Academic Policies

Full-Time and Part-Time Studies

To foster full participation and immersion in graduate education, full-time study is preferred in nursing graduate programs. At the PhD level, full-time enrolment is required. At the master’s level, part-time enrolment is permitted if space is available in the program. Preference may be given to full-time applicants.

Student who are admitted for part-time master’s study may enrol in a maximum of three half courses (1.5 FCE’s) per academic year and will pay part-time fees. Enrolment which exceeds this level is considered full-time study and full-time fees will apply. Except under exceptional circumstances, students who are admitted to full-time study will not be permitted to change their status to part-time.  


  • Each student is required to maintain a 70% grade in each course
  • If one grade less than 70% is obtained, continued progression is reviewed by the Graduate Programs Council
  • Repeat of the course or part of the course is at the discretion of the Graduate Programs Council
  • If the student obtains a second grade of less than 70%, the student will be asked to withdraw from the program

Faculty advisors or supervisors monitor student progress each term. This process includes:

  • Students must meet with their advisor or supervisor at least once per term and more often at the discretion of their advisor or supervisor
  • When meeting with the advisor or supervisor, students will provide a list of the academic work (papers, literature searches, etc.) they have completed and are currently working on, along with any marks received on course requirements and completed courses
  • If a student is experiencing academic difficulty, a collaborative written plan should be prepared to support success
  • The Annual Report prepared by PhD students must be submitted to their supervisor for review prior to the June meeting of the Progressions Subcommittee of the Graduate Programs Council

Academic progress of all students is reviewed at least annually via the Pathfinder system. Progress may be evaluated as:

  • Meeting expectations towards timely completion
  • Not meeting expectations towards timely completion

Results of the evaulation will be communicated to the student through Pathfinder.

Re-writing Failed Papers

With the permission of the course professor:

  • A failed course assignment may be re-written
  • The maximum mark allowed on a re-written paper is 70%
  • A maximum of two papers can be re-written in the graduate program
  • If a paper is re-written, the supervisor and Graduate Programs Office will be informed

PhD Proposal Defense:

Prior to defending their dissertation proposal, doctoral students must successfully complete all required coursework:

  • N9680: Doctoral Seminar
  • N9681: Philosophy of Nursing Science
  • At least one of:
    • N9683: Advanced Quantitative Research Methods
    • N9684: Advanced Qualitative Research Methods

Doctoral students may continue to take elective courses after the proposal defense.

Graduate Seminar Participation

Critical reflection, dialogue, mutual discovery and critique are foundational elements of graduate education in nursing. Each student has a responsibility to fully engage in class discussion, both to promote his/her own learning and discovery and to support the development of peers.

Students are expected to:

  • Attend all seminars
  • Prepare for each through in-depth reading and reflection
  • Actively contribute to class discussion in a way that promotes analysis, invites debate and enhances the depth of the group analysis

If a student is unable to attend a seminar, he/she must discuss this absence with the course professor in advance. The course professor may require the student to complete additional reading and/or assignments in lieu of the learning experiences that were missed. Repeat absences or lateness will be discussed with the student and may result in loss of marks and/or withdrawal from the course until a time when the student is ready and able to participate. Decisions about the consequences of repeated absences will be made by the course professor, in consultation with the Graduate Programs Chair.