MSc, MVSc, MA, PhD, PGDip


(Master of Science - MSc; Master of Veterinary Science - MVSc; Master of Arts - MA; Doctor of Philosophy - PhD; and Postgraduate Diploma in Pathology or Microbiology (PGDip)

1. Glossary of Terms

  • Faculties: Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Faculty of Arts, and Faculty of Science.
  • Master of Arts (MA): degree granted for successful completion of the requirements for the Master of Arts degree as listed in the regulations.
  • Master of Science (MSc): degree granted for successful completion of the requirements for the Master of Science degree as listed in the regulations.
  • Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip): diploma granted for successful completion of the requirements for the Postgraduate Diploma as listed in the regulations.
  • Master of Veterinary Science (MVSc): degree granted for successful completion of the requirements for the Master of Veterinary Science degree as listed in the regulations.
  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD): degree granted for successful completion of the requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy degree as listed in the regulations.
  • Graduate Studies Committee: standing committees of the Faculties appointed by the respective Deans to oversee and review the graduate programs. In the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, this role is filled by the Graduate Studies and Research Committee.

Mandate with respect to Graduate Studies includes:

  • To establish and periodically to review the goals and objectives of the graduate studies programs within each Faculty.
  • To review all applications from prospective graduate students and recommend acceptance or rejection.
  • To make recommendations concerning creation, deletion or modification of graduate programs and courses.
  • To develop and review program and thesis guidelines for graduate programs.
  • To review academic records of graduate students and recommend to the Dean the awarding of degrees or courses of action for substandard performance.
  • To recommend changes to the Graduate Studies Academic Calendar.
  • To review all recommendations from department chairs for the appointment of graduate faculty and recommend acceptance or rejection.

Graduate faculty: members of the Faculties who participate in the graduate programs are described herein as graduate faculty. Such members are assigned their duties by the Dean of the Faculty on the recommendation of a department chair and the Graduate Studies Committee. From time to time faculty members are drawn from other Faculties and Adjunct Professors may be recommended as graduate faculty, and may serve on graduate student Supervisory Committees as a result of particular expertise related to a particular project. Normally graduate faculty in the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine will have a Bachelor's degree or a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree, as well as a Master's degree or a Doctor of Philosophy degree or Board Certification. Graduate faculty in Arts and Science will normally have a Doctor of Philosophy degree.

Program Administrator: the individual within each of the Faculties who has administrative responsibility for the coordination of graduate programs and who chairs the respective Graduate Studies Committee. In the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, this person is the Associate Dean, Graduate Studies and Research. In the Faculties of Arts and Science respectively, it is the Coordinator of Graduate Studies.

For the purpose of these regulations, the term "semester" includes, in addition to first and second semester as defined in the Calendar, the period from May to August in each year as a third semester.

2. Description of Graduate Students

Graduate students are systemically described by category and classification.

a) Category

Regular Student: An applicant who has met the admission requirements set out above or who has been recommended for transfer from provisional student category described below is recorded as a regular student.

MAIS Regular Student:  An applicant who has met the admission requirements set out for this program and for UPEI.  Students are enrolled in the MAIS on a program basis and are considered to be full time graduate students.

Provisional Student: An applicant whose qualifications are not completely clear may be admitted as a full-time provisional student. If at the end of one semester the department is satisfied with the student’s progress, it will recommend to the Program Administrator transfer to regular student status. Upon such transfer, the student will receive credit for courses completed, and residence credit for the semester. If transfer to regular student status is not achieved at the end of one semester, the student may be permitted to continue for a second semester as a provisional student, at the end of which time the record will be reviewed as before. If transfer to regular student status is not recommended, the student will be transferred to special student category, or will be required to withdraw.

Special Student: A student who is not enrolled in a degree or diploma program at this university is recorded as a Special Student. Normally such students register for not more than one or two graduate courses with the permission of the instructor; in unusual circumstances, a special student may participate in research, but only with the permission of the Program Administrator. Graduate courses taken by special students may subsequently be considered for credit towards a graduate degree only on recommendation of the academic unit in which the student is registered and with the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee. Approval must be obtained within 12 months of the completion of the special studies course. A student who wishes to register as a special student should contact the Office of the Program Administrator before applying for admission.

