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Undergraduate Student Handbook

Senate Policy #166 (Article 5.1) requires Departments and Schools to have an online Student Handbook for the guidance of students enrolled in courses and programs that are the responsibility of the Department/School.

This Handbook is in addition to the comprehensive Student Guide, opens in new window produced annually by Ryerson University.  It is intended to assist students enrolled in either the Politics and Governance (POG) program or the Public Administration and Governance (PAG) program.  It also applies to students enrolled in Double-Major programs with Politics and Governance where the Department of Politics and Public Administration is their “Major 1” Department (i.e., where Politics and Governance is their “Program of Entry”).

Information of specific relevance to First Nations and Fire Services students in the Public Administration and Governance program is noted wherever necessary and appropriate.

Students in Politics and Governance (and related double majors) should also consult the web-site of the Ryerson Students’ Union, external link, opens in new window (RSU) for additional helpful information.  Public Administration and Governance students may also find the RSU website helpful, but should be aware that part-time students are represented by the Continuing Education Students at Ryerson (CESAR, external link, opens in new window), which also maintains a helpful website.

The Handbook is organised alphabetically by heading.  For a downloadable Table of Contents, click PDF filehere, opens in new window.

Click on a letter below to be taken to that section of the Student Handbook.

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    I    L    M    O    P    R    S    T    W   Z

 

A

Academic Advising

A division of the Registrariat, Curriculum Advising provides academic advice and service to all students about minors, graduation, transcripts, transfer credits, challenge credits, letters of permission and more.

Advice is also available from the Undergraduate Program Administrator or Undergraduate Program Director of your program.  See Department contacts.

Academic Integrity

Institutions of higher education are dedicated to the pursuit of truth. The pursuit of truth is grounded in certain core values, including diligence, civility, and honesty. All students, faculty and staff must maintain the highest standards of academic integrity.

Under the auspices of the Senate, the University has an Academic Integrity Officer, and maintains an Academic Integrity web-site to provide information to the University community.

Academic Policies

The body responsible for the creation and update of University-wide academic policies is the Senate. The Student Guide contains a useful summary of essential policies.  Department/Program policies are listed in this Handbook.

Academic Standing – see also: Standing

When the grades are tabulated at the end of each semester, every student has an academic standing.  See Academic Standing in the Student Guide for categories and criteria for overall academic performance.  See also Grade and Standing Information from the Office of the Registrar.

Admission

Undergraduate Admissions deals with requirements, processes and advice for all programs at Ryerson and produces annually an Admissions Handbook.

Advisory Council

The Department’s Advisory Council (the existence of which is mandated by PDF fileSenate Policy #158) provides ongoing advice and expertise to ensure the currency and relevance of the programs.

Appeals
  • see: Forms > Appeals
  • see: Policies > Appeals
  • see: Academic Appeals (Student Guide)
Assignments

Most assignments will be submitted electronically via D2L, and the system will record the date and time of submission.

In cases where the submission of hard-copy assignments is required, it is best to submit them directly to your instructor. If that is not possible, use the locked and secure drop-off box that is located on the 7th floor of Jorgenson Hall (close to the elevators).  Be sure that:

  • you retain a copy of your assignment together with your rough notes;
  • your name, the course and section number, and the instructor’s name (and GA’s name, where appropriate) are clearly identified on the title page of your paper;
  • the pages are securely stapled together.

The drop box is emptied at 4:30 pm each day, and the assignments date-stamped with that day’s date. Submissions received after that deadline will not be removed from the essay box until the following day, and will be stamped with that day’s date.  The stamp constitutes the date of submission, where late penalties are assessed.

  • Do not
    • submit assignments by fax (they will be discarded)
    • submit assignments by email attachment unless otherwise directed by the course instructions.
    • push assignments under the door of an instructor’s office,
    • leave assignments in the wall pockets outside your instructor’s office, or
    • expect Department staff to receive them.
Awards

At the undergraduate level, most internal awards are administered through AwardSpring, external link, and applications must be submitted there unless otherwise indicated.

For further information on awards specific to the Department or your Program, consult the Awards section of the Departmental web-site.

