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Please note that effective May 2015 (Spring/Summer Term), some terminology used in this calendar will change as a result of the implementation of the Mosaic enterprise resource planning system. Please see annotations below for the Glossary terms that will be affected.
Academic Probation, which may be assigned to students whose CA is at least 3.0 but less than 3.5, will allow a student to continue at the University for one reviewing period.
Advanced Standing/Credit may be granted to an applicant who has completed work at another university or college or who has completed a Certificate/Diploma program at McMaster University, subject to the applicant having met the minimum requirements prescribed by the University.
Antirequisite is a course which cannot be taken for credit before, after, or at the same time as the course with which it is listed.
Bursaries are granted based upon demonstrated financial need, a minimum expectation of academic accomplishment and, in some cases, other forms of earned merit. They may vary in monetary value, based upon the level of financial need demonstrated.
Continuing Student is a university graduate who is not proceeding to an advanced degree, but wishes to take one or more undergraduate courses.
Corequisite is a course which must be taken together with another course.
Course Numbers (e.g. 1A03) can be interpreted as follows: the initial digit indicates the Level of the course; the letter(s) in the middle identifies the specific courses within the Level; and the final digit(s) defines the number of units of credit associated with the course.
Cross-listed Course is a course which is listed under two or more subjects.
Cumulative Average (CA)3 is a weighted average based on the grades obtained in all courses taken.
Degree is conferred when a student completes a program of study (e.g. Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Kinesiology, Master of Science, Doctor of Philosophy).
Department is a subdivision of a Faculty, responsible for a particular subject or group of subjects (e.g. Department of Chemistry, Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics).
Elective Courses are those courses taken by a student which are not specifically designated in a student’s program, but which form part of the total number of units required to complete the program.
Extra Courses are those courses designated at the time of registration as “Extra”, which are not included as units toward completion of a student’s program. The grades obtained in such courses will not be included in the computation of the Cumulative Average. However, they will be included in the computation of the Sessional Average and the Full-load Average.
Faculty is a major administrative and teaching unit of the University responsible for programs and courses relating to common fields of study or academic disciplines (e.g. Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Engineering).
Full Load is the number of units specified in the Calendar for an individual level of a program (e.g. Commerce, Level II: 30 units). If the Calendar does not specify the program requirements by individual levels, divide the total units for all levels by the number of levels, discarding the remainder.
Full-load Average (FA) is based on the successful completion of a full load of course units (see Full Load definition), and includes only courses taken in the Fall/Winter session. Overload units (those above Full Load) and Extra Courses taken during the Fall/Winter session are included in the FA.
Full-time Student for academic purposes is an undergraduate student who is registered in at least 24 units in the Fall/Winter session, including Extra Courses. Full-time status for students in the Faculty of Science and Engineering Co-op programs is granted to those students registered in at least 12 units in Term 1 or Term 2 of the Fall/Winter session.
Letter of Permission is a formal document which allows a McMaster student to take one or more courses at another university for credit towards a McMaster degree.
Level is used to describe a student’s progression through a program.
Loans are monetary advances granted to students currently registered, based upon a demonstrated means and promise of repayment.
Mature Student has not attended secondary school or college on a full-time basis for at least two years; and has not previously attended university.
Minor is an option available to students enrolled in four- or five-level programs. A Minor consists of at least 24 units of which normally no more than six units may be from Level I that meet the requirements set out in the program description of that Minor.
Part-time Student (for academic purposes), is an undergraduate student who is registered in fewer than 24 units in the Fall/Winter session, including Extra Courses.
Post-Degree Student is a university graduate or a person with professional qualifications who is not proceeding to an advanced degree, but wishes to take one or more graduate courses.
Prerequisite is a requirement to be fulfilled before registration in a course is permitted. This is usually the successful completion of another course.
Program is a specific combination of courses that fulfils the requirements for a degree.
Program Probation which may be assigned to students whose CA falls within the probationary band below the minimum CA required to remain in the program in good standing, will allow a student to continue in his/her program for at least one reviewing period. (See the General Academic Regulations section in this Calendar.)
Readmission See Readmission in the Admission Requirements section in this Calendar.
Registration is the process whereby a student enrols in a program of study and/or courses and pays, or makes acceptable arrangements to pay, all fees.
Reinstatement See Reinstatement in the General Academic Regulations section in this Calendar.
Required Courses are those courses which are specifically designated for inclusion in a program.
Requisite is an academic requirement that must be met to register in a course. A course requisite may comprise Prerequisites, Corequisites and/or Antirequisites.
Result of Session4 is the statement of the academic standing of a student at the end of a reviewing period. May continue in program, May not continue and Clear to graduate are three examples.
Review is an assessment of a student’s performance to determine eligibility to continue in a program or to graduate.
Reviewing Period is the time between two reviews for a student. Reviews will take place in May and August, provided the student has attempted 18 units of work since the last review or is a potential graduand.
Session1 is a period of study within the academic year. For example, the Fall/Winter session runs from September to April.
Sessional Average (SA)5 is a weighted average based on the grades attained in a session. Overload courses and Extra courses are included in the Sessional Average.
Term2 is a period of study within a session. The Fall/Winter session, for example, contains three terms, Term 1 runs from September to December; Term 2 runs from January to April; Term 3 runs from September to April.
Transcript is an official document summarizing the entire academic record of a student at a particular educational institution.
Tuition is fees paid in consideration for enrolment in a program of study and selected courses.
Undergraduate Student is a student enrolled in a program of study leading to a bachelor’s degree or to the degree Doctor of Medicine.
Units define the number of credits associated with a course. A unit is roughly equivalent to one lecture-hour per week for one term or two hours of laboratories or seminars per week for one term. Three-unit courses are usually one term in length. Six-unit courses are usually two terms, or one session.
Weighted Average is calculated by multiplying the grade points achieved in each course by the number of units in each course, totaling these results, and then dividing this result by the total number of course units. (See example under Grading System in the General Academic Regulations section in this Calendar.)
Withdrawal is the formal process of discontinuing studies in a particular course or program
1Effective May 2015 the definition of Session, as used in this calendar, will change to:
A period of study within a Term. Each term may have multiple sessions. For example, the Spring/Summer term has at least two sessions: Session 1 (May-June) and Session 2 (July-August).
2Effective May 2015 the definition of Term, as used in this calendar, will change to:
A period within the Academic Year. The Academic Year will have three Terms that may have multiple Sessions within them. For example: Fall Term (September-December), Winter Term (January-April), and Spring/Summer Term (May-August).
3Effective May 2015 Cumulative Average (CA) will be renamed to Grade Point Average (GPA) and will be defined as:
A weighted average based on the grades obtained in all courses taken.
4Effective May 2015 Result of Session will be renamed to Academic Standing and will be defined as:
The statement of the academic standing of a student at the end of a reviewing period. May continue in program, May not continue in program, and Clear to graduate are three examples.
5Effective May 2015 Sessional Average (SA) will be renamed to Fall-Winter Average and will be defined as:
A weighted average based on the grades attained in the Fall and Winter Terms. Overload courses and extra courses are included in the Fall-Winter Average.