Conditional Student: Students who have met all other program admission requirements but have only met the Conditional Student English Language Proficiency requirements, and have been recommended for admission by   the appropriate admission committee. Conditional Students must participate in the Graduate English Preparation program and satisfy the minimum Unconditional English Language Proficiency requirement before being permitted to enrol in Graduate level courses or participate in Graduate program activity.

b) Classification

In the foregoing categories a student is classified as full-time or part-time.

Full-time Student: A full-time student is one who (I) is designated by the University as a full-time graduate student; (ii) is geographically available and is on the campus regularly*; (iii) save in exceptional circumstances, is not regularly employed at the University, for more than an average of a set number of hours per week**. Residency requirements for advanced degrees are cited as for full-time students.

NOTES: It is understood that a graduate student may be absent from the University while still under supervision (e.g. visiting libraries, attending a graduate course at another institution, doing field work). If such periods of absence exceed four weeks in any semester written evidence must be available in the Office of the Program Administrator to the effect that the absence has the approval of the Department Chair and of the Program Administrator. Irrespective of this provision, a student conducting experimental work in an external laboratory will not normally be considered as a full-time student, except as outlined under “Student Mobility” in Academic Regulations - Graduate Programs. If the student is employed as a Graduate Service Assistant or a Graduate Teaching Assistant, the number of set hours per week should represent the total time spent on preparative work, reading set assignments, marking examinations, and the like.

The number of set hours per week:

  • Faculty of Veterinary Medicine: 10 hours
  • Faculty of Science: 12 hours
  • Faculty of Arts: determined in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator.

Part-time Student: All graduate students other than full-time graduate students are part time graduate students. A part-time student may register for no more than two courses per semester. Normally, a part-time student will register in consecutive semesters and complete the Masters degree in approximately three years or the PhD degree in approximately six years. This would include summer periods as semester equivalents for research work, although normally no graduate courses would be offered. To transfer from “part-time” to “full-time” status, the student must consult with the Supervisory Committee / Graduate Coordinator and have the approval of the Department and the Program Administrator. The Program Administrator shall notify the Registrars Office.

3. Enrolment and Registration

Regular and Provisional Students: Each regular or provisional student will enrol in a program of study in the jurisdiction of a single academic department of the Faculties. The student will be identified with a single department, in which he or she is deemed to be registered. The department so identified will normally be the department of which the Supervisor is a member. In the case of the MA in Island Studies, the student will be deemed to be registered in an interdisciplinary Master of Arts program with the Dean of Arts taking the place of the Department Chair.

a) Registration Procedure

Before the beginning of the semester, the student shall file in the Office of the Registrar an Academic Registration setting out the program of studies for that semester. The form must be approved in the department concerned before it is submitted. New students are expected to follow the same procedures, but where this is not possible their registration may be delayed until the Last Date for Registration as announced in the Calendar.

Student identification cards, which are used for identification and for library purposes, are obtained upon initial registration, and are validated at the Sports Centre at the beginning of each subsequent semester. Loss or theft of an identification card must be reported. The registration procedure must be completed within the dates set in the Calendar. Students taking undergraduate courses must have completed their registration by the date of registration for undergraduate students.

b) Registration Changes

Changes of registration (deletion or addition of courses) must be made only on the recommendation of the student's Supervisory Committee. A proposal to add a course must bear the signature of the instructor concerned. Except where credits are granted for courses taken at other universities, credits will be given only for courses listed in the registration form or authorized through an official change of registration.

c) Continuity of Registration

Graduate students must be registered in each semester in which they are actively engaged in course work or in the research program; that is, whenever they are making use of University facilities or personnel, in connection with their work. Graduate students, upon being admitted to the program, are required to register in every semester thereafter until their work is completed. Failure to register will be regarded as withdrawal from graduate studies at this university.

Students who wish to resume their studies must apply for readmission; if readmitted, they will be required to conform to current regulations.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, a regular student may make prior arrangements, with the approval of the department and of the Program Administrator, and after consultation with the Registrar's Office, to pursue full-time studies at another approved university for a period of time.

A student who has not completed all the requirements for the degree by the due date for thesis submission in a particular semester must re-register. Candidates must be registered in the semester in which they qualify for the degree.

In the case of conjoint or collaborative graduate programs within UPEI or with other universities, arrangements will be made to ensure that the students involved are not placed at a disadvantage in respect of continuity of registration.

d) Cancellation of Registration

A student who wishes to withdraw from the University is expected to consult with the Department Chair prior to submitting the "withdrawal form" to the Registrar's Office, the Accounting Office, and the Office of the Program Administrator.