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B

Bookstore – see: Services > Campus Store
Brightspace – see: D2L Brightspace

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C

Calendar

The calendar outlines the degrees and courses offered by the university in addition to the policies, procedures, significant dates, services and more.

Career

See the Career sections of each undergraduate program on this website:

The Faculty of Arts Career Counsellor, Sonny Wong, opens in new window, offers individual, confidential counselling and workshops to assist you with many aspects of career and educational planning, such as confirming your degree choice, discovering your career options, job search strategies, and more. Sonny is located in POD-344-K and can be reached at 416-979-5000 x552141, or at sonny.wong@ryerson.ca

Career information is also available from the Ryerson Career and Co-op Centre

Challenge Credits – see: Curriculum Advising > Challenge Credits
Chang School  see: Continuing Education
Cheating – see: Academic Integrity
Codes of Conduct – see: Policies > Codes of Conduct
Collaborative Work – see: Policies > Collaborative/Group Work
Complaints

Any student at Ryerson University has the right to register a concern about a course or faculty member without placing his/her academic evaluation in jeopardy. In the event of any dispute regarding a course offered by the Department of Politics and Public Administration, the student should first contact the Instructor. If the student is dissatisfied with the response from the Instructor, the next step is to contact the Undergraduate Program Director or the Chair. In fairness to all concerned, anonymous communications will not be considered. The Undergraduate Program Director or Chair will not identify the complainant to the Instructor involved without the prior permission of the complainant.

Continuing Education

Many courses are also available through Ryerson’s G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education, in various formats, including online. Courses offered through Continuing Education are identified by a four-digit alpha-prefix, the first digit of which is “C” (e.g., POG100 becomes CPOG100; PPA101 becomes CPPA101).

Counselling

Academic
For guidance on course selection, course drops, academic standing and other concerns specific to your program of studies, your first step should be to consult with the Undergraduate Program Administrator or Undergraduate Program Director or your program (see Contact for contact information).

Career
The Faculty of Arts Student Experience Centre has a Career Counsellor, Sonny Wong, who can assist you with educational decision-making and planning including changing programs and future studies (post-diploma, graduate and professional).  The Career Counsellor also counsels Faculty of Arts students who have an academic standing of Required to Withdraw or Permanent Program Withdrawal who are thinking about taking their studies in another direction. Sonny Wong is located in POD-344-K and can be reached at 416-979-5000 x552141, or at sonny.wong@ryerson.ca

Career information is also available from the Ryerson Career and Co-op Centre

Personal
The Faculty of Arts Student Experience Centre has a Personal Counsellor, Ruth Frolic, who is available for confidential, one-on-one counselling about general school-related issues that you can no longer handle on your own (like settling into a new environment, making connections with others at Ryerson, finding motivation) or about personal difficulties you may be experiencing (such as, with family relationships, loss, traumatic experiences, depression, anxiety, alcohol or drug use, or other challenges). Ruth is located in POD-344-H and can be reached at 416-979-5000 x554847, at rfrolic@ryerson.ca, or through the Centre for Student Development and Counselling at csdc@ryerson.ca.

At the University level the Centre for Student Development and Counselling provides services, programs and resources that are intended to assist students not only to solve immediate problems, but also to define their personal, academic and career goals, and to acquire the self-confidence and transferable skills necessary for professional success and individual growth. The range of services provided are outlined on their website. The Centre also provides crisis services, and works with other Ryerson Community Supports.

Course Intentions

Course Intentions, opens in new window are the first step in the enrolment process. All students are expected to participate in the Course Intentions process (see link above to information provided by the Registrar).  In it, you are asked to indicate the courses you intend to take in the upcoming academic year so that a timetable can be produced for you before open course enrolment. For further information, consult the course intentions sub-section of the Enrolment section of the Student Guide.

Courses

All courses offered by the Department are listed in the calendar.

  • For course numbers, names and descriptions, select the hyperlink for the current year’s “Undergraduate Calendar,” then “Courses” from the RH menu, then “Politics and Public Administration (POG, POL, PPA)”
  • For course placement in your program, select the hyperlink for the current year’s “Undergraduate Calendar,” then “Undergraduate Programs Listed by Faculty” from the RH menu, then your program (note that double-majors are listed as separate programs).

