13.1 Graduate Regulations
Graduate students are subject to policies in other sections of this Calendar that apply to all Concordia University of Edmonton students. See in particular Undergraduate Admission, section 3.0, Registration Procedures, section 4.1, Registration Regulations, section 4.2, Changing Registration, section 4.3, Student Life, section 8.0, and Academic Regulations, section 9.0.
13.1.1 Graduate Admission
Concordia University of Edmonton welcomes applications from those who wish to pursue graduate studies and research, including students from other provinces and countries.
There is no general right of admission to the Faculty of Graduate Studies; Concordia University of Edmonton may at its discretion refuse admission to any applicant. Due to the limited enrolment capacity of Concordia University of Edmonton’s graduate programs, admission is competitive; meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee admission.
Graduate Admission Applications, transcripts, and supporting documents are received and compiled processed by the Admissions Office. Completed applications are reviewed by then forwarded for review to the appropriate Program Appeal Committee (PAC), which makes recommendations to the Dean of Graduate Studies as to the student’s admissibility according to the graduate program’s requirements. The Dean of Graduate Studies reviews the recommendation from the PAC and returns the applications to the Admissions Office with a decision on the status and admission conditions for the student, when applicable. All applicants are notified in writing as to the admission decision of the Dean of Graduate Studies. [Approved by the Faculties Council of the Faculty of Graduate Studies on February 18th, 2022]
Successful applicants are required to pay a non-refundable registration deposit (section 5.2) to confirm their acceptance of the offer of admission. Normally, an applicant’s decision to accept an offer of admission must be received within three weeks of the offer date.
For the Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology program, admitted students must accept offers of admission by April 15th, which is the national deadline for program acceptance in the field. Admitted applicants who were previously waitlisted must accept an offer of admission within three weeks of the offer date.
An admission decision is valid only for the academic term in which it is granted.
A. General Admission Requirements
The minimum requirements to the Faculty of Graduate Studies are outlined below. Applicants are reminded that individual graduate programs may impose additional admission requirements.
To be considered for admission, applicants must present the following minimum requirements:
- A four-year baccalaureate degree, a combination of a three-year baccalaureate degree followed by a second baccalaureate requiring the former degree or its equivalent, or a graduate degree from a recognized institution. Individual graduate programs may recommend applicants as qualifying/probationary students (e.g., those with only three-year degrees).
- An admission grade point average (AGPA) of 3.0 (on Concordia University of Edmonton’s 4-point scale) or equivalent on the most recent attempted 60 credits of undergraduate (or graduate) study including up to 15 credits of CR/NC grades. The AGPA is calculated using the most recently attempted credits, including failing marks, but excluding CR/NC grades. Normally, courses completed in the spring and summer session immediately preceding the term of admission are not calculated in the AGPA.
- Demonstrated fulfilment of the English Language Requirement, section D.
Applicants must be recommended for admission to the Faculty of Graduate Studies by the Program Appeal Committee (PAC) of the graduate program to which they are seeking admission.
Applicants seeking admission to a graduate program at CUE as regular or probationary graduate students, while being contemporaneously enrolled in a credential program at another post-secondary institution, require explicit approval from Concordia University of Edmonton’s Dean of Graduate Studies.
For further requirements and exceptions see section D.4.
B. Graduate Studies Readmission
There is no guarantee of readmission. Students must reapply for admission and meet the General Admission Requirements to the Faculty of Graduate Studies as outlined in section 13.1.1.A. In addition, students must meet the applicable program specific Admission Requirements outlined in sections 13.3, 13.4 or 13.5. Upon readmission, students are also governed by the program requirements of the Calendar in effect at the time of their readmission.
Applicants are advised to consult table 13.1.1 regarding the due date for application documents. Applicants are encouraged to visit https://concordia.ab.ca/graduate-studies/ well in advance of application deadlines to maximize consideration for admission.
Applicants to Concordia University of Edmonton graduate programs are processed through Apply Alberta. An application for admission to a graduate program is complete when all of the following have been received by the Faculty of Graduate Studies:
- The Graduate Admission Application, completed in full.
- Official transcripts and degree certificates from all post-secondary institutions attended.
- Official transcripts of graduate admission tests required for admission to the graduate program.
- Original supporting documents required for admission to the graduate program.
- Demonstrated fulfilment of the English Language Requirement, section D.
- Payment of the Application Fee, section 5.1.
Incomplete applications are not considered.
