Funding Policy

Students are considered for financial assistance at the time of admission. An offer of assistance is made as part of the admission package. Any limits placed on your funding at admission supersede the general guidelines posted below.

It is expected that all SSHRC-eligible students will apply for SSHRC funding. The department offers mentorship for these applications.

All appointments for graduate students are regulated by the collective agreement for graduate students. Please review this document to acquaint yourself with your rights and responsibilities. It can be found here.

Eligibility for funding, and continuation of funding, is subject to the following conditions:

  • Needs and resources of the Department
  • Satisfactory academic progress (including but not limited to satisfactory GPA, timely completion of courses, successful completion of candidacy exams, etc)
  • Performance evaluations, including student evaluations, supervisory reports, and assistantship supervisor evaluations

When possible, MA students may be funded for 1 year.

When possible, PhD students will be funded for four years. Further funding is subject to the needs of the department and that year's budget.

The funding year refers to September 1st through April 30th. There are limited intersession teaching appointments available, and they are not guaranteed. You are responsible for budgeting to pay your spring/summer tuition as necessary.

Students who considered to be not in good standing for funding will be required to meet with the Associate Chair, Graduate, where a performance improvement plan may be put in place. The department reserves the right to suspend or terminate funding.

All graduate assistantships are paid bi-weekly directly into your bank account. The University of Alberta requires all students to enroll in direct deposit, using your Bear Tracks account. Please note that tuition deductions may occur if you have outstanding fees on your account. See Tuition and Fees for more information.

Note: All students are responsible for paying their own tuition and fees. We do not offer tuition assistance in addition to an academic appointment.

Office Policy

The Department will endeavour to provide as many students with offices as possible. There are a limited number of spaces available, and the assignments are prioritized as follows:

1. PhD students
2. MA students with teaching positions
3. MA students with research assistant positions

MA students who are not academically employed by the Department are encouraged to use Room 246, a large drop-in study space for MLCS graduate students only. Contact Jo Bradley at mlcs@ualberta.ca for more information and access.

If you are assigned an office space, you are responsible for the knowledge of and attention to the following policies:

  • The Department reserves the right to ask you to vacate or move your office at any time. We try to limit moves as much as possible, but with limited space it may become necessary. You are not guaranteed the same office for the length of your degree nor are you guaranteed office space.
  • It is impermissible to live in your office or to use your office for purposes not affiliated with your work as a graduate student or instructor. Anyone found to be living in their office will have their office privileges revoked. This includes moving in your household or belongings over the summer or at any other time. 
  • We occupy a historic building on campus. Please respect your office space and do not vandalize or mistreat it. Please ensure you do not leave food out and that you are emptying your recycling bin regularly, as this will not be done by the janitorial service.

Failure of a Comprehensive Exam Policy

If you receive one or more marks of fail from any member of your supervisory committee, you will be invited to a meeting with your supervisor, one committee member, and the Associate Chair, Graduate. At this time you will be provided with the option to retake the failed exam(s) with a different question (from the original nine) within a period of 1 week. Alternatively, you may leave the program with an MA (at the discretion of the Associate Chair, Graduate) or withdraw from the program at this time. Should you receive a mark of fail on any of the rewrite(s) from one or more examiners then at the discretion of the Associate Chair, Graduate you will either be offered the possibility of an MA degree or be asked to exit the program.