For Public Administration and Governance students:
Most required courses are only offered in specific terms and in some cases only offered in alternate years (see “Schedule of Course Offerings” on the Curriculum page of the Program website. Students should plan carefully their course selection in order to avoid having to wait a year or more to enrol in a course that is offered infrequently.  You are thus advised to choose first the required courses that are being offered in that term before enrolling in Professionally-Related or Liberal Studies courses.

Course credits may also be achieved through Challenge Credits, Curriculum Substitution, Letters of Permission, and Transfer Credits.  See Curriculum Advising Office of the Registrar (below).

Curriculum

Undergraduate programs at Ryerson University have a PDF filetripartite curriculum structure governed by PDF fileSenate Policy #2: Undergraduate Curriculum Structure.

For program structure, go to the calendar homepage, select the hyperlink for the current year’s “Undergraduate Calendar,” then “Undergraduate Programs Listed by Faculty” from the RH menu, then your program (note that double-majors are listed as separate programs).

For both undergraduate programs, the Departmental web-site provides further explanation of the program curriculum, linked to the relevant pages of the calendar. A convenient “Degree Checklist” for each program is also available on the Departmental website.

In the Public Administration and Governance program, there are two variations:

Curriculum Advising – Office of the Registrar

Curriculum Advising provides many services related to curriculum, including graduation audits, and administration of the following:

Challenge Credits
It may be possible to earn academic credit for learning and experience outside of the traditional post-secondary environment. See Challenge Credits on the Curriculum Advising web-page.  Please note that not all courses are eligible to be challenged.

Curriculum Substitution – see also “Transfer Credits”
It may be possible to substitute a Ryerson course that is not part of the normal curriculum for a course within your program of study. See the “Course Exceptions: Substitutions and Directives” sub-section of Academic Matters section of the Student Guide for further details.

Letter of Permission
It may be possible to take courses at another accredited post-secondary institution for credit towards your Ryerson Degree or Certificate. See the Letter of Permission sub-section of the Enrolment section of the Student Guide for further details.  See also Letters of Permission on the Curriculum Advising web-site, which also contains a link to the application form.

Transfer Credits
Transfer credits are courses completed at other accredited institutions that are assessed, and when granted, may be used toward Ryerson University degree requirements, either as specific (course-to-course) credit or as credit in a program category. Accepted transfer credits affect your program curriculum, allowing you to avoid repeating coursework and graduate sooner. Most credits will be granted automatically at the point of admission, but if you have taken courses at another accredited institution for which you did NOT receive credit, please consult with your Program Administrator and/or the Transfer Credit Unit (see Transfer Credits).

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D

D2L Brightspace

Ryerson’s one-stop shop for online course materials, library, news, enrollment, and more! Also known as my.ryerson, it is also the portal to RAMSS (Ryerson Administrative Management Self Service).

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E

Email

University policy (PDF fileSenate Policy #157: Establishment and Use of Ryerson Student E-mail Accounts for Official University Communication) requires all Ryerson students to activate and maintain a Ryerson email account, and that any official or formal electronic communications from students be sent from their official Ryerson E-mail account. Most official correspondence from the University is now sent electronically and will not be sent to non-Ryerson accounts such as Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo, etc. Correspondence from students must be sent via an official Ryerson e-mail account because there is no way to know if an email from a non-Ryerson account is actually from a particular student or that replying to it will be confidential. There should also be no assumption that mail sent from a non-Ryerson account will received by the intended recipient at Ryerson, as it may be filtered by various spam filters.

English-Language Assistance
  • Writing and Language Support includes services formerly part of English Language Support [as well as what was formerly Writing Support (and before that, the Writing Centre)].
Enrolment

All students are expected to participate in the Course Intentions process and to complete their own course enrolment online, using RAMSS, at the earliest opportunity (“appointment periods” are announced by the Registrar by e-mail). Most courses have firm enrolment caps, and classes can fill up early.

