Managing Your Program
If you are taking graduate-level courses, you must be admitted into the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. As a degree-seeking graduate student, you are also enrolled in a specific graduate degree program within a faculty or school, and must maintain continuous registration (each term, three terms per year) in order to maintain your registration status at Laurier.
There are two important concepts you should understand around registration: registration status and course registration.
Registration status defines your pursuit of the graduate program (based upon your application for admission and the program in which you are enrolled), and impacts the tuition, financial support, and degree time limits.
Full-Time Status: Master's or Doctoral Degree Candidates
In order to qualify as full-time, graduate students must:
- Be pursuing studies as a full-time occupation;
- Identify themselves as full-time graduate students;
- Be designated by the university as full-time graduate students;
- Be geographically available and visit the campus regularly. Without forfeiting full-time status, graduate students, while still under supervision, may be absent from their university (e.g. visiting libraries, doing field work, attending a graduate course at another institution, etc.) provided that, if any such period of absence exceeds four weeks in any one term, written evidence shall be available in the Graduate Studies Office to the effect that the absence has the approval of the chairperson of the department and the dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.
A full-time graduate student at Laurier is defined as someone who works no more than 10 hours per week on campus (on average; 520 hours per year) in employment outside of their studies.
Part-Time Status: Master's or Doctoral Degree Candidates
These are candidates who do not meet all of the requirements of a full-time master's or doctoral degree candidate. Normally, part-time students may not register in more than one full-credit course or equivalent per term.
In most cases, you maintain continuous enrolment from the point of admission until the degree is complete (graduation). Circumstances occasionally arise that prevent you from remaining engaged in your academic work (e.g. illness, family emergencies, unexpected financial necessity that university funding cannot ameliorate, career change, parental leave, etc.). With the exception of parental leaves, students who suspend their studies do not have access to university resources.
Normally, inactive status will be approved only once for a maximum of two terms. Students who require more than two terms of leave should voluntarily withdraw from their program (see the policy on withdrawal from the university in the academic calendar) until they are ready to return to their studies. You may request inactive status by submitting a petition to the graduate student appeals committee.
Students who are granted inactive status will not be required to pay fees during that term; consequently, they will not have access to university facilities or faculty.
Terms spent on inactive status do not count toward degree program time limits or the number of terms that graduate students may be eligible for financial support from the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.
A petition for inactive status should indicate:
- The number of terms of inactive status requested;
- The date of commencement of the first such term; and
- The reason(s) why inactive status is required (including documentation, if applicable).
Parental leave may be granted for up to three consecutive terms. Your parental leave will be granted with supporting documentation (e.g. written confirmation from attending physician).
If you wish to withdraw from Laurier you must complete the Withdrawal from Graduate Studies Form and must notify the dean or director of the program in which you are enrolled.
Your graduate program typically requires some combination of seminar courses, and perhaps other milestone events such as a comprehensive exam, and/or an independent research project such as a major research paper, thesis or dissertation. In order to maintain continuous registration, your student record must include, each term, registration in a (seminar) course, or in some milestone event.
You enrol for courses using Laurier's Web Information System (LORIS). For those new to the university, LORIS might be intimidating at first; however, you can learn how to register for courses through Enrolment Service's Registration Guide. If you have any trouble, contact your graduate program for assistance.
Note: Students who had no registrarial activity in the academic terms fall 2015, winter 2016 or spring 2016 must indicate their intention to return by emailing the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office.