Undergraduate Academic Calendar information header


Glossary of Terms

Academic Alert
Students who achieve a Term Grade Point Average (TGPA) below 1.7 in their Fall Term grades will receive a letter from the Centre for Academic Adevising and Student Success, notifying them that they are on Academic Alert. Academic Alert is not an academic standing. It is an early alert that a student may be in academic jeopardy and indicates that academic advising should be sought.

Academic Appeals Procedures
An orderly opportunity for students to question interim grades, final grades and other academic decisions related to their coursework.

Academic Offences
Plagiarism, cheating and any misrepresentations related to your academic work.

Academic Probation
Students with a CGPA of less than 1.7 and greater than or equal to 1.0 who have attempted at least 3.0 units, will be placed on academic probation. See section 2.2.19 Academic Standing for more information.

Academic Standing
There are three types of academic standing:

  • Good Academic Standing: Eligible to register
  • Academic Probation: Defined above
  • Academic Suspension: Defined below

Academic Suspension
Students on academic probation whose TGPA is less than 1.7 will be academically suspended for a 12-month period. Students whose CGPA is less than 1.0 and who have attempted at least 3.0 units, will be academically suspended for a 12-month period.

Advanced Standing
Where movement into higher level courses is permitted but no transfer credit is assigned.

A faculty member or administrator who will help you plan your program and select your courses.

A former student or graduate of the University; plural is alumnae.

Application to Graduate Form
Students must complete this form when enrolling in their final session of coursework. The form indicates when the student intends to graduate (either spring or fall convocation), the program being completed and the name wanted on the parchment. The Application to Graduate form is available at the Registrar’s Office and online at msvu.ca/convocation.

Audit Student
A student who registers with the University to attend a university course for interest purposes but not as a candidate for university credit. No credit will be issued and fees are reduced.

A monetary grant based on demonstrated financial need.

Calendar (Undergraduate and Graduate)
An annual publication listing key dates in the academic year, admission requirements, program requirements, rules and regulations, and course descriptions. Course information changes from year to year but the degree requirements described in the Calendar in the year of your admission to the degree remain in force as you complete your program. Available from Registrar’s and Deans’ Offices.  The online calendar is available at msvu.ca/calendars.

CGPA – see GPA.

Co-Curricular Recognition Program (CCRP)
The CCRP provides students an opportunity to document their non-academic extra-curricular involvement in volunteer work, professional development activities, receipt of awards, leadership experiences, varsity athletics, and student society participation on an official university document, the Co-Curricular Record.

Concentration, Arts & Science
A concentration in Arts and Science consists of 4.0 units of study as defined by the department offering the program.

Concentration, Professional
Several professional degree programs require students to complete a concentration, a minimum of 3.0 units of coursework in a specific area within the professional program. See specific degree requirements in the Calendar.

Co-operative Education
Several professional degree programs offer co-operative education allowing students to integrate academic study with alternating paid co-op terms.

Course Change Form
The form must be completed if registration changes (adding/dropping courses) are made, including section changes, and submitted to the Registrar’s Office. See page 8 for the Academic Course Add/Drop Dates and refer to section 2.2.13 Withdrawal for more information.

Course Loads
The maximum course load for the Fall Term, Winter Term or combined Summer Sessions is 2.5 units. Practicum courses are not considered part of the course load. Students with a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or greater may apply to exceed this maximum course limit. Normally, only an additional 0.5 unit will be permitted per term.

Cross-listed Course
Cross-listed courses carry two or more subject prefixes. Such courses are recognized by each program shown by the subject prefix and may be counted towards either subject area, but not both.

The head of a faculty within the University. At the Mount, we have a Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science, a Dean of the Faculty of Professional Studies, a Dean of the Faculty of Education and a Dean of Graduate Studies.

Deans’ List
A list of outstanding scholars in undergraduate programs, who achieve a GPA of 3.5 or higher in 5.0 consecutive units, with no grade below B-. Students may be enrolled on either a full-time or part-time basis.

A course notation meaning Deferred, given through the Registrar’s Office in exceptional cases when a student is unable to complete course requirements due to medical or other reasons during the time frame provided for completing an INC (Incomplete) grade.

Degree Requirements
Listed in this Calendar and outlined on department worksheets, indicating the course requirements needed to complete the degree.

Directed Study
These courses are normally opportunities for a student to explore, in greater depth, a topic that is covered in another course or a topic that is not covered in an existing course. Directed Study courses are normally offered at the 4000, 5000, 6000 or 9000 level. A maximum of 2.0 units of Direct Study courses can be counted towards a credential. Program may set a lower limit.

Early Registration
Selecting and enrolling in classes before the regular September registration period, usually in May for new students.

