< back to General Regulations
Registration is the process by which a person has established, for an academic period, an active association with a program of study.
Enrolment is a separate process from registration. It is the approved engagement by a student in a course or other academic activity or component of a program of study.
The complete policy on
Association, Admission, and Registration is available on the University of Toronto website.
6.1 Registration Policies and Procedures
6.1.1 Registration Procedures
Students are required to register at the beginning of each session they wish to attend. The first step to registration is the payment of fees or arrangements to pay such fees. A student is considered to be registered once any conditions of admission have been satisfied and academic, incidental, and ancillary fees are paid or a fees arrangement has been made. New students who have received a conditional offer of admission should make arrangements with their graduate unit to clear conditions as soon as possible.
New graduate students will receive registration instructions prior to the registration dates listed in
Sessional Dates. Students may access
registration instructions from the SGS website and the graduate unit.
Registration material is posted online and students should consult the SGS website or their graduate unit's website for detailed registration information. Students are asked to check their ROSI/ACORN account to view their invoice online. Every effort is made to ensure that only students who are eligible to register receive registration material. However, receiving it does not override any other notification students receive about academic status and eligibility.
6.1.2 Full-Time Studies
Students registered as full-time students in the School of Graduate Studies must be engaged in their studies on a full-time basis, as required by government regulations for full-time graduate studies.
Full-time graduate students are defined according to government regulations as follows:
They must be pursuing their studies as a full-time occupation and identify themselves as full-time graduate students.
They must be designated by the University as full-time students.
They must be geographically available and visit the campus regularly.
They must be considered to be full-time students by their supervisors.
If an academic program requires an absence from the University, students must apply through their graduate unit for permission to be off campus.
A full-time student may be absent from the University for an extended period or may participate in a program offered by another university if, and only if, the student has received written permission from the graduate unit in which he or she is registered. A graduate student who, in a given session, is absent from the University without receiving prior approval may lose good academic standing. In exceptional cases, a graduate unit may recommend to the School of Graduate Studies the termination of the student's registration and eligibility.
6.1.3 Extended Full-Time (EFT) Studies
The EFT option permits an additional year of full-time studies to complete the program where the option is offered in a program.
The EFT registration option is available in professional master’s or professional doctoral programs where offered. Registration is full-time. A prescribed path to completion over the extended period is set out in the graduate unit’s calendar entry.
Full-time time limits apply to this option; the extended period may not exceed the time limit for the full-time program.
Students are charged the equivalent of the minimum degree fee which is spread out over the extended period; full-time incidental fees apply for each year of registration.
Students who do not complete the program in the prescribed period may apply for an extension and will be subject to the usual extension regulations2.
Transfers between the EFT registration option and any other registration option are not permitted.
Students in this option are subject to the rules and conditions of full-time studies as set out in the Full-Time Studies section above.
6.1.4 Part-Time Studies
Part-time studies are permitted in those master’s degree programs that are approved to offer part-time studies.
A student in part-time studies may enrol over the course of each academic year normally in a maximum of one-third of the annual program requirements, as defined by the graduate unit; enrolment each session by part-time students is subject to graduate unit approval.
A prescribed path to completion may or may not be provided for part-time studies; where provided, it will be set out in the graduate unit’s entry in the
A student who is registered in part-time studies is subject to the minimum degree fee (see General Regulations, section
14.4 Minimum Degree Fee).
Transfer from part-time studies to full-time studies requires the approval of the graduate unit and may not be permitted in some programs.
Transfer from part-time studies to the extended full-time registration option is not permitted.
See time limits for part-time studies.
Part-time special (non-degree) students may take a maximum of 0.5 or 1.0 full course equivalent (FCE) in any session as approved by the graduate unit; work does not count for degree credit.
6.1.5 Flexible-Time Studies
Flexible-time studies are permitted in those PhD degree programs that are approved to offer flexible-time studies.
Students in a flexible-time PhD program option will register full-time during the first four years and may switch to part-time registration during subsequent years in the program.
Students are required to be registered for every successive session, including summers, following the first session of registration unless granted a leave of absence.
The time limit, between six and eight years, will be established through the departmental regulations.
Transfers between the full-time PhD program and the flexible-time PhD program option are not permitted.