1. Ownership of Documents
Please refer to section 3.1.1.D of the Academic Calendar. Concordia University of Edmonton does not release these documents to third parties unless required by law.
Misrepresentation, falsification of documents, or withholding requested information are serious offences. If at any time it is discovered that students have misrepresented facts, falsified documents, or withheld requested information on official Faculty of Graduate Studies forms, they may be subject to one or more of the following penalties:
- Verbal and/or written reprimand
- Disciplinary or academic probation
- Cancellation of admission and/or registration
- Requirement to withdraw from the institution
- Placement on Document Alert, a national warning notification list used by post-secondary institutions
- Prosecution under the Criminal Code of Canada.
Individuals interested in applying to study at Concordia University of Edmonton should review section 8.6, Applicant Conduct.
D. English Language Requirement
English is the principal language of instruction at Concordia University of Edmonton. To ensure that graduate students have the best opportunity to achieve academic success, all applicants whose first language is not English (regardless of citizenship or country of origin) are required to demonstrate English language proficiency prior to admission, in one of the following ways:
- Applicants who have a baccalaureate degree from a recognized college or university where English is the primary language of instruction and the principal language of the country meet the English language requirement.
- Applicants who have a baccalaureate degree from a recognized college or university and are in the process of completing an additional degree at the same or next level and have earned a minimum of 15 credits where English is the primary language of instruction and the principal language of the country meet the English language requirement.
- Applicants who demonstrate that they have a baccalaureate degree from a recognized college or university and that English was the primary language of instruction may be exempt from providing an English language proficiency exam score.
- A satisfactory score on one of the following approved English language proficiency examinations, taken within the last two years, as described below:
- CAEL (Canadian Academic English Language) Assessment. The minimum satisfactory overall score is 60, with at least 60 on each subtest.
- Successful completion of Concordia University of Edmonton’s English for Academic Purposes (EAP) program EAP Tier 1 and EAP Tier 2 or EAP Tier 2 with a minimum score of C or higher in each tier satisfies Concordia University of Edmonton’s broader English Language Requirement for admission to Concordia University of Edmonton’s Graduate Degree programs. Successful EAP performance is considered one component of an application to any academic program; admission requirements and competitiveness (if applicable) to any degree program is still required.
- IELTS (International English Language Testing System) academic module. The minimum satisfactory overall score is 6.0, with no individual band below 6.0.*
- Pearson Test of English (Academic). The minimum satisfactory score is 54. The Pearson Test is not accepted for admission to the Psychological Assessment programs in the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
- MELAB (Michigan English Language Assessment Battery). The minimum satisfactory score is 85.
- TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). The minimum satisfactory score is 550 (PBT) or 80 (iBT). We do not accept MyBest Scores for admission purposes. When requesting that official TOEFL test scores be sent to Concordia University of Edmonton of Edmonton, students should indicate Concordia University of Edmonton’s institution code, 0916.
- Successful completion of Pathway III offered through International Language Academy of Canada (ILAC).
E. Admission Classification
Students are admitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies at Concordia University of Edmonton on the basis of their previous academic record. Students may be admitted as full-time or part-time and are classified as one of the following:
1. Regular Graduate Students
are students who, having met all the admission requirements, are registered in a faculty-approved graduate program at Concordia University of Edmonton.
2. Qualifying Graduate Student
meet the admission requirements for a graduate program but lack the background in a chosen area of specialization to pursue graduate studies in that area. Qualifying graduate students are registered in the Faculty of Graduate Studies but are not candidates for a degree/diploma/certificate.
During the qualifying period, which normally should not exceed one year or five full-course equivalents, students are required to complete courses specified by the department concerned.
In addition to the required courses, the student may be permitted to take one or more graduate courses with the permission of the PAC. Upon the student’s satisfactory completion of qualifying work, the department may recommend that the student be reclassified as one of the following: (a) probationary graduate student or (b) regular graduate student. This reclassification is not automatic and is dependent on the student’s academic performance.
Qualifying graduate students are required to pay the tuition fees for all courses taken during the qualifying period. Neither the non-program courses taken nor the fees paid during the qualifying period may be credited toward a subsequent degree/diploma/certificate program.
3. Probationary Graduate Students
are those whose academic record is
- difficult to assess, as may be the case of students from foreign universities,
- below the academic standard required by a department,
- below AGPA required by the faculty but with substantial work experience directly related to the field as assessed on a case-by-case basis by the relevant Program Appeal Committee.