An optional course or subject not required for a particular program of study.

Exam Conflict
An exam conflict might be: overlapping exam times, a work commitment that cannot be changed, or scheduled to write three exams in three consecutive writing times. An Exam Conflict form must be completed and submitted to the Registrar’s Office prior to the deadline.

Exam Schedule (When) and Seating Plan (Where)
The exam schedule tells when an exam will be written. A detailed schedule listing each course, date and time is posted outside the Registrar’s Office and the Seton Auditorium and online at msvu.ca/exams. The seating plan is posted in the same locations as the schedule during the last week of classes indicating where the exams will be written.

A course notation meaning Failure resulting from an academic offence.

Fees are the costs associated with various aspects of attendance at the University. See section 3.2 Fees and Financial Policies.

Full-time Students
Full-time students are enrolled in 3.0 or more units during the September to April academic year.

General Studies
Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degrees can complete their studies with a general studies degree.
Plans to complete a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science General Studies must be declared prior to registering for the sixth unit of coursework. Once you have declared, changes can be made at any time with the approval of the appropriate department.

Grade Point Average (GPA)
The total of grade points averaged over the number of units contributing points of 0.0 and greater. Final grades with “neutral” points do not effect your GPA. GPA (also called cumulative GPA) is based on all coursework completed from September 1996 onward.

Grade Points
The value (ranging from 0.0 to 4.3) given to each final grade (e.g., A+ = 4.3, F = 0.0).

Grade Report
Available at the end of each academic term/session, a grade report lists the courses taken during the term and the grades earned including withdrawals and failures. Any fees owing to the University for the term/session must be paid in full before receiving a grade report or to view grades through myMount.

Graduate Student
A student enrolled in a graduate program.

Harassment and Discrimination Advisor
An advisor who provides information and assistance, including mediation, of complaints under the Harassment and Discrimination Policy, on behalf of students, faculty and staff. Awareness raising and training sessions are provided by the advisor. The advisor can be reached at 902-457-6766.

Honours at Graduation
Also known as graduating “with distinction,” this designation is awarded according to a specific set of guidelines as interpreted by the Committee on Academic Policy in consultation with the Registrar. See 2.2.31 Graduation.

Honours Degree
Awarded after completion of an honours program (see below). An honours degree usually requires 20.0 units.

Honours Program
A course of study which considers a particular discipline in depth, usually undertaken by students with post-graduate study as a goal. Students must fulfill specific departmental and general university requirements.

Honours Thesis
Original research in a specific field written by a candidate for an honours degree.

A course notation meaning Incomplete which is given instead of a grade when an arrangement exists between the professor and the student indicating requirements for the course shall be completed by a predetermined date. If these arrangements are not completed in the specified time, the INC notation shall be changed to F (failure).

Independent Study
Any course in the calendar, with the exception of Directed Study courses, can be offered as an Independent Study course, subject to the approval of a Chair or Director and the appropriate Dean. Independent Study courses are normally offered when a student requires a course to meet graduation requirements or needs to maintain progression in a program of study and cannot register for a scheduled offering of the course due to scheduling conflicts or course unavailability in a particular semester. There is no limit on the number of Independent Study courses that can count towards the requirements for a credential.

A course notation meaning In-Progress. A final grade notation of IP is given in seminars, independent and directed studies at the senior undergraduate level. Students must complete the required work within four months of the month the notation is given.

Regularly scheduled meeting times in addition to lecture times for many courses in the timetable. Lab times are published in the timetable and when registering for a course, students are also required to sign up for a lab time.

Letter of Permission (LOP)
An official document granting prior approval to take a course at another university for credit at the Mount. Forms are available online at msvu.ca/regofficeforms.

Local Address
If a student’s address changes while attending the University, the Registrar’s Office must be notified. Failure to do so could result in not receiving correspondence and other important information.

Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degrees can complete their degrees with a major – a planned selection of courses in one discipline intended to provide background and depth in the discipline. See specific degree requirements.
Students intending to complete their degree with a major must declare the major before registering for the sixth unit of coursework. For the procedures on how to declare your major, refer to section 2.2.11 Declaring a Major.

Mature Admissions
Mature students who wish to continue their education must meet one of the following three criteria: graduated from high school but lacking the required grade average or course requirements and three years have elapsed, not graduated from high school and five years have elapsed or have been away from formal education at the high school or community-college level for five years or more. See Mature Admission Policy.

Mature Student
A student who returns to university after a break in her/his education for work, family responsibilities, etc.; normally after 3-5 years have elapsed.

