graduates will drive the future of smart technology in Canada.
The Wearable Technology Research and Collaboration (We-TRAC) training program is funded through a grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Collaborative Research and Training Experience (CREATE). Read more about how the program got started in the ‘Media’ section.


Job prospects in wearables

It’s estimated that for every wearable job posting, there are only 16 qualified professionals. This compares to an average of 59 applications for any other technology-related job posting.

Graduates can work with wearable technology companies, or receive training to start a business of their own with the new skills they gain in entrepreneurship. Many industries such as sports, recreation, healthcare and education need trained professionals.


Training in four areas

Successful applicants will receive hands-on job experience as well as training in these main areas:

Human Movement Biomechanics
Learn how the bones and muscles in the human body work together to form movement.

Data Science and Analytics
Become familiar with various machine learning techniques and advanced methods for analyzing complex data-sets for human health and movement. 

Data Visualization
Develop new skills and advanced methods for presenting data and communicating results to facilitate evidence-based decision making. 

Knowledge Translation and Entrepreneurship
No need to be an MBA. You'll be introduced to pre-start-up business development through group projects and case studies. Develop skills in creativity, idea generation and feasibility analysis, and learn - will this new project or business work?


Benefits of studying at UCalgary

This program incorporates hands-on training in many disciplines so graduates have well-rounded skills.

  • Gain experience by working at a leading wearable tech company. One to four month practicums are available. These unpaid job placements will give you valuable industry contacts and mentorship.
  • Take training with a university partner. Gain expert knowledge in a particular area that interests you and meet new people in the wearable technology industry. 
  • Work with coaches and athletes year-round to collect data using smart devices. You will have access to millions of data points from hundreds of athletes. Now we are also partnering with wearable users off campus to create new opportunities to improve health, wellness and city planning and infrastructure. 

To apply, or for questions, contact Program Manager AJ Macaulay at cajmacau@ucalgary.ca.

The We-TRAC program and its students are proud to work closely with and contribute to the Biomedical Engineering: Health Monitoring and Management research focus area.

Nserc logos

Funding provided by NSERC

Faculties involved in training

The following faculty members are part of the wearables technology program:

Primary Investigator, Dr. Reed Ferber, PhD, Faculties of Kinesiology and Nursing

Dr. John Bertram, PhD, Cumming School of Medicine and Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

Dr. Jeffrey Edwin Boyd, PhD, Department of Computer Science

Dr. Linda Duffett-Leger, PhD, Faculty of Nursing

Dr. Brent Edwards, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology

Dr. Carolyn Emery, PT, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology

Dr. Naser El-Sheimy, P.Eng., PhD, Department of Geomatics Engineering

Dr. Christian Jacob, PhD, Department of Computer Science

Dr. Sarah Kenny, PhD, Faculties of Kinesiology and Arts

Dr. Henry Leung, PhD, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Steve Liang, P.Eng., PhD, Department of Geomatics Engineering

Dr. Martin MacInnis, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology 

Dr. Kyle O'Keefe, P.Eng., PhD, Department of Geomatics Engineering

Dr. Kati Pasanen, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology

Dr. Ryan Peters, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology 

Dr. Chad Saunders, PhD, Haskayne School of Business

Dr. Jane Shearer, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology 

Dr. Mike Smith, PhD, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Darren Stefanyshyn, PhD, Faculty of Kinesiology

Dr. Svetlana Yanushkevich, PhD, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering



In the Media 

University of Calgary articles featuring the wearable technology program. 

Calling all cyclists-we want to make your ride safer

Citizen scientists with wearable tech needed for UCalgary project

Proper use of wearable tech is considered ‘wild, wild west’

UCalgary launches program specializing in wearable technology

How data can revolutionize personal healthcare