Exams – see: Policy > Examinations
Extracurricular Activities

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F

Faculty and Staff Directory
Faculty of Arts

An administrative unit that is the home of ten (10) academic Departments, the Faculty of Arts provides the following services:

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Financial Aid (Student Financial Assistance)
  • OSAP, scholarships and bursaries, student employment, financing your education
Fire Services

The Public Administration and Governance program includes an exceptional opportunity for Fire Service professionals to earn a Level 1 Certificate and an Level 2 Certificate, both of which are component elements of the B.A. (honours) in Public Administration and Governance.  The curriculum and program requirements have been modified specifically for fire service professionals to acquire related knowledge and management skills.

Although courses are no longer delivered in 1-week intensive mode at the Ontario Fire College in Gravenhurst (because the Memorandum of Understanding that facilitated that mode of delivery was terminated by the OFMEM and the OAFC), Ryerson is committed to delivering, in accessible alternative formats, all of the courses necessary for fire services students to complete at least Level 2 of the program.  It is hoped that courses making up Level 3 will soon be available in hybrid format.

Questions or concerns?  Contact the Undergraduate Program Director (UPD), or the Program Administrator, Viola Ing.

First Nations Option

The Public Administration and Governance program includes a First Nations Option.  Through a ground-breaking partnership between First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI) and Ryerson University, First Nations students are able to earn a Level 1 Certificate, a Level 2 Certificate, and a Bachelor of Arts (honours) in Public Administration and Governance.  Since 1999, courses have been delivered in First Nations Communities across Ontario. Please visit the website of the First Nations Technical Institute, external link for further information on the Public Administration and Governance program, including certificates and degree information, course descriptions, schedules, and forms. For other questions, contact the Program Administrator, Viola Ing

Forms

The University maintains a fairly comprehensive Forms Listing.

Below are links to some frequently used forms (this list is far from exhaustive):

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G

Getting Started

Public Administration and Governance ONLY
You may begin the Public Administration and Governance program in either of two ways: by taking a course through the G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education, or by registering directly in the Public Administration and Governance program.  Course(s) may be available in-class on campus, online, in hybrid format, or (for students of the First Nations partnership), on site.  In either case, course(s) taken can be applied toward the program requirements or can be used as a trial, to test your interest in the program.

The first course normally taken should be C\PPA101: Canadian Public Administration I: Institutions or any one of C\PPA120: Canadian Politics and Government; C\PPA121: Ontario Politics and Government; C\PPA122: Local Politics and Government; C\PPA124: Indigenous Politics and Governance; or C\PPA125: Rights, Equity, and the State.

Grade Appeals
  • see: Forms > Appeals
  • see: Policies > Appeals
Grades
Graduation and Convocation

The Ryerson Student Guide provides important information regarding Graduation and Convocation

Group Work – see: Policies > Collaborative/Group Work

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I

Identifcation Card (see "One Card")
Intentions (see "Course Intentions")

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L

Learning Success Centre – see: Student Life and Learning Support
Letters of Permission - see: Curriculum Advising > Letters of Permission
Library

The Ryerson University Library and Archives (RULA) provides a many services.  See its website for further details.

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M

Minors

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O

One Card

All Ryerson students are required to obtain a “one card” which serves as official identification as well as a host of other functions.

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P

Plagiarism
  • see: Academic Integrity
  • see: Policies > Academic Integrity
Policies