In the event that a student fails to obtain satisfactory standings or to make satisfactory progress either in course work or in research, the Dean on the advice of the Graduate Studies Committee may require the student to withdraw. Registration will be cancelled as of a date set by the Committee, and an appropriate refund of fees made.

A student who withdraws from the University must return all outstanding loans from the Library prior to withdrawal, regardless of the due date. Any items not returned will be declared "lost", and will be charged to the student's account. This procedure is required practice even though in his or her new capacity as an outside borrower the ex-student may wish to borrow the same or other books.

4. Supervision

a) Departmental Supervision

The student's program is established and progress kept under review by the appropriate department or in the case of the interdisciplinary MA in Island Studies, by the Dean of Arts and Program Administrator. The Department will establish a Supervisory Committee consisting of a minimum of three (Faculty of Science) or four (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine) graduate faculty to assist with the supervision of the program. At the discretion of that academic unit, the day-to-day responsibility for overseeing the student's program will rest with the Supervisor; two Co-Supervisors or jointly with the Supervisory Committee. In the case of co-supervision, one of the co-supervisors must be a member of the Department in which the student is enrolled and is hereafter referred to as the “Supervisor”. The Supervisor will normally have, at minimum, a degree equivalent to that for which the student is registered, and be from the Department in which the student is enrolled.

In the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, the Chair of the Supervisory Committee is the Department Chair (or designate), and in no case shall the Committee be chaired by the graduate student's Supervisor. In addition, at least one member of the Supervisory Committee must be from a Department other than that in which the student is registered.

In the Faculty of Science, the Supervisory Committee is composed of the Supervisor, and at least two other graduate faculty members, at least one of whom must be from the Department in which the student is registered. All members of the Supervisory Committee must be able to participate actively during the program.

In the Faculty of Arts, the Supervisory Committee is composed of the Supervisor, and at least two other graduate faculty members familiar with the academic discipline(s) of study. All members of the supervisory committee must be able to participate actively during the program.

b) Supervisory Committee

In all cases, except the PGD program, the program of a graduate student is established and supervised by the Supervisory Committee, all of whom must be graduate faculty. Once the Supervisory Committee has been approved no changes may be made in its membership without the written approval of the Graduate Studies Committee.

c) Establishment of Program

After examining the student's academic record, due account being taken of all relevant courses passed at any recognized university or college, and in the light of a Placement Examination if so desired, the Supervisory Committee will arrange a program appropriate for the degree. The program will include prescribed studies on the basis of which the candidate's final standing will be determined; and it may include additional courses either chosen by the student or specified by the Supervisory Committee. The program established by the Supervisory Committee must be submitted to the Program Administrator within 60 days of the student's first registration date for approval by the Graduate Studies Committee.

d) Changes in Program

Once the program of courses is established, changes may be made subject to the approval of the Supervisory Committee and the Graduate Studies Committee.

e) Transfer of Academic Credit

On the recommendation of the Supervisor and with the approval of the Department Chair and the Program Administrator, a graduate student may take, and receive credit for, courses at another university. The arrangements for these courses must be made through the Registrar's Office. The maximum number of credits that may be taken at other universities will be 50% of the total program requirements.

f) Review of Progress

The Department in which the student is enrolled is responsible for reviewing the academic record and progress of each student at least twice a year and reporting on that progress to the Program Administrator. If problems are identified which necessitate changes to the student's approved program, these may only be made with the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee.

g) Masters Examination

The Departmental Chair selects the examination committee at the request of the Supervisor / Graduate Coordinator and is responsible for notifying the Program administrator of its composition.

