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Calendars > Faculty of Science > Academic regulation - Registration

Faculty of Science



Courses, programs of study and their requirements are proposed by
the Faculty and approved by the Senate of the University. If the
requirements are modified during the course of their studies,
students may satisfy the requirements of their program at the time
of admission or they may follow the new requirements.

The Faculty responsible for the program is normally charged with
the interpretation of program requirements.


Regular student status (full- or part-time): To register for courses
with the intention of pursuing a degree, an individual must first be
admitted to a program. Regular student status is granted upon

Special student status: It is possible to register for courses for
personal interest without seeking a degree. In such a case, formal
admission to a program of study is not necessary. Registration to
the course is done as a special student. Accumulated credits as a
special student – to a maximum of 30 – can be retained for
eventual admission to a program of study.


Certain faculties (for example, the Faculty of Education) require
previous university studies or a university degree as a prerequisite
to admission. It is the students’ responsibility to verify that their
program of studies (or degree) satisfies the accreditation
requirements of the professional association to which they aspire.


The University offers seven types of baccalaureates:

General baccalaureate (three years)

The general baccalaureate allows a student to acquire a broad
university education encompassing several disciplines. It requires
the successful completion of at least 90 credits and is offered by
the faculties of Arts and Science.

Baccalaureate with concentration (three years)

The baccalaureate with concentration allows a student to acquire a
solid base in a single discipline and normally requires the
successful completion of a minimum of 90 credits.

Baccalaureate with honours (four years)

The baccalaureate with honours enables students to acquire a
sound understanding in a discipline and prepares students who
may wish to pursue graduate studies. Usually a minimum of 120
credits is required.

The coop option may be offered in the baccalaureate with honours.

Professional baccalaureate

The University offers several professional baccalaureates (three- or
four-year program) which lead directly to the work force. These
include programs such as the baccalaureate of music, journalism in
the Faculty of Arts, the bachelor of fine arts, or in disciplines
where the program is accredited by professional societies, such as
engineering, nursing, occupational therapy and physiotherapy. The
requirements of the accredited programs must satisfy the
conditions established by the professional societies and may
require more than 120 credits.

Joint honours baccalaureate

The joint honours baccalaureate allows students to specialize in
two related disciplines (for example mathematics and economics or
psychology and linguistics). Such a program requires 42 to 48
credits in each discipline. The program has few optional credits.
Therefore, courses must be chosen with care starting in second

Multidisciplinary baccalaureates (three or four years)

A multidisciplinary baccalaureate involves several disciplines.

Combined baccalaureates

The baccalaureate with combined programs (three- or four-year
program) allows a student to satisfy the specific requirements of
two different disciplines within one single baccalaureate. A student
enrolled in a concentration or an honours program and who is in
good standing may choose another concentration or honours
degree for a combined program. To graduate, the student must
satisfy the general requirements of the first baccalaureate and the
specific requirements of both disciplines. In such a case the
number of credits required may exceed the usual 90 or 120 credits
required for the first baccalaureate. Some programs can only be
chosen as a second concentration. Several programs have specific
admission requirements and have limited enrolment.

Rules for combined programs

a) It is not possible to choose an honours and a concentration in
the same discipline.

b) A student who has been asked to withdraw from a faculty
cannot enrol in a combined-program baccalaureate that
includes a program offered by the faculty from which that
student has been asked to withdraw, for at least one year.

c) A student enrolled in a baccalaureate with combined programs
is deemed to be in the Faculty of his or her first baccalaureate
and is subject to all the academic regulations of that Faculty.
The course requirements of both programs must be satisfied
and the student will receive the degree given by his or her
Faculty. For example a BA or BSc etc with both disciplines
mentioned. A student who completes two honours programs
will receive two diplomas. In such cases, the required number
of credits must be completed for each honours program. (See
also the regulations on obtaining a second degree from the
University of Ottawa, section 8d.)



Credit: A credit is a numerical value assigned to a course, normally
defined as 13 to 15 hours of formal lectures or the equivalent.

Course: A course is defined as a teaching activity. Three-credit
courses are usually given three hours a week during one academic
session, and six-credit courses are given over two academic
sessions. However, some courses, notably those with laboratory or
studio work, require more hours in class or in laboratories. These
courses may carry more credits. Some three-credit courses are
given over two sessions. During the spring-summer session, some
courses are compressed over a shorter period of time.

Session: A session is one of three pre-determined periods in which
academic activities take place at the University. The fall and winter
sessions are approximately 13 weeks. The spring-summer session
may consist of sub-sessions of three, four, five or six weeks.

