Fast tracking and back tracking
Fast tracking procedures
“Transfer” from the Master’s to Doctoral Program
Upon recommendation by the program and approval by Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (GPS), academically promising students registered in Master’s programs may proceed directly to Doctoral studies without completing the requirements for the Master’s degree. An applicant for such a “transfer” from the Master’s program to the Doctoral program must present both a strong academic record (CGPA of 3.5 or higher) and strong evidence that he/she is capable of successfully completing appropriate research for the Doctoral level. Candidates who do not meet the minimum GPA requirement will not normally be approved for Doctoral studies without completion of the Master’s degree, but otherwise exceptional candidates may be considered for transfer through GPS’s comprehensive admissions process. Each Graduate Program must have rigorous policies and procedures upon which evaluation, recommendations and deadlines for such transfers are based*. A candidate for transfer must submit an application to the Doctoral program according to normal procedures and deadlines.
Back tracking procedures
Terminating Registration in a Doctoral Program to Complete a Master’s Degree in the Same Program
GPS strongly discourages the practice of withdrawing from a Doctoral program to register in the same program for a Master’s degree (“back-tracking”). However, in exceptional circumstances such a transfer may be preferable academically to having the student fail or withdraw from the Doctoral program.
In those cases, the student must have permission from both the Graduate Program and GPS to transfer from the Doctoral to the Master’s program; the Graduate Program Director must provide specific reason(s) when recommending the change in program to GPS. The student must then submit an application to the Master’s program according to normal procedures and deadlines. Also, the student must be made aware that he/she will not be eligible for subsequent readmission to the same Doctoral program after completion of (or participation in) the Master’s degree. The student should discuss any concerns with the Graduate Program Director and if necessary, the Associate Dean GPS.
Note: Ministry of Education, Leisure and Sport (MELS) regulations require that a student must be registered for at least one academic term in the program from which he/she intends to graduate.
Reapplication to a graduate program subsequent to having back tracked or fast tracked
A student who has already fast tracked from a Master’s to Doctoral program or back tracked from a Doctoral to a Master’s program (with or without having completed the Master’s degree) is not eligible for admission to the original program. However, such a student may be eligible for admission to a different graduate program under normal admissions processes.
*Comprehensive evaluation of the student’s abilities is important to avoid subsequent back tracking to the Master’s program, which is problematic because of auditing requirements of GDEU (Gestion des données sur l'effectif universitaire).