6.1.6 Summer Session Courses
Students enrolled in courses or engaging in research or project work in the summer must register for the Summer session. Doctoral, MSc, and MASc students are already registered for the Summer session when they first register in:
In addition to a large program of research supervision and independent study, the School of Graduate Studies offers a limited number of graduate courses for credit towards higher degrees during the summer. Summer courses are equivalent to those offered during the Fall and Winter sessions but vary in duration and thus in frequency of meeting. Some courses will last 12 to 14 weeks while others will meet for 7 weeks.
For students enrolled in the May to August session, the maximum possible load is 2.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs). The maximum load in the May to June or July to August period is 1.0 FCE.
6.1.7 First Registration
Students beginning their degree programs normally register for the first time in the Fall session. In some cases, graduate units may give permission for new students to register for the first time in their program in the Winter or Summer session.
6.1.8 Continuity of Registration
Students in a thesis program (doctoral or master's) or in a coursework-only master's program with other requirements to complete, such as a project, major research paper, or recital, must be continuously registered or have an approved leave of absence.
184.108.40.206 Master's Students: Continuous Registration
Once they have first registered, full-time, part-time, and extended full-time master's students in programs that require continuous registration must register annually until all degree requirements have been completed. Full-time master's students who have completed the program length defined for the program may not register as part-time students.
220.127.116.11 Master's Students: Coursework-Only
Full-time master's students in coursework-only programs must register initially for the program length defined for the program and thereafter for each session in which they are completing requirements for the degree.
Master's students in coursework-only programs proceeding to their degree on a part-time basis register in those sessions in which they are completing course requirements for the degree. When all course requirements have been completed, part-time master's students must register annually until all other requirements have been completed. A switch from full-time to part-time status is not permitted once the program length defined for the program has been completed.
Prior to completing all courses in a coursework-only program, and with the permission of their graduate unit, master's students admitted to a full-time or part-time program may
“stop out" between sessions for up to 12 months. However, no change is made to the time limit for completing the degree.
Master's students are advised to consult their graduate units for further information on continuity of registration requirements, particularly with regard to the Summer session; many graduate units expect their students to be registered for all three sessions.
18.104.22.168 Doctoral Students
All doctoral students must register annually until all degree requirements have been fulfilled.
6.1.9 Late Registration Fee
Since it is the student's responsibility to ensure that proper registration is completed on time, late registration will be subject to an additional fee as specified in the
Fee Regulations section of this calendar.
6.1.10 Failure to Register
Students will not receive credit for work completed during a session in which they have not registered.
Students who fail to register during a program requiring continuity of registration and who do not have an approved leave may only apply to re-register if, at the time of application, they are still within the maximum allowable time for the degree program (normal time limit plus maximum extension years). A student wishing to re-register must apply to the relevant graduate unit.
Reinstatement requires approval from both the graduate unit and SGS. The program's normal requirements and time limits (as defined by regulation
5.5 Time Limit) will apply to reinstated students as if they had been continuously registered; reinstated students must pay fees owing for any session(s) in which they did not register. Non-registered students forfeit any funding that would have been available had they been registered.
6.1.11 Extension of Time for Completion of Degree Requirements
22.214.171.124 Master's Students
In exceptional circumstances, a master's student who did not complete all the requirements for the degree within the time limit specified in the degree regulations may be considered for a maximum of three one-year extensions provided that the graduate unit concerned so approves. The first two extension requests require departmental approvals; the third requires departmental and School of Graduate Studies approvals.
To apply for an extension, the student must complete the
Program Extension Form and present to the graduate unit concerned the causes for the delay and evidence that the remaining degree requirements may be completed within the period of the extension request. No registration beyond the extension period will be permitted.
126.96.36.199 Doctoral Students
In exceptional circumstances, a doctoral student who has not completed all the requirements for the degree within the time limit for the doctoral degree is eligible to apply for four one-year extensions. The first two extension requests require graduate unit approvals; the second two require graduate unit and School of Graduate Studies approvals.
To qualify for an extension, the student must complete the
Program Extension Form and present to the graduate unit concerned the causes for the delay and evidence that the remaining degree requirements may be completed within the period of the extension request. No registration beyond the four-year extension period will be permitted.