A probationary graduate student is admitted under the following conditions:
- Probationary graduate students in non-doctoral programs must take the additional courses specified at the time of admission during their first term of registration. Probationary graduate students in doctoral programs must take the additional courses during their first year of registration and before taking Candidacy Examinations.
- The probationary graduate student must meet all probationary conditions and achieve the minimum grades established by the department.
- The probationary conditions will be clearly stated in the student’s admission letter, followed by the statement that if the student fails to satisfy the stated conditions, the student may not be allowed to continue in the program.
- Probationary graduate students in doctoral programs cannot write Candidacy Examinations. To sit for Candidacy Examinations, doctoral students must first be accepted as regular graduate students.
After the probationary period described in 13.1.E.3.1, the following regulations apply:
- If the probationary graduate student satisfies all of the probationary conditions of admission, the department recommends that the student be accepted as a regular graduate student. All graduate courses successfully completed during probation may be credited toward the student’s graduate degree/diploma/certificate.
- If a student fails to meet all of the conditions of admission as a probationary graduate student, the department recommends one of the following to the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies:
- that the student be allowed to register for another semester as a probationary graduate student. This written recommendation to the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies must include the following: (a) an indication of how an Incomplete or Failure in a course will be managed and (b) a specification of the minimum number of graduate courses that are to be taken by the student.
- that the student may be permitted to register as a qualifying student provided that he or she has not already been admitted as a qualifying student.
- that the student not be permitted further registrations in the program. This written recommendation to the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies must include a rationale for the decision.
Any student who fails to meet the conditions of a second probationary registration may not continue in the program.
Probationary graduate students are not considered to be candidates for a degree/diploma/certificate.
4. Special Graduate Students
are those who take graduate courses without proceeding to a graduate degree/diploma/certificate at Concordia University of Edmonton. They must meet the general admission requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. However, with the consent of the Dean of Graduate Studies and the appropriate Director, students may be admitted as special graduate students for graduate certificate courses even though they do not meet general requirements for Graduate Studies.
A special graduate student is not a candidate for a degree/diploma/certificate at Concordia University of Edmonton and will not receive any residence or fee credit toward a subsequent degree/diploma/certificate program at Concordia University of Edmonton for work completed as a special graduate student.
Admission as a special graduate student does not imply eligibility for admission to a degree/diploma/certificate program in any department. Individuals who wish to study under this classification must apply and be admitted each year in which they take courses.
Special graduate students require written permission from the department concerned to register in a course.
Probationary status as a special graduate student may be granted on an individual basis.
5. Visiting Graduate Students
are those who are registered at another university that does not have an exchange agreement with Concordia University of Edmonton. Students must obtain written permission from their host institution and from Concordia University of Edmonton to take one or more courses for transfer credit toward the graduate degree program at their home institution.
13.1.2 Transfers, Course Exemptions, and Substitution
Individual graduate programs may impose additional limitations for course transfer, course exemptions, and substitutions.
- Thesis-based and dissertation-based programs: The total course work credit weight required for any thesis-based and dissertation-based programs may not be reduced by more than one third (⅓) through any combination of transfer credit and course exemption from the requirement set out in each department’s program. Refer to Exceptions, section 13.1.2.B
- Course-based programs: The number of courses nearest to, but not exceeding, three fifths (3/5) of the total units of course weight of a student’s program can be met through transfer credit and/or course exemption if recommended by the department and approved by the Faculty of Graduate Studies on a case-by-case basis.
- Transfer Credit refers to the formal transfer of credit for a course(s) which has been earned outside Concordia University of Edmonton.
- Transfer credit is recommended by the Chair of the PAC to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
- Decisions concerning transfer credit can not be appealed under Concordia University of Edmonton’s appeal procedures
- Course Exemption refers to the reduction in required credit weights of a student’s program by removal of specific courses normally required. In special circumstances, the Faculty of Graduate Studies may approve exemption of certain courses if the student has completed appropriate equivalent course work at Concordia University of Edmonton or elsewhere, but the program may not be reduced by more than the value set out above.
- Course exemptions are recommended by the Chair of the PAC to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
- Decisions concerning course exemptions can not be appealed under Concordia University of Edmonton’s appeal procedures
- Course Substitution means that a department may, at its discretion, substitute specific required courses from a student’s program with more appropriate courses equivalent in weight.
- Course substitutions are recommended by the Chair of the PAC to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
- Decisions concerning course substitutions can not be appealed under Concordia University of Edmonton’s appeal procedures
- Limits. The description of each graduate program in this Calendar contains a listing of the required and optional courses.
