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Glossary

The following glossary of definitions is intended to provide explanations of how certain important terms are used throughout the Calendar. In rare cases where a discrepancy may occur between the definition provided in this Glossary and the use of the term in the remainder of the Calendar, the term as used in the remainder of the Calendar takes precedence.

The Glossary is not intended to be exhaustive; students should refer to Carleton’s web site for other important information (e.g., carleton.ca/registrar; gradstudents.carleton.ca).

Except where noted, all definitions apply to undergraduate and graduate students.

| A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M |

| N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

 

A

Academic Performance Evaluation (APE) The APE is the annual assessment of student academic standing in undergraduate degree programs and special studies. The possible outcomes of an APE are Good Standing, Academic Warning, Suspension, Continue in Alternate, Continue in General, Dismissed from Program, or Debarment.
Auditing Student A student who attends a course for interest and not for credit. Formal registration is required.
 

C

Calendar The official publication of academic regulations, academic programs and course descriptions as approved by the Senate.
Certificate An undergraduate certificate is a stand-alone Credential that may be taken concurrently with a bachelor’s program or independently. It is normally constituted by a structured set of at least four credits of sequential year-level courses in a particular discipline or area of study that introduces students to, or extends their knowledge of, that discipline or area of study.
Challenge for Credit Undergraduate academic course credit gained through examination based on a student’s prior learning experience gained through professional or work experience. A successful challenge for credit is noted in the student’s record as CH. (An unsuccessful challenge for credit is noted as UCH). A CH is neither included in the CGPA calculation nor used to satisfy the degree program residency requirement. Challenge for Credit is not available in all courses.
Concentration A program Element recorded on the transcript and diploma constituted by at least 3.5 credits of required courses at the undergraduate level and 1.5 credits of required courses at the graduate level that concentrates on a particular area of study within the program and provides the student with specific expertise, knowledge and/or practice.
Co-operative Education An undergraduate or graduate Option comprising work periods combined with academic study to acquire work-related experience; the co-op option is intended to complement the student's academic study.
Core A course or group of courses that are a subset of the courses that constitute a major in an undergraduate program. These are courses of special importance to undergraduate programs and are subject to specific CGPA requirements.
Cotutelle An Option in any Ph.D. program. Doctoral students undertake to complete the requirements of a Ph.D. program in both their home university and a partner university in another country.
Course A course is a unit of teaching that may count as credit towards the award of a Credential. Courses typically last one academic term and focus on one subject area with a prescribed sequence of units of study (lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops, laboratories, assignments, essays, tests, examinations and so on). Courses are delivered by one or more instructors and have a fixed roster of students. Students receive a grade after completion of courses that count as credit towards the award of a Credential.

Courses have unique eight-character alphanumeric course codes, titles and descriptions. The credit value is indicated in square brackets following the course number.
 

1. Numbers 1000-4000 designate undergraduate courses;

2. 0000-level courses are also available and may be required to satisfy prerequisites;

3. Numbers 5000-6000 designate graduate courses.

Course Outline Instructors are required to provide students in each course a written Course Outline (distributed in class or electronically), on or before the first teaching day for undergraduate courses, and before the last date for late registration for graduate courses. The course outline must specify all the elements that will contribute to the final grade, as well as the overall grade breakdown for the course.
Courses Set Aside Courses that do not contribute to the fulfilment of graduation requirements within the student’s program:
 

1. Extra to the Degree (ETD): Passed credits that are in excess of the required credits;

2. No Credit for Degree (NCD): Passed credits that are ineligible for credit in the student’s program;

3. Forfeit: Repeated courses, course equivalencies, preclusions, and courses placed in this category by an academic standing committee or an appeal committee.

Credential An academic qualification awarded by the University Senate upon successful completion of an academic program. All credentials are either degrees (bachelors, masters, or doctoral), diplomas, or certificates.
Credit The academic value of a course (for example, 0.0, 0.5, 1.0, et cetera).
Credits Not in the Major Credits Not in the Major are credits that must be taken in programs that require Credits Not in the Major from disciplines and intellectual areas other than those which constitute the discipline, disciplines or intellectual area of the major in such programs. Credits Not in the Major constitute one form of restricted electives.
Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) The key assessment tool for undergraduate Academic Performance Evaluation, and graduate and undergraduate graduation requirements and distinctions. The CGPA may be used in assessments for scholarships, medals and other milestones. The CGPA is the average of grade points earned on all courses required for and counting towards graduation from the student’s current program (overall CGPA), or the average of grade points earned on a subset of such courses (for example, those constituting the Major or a Minor) at the time the CGPA is calculated.
 

D

Degree A Credential at the Bachelor, Master or Doctoral level awarded by the University Senate upon the successful completion of a prescribed set and sequence of program requirements at a specified standard of performance.
Diploma Post-baccalaureate Diploma: a stand-alone undergraduate credential for candidates already possessing a bachelor’s degree intended to: (a) qualify candidates for consideration for entry into a Master’s program; (b) bring a candidate who already possesses a bachelor's degree up to a level of a bachelor's degree of 20.0 credits or more in another discipline; (c) provide a candidate who already possesses a twenty-credit bachelor's degree in the same discipline the opportunity to bring their previous studies to current equivalents and/or to examine alternative areas; or, (d) provide a candidate with a professional undergraduate credential for which the prior completion of an undergraduate degree program is appropriate.