6.1.12 Joint Educational Placement for Doctoral Students
Joint Educational Placement is a registration option available for full-time study towards the earning of a doctorate at the University of Toronto and a recognized collaborator institution. The Joint Educational Placement is intended to allow exceptional doctoral students to pursue research opportunities and acquire research experience in two institutions at an early stage in their career.
Applicants must meet the admission, registration, and degree requirements of both SGS and the joint institution. To be considered for this option, an applicant must complete the Agreement for a Joint Educational Placement, must be recommended for admission as a full-time doctoral degree student, and must be deemed admissible by both institutions. Applications are assessed case by case by the graduate unit in consultation with SGS.
At the time of application to the Joint Educational Placement, the applicant designates one of the partner institutions as the lead institution, the other as the collaborator. For students who designate the University of Toronto as the lead institution, the Agreement must be completed prior to achieving candidacy. Regardless of whether the University of Toronto is the lead or collaborator institution, all U of T course requirements for the doctoral degree must be met as defined in the graduate unit entry in the
The academic and research program of a student enrolled in a Joint Educational Placement should be based on ongoing or developing research collaboration between supervisors and/or research groups in the two participating institutions. Students enrolled at the University of Toronto as the lead institution who successfully complete the requirements of the program receive a U of T degree and may participate in a U of T convocation ceremony.
For the agreement form and additional information, visit the SGS web page on
Joint Placement Students.
6.1.13 Dual Registration
A student in a master's program at this University who has been offered admission to a PhD program conditional on completion of the master's program may be a dual registrant for only one session in both programs under the following conditions:
A minimal amount of work remains to complete the requirements for the master's degree. A student may enrol in a maximum of 0.5 full-course equivalent (FCE; one half course) for the master's program in the one session of dual registration with the approval of the graduate unit.
Permission has been granted by the graduate unit.
The student will be engaged in full-time PhD studies and will be registered full-time in the PhD and part-time in the master's program. Only the appropriate PhD fees will be charged.
The period of dual registration will be either September 1 to January 31 or January 1 to April 30.
In order to receive credit for the PhD for the period as a dual registrant, the student must be recommended for the award of the master's degree by the deadlines in the
SGS Sessional Dates. Otherwise, the PhD registration will be cancelled, no credit for the PhD will be allowed, and the student will continue to be registered as a master's student only. An appropriate fees adjustment will be made so that the student will be charged fees only as a master's student.
PhD course credit will be retained for courses completed in the period of dual registration, provided the graduate unit has informed the School of Graduate Studies.
Students who are not recommended for the master's degree by the deadline and whose enrolment in the PhD is thereby cancelled may not apply for dual registration a second time. They must successfully complete the requirements for the master's degree before registering in the PhD program.
6.1.14 Simultaneous Registration
Simultaneous registration in two full-time programs is not permitted. With the consent of both graduate units concerned, or of the graduate unit and another Faculty or School, and written notification to the School of Graduate Studies, simultaneous registration in a full-time program and a part-time program may be permitted. Two part-time registrations in different programs also may be permitted. Students are responsible for the fees charged for both programs.
6.1.15 Leave Policy
Graduate students may apply to their Graduate Coordinator for a one-session to three-session leave during their program of study for:
serious health or personal problems which temporarily make it impossible to continue in the program; or
parental leave by either parent at the time of pregnancy, birth or adoption, and/or to provide full-time care during the child's first year. Parental leave must be completed within 12 months of the date of birth or custody. Where both parents are graduate students taking leave, the combined total number of sessions may not exceed four.
Once on leave, students will neither be registered nor will they be required to pay fees for this period. In general, students on leave may not make demands upon the resources of the University, attend courses, or expect advice from their supervisor. As an exception, students on leave for parental or serious health reasons who wish to consult with their supervisor or other faculty are advised to make special arrangements through their graduate unit.
Students on leave will not be eligible to receive University of Toronto financial assistance. In the case of other graduate student awards, the regulations of the particular granting agency apply. Master's students whose programs do not require continuous registration may "stop out" as an alternative to taking a formal leave—see section
188.8.131.52 Master's Students: Coursework-Only.
Students may make application for a leave by completing the
Leave of Absence Form and submitting it to their Graduate Coordinator for approval. The form is then sent to the School of Graduate Studies for processing.
