2.1. ACADEMIC UNIT RESPONSIBILITY
It is the responsibility of the academic unit to compile the complete file, to review the application, to judge the suitability/capability of the applicant, and to recommend the acceptance of those applicants they wish to have admitted. It is the responsibility of each unit with authority over admission decisions to ensure that the criteria for admission, application procedure and the process for evaluation of applicants are consistent with the University Policy entitled Discrimination and Harassment Prevention and are stated clearly in the University of Saskatchewan Catalogue. When the criteria for admission includes multiple elements, the weights assigned to these elements shall be specified. If a unit uses media other than the Catalogue to advertise programs, such as brochures or web pages, either the media shall contain this information or the material shall refer the student to the admissions policy in the University of Saskatchewan Catalogue.
Academic units will recommend admission only for students they believe are likely to succeed in the program and for whom they have necessary resources (including supervisory personnel, facilities and financial support, where appropriate). Any submission of fraudulent or plagiarized documents must be reported to the College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.
Applicants rejected by the academic unit are notified by the unit. University Council policy guarantees an appeal in such instances. Grounds for an appeal from an admission decision shall be limited to (1) unit procedural errors, or (2) evidence that the information used in the decision was wrong or incomplete. A failure by the candidate to provide accurate and complete information in accordance with the admission policy shall not be grounds for an appeal. Each academic unit should establish an appeal mechanism and process ensuring that the individuals who made the decision to reject an application are not members of the appeal panel. The decision of the individual, committee or board that adjudicates the appeal shall be final.
Applicants accepted by the academic unit should be informed that their application has been forwarded to the CGPS and that the student has been recommended for admission. Academic units must ensure, however, that prospective students understand this is not an official offer of admission.
2.2. SPECIAL CASE ADMISSION
Academic units without a regular graduate program may apply for the admission of a graduate thesis student on a special-case basis. No more than four special case students will be admitted to an academic unit at the same time.
For special case admissions, the entire program of study must be outlined prior to approval, and final approval for the admission shall be by the Graduate Academic Affairs Committee.
2.3. INDEPENDENT INTERDISCIPLINARY ADMISSION
The CGPS Interdisciplinary Committee serves as equivalent in authority, role and responsibility to an academic unit’s Graduate Affairs Committee, with the Interdisciplinary Committee Chair acting in an equivalent role as a Graduate Chair for all students in independent Interdisciplinary programs.
Prior to making a recommendation to the CGPS to admit an independent interdisciplinary student, the Interdisciplinary Committee shall review and formally recommend the proposed interdisciplinary program of study.
2.4. OFFERS OF ADMISSION
2.4.1. CONDITIONAL ADMISSION
An offer of admission will be conditional when an applicant is recommended for admission under one or more of the following circumstances:
- The undergraduate or graduate degree is not yet complete
- The applicant has not yet met minimum standards for proof of English language proficiency
- Official required transcripts are not yet available
Registration in the program will not be allowed until such documentation is provided and conditions of admission are satisfied.
2.4.2. PROBATIONARY STATUS
Applicants whose academic qualifications are difficult to assess or whose qualifications are marginal for admission to a graduate program may be admitted to a program on a probationary status. Such applicants may be required to take a certain number of preparatory courses to improve their qualifications. In this case they will be required to pay additional fees. The student’s status shall be reviewed after a specified amount of academic work is completed. If progress is satisfactory the academic unit in which the student is working or the Advisory Committee may recommend to the CGPS that the student proceed as fully-qualified.
In certain exceptional situations, the academic unit may extend the probationary period with a new set of requirements, agreed to by the student and by CGPS. Students who do not achieve the probationary requirements may voluntarily withdraw, or they will be required to discontinue.
In all cases:
- The maximum length of the probationary period shall not exceed 12 months;
- The minimum grade required for courses completed during the probationary period shall be 70%;
- The minimum course requirements for probationary assessment shall be the lesser of 9 credit units or at least 50% of program requirements required for the degree.
Terms of probation are determined by the academic unit in consultation with the CGPS. It is generally recommended that the probation length be one term - that being the student's first term of study. In this period, the student will have to meet some minimum standards of performance which would demonstrate the student's preparedness and ability to continue on and be successful in the graduate program.
For example, if an academic unit sees fit to recommend admission of a student, but that student has an admission average of 69%, and is thus marginally deficient of the minimum admission average - that student may be admitted on probation, with the following probationary term:
"You must achieve a minimum 70% in each of the courses completed in your first term of study"
As another example, an academic unit may wish to admit a student whose academic background is deficient in some prerequisite components (e.g. the graduate program requires some background/knowledge in Statistics, and the student has completed limited/insufficient coursework in Statistics). The terms of probation in that student's offer letter may be:
- Register in and successfully complete STAT 443 in your first term of study
- Achieve a minimum 70% in each of the graduate courses completed in your first term of study"
Note: Academic units are under no obligation to offer probationary admission to applicants who fall below the minimum requirements - they may access this option at their discretion, generally in instances which they deem as exceptional.
2.4.3. ADMISSION DEFERRALSAcademic units are not required to grant deferrals, and may choose not to do so. An applicant may request, in writing to the academic unit, a deferral of admission for up to one year. This request and written approval from the unit shall be submitted to the CGPS for review and approval.
2.4.4. NEGATIVE DECISIONS BY THE CGPS
Negative decisions will first be reported to the recommending academic unit. After consultation, the academic unit may file an appeal on the applicant's behalf against the CGPS's negative decision. Grounds for an appeal from an admission decision shall be limited to (1) unit or College procedural errors, or (2) evidence that the information used in the decision was wrong or incomplete. A failure by the applicant to provide accurate and complete information in accordance with the admission policy shall not be grounds for an appeal. This appeal will be heard at the earliest possible time by the Graduate Academic Affairs Committee. The Associate Dean of the CGPS will advise the student and academic unit of the decision.
The decision of the committee shall be final.