For students who have commenced an equivalent graduate program at a recognized university and are relocating to Concordia University of Edmonton, consideration will be given to departmental recommendations for transfer credit which exceeds the limit stated above. See department program descriptions for exemptions specific to individual programs.
Students should note that they cannot apply directly for transfer credit, course exemption, or course substitution; the department, through the PAC, must petition the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
A. Academic Standing
1. Grading System
|Descriptor||Alpha Grade||Grade Point Value|
|Other Final Grades:|
|Credit (C- or higher)||CR|
|Pass||P||Pass (P) is used exclusively for non-credit or 0-credit courses marked as Pass (P)/Fail (F)|
2. Academic Standards
For students in the Faculty of Graduate Studies, the normal passing grade is C+. A student who receives two or more grades below a C+ may be Required to Withdraw from the program, regardless of their overall GPA in the program.
3. Master’s and Doctoral Examination Committee (thesis- and dissertation-based programs)
The Examination Committee will consist of the following members:
- A neutral chair, chosen from a department other than the student’s department; the chair functions solely to guide the process of the examination.
- The student’s supervisor
- An external examiner, chosen from a department other than the student’s department
- A second reader from the graduate faculty in the student’s department.
4. Grading of Thesis or Dissertation
Following the completion of the examination, the Examination Committee will assign one of the following verbal evaluations to the thesis or dissertation:
- Acceptable, with no revisions
- Acceptable, with minor revisions
- Acceptable, with major revisions
Students whose theses or dissertations are judged to be “Acceptable, with minor/major revisions” will be required to resubmit their theses or dissertations by the established time limit for their program. Refer to Time Limits, section 13.1.3.B.2.
“Unacceptable” theses or dissertations will be assigned a mark of “no credit”.
In cases in which the Examination Committee judges a thesis or dissertation to be of exceptional quality, the Committee may make a formal recommendation to the Dean of Graduate Studies that the student be awarded a Faculty of Graduate Studies Thesis or Dissertation Award or any other thesis or dissertation award that may be instituted at Concordia University of Edmonton. When such thesis or dissertation awards are approved, the name of the award will be noted on the student’s academic transcript.
B. Maintenance of Registration
Course-based programs: Over the duration of their program, students in course-based master’s graduate programs must complete a minimum of 2/5 of the total number of credits required for the program at Concordia University of Edmonton. This is a minimum requirement; students are required to fulfil the department requirements, which may be higher.
Thesis- and dissertation-based programs: Over the duration of their program, students in thesis- and dissertation-based programs must complete a minimum of 2/3 of the total course work plus the thesis or dissertation at Concordia University of Edmonton. This is a minimum requirement; students are required to fulfil the department’s thesis- and dissertation-based program requirements, which may be higher.
2. Time Limits
The time limit (or maximum period of time permitted to complete the requirements for a degree) is calculated from the start of the term in which the student first registers in that specific program.
Thesis-based master’s students normally must complete all the requirements within four years of the term in which they first register as probationary graduate students or as regular graduate students.
Dissertation-based doctoral students normally must complete all the requirements within eight years of the term in which they first register as probationary graduate students or as regular graduate students.
Course-based master’s students normally must complete all requirements within six years of the term in which they first register as probationary graduate students or as candidates in the master’s program, unless the department has indicated a shorter time limit.
In exceptional circumstances, a candidate who has failed to complete all the requirements for the degree within the appropriate period specified above may be granted an extension upon departmental recommendation and approval by the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
3. Registration at the end of programs
Course-based programs: If applicable, course-based programs are not recorded as complete until the student’s project or capstone has been submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
Thesis-based programs: Students in thesis-based master’s programs must register in a Thesis during the registration period in which the thesis is submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies. Thesis-based programs are not recorded as complete until the thesis and accompanying documentation have been submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
Dissertation-based programs: Students in dissertation-based doctoral programs must register in a Dissertation Defence during the registration period in which the dissertation is submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies. Dissertation-based programs are not recorded as complete until the dissertation and accompanying documentation have been submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
4. Registration Status
Concordia University of Edmonton’s general Student Registration Status Policy applies to graduate students. This policy can be found in section 4.6 (Student Registration Status Policy).
5. Registration Procedure
Students in certain graduate programs may be required to have their registration approved by the chair of their Program Appeal Committee (PAC).
6. Leave of Absence
Concordia University of Edmonton’s general Leave of Absence Policy applies to graduate students. This policy can be found in section 4.5 of this academic calendar.