5. Grades Schedule

In the courses which comprise a part of the student's program, standings will be reported according to the following schedule of grades:

  • First class standing: 80 per cent and higher
  • Second class standing: 70 to 79.9 per cent inclusive
  • Pass standing: 60 to 69.9 per cent inclusive
  • F: a graduate student who receives a grade of less than 60 per cent in any course (graduate or undergraduate, prescribed or additional) is deemed to have failed the course. The candidate must maintain a cumulative average grade of at least a B
    standing (see Grades in General Regulations section) in the substantive courses outlined below in order to maintain registration in the program.
  • INC: students who fail to complete all components of a course, such as assignments, examinations and laboratories, due to circumstances beyond their control (such as illness) may, with the permission of the Professor, Chair and Dean, be granted an amount of time deemed reasonable for the completion of said components. If a student does not complete all the components of a course by the agreed-upon date, normally a grade of F shall replace INC on the transcript. Nevertheless, in cases where the component left incomplete was not a requirement for passing the course and where the student already has earned a passing grade without completing the component, the passing grade shall be submitted and shall replace INC on the transcript.
  • AUD: an "audited" course (additional courses only)
  • DISC: discontinued with permission

Some seminar courses are graded as Pass/Fail. In the thesis, percentage grades as above are not required; instead the work is reported as either satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

6. The Thesis

a) Submission of Thesis or Project Report

When the thesis, or project report, in its final form, has been prepared after the final oral examination, the candidate will bring six unbound copies to the Office of the Program Administrator no later than three weeks prior to Convocation. Each copy must be submitted in a separate folder with the pages numbered and arranged in the appropriate order. The thesis must be free from typographical and other errors. All copies must include the Certificate of Approval signed by the Examination Committee. Also included must be a brief Abstract and a copy of the circulation waiver and the copying licence.

When accepted by the Program Administrator, one copy will be retained for microfilming and for deposit in the University Library after being bound. A second copy will be released to the Department in which the student was registered. A third copy will be released to the student's supervisor and three copies will be released to the student.

b) Publication of Thesis

The University requires publication of the thesis in the following manner:

One unbound copy of the thesis is forwarded to Library and Archives Canada, together with an agreement form signed by the candidate authorizing Library and Archives Canada to microfilm the thesis and to make microfilm copies available for sale on request. Library and Archives Canada will film the thesis exactly as it is and will list the thesis in Canadiana as a publication of Library and Archives Canada. A fee is charged by Library and Archives Canada to offset the cost of microfilming.

Library and Archives Canada's Microfilm Agreement form will be sent to the candidate prior to the Thesis Examination, to be signed and submitted to the Program Administrator immediately after the successful completion of the Examination.

c) Circulation & Copying of Thesis or Project Report

The candidate, in consultation with the Supervisor and the Department Chair, shall have the right to request that circulation and/or copying of the thesis or project report in any form be withheld for up to one year.

In normal circumstances, as a condition of engaging in graduate study in the University, the author of a thesis or project report grants certain licences and waivers in respect of the circulation and copying of the thesis or project report:

  • to the University Librarian -- a waiver permitting the circulation of the thesis or project report as part of the Library collection;
  • to the University -- a licence to make single copies of the thesis or project report under carefully specified conditions;
  • to Library and Archives Canada -- a licence to microfilm the thesis or project report under carefully specified conditions.

d) Copyright

Copies of the thesis or project report shall have on the title page the words "In partial fulfilment of requirements for the degree of Master of Science" or “In partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts” or "In partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Veterinary Science” or “In partial fulfilment of the postgraduate diploma in Pathology or Microbiology” or “In partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy." The International copyright notice, which consists of three elements in the same line -- (a) the letter "C" enclosed in a circle, (b) the name of the copyright owner (the student), and © the year -- should appear as a bottom line on the title page of the thesis or project report.

e) Retention/Maintenance of Records

In the interests of good scholarly practice and in order to substantiate claims to intellectual property, graduate students should keep complete, dated records of their research. These records may be in the form of bound notebooks, log books, laboratory records or other documentation, as appropriate to the discipline.

Students should also retain copies of significant drafts and notes, and of all material submitted for evaluation, presentation, publication or by way of informal contribution to collaborative research projects. They must also realize that raw data and other research results should remain accessible at all times to all other members of any collaborative research activity.

f) Unacceptable Thesis or Project Report

If a candidate is unable to prepare an acceptable thesis or project report, the Supervisory Committee will so report to the graduate faculty of the department (sending to the candidate a copy of the report). The Department Chair will notify the Program Administrator.

g) Transcripts of Records

Certified official transcripts of the student's academic record are available through the Registrar's Office. Only individually signed copies are official. Transcripts will be sent to other universities, to prospective employers, or to others outside the University only upon formal request by the student.

h) Department Regulations

Individual departments may have specified regulations additional to those set out herein. The student is responsible for consulting the department concerning any such regulations.

Contact UPEI