NOTE: students must submit ALL grade and standing appeals online

  • Appeals - Grade Reassessment and Recalculation
  • Attendance
    • Grades assigned for attendance may be a subset of an overall participation grade
    • Grades for attendance alone should not comprise more than 10% of the overall evaluation scheme for the course.
    • If a grade for attendance forms part of the evaluative framework of a course, the syllabus must outline clearly the basis upon which attendance grades will be awarded.
    • If a grade for attendance forms part of the evaluative framework of a course, the instructor must keep a written record of student attendance together with a written justification of the individual grades assigned for attendance, and be prepared to provide both to the Department Appeals Committee in the event of a grade appeal.
  • Codes of Conduct (Senate Policies #60 and #61)
  • Collaborative/Group Work (Department Policy)
    • For general guidance, see the Academic Integrity web-site, particularly the tutorial episode #5 entitled Group Work
    • In courses offered by the Department of Politics and Public Administration:
      • Grades assigned for group/collaborative work shall not comprise more than 25% of the overall evaluation scheme for the course.
      • The course syllabus must outline:
        • clear criteria for group work; and
        • processes/procedures by which students who encounter difficulty with their working group may have their concerns addressed in a fair, appropriate and timely way.
      • Instructors must keep a written justification of the individual grades assigned for group (collaborative) work, and be prepared to provide that written justification to the Department Appeals Committee in the event of a grade appeal.
  • PDF fileConsideration – Academic (Senate Policy #167) – see also “Accommodation”
    Students seeking academic consideration (e.g., extended assignment deadlines, make-up tests/exams) on health, compassionate, or other grounds may be required to provide a completed PDF fileStudent Health Certificate.
  • Course Variation (Department Policy)
    All courses offered by the Department of Politics and Public Administration are designed to achieve the desired learning outcomes established for that course as determined by the Department Curriculum Committee. The Department endorses the concept of academic freedom and creativity by allowing faculty to determine the structure and method of evaluation for the courses for which they are responsible. To that end, the same course taught by different instructors will maintain the same learning objectives, but the course programming and evaluation may differ from instructor to instructor.
  • Direct Supervision (Department Policy)
    In courses offered by the Department of Politics and Public Administration, a minimum of twenty-five per cent (25%) of the course grade will be completed under direct supervision.
  • Disability (see “Accommodation – Students with Disabilities”)
  • PDF fileEmail (Senate Policy #157) – (see also Email section of this handbook)
  • Grade Reassessment and Recalculation - Department Policy
    • Step 1: the COURSE level:
      • requests for re-evaluation must be initiated within ten (10) working days from the date upon which graded student work is returned to the class or published in D2L.
      • requests for re-evaluation are normally initiated with whomever assigned the grade [Graduate Assistant (GA) or Instructor], but this should be specified in course material (syllabus or website).
      • requests for reassessment must include a written statement that – with reference to the graded work, the assignment, and engaging any feedback received – itemises specific reasons for dissatisfaction with the grade assigned (i.e., an appeal cannot be based upon the amount of time spent to complete the graded work nor can it be based upon a heartfelt belief that the work deserved a better grade).
      • a written response must be received by the student within five (5) working days, and the response should address any points raised in the request for reassessment. Where the initial re-evaluation is by a GA, and where the GA’s re-evaluation does not resolve student concerns, the appeal should be escalated, within five (5) working days from receipt of the GA’s decision, to the Instructor by providing a copy of the statement submitted to the GA, any response thereto, and a further written statement indicating reasons that the GA response failed to satisfy. The Instructor must respond to the student within five (5) working days from receipt of all the documentation noted above.
    • Step 2: the DEPARTMENT level
      • If the instructor denies, or does not respond to the request for a grade reassessment within ten (10) working days, or if the student disagrees with the result, the student may submit a formal request for grade reassessment to the Chair of the Department offering thecourse.
      • The request to the Chair must be accompanied by a copy of the course outline; a copy of what was assigned; a copy of the assignment submitted; a copy of the original feedback; the statement submitted to the GA and any response thereto; a copy of the statement submitted to the Instructor and any response thereto; and a further written statement indicating reasons that the Instructor's response failed to satisfy.  As in step 1 above, that written statement is expected to engage the assignment, the work submitted, the initial feedback received, and all additional feedback received from the GA and/or the Instructor.
      • Within ten (10) business days after receiving all relevant documents, the Chair will inform the student in writing whether the requested grade reassessment is granted.  If not a rationale must be provided for denying the request.  If so, the Chair will proceed, as per the Procedures under Policy #162, to arrange for a reassessment by an independent assessor.
  • PDF fileGrading, Promotion, and Academic Standing“GPA Policy” (Senate Policy #46)
  • Group Work – see “Collaborative/Group Work”
  • Participation (Department Policy)
    • Grades assigned for participation should not comprise more than 20% of the overall evaluation scheme for the course (including any grade assigned for attendance).
    • If a grade for participation forms part of the evaluative framework of a course, the syllabus must outline clearly the basis upon which participation grades will be awarded.
    • Instructors must keep a written justification of the individual grades assigned for participation, and be prepared to provide that written justification to the Department Appeals Committee in the event of a grade appeal.
Practicum (PPA 50A/B)

Students who believe themselves qualified to enrol in the Practicum Option of the Public Administration and Governance program must apply in a two-step process..  The first step should be undertaken following successful completion of 3 out of the 8 courses in Level 2.  Although PPA 50A/B should be the last thing taken in the Public Administration and Governance program, eligibility must be determined early, in order to plan the orderly satisfaction of the degree requirements.