Fall session: September to December
Winter session: January to April
Spring-summer session: May to August

Prerequisite: The term prerequisite is used to designate a course
that must be taken and passed in order to register for another
course. Hence, a prerequisite for course B is course A (where
essential notions for the comprehension of course B are taught)
which must be completed before one can register in course B.
To enrol in a course, a student must have successfully completed
every prerequisite course. Exceptions to this rule require approval
by the instructor and the department offering the course.
Where a student has not successfully completed a prerequisite
course but has the possibility of so doing (for instance, by passing
a supplemental or deferred examination) prior to the deadline for
dropping courses, the student will automatically be granted a
conditional waiver of that prerequisite, whereby the student is
allowed to enrol in the course but must withdraw prior to the
deadline for dropping courses unless a passing grade for the
prerequisite course has been obtained by that time.

Corequisite: The term “corequisite” is used to identify a course,
that if not taken as a prerequisite, must be taken concurrently with
another course, due to the complementary nature of the courses.


Full-time: A student registered for 12 credits or more during a
session is considered having full-time status.

Part-time: A student registered for less than 12 credits during a
session is considered having part-time status.

Impact of student status

University fees –The Board of Governors of the University
establishes tuition and incidental fees based on student status.
Consult the University fees schedule published by the Office of the
Registrar. (www.registrar.uottawa.ca)

Government financing – Most government bursary and loan
programs take into consideration the student status (full- or parttime)
when awarding bursaries or financial aid. It is important to
note that certain bursary and financial aid programs do not define
the student status in the same way as the University. Students
should check with the appropriate sources to verify the number of
credits to which they must be registered in order to be eligible for
bursaries or loans.


To follow courses or participate in other academic activities (for
example discussion groups, laboratories, work terms and other
academic activities), students must register before the start of a
session and within the deadlines indicated in the sessional dates
calendar. It is possible to register online or in person at their
Faculty. It is also possible to modify course selections before the
deadline indicated in the sessional dates calendar.

Anyone who is not registered for a course or related academic
activity will not receive a grade or credits. Retroactive course
registration or course modification is not permitted.


Not all courses are offered every session. Students should consult
the course schedule on the University Web site to verify if a course
is being offered in a particular session.

Enrolment in the majority of courses is limited, and some courses
may be reserved exclusively for students registered in specific
programs. The Faculty or department concerned may establish
conditions on enrolment in their courses.


Every Faculty recommends a maximum course load for its full-time
students. At the Faculty of Science, the recommended course load
is in general five courses per session. In principle, the Faculty
considers that for each hour of course time, the student should
spend two to three hours of individual work.


Important recommendation

Before registering for courses, it is essential that students do the

• familiarize themselves with the requirements of their program
of study and with academic regulations;
• plan course choices so that they correspond to the requirements
of the program of study;
• pass all prerequisites of the chosen courses;
• consult the schedule to know what courses are offered and to
avoid timetable conflicts; and
• respect the registration deadlines indicated in the sessional
dates calendar. (www.registrar.uottawa.ca)

Online registration

The university strongly urges students to register and modify
course selection online. To do so, several tools are available – the
Registration Navigator®, the Degree Navigator® and the online
course schedule.

Registration Navigator®

The Registration Navigator® (RN) is an application that allows
online registration. It presents the information contained in the
calendars concerning programs, courses and course schedule.
Because the Registration Navigator® is tied into the Office of the
Registrar databanks, it can track students’ progress through their
program of study. To access the system, students must use their
InfoWeb password assigned at the time they were admitted. In this
manner, all transactions on the system are kept confidential.

Once a student has registered online and the transaction accepted,
no other approval is necessary (except in cases of courses being
repeated). Students should take note of the transaction
confirmation number that appears on the screen as this number
disappears at the end of the transaction.

The following students can access the Registration Navigator®:
full- and part-time students in the School of Management and the
faculties of Arts, Engineering, Law (Common Law and Droit civil),
Health Sciences, Science and Social Sciences. This application is
available 24 hours as day.

Degree Navigator®

The Degree Navigator® (DN) application is available online and
can produce a detailed analysis of an academic file. It also allows
the exploration of undergraduate options offered at the University,
the requirements to obtain a degree, and numerous details on
course offerings (for example description, prerequisites and other
related information).

