Policies

There are policies that apply to every member of the School, and some which affect only students of certain programs. It is incumbent upon you, as a student, to make yourself aware of policies that will affect your program of studies; we will do our best to inform you of policies through handbooks, links, and emails.

Please click here to view the School of Public Administration's graduate student handbook. The Graduate Supervision handbook, with sections pertinent to Master’s and PhD programs, is available here.

General Policies

Academic Integrity policy

The University of Victoria Calendar offers examples of what may be considered plagiarism and cheating and explains the consequences of engaging in such actions. Every student should be familiar with the definitions by referring to this section.

Plagiarism and cheating are misrepresentations of your own work in the program. They constitute an ethical breach of conduct and reflect poorly on you as a student and as a professional. The School takes plagiarism and cheating seriously and students who are caught engaging in such practices will be sanctioned. The University policy permits a range of actions up to and including expulsion from the program.

In the School of Public Administration, we include team assignments as a part of many courses. Normally, teamwork is graded as such - one grade is assigned for the team's assignment. But within many courses there are also individual assignments wherein each student is expected to complete the assignment on their own. Those assignments will be described as such and any evidence of copying work, sharing tables or graphs or other forms of plagiarism will be sanctioned.

The minimum penalty for plagiarism or cheating is to repeat the full assignment to demonstrate your capacity to do the work. But if students are caught plagiarizing or cheating on a major assignment or an examination, a failing grade for that course may be assigned. In such a situation, the student's academic progress would be reviewed by the Admissions, Programs and Standards Committee and the minimum sanction would be to repeat the entire course.

If you are in any doubt about the guidelines for an assignment in any course, contact the instructor for clarification. Do not put yourself in a position where you thought collaboration was permitted, when it was not.

It is essential that each student approach their involvement in courses with a high ethical standard. You are responsible for ensuring that you are fully and fairly representing the work you contribute. Your program of studies is only meaningful if you invest the time and energy towards understanding and learning from the materials.

If you are experiencing stress and uncertainty about the time to complete an assignment or the instructions for an assignment, reach out for assistance from your instructor or your teaching assistant, before the assignment is due.

Last updated: 28 January 2019


Ethics approvals for research policy

All research involving human participants must receive approval from the University of Victoria Human Research Ethics Board (UVic HREB). This approval is required both prior to, and during, the recruitment and data collection phases of the study. The mandate of HREB is to ensure that all human research is conducted in accordance with the highest ethical standards and that the public, the researchers, and the University are all protected from harm.

Research Conducted as Part of a Course

Course instructors will ensure that research conducted as part of a course fulfills the university research ethics requirements. For further information, please see the University of Victoria guidelines on course based research that involves human participants.

Research Conducted as Part of a Master's Project or Thesis (598 or 599)

Most Master's projects involve contacting people and obtaining information from them. Many projects include surveys, interviews, focus groups, and other data collection methods which involve people. As the person conducting research, it is your responsibility to navigate the ethics approval process. The guidelines and forms can be found on the UVIC HREB website.

Before commencing any research, students need to inform their clients that they will be seeking ethics approval for their research from the UVic Human Research Ethics Board (HREB).

To assist you with the completion of your application for approval, copies of successful ethics applications are available from the School of Public Administration office.

Applying for an Approval or a Waiver
  1. Read the general guidelines for completing HREB forms and applications.
  2. If your research involves human participants as defined by the HREB, determine whether you will need to submit an Application for Ethical Review or an Application to Request a Waiver from Full Ethical Review.
  3. Inform your clients that you will be applying for ethics approval or for a waiver from the HREB.
  4. Complete the appropriate application form. Run the application by your supervisor to get her/his comments on the application.
  5. Your supervisor will then instruct you to email the completed application form to the School's ethics review officer.
  6. The ethics review officer will ensure the form is completed properly. If no changes are required, the form will be forwarded to the graduate administrative assistant who will arrange for the appropriate signatures and required copies of the application, before sending on to the Office of the VP Research, HREB.
  7. The HREB will notify you, the principal investigator, of its approval. Depending on the volume of applications in process and the number of revisions required, the review process usually takes between two and three weeks from submission to HREB to e-mail notification of approval.

If you have any questions about the approval process, please contact the graduate administrative assistant ().

Last updated: 28 Jan 2019

Continuity of registration

Every student of the Faculty of Graduate Studies (which includes all graduate students in the School of Public Administration) must either register for credit in every term from the time of admission until the requirements of the degree have been met, or register for a temporary withdrawn status, or formally withdraw in accordance with the regulations listed in the Graduate Studies Calendar at this link:

http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/registration/continuing-registration.html


Grading policy

The School's grading policy is based on the policies of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. For further information on the evaluation of student course work and grading policy, please see the Graduate Studies Calendar at the links below.

http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/academic-regulations/grading.html

http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/academic-regulations/evaluation.html

If you have any questions about the policy, please contact your instructor or the Graduate Advisor ().

Co-operative education policies

MADR and MPA students may not enroll in first and second Co-op terms consecutively. Students must successfully complete (B grade or better) all first term courses prior to commencing the first work term and all second term courses prior to commencing the second work term.

DR students can view their program requirements at: http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/programs/dr/program-requirements.html and co-op education information at: http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/programs/dr/co-op.html

PA students can view their program requirements at: http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/programs/padm/program-requirements.html and co-op education information at: http://web.uvic.ca/calendar/grad/programs/padm/co-op.html

Please consult the Public Administration and Dispute Resolution Co-op page for further information – https://www.uvic.ca/coopandcareer/co-op/info-by-program/other-programs/index.php.

