6. General postgraduate degree regulations


All graduate students must maintain satisfactory performance in order to continue in program and register for each new term. This requires maintaining an overall GPA of 3.0 or better. Any student whose cumulative GPA falls below 3.0, or who receives a grade of D or F in any required course, is not in good standing and may be required to withdraw. Students in this circumstance are not eligible to continue in their program until the matter has been resolved. Normally a student in this circumstance will be required to withdraw or will be placed on academic probation. Academic probation requires a detailed plan to remedy the student’s academic performance, which is developed by the GAU in consultation with the Dean of Graduate Studies. Where the unsatisfactory performance is due to a grade in a single course, a student may petition the SGS to repeat the course or to take a single course to replace it. Where the Dean, in consultation with the GAU, approves this petition, the mark in the repeated or replaced course will be substituted for the grade originally obtained. 

In the calculation of student performance and grade point average, the following regulations apply: 

  • Graduate credit is provided for required courses for which a grade of C or better is obtained. 
  • A full year course is assigned twice the weight of a term course.  
  • Seminar courses are sometimes required for the degree but no letter grade is assigned. Such courses receive a CREDIT on the transcript. 
  • A grade of INC (Incomplete) can be recorded only on the basis of illness (supported by medical evidence), compassionate grounds, or other exceptional circumstance with the approval of the SGS. 
  • INC grades are automatically converted to F at the end of the following term unless alternative arrangements are made to the satisfaction of the SGS. 
  • If a course extends beyond a single term, a grade of INP (In Progress) may be used until the course is complete.

    In the event that circumstances beyond the control of the student prevent them from continuing their program, the student may apply for a leave of absence. If granted, a leave of absence is a period of time during which the student is not required to register, no fees are assessed, and the time granted is not counted toward the maximum time period permitted for degree completion. A leave of absence must meet eligibility criteria (see the Leave of Absence Policy in the Graduate Manual), and can be granted only by the School of Graduate Studies. The request for a leave is first made to the Director of Graduate Studies of the student's GAU after consultation with the supervisor(s). The Director will then forward the request to the Dean of Graduate Studies who will decide if the leave is to be granted. A student may normally apply for only one leave of absence during a degree program. Normally a leave of absence will not exceed 12 months.


    On request, a graduate student may be granted maternity/paternity/parental leave.  Such leaves will be for the period of time specified by the student at the time of the request and will not normally exceed one year. A student may apply for a maternity/paternity/parental leave more than once. During the period of maternity/paternity/parental leave, students remain in good academic standing in their graduate program and are not required to pay graduate fees to the University

    Any UNB awards (e.g., GRA, GTA, DTA, Magee Third-Century Merit Award, etc.) held by the student at the time of the request, and which otherwise would have continued during the period of the maternity/paternity/parental leave, will be deferred in full until the student returns from their leave.

    Deferral of financial support provided indirectly through the university (e.g., RA funding from a supervisor’s grant or contract) must be negotiated between the student and the supervisor.  Because of the nature of this funding, any deferral provisions would be at the discretion of the grant or contract holder and the external agency providing the funds.

    Deferral of awards to students from agencies external to the University (e.g., NSERC and SSHRC graduate fellowships) are governed by the deferral regulations of the awarding agency.


    Graduate students in a thesis-based program, or those studying in a course-based program on a full-time basis (i.e., registered in 3 or more courses per term), may engage in additional employment for up to 520 hours annually, which translates to an average of 10-hours per week across the year. The latter provision helps to protect students’ time to work on their degree programs and avoid undue delays in degree completion. Employment can take the form of Graduate Student Teaching Assistantships (GSTA), Graduate Student Research Assistantships (GSRA), or stipend teaching. Employment may also take the form of paid work in other university offices or departments (e.g., work study, libraries, campus security, etc.). In all cases, and between all forms of employment combined, students are not permitted to work more than an average of 10-hours per work across the year.

    Graduate Student Teaching Assistantship (GSTA) appointments are subject to the same average 10-hour/week regulation. If a full-time graduate student has more than one GSTA appointment, the cumulative hours of employment cannot exceed the average 10-hour weekly limit. GSTA appointments are governed by a collective agreement with the Union of Graduate Student Workers (PSAC-UGSW), the terms of which must be adhered to and can be found on the Human Resources website.

Graduate Student Research Assistantship (GSRA) appointments are subject to the same hourly work restrictions and the same collective agreement governing GSTA appointments.

Graduate students may be engaged in stipend teaching, which is subject to the same hourly work restrictions as other appointments (10-hours per week on average). Stipend teaching appointments are governed by the collective agreement on Contract Academic Employees (AUNBT-CAE) (//www.unb.ca/hr/employeeagreements). Responsibility for approving stipend teaching appointments for graduate students lies with the SGS. Students being considered for stipend teaching must complete the form, Part Time Employment of Graduate Students. This form must be signed by the student, Supervisor, Director of Graduate Studies, and then Department Chair and then forwarded to the SGS for final consideration and approval.

For additional information on employment opportunities and regulations consult the graduate employment section of our website.


In order to facilitate extracurricular research and professional internship opportunities for graduate students, the SGS has created the following guidelines for such internships that are not part of the graduate programme credential:
•    Consistent with the broader guidelines above, full-time graduate students are permitted outside employment for up to 520 hours per year (i.e., 10-hours per week on average) inclusive of any continuing internal employment in the form of GSTA/GSRA or stipend teaching appointments.
•    Remuneration shall be a matter of agreement between the intern and the employer.
•    Each graduate student intern must have the written approval of their supervisor(s) and the Director of Graduate Studies in the GAU with a copy of the signed approval forwarded to the SGS. Where no supervisor has been appointed, the Director of Graduate Studies in the Graduate Academic Unit (GAU) must sign approval.
•    Subject to the approval of the registrar’s office, the internship will be included on the transcript.
•    The length of an internship may vary. When a graduate student’s internship employment exceeds 520 hours per year they must transfer to part-time status in the School of Graduate Studies.