7. Incompletes and Extensions
The Faculty of Graduate Studies adheres to the policy on incomplete work as it is defined in Incomplete Work, section 9.2.3.
For research projects in course-based programs only: If a student anticipates that he/she will not be able to meet the course requirements of the research project by the typical 4-week extension deadline, the students may apply to their Master’s Program Committee for a four-month extension. If the Master’s Program Committee approves this application, the committee will recommend to the Faculty of Graduate Studies that the student be allowed to re-register in that course. The new deadline will be the last class of the semester immediately following the term in which the student was originally registered in the research course. This application for re-registration and four-month extension must be made before the original extension deadline date: that is, while the student is officially in the course and in Incomplete status.
The re-registration must be in the term immediately following the term of the original registration. The fee for this re-registration will be 50% of the full fee for the course.
The grade for the term in which the student registered remains on the transcript as I (Incomplete). The grade for the term in which the student re-registers will be the final grade and will be based on the work that is completed; any incomplete work is assigned a mark of F (Fail).
Should a student require a further four-month extension to complete the research project, that student will again have to apply to the Master’s Program Committee. If the Master’s Program Committee approves the application, the cost for the second re-registration will be 100% of the full fee for the course.
8. Thesis & Dissertation Registration (Thesis- and Dissertation-based programs)
Students in a thesis-based Master’s program are required to register in their thesis course in each semester in which they are working on their thesis until the thesis is satisfactorily completed.
Students in a dissertation-based doctoral program are required to register in their dissertation research or dissertation defense course in each semester in which they are working on their dissertation until the dissertation is satisfactorily completed.
9. Continuing Registration
Students must maintain continuous registration in the program. Students who do not register in any academic year are considered to have withdrawn from their graduate program.
Course-based programs: Students in course-based graduate programs must register in a minimum of 3 credits of course work or in MREG 600 (Maintaining Registration) for at least one term in each September-to-August period to keep the program active.
Thesis-based Master’s programs: In order to keep their program active, students registered in thesis-based programs must register each Fall and Winter semester until the program is completed. Students not registered in course work or thesis must register in MREG 600 (Maintaining Registration) both terms of Fall and Winter in order to keep their programs active.
Students who have registered in Fall/Winter and are working only on thesis research during May to August do not need to register separately for this period.
Dissertation-based doctoral programs: In order to keep their program active, students registered in dissertation-based programs must register each Fall, Winter and Spring semester until the program is completed. Students not registered in course work or dissertation must register in MREG 600 (Maintaining Registration) in each Fall, Winter or Spring semester in order to keep their programs active.
Failure to maintain registration: Students who fail to keep the program active as described above will be considered to have withdrawn from their program. If they wish to resume work on the program, they must apply for readmission by submitting a new application and paying the application fee. They will have their program reassessed in terms of the regulations in force at the time of reapplication. There is no guarantee of readmission.
Leave of absence: Students who anticipate an interruption in their program must apply for a leave of absence (see section 4.5 of this Academic Calendar).
Incompletes and extensions: Students are required to complete the requirements of all courses (including research projects in course-based programs) within the time limits of an academic term. In exceptional circumstances, students may apply for time extensions for the purpose of completing course requirements (see #8).
13.1.4 General Program Requirements
In addition to the program specific program requirements as given in sections 13.3, 13.4, and 13.5, students in all graduate programs have to successfully complete the Graduate Ethics Training Course FGS 600 (Graduate Ethics Training (GET) Course) by the applicable deadline for application for graduation, see Academic Schedule, section 2.0. Normally, students complete this course in their first term.
13.1.5 Graduation Requirements
There are three conferral dates each year, normally held in September, January, and May. For further information, see Graduation, section 9.7.
Students in thesis- or dissertation-based programs must complete all course work and submit the number of unbound copies of the thesis or dissertation required by their department to the Faculty of Graduate Studies by the deadline dates specified in the Academic Schedule, section 2.0.
Students in course-based programs must complete all program requirements prior to the deadlines set out in the Academic Schedule, section 2.0.
13.1.6 Thesis, Dissertation, Project and Capstone Guidelines
The Thesis, Dissertation, Project and Capstone Guidelines are included in this calendar and provided as a pdf file.
13.1.7 Timelines for Theses, Dissertations and Projects
The Thesis, Dissertation and Project Deadlines are as provided below.
If a deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, applications and documents are accepted until the end of the next business day.