Note that enrolment in PPA 50A/B requires, in addition to approved work experience, a cumulative GPA (CGPA) of 2.67 or higher following the completion of Levels 1 and 2, PPA333, and at least six (6) of the eight (8) “Required Group 1” courses at Level 3.

Probation – see: Standing
Program

For further information about the programs offered by the Department of Politics and Public Administration, please consult the Departmental web-site and the relevant Calendar.

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R

RAMSS

“Ryerson Administrative Management Self-Service” is the system that you use to enrol in courses, check your degree progress, and a host of other activities. It is accessible through the my.ryerson.ca portal.

Registration – see: Enrolment
Required to Withdraw (RTW) – see: Standing
Rights and Responsibilities – see: Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities

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S

Senate

Senate is the University body responsible for academic policy

Services and Facilities
Significant Dates

The University publishes the Significant Dates for each academic year in the Calendar

Standing – see also: Policies > Grading, Promotion and Academic Standing

When the grades are tabulated at the end of each semester, every student has an academic standing.  See Academic Standing in the Student Guide for categories and criteria for overall academic performance.  See also Grade and Standing Information from the Office of the Registrar.

An initial grade point average (and academic standing) is not calculated until three or more course grades are available.

Students who receive a Probationary Academic Standing may not continue their studies until they have met with the Undergraduate Director or Program Administrator and executed a written probationary contract, which may include any or all of:

  • a restriction on the number of courses that may be taken;
  • restriction on the choice of courses that may be taken;
  • recommended attendance of workshops provided by Student Life and Learning Support.
  • a recommendation, where appropriate, to seek personal counselling, provided by the Faculty of Arts Counsellor or through Ryerson's Centre for Student Development and Counselling, and/or career counselling provided by the Faculty of Arts Career Counsellor.

Students who fail to execute, by the last date to add courses for the semester, a written probationary contract outlining their plan of studies will have their course registrations and course intention requests cancelled for the semester in which they are on probation and will be Required To Withdraw (RTW) from their program unless the program Department determines otherwise.

No course may be repeated more than twice, so anyone who fails a required course for a third time will be Permanently Withdrawn from the program.  Students who are Permanently Withdrawn from the program may not apply for reinstatement to that program.

Students will be Required To Withdraw (RTW) from their program for one of the following reasons:

  • a CGPA of less than 1.00 (except for students enrolled for their first semester); or
  • BOTH a term GPA and CGPA below 1.67 while on probation; or
  • violation of a Probationary Contract (including unauthorized changes to the contract or failure to negotiate a Probationary Contract).

Students who have a “Required to Withdraw” standing cannot – unless they participate in the Fresh Start Program – continue their program of studies, and cannot apply for reinstatement for a period of twelve (12) months.

Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities

Ryerson Senate published a PDF fileStatement of Student Rights and Responsibilities

Student Codes of Conduct – see: Policies > Codes of Conduct
Student Identification – see: One-Card
Student Life and Learning Support

Student Life and Learning Support is dedicated to helping students reach their academic potential by providing professional resources that develop sound learning strategies which address the primary challenges students face in an academic environment. Individual assistance is available and many useful workshops are offered.

Student Representation
Student Services – see: Services and Facilities > Student Affairs

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T

Transcripts
Transfer Credits

Transfer credits are courses completed at other accredited institutions that are assessed, and when granted, may be used toward Ryerson University degree requirements, either as specific (course-to-course) credit or as credit in a program category. Accepted transfer credits affect your program curriculum, allowing you to avoid repeating coursework and graduate sooner. Most credits will be granted automatically at the point of admission, but if you have taken courses at another accredited institution for which you did NOT receive credit, please consult with your Program Administrator and/or the Transfer Credit Unit (see linked heading above).

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W

Writing and Language Courses and Support

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Z

Zone Learning

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