Post-baccalaureate diplomas are normally constituted by at least three and a maximum of five credits of advanced undergraduate courses.

Graduate Diploma:

Type 1: Awarded when a candidate admitted to a master’s program leaves the program after completing a certain proportion of the requirements. Students are not admitted directly to a Type 1 Diploma.

Type 2: Offered concurrently with a master’s or doctoral degree, the admission to which requires that the candidate be already admitted to the master’s or doctoral degree program. A Type 2 Diploma represents an additional, usually interdisciplinary, qualification of 2 to 3 credits.

Type 3: A stand-alone, direct-entry program of 2 to 3 credits, generally developed by a unit already offering a related master’s (and sometimes doctoral) degree, and designed to meet the needs of a particular clientele or market.
Discredit For undergraduate students, a discredit is a course registration that results in a grade of F (failure) or UNS (unsatisfactory performance).
Dual Master's Degree An Option in any Master's program. Master’s students may opt to complete the requirements of a master’s program in both their home university and a partner university in another country.
 

E

Element

Elements are: (i) Undergraduate: majors, minors, concentrations, and specializations; there are a maximum number of elements that may be taken in conjunction with a program at the undergraduate level; (ii) Graduate: concentrations.

Elements are recorded on the transcript and the diploma.

Equivalency Courses that are of equal credit value and which are considered to be similar enough that they always preclude one another and may serve interchangeably for the other in terms of prerequisites, co-requisites, and program requirements. These will be identified in the calendar as 'Also Listed As', and are commonly referred to as 'cross-listed courses'.
 

F

Field A Field occurs only at the graduate level, and is defined as an identifiable area of research activity undertaken by a group of faculty of sufficient number.
Flex Term Flex Term refers to the timing of delivery of 'asynchronous' on-line courses that are currently restricted to special students and in which they may register at any time. Special students may engage with the material of these courses at their own pace. The delivery of 'asynchronous' on-line courses does not therefore conform to the usual beginning and end of Carleton University terms.
Formative Assessment Formative assessments are those assessments of a student's work carried out during the course that act to provide feedback and guidance to the student in addition to assessing the student's performance.
Free Elective Free electives are any approved credit course normally at the 1000-level or higher – including courses from the discipline, disciplines or intellectual areas that identify the major of the degree program in question – that may be taken to make up the number of credits required for the degree program in question.
 

G

General Bachelor's Program An undergraduate, non-honours Bachelor's program requiring a minimum of 15.0 credits.
 

H

Honours Bachelor's Program An undergraduate Bachelor's program requiring a minimum of 20.0 credits. Pathways to completion constituted by a thesis, research essay or significant project may demand a higher academic standard than a course-based pathway.
 

I

Internship An internship is constituted through a course or sequence of courses that provides students with work experience directly related to the subject matter of their degree program. There are two types of internship:

1. Program Internship: an Option constituted by a structured sequence of at least 4.0 credits of courses at different year levels of an honours bachelors program taken in a work environment off-campus. A program internship provides students with extensive professional work experience directly related to the subject matter of their program.

2. Course Internship: an individual course within a degree program taken in a work environment either on- or off-campus that provides students with professional work experience directly related to the subject matter of their program.
 

L

Letter of Permission A formal document issued by the University Registrar approving a student to register in a course at another institution in lieu of a Carleton course in the student's academic program. The Letter of Permission must be issued before the student takes the course for credit in a Carleton program at another institution.
 

M

Major A program Element recorded on the transcript and diploma. The major is constituted by the required course credits in one or more defined disciplines or intellectual areas that define the principle focus of a student’s undergraduate program and constitute the basis for the calculation of the Major CGPA.
Major CGPA The Major CGPA is calculated as the average grade points earned on the courses that constitute the major.
Mention Francais An undergraduate Option noted on the transcript denoting specified courses taken in French, which may be used to fulfil program requirements.
Minor A program Element at the undergraduate level recorded on the transcript and diploma. A minor is a structured set of credits that form a distinct subset of a program or intellectual area. Each Minor requires at least 4.0 and at most 5.0 credits. Access to minors may be restricted. A minor introduces a student to, or extends their knowledge of, a discipline or intellectual area.
 

O

Option An optional addition to or component of a program with requirements distinct from those of an Element: (i) Undergraduate: co-operative education, study abroad, Mention Francais, program internship; (ii) Graduate: co-operative education, Cotutelle (in Ph.D. programs), Dual Master’s Degree (in master's programs), collaborative specialization. Options may be taken in addition to elements and are recorded on the transcript and the diploma.
 