The termination date of the degree program will be extended by the duration of the leave taken, i.e., one, two, or three sessions as appropriate. Except for parental leave or in exceptional circumstances, it is not expected that a student will be granted more than one leave under the terms of this policy.
Normally, the start and finish of the leave would coincide with the start and end of a session. When students require a leave to begin in mid-session, they are advised to contact Student Services at the School of Graduate Studies to make special arrangements.
Leave requests that do not fall under the terms of this policy will require final approval from the School of Graduate Studies.
6.1.16 Withdrawal from a Graduate Program
A student may withdraw voluntarily from their program at any point. To withdraw from a program, a student first must submit a
Program Withdrawal Form to the graduate unit and then to SGS. The withdrawal is recorded on the student academic record and reflected on the transcript; the University determines fee rebates, if applicable. An application for re-admission by a student who has withdrawn will be made in competition with all other applicants.
6.1.17 Graduate Courses and Other Academic Activities
Graduate Courses and Other Academic Activities are available on the SGS website.
184.108.40.206 Graduate Courses
All graduate programs are composed of a number of academic requirements that include graduate courses and other academic activities. A graduate course is a discrete, time-delimited unit of instructional/learning activity identified by a course code in which students enrol. Graduate courses must be approved as minor modifications. All graduate courses must have an instructor in charge who has a graduate faculty membership in the graduate unit(s) responsible for the course.
Graduate courses may vary in timing, weight, delivery mode, and format. Course codes may serve as markers for Other Academic Activities. See the guidelines on
Graduate Courses and Other Academic Activities including Program Examinations available on the SGS website.
If a course is not offered for more than five years, it becomes inactive; SGS will archive the course in
ROSI/ACORN. See the SGS guidelines for
De-activating/Archiving and Re-activating Graduate Courses on the SGS website.
220.127.116.11 Course Code and Weight
All graduate courses have course codes consisting of:
a prefix associated with the academic unit or program (three letters);
a four-digit course number; and
a suffix associated with the course weight (alpha character).
Normally, course weight is measured in full-course equivalencies (FCEs) and is indicated using a Y or H suffix:
Y (full course): 1.0 FCE, normally taken over two sessions
H (half course): 0.5 FCE, normally taken over one session
A full graduate course (course weight of 1.0 full-course equivalent [FCE]) should involve a minimum of 48 to 72 hours of organized activity (e.g., two lectures or three hours of laboratory work a week over two sessions). A half course (0.5 FCE) should require approximately half this time commitment.
Normally, the beginning and end dates for courses should coincide with the beginning and end dates of University sessions.
18.104.22.168 Other Academic Activities Including Program Examinations
Graduate programs may have a variety of requirements that are not courses but constitute other academic activities that have been approved according to SGS policies and procedures. Some common non-course academic activities are theses, major research papers, placements (including field work, clinical placements, and internships), and program examinations, etc.
Included in the category of program examinations are examinations such as comprehensive, qualifying, and field examinations. See individual program requirements in the Programs by Graduate Unit section of this calendar. Individual program requirements will identify the:
different components of each examination;
format of each examination and its components, if any;
deadlines and timelines associated with required completion of examinations; and
consequences for failure of a required examination and/or its components, including information about the number of attempts permitted to satisfactorily complete the examination.
6.2 Enrolment Policies and Procedures
After registration, students enrol with their graduate units and arrange programs of study (courses, research topics, supervisors, etc.). Students should contact the graduate unit regarding enrolment procedures. Enrolment should be completed by the deadline noted in the
Most formal classes and seminars in the:
However, starting dates are determined by the graduate units; students are urged to contact the relevant graduate unit for information.
Not every course will be given in any one year. Consult the graduate unit concerning course availability.
6.2.2 Deadlines for Enrolment Changes
Graduate units may establish earlier deadlines for course changes. Courses must be dropped by completing an Add/Drop Course(s) Form or by using ROSI/ACORN (www.rosi.utoronto.ca), if the graduate unit permits access.
