Feb 05, 2023  
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2013-2014 
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2013-2014 [-ARCHIVED CALENDAR-]

Regulations for Master’s Degrees

Master of Applied Science, Master of Arts, Master of Communications Management, Master of Engineering, Master of Engineering Design, Master of Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Master of Engineering and Public Policy, Master of Health Management, Master of Finance, Master of Science, Master of Social Work, Master of Technology Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Regulations for the M.B.A. program may be found in the M.B.A. Calendar, available from the DeGroote School of Business.

3.1 General

Three types of Master’s programs are available, although not all departments offer each type. The first is the thesis program, consisting of both course work and a research thesis. The second type entails a project rather than a thesis, as well as course work. In some departments a course work-only program is available. Consult the departmental listings to see what types are available in a specific discipline.

If a department offers more than one of these types, the ability for a student to switch between them is not automatic, but is sometimes permitted. Approval of the supervisor and department chair (or graduate chair/advisor) is required. In many departments, there will be consequences for the level of financial support to the student. As well, there are likely to be consequences for the expected time to completion. Both financial support and expected time to completion should be clarified prior to approval of the change. If such a change is approved, notification should be sent to the School of Graduate Studies by the department or program, along with any change to the payroll authorization. Graduate Studies approval is not required.

The regular Master’s programs are designed for those students who can devote their full time to graduate studies. (See Section 2.5.2  for the definitions of a full-time student.) Some departments also offer part-time programs. Consult the departmental listing in this Calendar to see whether or not a part-time program is available in a particular department.

Prior to the 2001-2002 academic year, all Master’s degrees awarded within the Faculty of Engineering were designated as Master of Engineering (M. Eng.) degrees. On April 11, 2001, the University Senate approved the use of the Master of Applied Science (M.A.Sc.) designation for thesis-based degrees in the Faculty of Engineering. Non-thesis Master’s degrees in the Faculty of Engineering retain the M. Eng. designation.

3.2 Program Requirements

A Master’s program involving a thesis will normally be somewhat more specialized and will involve fewer courses than is the case in a Master’s program without a thesis. A course Master’s program is constructed by departments to contain a sufficient number of courses to make possible a diversified experience, for the student.

The student who is presenting a thesis as part of a program is required to complete, with at least B- standing, at least one full graduate course (or equivalent). Certain programs regularly prescribe additional graduate courses. In accordance with OCGS requirements, no more than one-third of the departmental minimum course requirements may be at the 600-level. The student may be required or permitted by the department to take courses in addition to those prescribed for graduate credit. In consultation with the programs concerned, one or more graduate courses in a related subject may be taken outside of the program.

Students will be required to meet any additional requirements of the program, including special seminars or colloquia. Such requirements are subject to approval by the appropriate Graduate Curriculum and Policy Committee.

3.3 Thesis

A thesis may be submitted at any time. The final date for submitting a thesis to the department for Fall or Spring Convocation is found in the Sessional Dates Section. The thesis will be examined by a committee of not fewer than three members (including the supervisor and an examiner external to the supervisory committee) who will be appointed by the department/program chair;the thesis will be defended by the candidate in an oral examination before this committee. The Associate Vice-President & Dean of Graduate Studies may appoint members to these committees. The time of the defense will be set by the department/program chair; normally this will be about two weeks after the completed thesis (as an electronic file; see section 2.8  above) has been submitted to the department for examination. 

After a successful examination and all requested changes have been made, the student will upload the final e-thesis to Digital Commons (see section 2.8 ). The student may wish to have printed copies of the final thesis suitably bound for personal use or for presentation. The student will be responsible for the cost and distribution of any bound copies. 

Tuition fees continue to be assessed until all degree requirements are met, including the successful submission of the final approved thesis to Digital Commons.

3.4 Project

In departments where there is the option of submitting a project, the department regulations must be observed. If the project is to be submitted to the University Library, the rules governing Master’s theses must be followed.

3.5 Supervision

The general regulations regarding supervision, described earlier (Section 2.7, “Supervision” ), apply to Master’s students. If the student is registered in a thesis degree program, the thesis supervisor will have been identified by mutual consent, based on the nature of the thesis research. If the student is registering in a degree program without a thesis, a faculty advisor will be assigned. In either case, the advisor may be changed with the approval of the Department, as described in Section 2.7 .

3.6 Program Duration

The amount of work in a regular (full-time) Master’s program for a student with good preparation varies across the campus, but generally, programs involving a thesis are designed to take longer than those without a thesis. Programs with a thesis typically take sixteen to twenty months. Twelve-month non-thesis programs occur in Anthropology, Classics, Cultural Studies and Critical Theory, Economics, Economic Policy, English, Finance, French, History, Physics, Political Science, and Sociology.

For students in a regular program, the permissible time for completion of a Master’s degree program is limited to three years from their initial registration in the program. For those students admitted to a part-time Master’s program, and who complete all degree requirements while registered part-time, the permissible time is limited to five years from their initial registration.

Each student’s progress is reviewed annually by the department and on a more frequent basis by the supervisor. A student whose work is unsatisfactory may at any time be required to withdraw from the University. In those cases in which a student does not manage to complete the degree before the end of the time limit specified above, the University has no further obligation to provide supervision. Upon consultation with the department and on its recommendation, the student will be shown as having been “withdrawn in good standing due to time limit”.

In the case of a student in a thesis program, if a completed thesis is submitted, and is acceptable to the department, the student can be readmitted in order to defend the thesis. However, thesis program students who have been withdrawn in good standing should be aware that they may be required to complete additional course work before being permitted to proceed to a defense of the thesis. In all cases, the department must first declare that the submitted thesis is ready for defense before the student will be readmitted.

A student enrolled in a course work or project program may also be readmitted if this is deemed acceptable by the student’s department. However, course work and project program students who have been withdrawn in good standing should be aware that they may be required to retake courses in which the content is judged by their department to have changed significantly since first completion and/or may be required to take additional courses that are necessary to fulfill current program requirements.

At the time of readmission, the student will be required to pay a fee (equivalent to one term’s tuition at the current part-time level 5 rate - see section 5.1 ) to compensate for the costs of the defense and subsequent processing of the thesis.