Applicant’s FAQ

How is my application assessed?

Applications for admission and documents are received by the Graduate Secretary. When the Graduate Secretary determines that all the materials for an application are received and the application is complete, she gives the completed file to the Graduate Advisor, who decides which of the department faculty members would be the most appropriate supervisor for the applicant’s proposed program of research. The application file is then passed to the proposed supervisor, who reads it to judge whether the applicant’s proposed research is close to the proposed supervisor’s area of expertise, and then indicates on the file whether s/he is willing to supervise that student if admitted.

The application files that do have a willing supervisor then go to each of the four members of the graduate committee. The committee members indicate whether they think an applicant should be accepted or rejected. Each committee member also assigns a number grade, 1-5, to each of three aspects of the file: transcripts, research proposal and  letters of recommendation.

When the committee has assessed all the files, it meets to rank the applicants according to the aggregate scores. Based on the resulting ranking, the committee makes final decisions about admission. We cannot admit all qualified applicants, so the committee also decides how many of the qualified applicants can be admitted in a given year, based on available funding and other considerations. (Please note that even if an applicant meets or exceeds the minimum qualifications for admission and even if there is a faculty member willing to supervise the applicant’s proposed research, we cannot admit all the applicants.)

The committee’s recommendations are then sent to the department Chair, and from there the files of the recommended students are sent on to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (G+PS). G+PS makes the final offers of admission to the recommended student.

When will the results of admission be known?

The results of admission are usually known in early March.

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