These tools are available at the following address
www.infoweb.uottawa.ca. Each application is accompanied by a
tutorial. Students who have changed their initial password and
who have forgotten their new one must go in person to the
Computing Help Centre (Montpetit Hall, room 140) or to
InfoService on the first floor of Tabaret Hall (75 Laurier East). Our
information officers will need to see ID before they can give a

Registration in person or by mail

Students who do not have access to the Internet can register or
modify a course selection, in person or by mail, respecting the
deadlines set out in the sessional dates calendar. To register,
students must obtain approval of their course selection from their
Faculty or school where they are admitted. A registration form
must be completed and signed. To modify a course selection
students must use the form entitled “Modification / Cancellation of


If a student wishes to change program, but remain in the same
Faculty, a request must be submitted to the Faculty. All courses on
the student file will normally be retained in the calculation of the
grade point average. The change of program is normally done
during the pre-registration in April.

If a student wishes to change program and Faculty, a new
admission form must be completed and submitted to the
admissions office. In such a case, the Faculty, in consultation with
the admission office, will decide which courses to retain for the
new program. The equivalencies granted or retained credits
received at the moment of admission can be revised during the
initial registration to the Faculty or during a program change.

In certain faculties, a change of faculty can be done for the fall or
the winter session



Course registration and changes to a program of study or course
selection are only accepted until the deadline indicated in the
sessional dates. These dates can be found on the University of
Ottawa Web site (www.registrar.uottawa.ca).

Course withdrawals are permitted up to the dates indicated in the
sessional dates calendar. The grade report (not the official
transcript) will indicate the symbol “DR”, and no grade will be
assigned to the course.

The symbols “ABS” and “INC” are equivalent to a failing grade
(F). These symbols will appear on the grade report and the official
transcript if withdrawal from the course has not been done by the
date indicated in the sessional dates calendar on the University
Web site.

Students who fail or withdraw from a prerequisite course must
make appropriate adjustments to their course selection for the
following session.

University fees

Tuition, incidental fees and regulations pertaining to refunds are
subject to approval by the Board of Governors of the University
and can be modified without prior notice. University fees are
normally published on the University Web site as of the month of
May at the following address, (www.registrar.uottawa.ca).

Students are responsible for paying tuition fees the moment their
course selection has been approved by the Registration Navigator®
or the Faculty. Payment due dates are indicated in the sessional
dates section of the University Web site at the following address

Tuition fees are refunded if the student officially withdraws from
all courses within the prescribed deadlines (see the sessional dates
calendar). However, the University will retain administrative fees.

Courses in other faculties

In order to obtain a degree from the Faculty of Science, students
must acquire a minimum of credits taken in the following faculties:
Arts, Social Sciences, School of Management and Droit Civil.

The non-science courses followed in other faculties are subject to
the regulations of the Faculty sponsoring these courses.
Registration to courses in other faculties is subject to limited

A Faculty can refuse registration to courses offered by another
Faculty if a student’s academic record is deemed unsatisfactory
(see the Section, Evaluation of academic standing). As a rule,
students who have been required to withdraw from a Faculty are
not allowed to take other courses in that Faculty during the
withdrawal period.

The list of courses offered outside the Faculty of Science found in
this calendar includes non-science compulsory courses and nonscience
electives. This list is not restrictive; for a complete list of
courses, consult the respective faculty calendars.
Minimum number of credits to be obtained at the
University of Ottawa (residency requirements)
Students must obtain a minimum of 30 credits at the University of
Ottawa to receive a baccalaureate (see Section 8b for details).

Off-campus courses

Off-campus courses offered by the University of Ottawa carry the
same credit value as courses offered on campus.

Additional (ADD), out-of-program (HP) and auditing
courses (AUD)

With permission, students can register to courses with the
following designations:

• Out-of-program course (HP): if the course is beyond the
requirements of the program of study. The mark for the course
does not count in the calculation of the grade point average. An
out-of-program course is not applicable in the credit calculation
used in determining loans and bursaries. Students wishing to
follow an out-of-program course (HP), must indicate it to the
Faculty at the time of registration. Students cannot change their
status after the deadline for course changes in a given session.

• Additional course (ADD): if the course is beyond the
requirements of the program of study. The mark does count in
the calculation of the grade point average.
Students wishing to follow an additional course (ADD), must
indicate it to the Faculty at the time of registration. Students
cannot change their status after the deadline for course
changes in a given session.

• Auditing a course (AUD): Students registered as auditors will
not receive credit for the course. They do not have the right to
write examinations, submit assignments, or change their status
after the deadline for course changes in a given session.
Students wishing to audit a course (AUD) must indicate it to
the faculty at the time of registration.