In order to avoid academic penalties, courses must be dropped by the following deadlines:
Sep. 26, 2016||
Deadline to add full courses (Y) and Fall session half courses (H).|
|Oct. 31, 2016||
Deadline to drop a Fall session full course or half course without academic penalty.|
|Jan. 23, 2017||
Deadline to add Winter session full courses (Y) and half courses (H).|
|Feb. 27, 2017||
Deadline to drop a full course (Y) or Winter session half course (H), or withdraw from a program without academic penalty.|
|May 8, 2017||
Deadline to add Summer session May to June half courses (H) or May to August full courses (Y).|
|May 26, 2017||
Deadline to drop a May to June half course without academic penalty.|
Jun. 19, 2017||
Deadline to drop a May to August full course without academic penalty.|
|Jul. 3, 2017||
Deadline to enrol in July to August half courses (H).|
|Jul. 17, 2017||
Deadline to drop a July to August half course without academic penalty.|
Students enrolled in coursework-only programs who drop all courses by the deadlines must withdraw from the program.
Some graduate units offer modular courses which have enrolment deadlines that do not conform to the deadlines in the above chart. All modular courses with non-standard start/end dates require the graduate unit to establish suitable drop dates.
6.2.3 Exceptional Circumstances Affecting Student Performance
Students with health problems or other personal circumstances which may adversely affect their performance in, or their ability to complete coursework, examinations, or other departmental or graduate program assessments may request special consideration.
Written requests, supported by a medical certificate or other appropriate evidence, must be submitted to the instructor or the Coordinator of Graduate Studies as soon as possible or no later than two business days following the deadline or date of assessment. If a medical certificate is submitted, it must confirm the student was adversely affected by health problems and must show the dates of illness and that the physician was consulted at the time of the illness.
If a student is affected by health problems or other personal circumstances during an examination that affect the completion of the examination, the student must notify the instructor or invigilator immediately; that is, the student should not wait until the end of the examination. Such notification must be followed up with a written request for special consideration as above.
6.2.4 Completion of Coursework and Grade Submission
Coursework must be completed and grades submitted by the following dates:
|Jan. 13, 2017||
Fall session (Y, H) courses|
|May 12, 2017||
Fall/Winter session (Y) and Winter session (Y, H) courses|
Jul. 14, 2017||
May/June Summer session courses|
|Sept. 8, 2017||
July/August Summer session courses and extended courses|
Graduate units may establish earlier deadlines for completion of coursework and may prescribe penalties for late completion of work and for failure to complete work, provided that these penalties are announced at the time the instructor makes available to the class the methods by which student performance shall be evaluated.
6.2.5 Coursework Extensions
Students are expected to meet the course deadlines, both of the School of Graduate Studies and of the graduate units in which they are registered, and are advised to plan their research projects accordingly. Students who find themselves unable to meet SGS deadlines for completing coursework can, under certain conditions, receive extensions for completing the work after the date set by SGS. Students must be registered in the session in which they are completing coursework extensions.
22.214.171.124 Petitions for Course Extensions
The authority to grant an extension for the completion of work in a course beyond the original SGS deadline for that course rests with the graduate unit in which the course was offered, not the instructor of the course. Students will petition the graduate unit for extensions, using a standard form provided by SGS.
The deadline for requesting an initial extension is the deadline for completion of coursework and grade submission for courses offered in the relevant session, as specified in this calendar.
A student on extension who is unable to complete the required coursework in the extension period specified by the graduate unit may apply to the graduate unit for a continuation of the extension (subject to the time limits and deadlines for extensions, set out below); however, the student must make such a request before the expiry date of the extension period in place.
126.96.36.199 Grounds for Course Extensions
Legitimate reasons for an extension can be academic in nature (e.g., unexpected problems of research in a course) or non-academic (e.g., illness). In order to ensure as much uniformity and fairness as possible in the granting of extensions (or continuations of extensions), the relevant graduate unit must be reasonably certain that:
the reasons for the delay are both serious and substantiated: the student must provide a statement detailing the reasons, together with a physician's letter in the case of illness;
the student would not be granted an unfair academic advantage over fellow students in the course;
the student would not be placing in jeopardy the normal and satisfactory completion of new coursework; and
the student does have a reasonable chance of completing outstanding requirements within the time to be allotted.
188.8.131.52 Deadlines for Course Extensions
If a graduate unit grants a petition for a course extension, it must specify an extension period which is not to run beyond the SGS deadline for completion of coursework and grade submission following the original SGS deadline for the course. Thus, the deadlines for course extensions are as follows:
May 12, 2017||
Fall session (Y, H) courses|
|Sept. 8, 2017||
Fall/Winter session (Y) and Winter session (Y, H) courses|
Jan. 2, 2018||Summer session courses and extended courses|
A graduate unit may grant a continuation of an extension that is already in place provided that it does not extend the total period of the extension beyond the foregoing deadlines.