P

Pathway A pathway through a program is a route to completion such as: stream, thesis, research essay, research project, or course only. Pathways may be chosen in addition to Elements and Options, and are not recorded on the transcript or diploma.
Practical Assessment Practical assessments are those assessments, such as exams or term work, of a student’s work where the tasks and conditions are similar to what they would experience in a work environment and are designed to complement their academic skills and competencies.
Prerequisite A required course or courses that must be completed successfully before registering in the course that requires the prerequisite.
Preclusion Courses that contain sufficient content in common that credit may not be earned for more than one of the courses. Courses that preclude one another are not necessarily considered equivalent and may or may not be interchangeable to fulfil program or specific element requirements.
Program A specified combination of academic requirements in a discipline or intellectual area of study which leads to a credential (for example, B.A. in Philosophy, Ph.D. in History, M.Sc. in Chemistry, Graduate Diploma in Public Policy and Program Evaluation, Certificate in the Teaching of English as a Second Language).

There are five types of program at the undergraduate level:

1. Single-Discipline General Program: A General Single Discipline program is a program of at least 15.0 credits in which the courses that constitute the program’s major are drawn overwhelmingly from one discipline or intellectual area.

2. Thematic General Program: A General Thematic program is an interdisciplinary program of at least 15.0 credits that concentrates on a particular interdisciplinary intellectual area or theme, and draws on courses within its major from at least three disciplines or intellectual areas.

3. Single-Discipline Honours Program: A Single Discipline Honours program is a program of at least 20.0 credits in which the courses that constitute the program’s major are drawn overwhelmingly from one discipline or intellectual area. Pathways to completion constituted by a thesis, research essay or significant project may demand a higher academic standard than a course-based pathway.

4. Combined Honours Program: A Combined Honours program is a program of at least 20.0 credits in which a student fulfils the requirements for combined honours majors in two such majors from two different programs. Pathways to completion constituted by a thesis, research essay or significant project may demand a higher academic standard than a course-based pathway.

5. Thematic Honours Program: A Thematic Honours program is an interdisciplinary program of at least 20.0 credits that concentrates on a particular interdisciplinary intellectual area or theme, and draws on courses within its major from at least three disciplines or intellectual areas. Pathways to completion constituted by a thesis, research essay or significant project may demand a higher academic standard than a course-based pathway.
 

R

Restricted Elective Restricted electives are courses required to fulfil elective requirements in an undergraduate program that are not free electives. The courses that may fulfil restricted elective requirements in any program are in other words prescribed by the program.

Students should refer to individual program descriptions to determine the courses that may fulfil restricted elective requirements for a program.
 

S

Specialization At the graduate level the term 'collaborative specialization' refers to an Option added to a degree program that provides an experience in a discipline or intellectual area in addition to that provided in the student's home program.

At the undergraduate level, the term 'specialization' is reserved for specific areas of concentration in programs in which the courses constituting the program's specializations are delivered overwhelmingly by academic units other than the academic unit administering the program.
Special Students Students not admitted to a program or a degree leading to a Credential.
Status Full-time status for tuition fee purposes:

1. Undergraduate students are full-time when registered in a 60% course load per term as defined by the student’s academic program: for example, registered in at least 1.5 credits per term in a 2.5 credit normal term course load. Undergraduate students should consult the website of the Academic Advising Centre to determine their eligibility for various Provincial and University services according to the number of credits taken each term.
2. Graduate students are normally admitted and must stay continuously registered as full-time. Students may apply to the Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs for exemption from full-time status in exceptional circumstances (for example, medical circumstances); exemptions are normally granted for one term.

Part-time status for tuition fee purposes:

1. Undergraduate students are part-time when registered in less than a 60% course load per term as defined by the student’s academic program (for example, registered in less than 1.5 credits per term).
2. Graduate students may be admitted as part-time students and will be required to continue and complete their program as part-time; a part-time student is not eligible to register in more than 1.25 credits per term, including audit courses.
Stream A Pathway within an undergraduate program constituted by at least 2.0 credits of courses that facilitate concentration on a particular area of study within the program. Streams are not recorded on the transcript or diploma.
Summative Assessment Summative assessments are those assessments of a student’s work carried out at the end of a course or the end of specific components of a course whose sole purpose is to constitute a judgement on a student’s performance in the course or a specific component of the course.
 

T

Transfer Credit Academic credit granted for individual courses successfully completed at another institution, either upon admission (admitted with advanced standing from secondary school, or transfer from college or university) or while registered with a Letter of Permission or on exchange.
Transcript The official record of a student's academic registration and accomplishments at Carleton University.
 

U

Undeclared Students Undergraduate students admitted to a degree who have not chosen a program ('declared a major') within that degree; normally, students are required to choose a program ('declare a major') before reaching second-year standing.
 

W

Withdrawal A formal process for discontinuing studies in a course or a program.

Undergraduate students who wish to drop all courses and terminate their registration in the academic program must follow the procedure available through the Registrar's Office. Students who have been away from the University for nine or more consecutive terms will be withdrawn and must re-apply for admission.

Graduate students who wish to drop all courses and terminate their registration in the academic program must notify their department in writing of their intention to withdraw. Students who do not register for three consecutive terms or do not register continuously in their thesis, research essay, or independent research project will be withdrawn and must re-apply for admission.