6. Program Design
A graduate course is the study of a particular topic, group of topics or area of specialization within a wider discipline/subject area, normally extending through one term or session, and can be one of the basic building blocks of qualification for a graduate degree. Graduate courses are designed to meet substantive discipline graduate learning outcomes and normally utilize the student/instructor format. Grades are assigned that contribute towards the student’s academic average; grades assess the level of mastery of the topic(s) or areas of specialization.
A milestone is a learning activity that must be successfully completed in order to fulfill the requirements for the graduate degree. If grades are assigned, they do not contribute to the student’s academic average.
For information on course outlines click here.
In addition to the Academic Handbook, Examinations, Course Outlines Senate regulation linked above, please include the following statement for Student Accessibility Services (SAS).
Student Accessibility Services
Western is committed to achieving barrier-free accessibility for all its members, including graduate students. As part of this commitment, Western provides a variety of services devoted to promoting, advocating, and accommodating persons with disabilities in their respective graduate program.
Graduate students with disabilities (for example, chronic illnesses, mental health conditions, mobility impairments) are encouraged to register with Student Accessibility Services, a confidential service designed to support graduate and undergraduate students through their academic program. With the appropriate documentation, the student will work with both SAS and their graduate programs (normally their Graduate Chair and/or Course instructor) to ensure that appropriate academic accommodations to program requirements are arranged. These accommodations include individual counselling, alternative formatted literature, accessible campus transportation, learning strategy instruction, writing exams and assistive technology instruction.
Graduate courses are numbered from 9000 to 9999.
All courses added or dropped by the student must be approved by the Graduate Chair of the student's program and by the Graduate Chair of the department offering the course (if the course is not from the student's program). Courses may not normally be added and dropped after the specified deadline dates.
Deadline dates for adding or dropping a course will normally be calculated according to the table below. A course that has been dropped by the last date specified for adding a course shall be expunged from the records. A course that has been dropped after the last date specified for adding a course but before the last date specified for dropping a course without academic penalty shall be recorded as "WDN". A course that has not been dropped in accordance with the above regulations and that has not been completed satisfactorily by the student shall be recorded as "F", failures.
|Weight of Course||Last Day to Add||Last Day to Drop|
|0.5, 1.0, 1.5 or 2.0||One month from the official beginning of the term in which the course begins||Two months from the beginning of term in which the course begins|
|0.25||10 Business days||50% of the way through the course|
The student must declare an intention to audit a graduate course by the enrolment deadline for the term, using the Graduate Course Audit Form. The student must have the instructor's signed approval to audit the course, as well as approval from the Supervisor (if applicable) and Graduate Chair. An Audit requires regular attendance and any other obligations as stated by the course instructor in the Comments/Expectations section of the Graduate Course Audit Form. If these requirements are not met, the audit will be removed from the student’s record at the instructor's request.
After the enrolment deadline, a student may not make a change from auditing a course to taking it for credit, or vice versa, within a given term. A student may, in a subsequent term, enroll in a given course for credit that has previously been audited.
Graduate courses delivered online may not be audited without special permission from the program.
When a course previously completed is repeated, both marks will appear on the official transcript, but only the last mark obtained is used for all academic purposes, even if it is lower than the previously obtained mark.
When a student does not
A numerical grade submitted for an INC grade, or an F grade resulting from an INC, is final. The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will not consider a subsequent revision of either grade except on documented medical or compassionate grounds.
The INC grade does not apply to full courses that are longer than two terms (in these courses the interim grade of IPR stands until the student completes the course).
Graduate Students may take undergraduate courses without additional charge only if needed for their degree requirements and with the approval of the Graduate Chair and the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. Graduate students taking undergraduate courses must follow the undergraduate regulations, as stipulated in the undergraduate calendar under 'add/drop deadlines'.
To register in an undergraduate course, you must use the Graduate Student Taking Undergraduate Course Form. Undergraduate
All graduate courses with an enrolment of three or more students are subject to an evaluation designed by the program and completed by students. This evaluation should occur at the end of each offering of the course and should include elements that are designed to provide an evaluation of both the course and the effectiveness of the instructor. The results of such evaluations will be made available to the course instructor and the Chair or director of the instructor's home unit. Programs are encouraged to make the results of these evaluations available to students who might be considering taking the same course in the future.
At the time of the student's admission, a program may reduce its requirements if it is satisfied that the student has completed equivalent work that has not counted toward a previous degree.