Extensions beyond these deadlines will require the approval of both the graduate unit and the SGS Admissions and Programs Committee.
184.108.40.206 Grade-Reporting Procedures
The graduate unit will assign the temporary course report of SDF (Standing Deferred) to a student on extension, pending receipt from the instructor and graduate unit of a final course report. The final course report is due no later than the SGS deadline for completion of coursework and grade submission following the original one for the course.
If, by that date, the student has not submitted the outstanding coursework, the submitted grade should be the actual grade earned in the course, calculated with zero assigned to any coursework that is still incomplete.
If there are compelling reasons for a further extension, and a graduate unit-supported request is approved by SGS, then the temporary report of SDF will be maintained until either a final course report is received by SGS, or the relevant deadline has expired.
Use of non-grade course reports such as WDR or INC, and amendments to submitted grades, must be approved by the SGS Admissions and Programs Committee.
220.127.116.11 SGS and Graduate Unit Notification
Graduate units are to notify SGS of extensions no later than the original deadlines for submitting grades for the relevant courses or, in case of continuations, no later than the expiry dates of the original periods of extension, providing in each case the new deadline for completion of coursework.
In addition, a graduate unit should notify the graduate unit in which the student is registered when it is not the same as the one granting the extension.
6.2.6 Extra Courses Not Required for the Degree
Graduate units may permit students to enrol in additional courses not required for the degree. Such courses must be so designated on the student's enrolment form.
These courses are subject to the same regulations regarding withdrawal, failure, and failure to complete work as are courses required for the degree, except that repetition or replacement of failed or incomplete courses may be waived by the graduate unit.
6.2.7 Prerequisite Courses
At least B- is required in all prerequisite courses but some graduate units may require a higher average; students should consult the graduate unit in advance.
6.2.8 Auditing a Graduate Course
Graduate units determine if they wish to allow auditing of their courses and which groups of students and non-students specified in the University of Toronto's
Policy on Auditing of Courses they wish to allow. When auditing is allowed, the final decision to permit an individual to audit rests with the instructor of the course. In all cases, students registered in the University who wish to audit courses have priority over others.
An auditor may attend lectures and other class meetings, take part in class discussions, and, when the appropriate fee is paid, receive written confirmation of attendance. An auditor will not receive evaluations of participation and will not be allowed to submit assignments or write examinations and tests except by special and express permission.
Audited courses are not recorded on the student's official transcript. The following University of Toronto codes apply to auditors:
Code of Student Conduct (PDF)
Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters (PDF)
Further information about access, certificates of attendance, and fees for auditing may be obtained from Student Services at the School of Graduate Studies.
6.2.9 Transfer Credit and Exemptions
Transfer credit for graduate work completed in another program or as an SGS special student is limited to 1.0 full-course equivalent (FCE) or 25% of the course requirements for any degree, whichever is greater, provided that the courses have not been credited towards another degree, diploma, certificate, or any other qualifications. Such credit may be given on the recommendation of the student's graduate unit and with the School of Graduate Studies' approval, normally upon admission. Exceptions to the limit are allowed when approved for specific degrees.
Students participating in an approved exchange program on the recommendation of their graduate unit may receive transfer credit for up to 50% of the course requirements for their degree. They may also complete language requirements while on the exchange. When recommended by the unit and approved by the SGS Dean, that percentage may be exceeded by doctoral students.
In all cases, transfer credit arrangements for exchange program participants must be approved in advance by the SGS Dean or designate.
Transfer of credit and course exemptions include the following categories:
Transfer Credit: Course Equivalent Credit received for course completed in a prior program is considered to be equivalent to course offered by the graduate unit, thus reducing the overall course credit requirements for degree.
Transfer Credit: General Equivalent Unassigned credit for course not identifiable with course offerings but which is evaluated as being appropriate for academic credit on transfer, thus reducing overall course credit requirements for degree.
Course Exemption: The graduate unit may exempt a student from a specific course requirement permitting the substitution of another course to meet degree requirements. Overall course credit requirements for degree are not reduced.