Language of instruction

The second digit in a course code normally indicates the language
of instruction of the course. Courses taught in English are
identified by the digits 1, 2, 3 and 4 while French instruction is
identified by the digits 5, 6, 7 and 8.

Every student registered for a course has the right to take it in the
language used to describe the course in the current Faculty
calendar. This policy is applicable only if the regulations of a
Faculty or school are respected with regards to conditions
necessary for a course to be given.

With the exception of English, lettres françaises and language
courses, every student can submit papers or write examinations in
English or French regardless of the course’s language of

With the exception of particular cases based on the nature of the
course, papers and examinations must be submitted either in
French or English. This requirement is an essential element of
instruction at the University of Ottawa.

The Faculty recognizes that, due to academic requirements,
students may have to read English text for a course taught in
French and vice versa.
OTE: Students can register in a course offered in their second
language if they have adequate knowledge of the language.
Students should see an academic counsellor for more information.

Bilingual courses

If the second digit of a course code is 9 or 0 the course is bilingual,
meaning that, French and English are used equally in the
instruction of the entire course. In a bilingual course, students can
use the language of their choice, but must have a passive oral and
written understanding of the other language.

Bilingual courses do not, in any case, designate a course offered in
alternating languages (one year in French, one year in English).

NOTE: The digits 9 and 0 also identify the following:

i) language courses other than French and English;
ii) individualized studies (no formal lectures given) such as
workshops; laboratories, work terms, clinical rotations,
research and directed studies
iii) thesis and general examinations.

i) Voluntary interruption of studies

1. Students who wish to withdraw from a course in which they
are registered or from their entire program must do so
according to the dates indicated in the sessional dates calendar;
otherwise, they will receive the mark ABS or INC.

2. Students who voluntarily withdraw for the Faculty or
University for seven consecutive sessions and wish to return
must submit a new application for admission and are subject to
the admission requirements in effect at that time.

3. Students who interrupt their studies for six consecutive
sessions or less may pursue their program with no additional
requirement, whether or not they took courses at another
institution during that time, by completing the intent to register
form available either in person or online.

4. Students who withdraw voluntarily from one Faculty of the
University of Ottawa must submit a formal application for
admission in order to register in another Faculty.



To make it easier for undergraduate students to complete their
programs, the Council of Ontario Universities has agreed to the
following principles governing transfer course credit from one
Ontario university to another.

1. Acceptance of transfer credits among Ontario universities shall
be based on the principle that while learning experiences may
vary in terms of content and level of difficulty, they are
essentially equivalent. When possible, acceptance of transfer
should allow for the maximum recognition of previous learning
experience in university-level courses.

2. Any course offered for credit by one Ontario university shall be
accepted for credit by another Ontario university when there is
virtual equivalency in course content and is part of the program
requirements. Notwithstanding, residence requirements are
applicable (see Section 8 b for information concerning the
minimum number of credits to be obtained at the University of


In order to be eligible for the exchange program between the
University of Ottawa and Saint Paul University, the University of
Ottawa student must be admitted to a degree program at the
University of Ottawa and be registered at the University of Ottawa
for the session during which the exchange will occur.

Courses taken at Saint Paul University, which are recognized as
part of the degree requirements, will be credited towards that
degree at the University of Ottawa and will be counted among the
residency requirements. Grades obtained for these courses will be
counted in the grade point average.

Courses that are not recognized as part of the degree requirements
will be considered extracurricular and will not be counted in the
grade point average.

Students must comply with each university’s sessional dates


Students at the University of Ottawa may take courses at Carleton
University without paying additional tuition fees. The following
conditions apply.

1. Only undergraduate students who are admitted to a degree
program at either university and are duly registered and in
good standing (not on probation) may be permitted to enrol in
courses at the other university during a given session.

2. Only courses to be credited as part of the degree requirements
at the student’s home university are accepted.

3. The total number of courses taken by the student at the home
university, and counting toward the student’s degree, must at
all times be greater than the number of courses taken at the
host university. First-year students may take a maximum of
one three-credit course per session at the host university.

4. Courses completed at the host university will not count towards
the student’s residency requirements at the home university.

5. Students must comply with each university’s the sessional
dates calendar.

Recording of course results within the Ottawa-Carleton
exchange program

Results obtained in courses taken within the exchange program
will be recorded on the students official University of Ottawa record
and will count in their grade point average. Results are converted
as follows:

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Students must obtain a letter of permission from their Faculty if
they wish to take one or more courses at another university. Those
courses will be recognized in their program if they complete the
courses with at least the passing mark of the university giving the
course (certain programs can require a mark higher than D).