A secondary area of study. A minor normally requires completion of 3.0 units in a related field. Students must achieve a GPA of 2.0 in the required 3.0 units of the minor as specified by the program.

Moodle (Modular Object Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment) is a course management system used by the University. Faculty may use Moodle to distribute course notes, communicate with students, set and grade quizzes, create assignments, discussions, and much more.

myMount allows Mount students to access the Registration Centre, Moodle and E-Mail along with student specific news, events and information both on and off campus, through a secure environment.

A course notation meaning No Credit, Repeat. It is allowed only in courses graded on a pass/fail scale.

A course notation given in 1.0 unit courses for which no December grades are given.

Non-Credit Unit
The term “non-credit unit” defines the instructional time required for a course that does not count for credit towards any academic credential offered at the Mount. A 0.5 non-credit unit is the equivalent of three semester hours of instructional time.

A student enrolled in coursework but not working towards a specific degree program. See Non-Degree Students.

A program providing academic and social information to introduce new students to the University environment.

Part-time Students
Part-time students are enrolled in 2.5 or fewer units during the September to April academic year.

Passport Learners
The program opens many regular undergraduate courses to persons not seeking academic credit. Learners may attend lectures in designated courses with permission from the instructor but are not required to write tests and exams and do not receive an official transcript. Prospective students should contact Teaching and Learning Centre and Online Learning.

Permanent Address and “Other” Addresses
Students must notify the Registrar’s Office of any changes to the permanent address in order to receive correspondence and other important information. Change of address for Christmas, summer vacations or co-op work terms should also be given.

Placement Test
An assessment of a student’s abilities in a particular area given before registration in a course. It allows a department to determine what level of study a student is best prepared to undertake.

Practica Route
Several professional degree programs offer the practica route (as an alternate to the co-operative education route) for completion of the degree. The practica route is primarily for students who have previous university coursework or work experience in the specific profession. See specific degree requirements.

A course of study involving the supervised practical application of previously studied theory. For example, the Child and Youth Study program includes 2.0 units of practica.

A course or combination of courses that must be completed before registration in another course is permitted. Students registering in courses do so on the understanding that they will meet/complete course prerequisites. Failure to do so could result in deregistration and academic and/or financial penalty.

A basic plan of study or coursework in a specific field; also called a curriculum.

Reactivation Form
Students who leave the University for one academic year and then return must complete a reactivation form. Forms are available online at msvu.ca/regofficeforms.

Resident Assistant
A full-time undergraduate student whose major function includes interpreting and enforcing policy to students living in residence.

A monetary award based on academic achievement.

Student Identification Card
The Student Identification Card has your picture and other personal identification information on it. These are produced by the Library on an annual basis each autumn. Student ID cards are needed to use the Library, Computer Labs, to display when writing exams and to participate in many student and other activities on campus and in the metro area.

Term Grade Point Average (TGPA)
The grade point average achieved at the end of each academic term, calculated on the final grades for each academic term.

The timetable lists all the courses and labs offered for the academic year or session showing course ID, course number, name, time, classroom location and faculty for each course and lab offered. The timetable is available online via myMount at msvu.ca.

An official document prepared by the Registrar’s Office recording the entire academic history of a student. The Transcript Request form can be found online at msvu.ca/regofficeforms. Transcripts can be requested in writing to the Registrar’s Office. See 2.2.15 Transcripts.

Transfer Credits
May be granted to students who attended another university before being admitted to the Mount and counted toward the program here. See Admission Requirements for Transfer Applicants.

Tuition Structure
Tuition fees are assessed on a per 1.0 unit course cost. The number of units a student is taking will drive the tuition calculation. Certain other fees such as Students’ Union medical continue to be based on a student’s status as being full-time or part-time.

A student who is working toward a first credential.

The term used for the Mount’s credit system. 0.5 unit is the equivalent to three semester hours of credit and 1.0 unit is equivalent to six semester hours of credit.

Students who hold a degree may upgrade to major or honours standing by completing additional requirements after consultation with the Registrar’s Office.

Visiting Students
Students from other universities taking coursework at Mount Saint Vincent University with formal approval from their home university. See section 2.2.9 Visiting Students.

A course notation meaning withdrawal without academic penalty; deadline driven.

A course notation meaning withdrawal with academic penalty; deadline driven.

Work Experience Term
Intersperses one or two work terms (typically full-time) into an academic program, where work terms provide experience in a workplace setting related to the student’s field of study and/or career goals.

A course notation meaning withdrawal after the deadline without academic penalty; deadline driven.


Academic Note: This web-based calendar information is applicable for the 2024-2025 academic year which runs from September 01, 2024 to August 31, 2025.

For information on previous years, please consult the University Academic Calendars web page.

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