Course substitution and exemption policy

The guiding principles of this policy are as follows:

  • Course Substitutions: Students are offered an opportunity to substitute elective courses for certain MPA core courses (see list below) with content similar to courses they have previously taken, if they received a grade of B+ or better in those courses, and completed them in the last 5 years or have recent work-related experience.
  • Course Exemptions: Students may be exempted from MPA core courses and given credit for them if they have received a grade of A- or better in similar graduate courses at another institution in the 5 years before joining the MPA Program and the similar courses were not counted towards any other credential. A maximum of six units (4 courses) of such coursework can be transferred into the MPA Program.
  • Neither substitutions nor exemptions will be permitted for elective courses taken before students joined the program.
  • Students must take the initiative to activate this policy by approaching the graduate advisor or the instructor of a course for which substitution or exemption is sought. An outline of the contents of the previous course may be required.
  • The Graduate Advisor, in consultation with course instructors, will decide if previous courses qualify under this policy.

These principles are consistent with the policies of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and are embodied in the specific course requirements with respect to substitutions and exemptions identified below. Further applications of these principles may arise at the request of the Graduate Advisor or students. Final decisions will be made at the discretion of the Graduate Advisor.

Students with course substitutions and an interest in evaluation could concurrently enroll in the Graduate Certificate in Evaluation, using their elective courses to fulfill the Certificate’s requirements. A separate application is required for the Graduate Certificate in Evaluation Program. The Graduate Advisor will be able to advise on the process

ADMN 502 B

Students with B+ grades or better in statistics courses that included introductory coverage of multiple regression analysis may be permitted to substitute an elective course for ADMN 502B.

ADMN 509

Students with a recent B+ grade or better in undergraduate introductory microeconomics may be required to substitute an alternate course for this requirement.

ADMN 512

Students with B+ grades or better in both introductory financial management and managerial accounting courses are not required to take ADMN 512. Students who choose not to take ADMN 512 must substitute one of ADMN 537, ADMN 544 or ECON 416.

ADMN 551 (Legacy policy: for students who entered the MPA program prior to fall 2015.)

Students with B+ grade or better in an administrative law course may be permitted to substitute an elective course for ADMN 551.

Last updated: 28 Jan 2019

Course sequencing and registration policies

MPA On Campus students may choose to register in one elective during each of their two mandatory co-op work terms.

The MPA On Campus is a full-time program and students are not permitted to hold a full-time job during the academic terms.

Students admitted to the MPA On Campus program may not take core courses from the MPA Online program unless (1) the course is specifically open to students from either MPA On Campus anf MPA Online, or (2) the students have approbal from the Graduate Adviser. 

Program transfer policy

Normally, students may not transfer between the MPA On Campus and MPA Online programs. Exceptons may be made by the Graduate Adviser for documented medical/health reasons. 

Course substitution and exemption policy

The guiding principles of this policy are as follows:

  • Course Substitutions: Students are offered an opportunity to substitute elective courses for certain MPA core courses (see list below) with content similar to courses they have previously taken, if they received a grade of B+ or better in those courses, and completed them in the last 5 years or have recent work-related experience.
  • Course Exemptions: Students may be exempted from MPA core courses and given credit for them if they have received a grade of A- or better in similar graduate courses at another institution in the 5 years before joining the MPA Program and the similar courses were not counted towards any other credential. A maximum of six units (4 courses) of such coursework can be transferred into the MPA Program.
  • Neither substitutions nor exemptions will be permitted for elective courses taken before students joined the program.
  • Students must take the initiative to activate this policy by approaching the graduate advisor or the instructor of a course for which substitution or exemption is sought. An outline of the contents of the previous course may be required.
  • The Graduate Advisor, in consultation with course instructors, will decide if previous courses qualify under this policy.

These principles are consistent with the policies of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and are embodied in the specific course requirements with respect to substitutions and exemptions identified below. Further applications of these principles may arise at the request of the Graduate Advisor or students. Final decisions will be made at the discretion of the Graduate Advisor.

Students with course substitutions and an interest in evaluation could concurrently enroll in the Graduate Certificate in Evaluation, using their elective courses to fulfill the Certificate’s requirements. A separate application is required for the Graduate Certificate in Evaluation Program. The Graduate Advisor will be able to advise on the process.

ADMN 509

Students with B+ grades or better in statistics courses that included introductory coverage of multiple regression analysis may be permitted to substitute an elective course for ADMN 502B.

ADMN 512

Students with a recent B+ grade or better in undergraduate introductory microeconomics may be required to substitute an alternate course for this requirement.

ADMN 551

Students with a recent B+ grade or better in undergraduate introductory microeconomics may be required to substitute an alternate course for this requirement.

Last updated: 28 Jan 2019

Course sequencing and registration policies

MPA Online students are expected to complete all available core courses before registering in MPA elective courses.

The MPA Online program is a part-time program. Students can register in no more than two courses per term. If an exception is required, please contact the Graduate Advisor.


Students admitted to the MPA Online program may not take core courses from the MPA On Campus program unless (1) the course is specifically open to students from either MPA Online and MPA On Campus, or (2) the student has approval from the Graduate Adviser.


Normally, students may not transfer between the MPA Online and MPA On Campus programs. Exceptions may be made by the Graduate Adviser for documented medical/ health reasons.