Permission to take courses at another university is indicated in the
student’s file.

When submitting a request for a letter of permission, students
must have a minimum CGPA of 3.5, and must not be on probation.
Only courses to be credited as part of the degree requirement will
be approved.

Deadlines for requesting a letter of permission are April 15 for the
summer session, August 15 for the fall session and December 15
for the winter session.

Students who are taking courses with a letter of permission at
another university and who have registered for graduation at the
University of Ottawa, must have their official transcript sent to the
Faculty prior to May 15 for spring convocation and prior to
September 15 for fall convocation.

NOTE: Credit will not necessarily be granted for courses taken
outside the University of Ottawa unless a letter of permission has
first been obtained.

Results of courses taken outside the University of Ottawa are not
considered in calculating the cumulative grade point average except
for those courses taken at Carleton University, Saint Paul
University and Dominican College (see the Department of
Philosophy) according to the official agreements.

Also, consult the regulation concerning the minimum number of
credits to be obtained at the University of Ottawa (see section 8b).


Exchange programs are available to students at the University of
Ottawa who are interested in studying at another Canadian
university or abroad for one session or an entire academic year.

For more information on these exchange programs, students must
contact an academic advisor of the Faculty or the International
Office, international exchange programs sector, or consult the
University of Ottawa Web site.

Students must normally take a course load equivalent to full-time
student status at the University of Ottawa (see section 8b).

Passing grade required at a foreign institution

When exchange students obtain a passing grade in a course, or a
group of courses, in a foreign institution with which the University
has an exchange agreement, they will automatically receive the
credits applicable to that course or group of courses. The content
and number of hours of instruction in these courses must
correspond to those of the courses at the University of Ottawa and
are normally determined when the course selection is approved.

These regulations apply only to studies done in accordance with
the agreement on international exchange programs approved by
the University.

Renewal of scholarships for international
exchange programs

In a case where renewal of a scholarship depends on maintaining a
specific grade point average (annual or cumulative), exchange
students who have successfully completed full-time studies at the
host school in the international exchange program will be
considered to have met the conditions for renewal.


1. Advanced standing is granted only for courses taken at the
post-secondary level.

2. Advanced standing granted or credits retained on admission
may be revised when students first register in the Faculty or
when they change programs.

3. Advanced standing is granted only for passed courses that are
deemed equivalent in content and level to the courses offered
at the University of Ottawa, where these courses conform to
the general regulations of the Faculty.

4. Students cannot retain advanced standing for a course followed
at another university if they register for a course that covers
the same material at the University of Ottawa.

5. Students must successfully complete all compulsory courses of
the program for which they do not receive advanced standing.


The University of Ottawa recognizes that learning can occur by
taking university-credit courses (or its equivalent) as well as in
professional experience, self-teaching, non-credited courses,
workplace training and in other situations. Prior Learning
Assessment (PLA) allows students who have acquired knowledge
in a non-traditional manner to receive advanced standing for a
course (specific course code) offered at the University or, in certain
instances, to be granted an exemption.

Any specified advanced standing recognized by a Faculty is done
on behalf of the University and therefore should be recognized by
other faculties.


• To have prior learning recognized and to receive advanced
standing an individual must first be admitted to and register
for a program of studies at the University of Ottawa.

• The request must be submitted during the first study session
as a University of Ottawa student. (The assessment period may
be lengthy. For this reason, it is strongly suggested to submit
the request at the beginning of the first study session.)

• A request for prior-learning recognition applies only to
undergraduate students and courses in the following faculties
and school: Arts, Engineering, Health Sciences, Management,
Science and Social Sciences.

• Only courses scheduled at the University of Ottawa within the
last 24 months can be submitted for prior-learning assessment.

• Advanced-standing credits are awarded strictly for courses
offered at the University of Ottawa and are part of the student’s
program of studies.

• A maximum of 30 credits is granted for prior-learning

• Advanced standing is granted only if the knowledge is equal to
that of the students taking the course.

• Advanced-standing credits appear on an official transcript, but
do not count as University of Ottawa residency requirements
(that is, courses students must follow at the University of
Ottawa itself).

• Credits obtained for prior learning might not be recognized by
the discipline’s licensing body or professional association.

• Should advanced standing not be granted, students can submit
a written appeal of the decision to the dean – or the dean’s
representative – of the school or Faculty offering the course.

The procedures and Request for Prior-learning Recognition form
are available on the University Web site at



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