Cost-Free Completion

Effective SU21, Graduate students who exceed their program time limit will be evaluated for a cost-free term of completion. The Faculty of Graduate Studies will implement this provision as follows:

  1. The evaluation for a cost-free completion term will be automatic; there is no new application process.
  2. Doctoral or master's degree students who are out of time must first follow the normal petition process for a program time extension and this evaluation will take place upon completion. Petition forms and information can be found here: FGS Petitions.
  3. Cost-free means that tuition, registration fee, and interest charges for that final term will be credited on the student account.
  4. Any outstanding balance on the student account left after these credits are applied must be paid.
  5. Students who complete under or at the program time limit are excluded from this provision, but they will still be evaluated for the usual tuition refund of 100%, 80%, and 40% according to the dates posted here: FGS Important Dates.

The following restrictions apply:

  1. The provision includes all graduate students except for graduate diplomas, Schulich Masters students and Osgoode Professional Development Masters students.
  2. Any students who withdrew prior to WI20 are considered outside the pandemic timeframe and therefore not eligible.
  3. MES student completions are not normally processed by FGS; therefore, MES students should connect with their program office to inquire about completion tuition refunds.


Graduate students have the right to choose to hold a thesis or dissertation defence in an electronically mediated, audio/visual, online format (via Zoom) or to defer the defence with no penalty until such time as the university recommends a return to in-person formats for classes and other program requirements. Consult with your supervisor, supervisory committee, and Graduate Program Assistant via email. GPAs can then convey this information to FGS.

Please consult our comprehensive guide to scheduling Zoom defences.

If the external examiner is unable to participate in an electronically mediated defence, then the defence must be cancelled and rescheduled when the university recommends a return to in-person formats for classes and other program requirements. To convey this information to FGS, consult:

  • Nadia D'Angelo ( (Faculty of Fine Arts, Faculty of Education, Glendon, Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies except Professional Programs)
  • Ebrahim Narimani ( (Faculty of Environmental Studies, Faculty of Health, Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies Professional Programs, Lassonde School of Engineering, Osgoode Hall Law School, Schulich School of Business, Faculty of Science)

Graduate students who do not yet have defence dates can book online defences by emailing their supervisor, supervisory committee members, and Graduate Program Assistant to request to book a defence in this electronically mediated format. Information and relevant forms, including the "Recommendation for Oral Exam" form can be found at:

Please note that the graduate regulation prohibiting audio-taping or videotaping oral exams remains in place for defences conducted online (see Use of Audio-Visual Equipment at Oral Exams):

Comprehensive/Qualifying Examinations


Please contact your Graduate Program Assistant for information about comprehensive/qualifying examinations.

Course Extensions

Any student can ask for a course extension (an “incomplete”), negotiating a new deadline within the subsequent term. To apply, go to Course Transaction Form (.pdf)

Pass/Fail Grading

Senate Executive has enabled graduate students to request a Pass/Fail grading scheme in courses taken and ending in W20 - however the deadline is now passed.
Important note: Currently the Nurse Practitioner (PHCNP) MScN program is excepted. Students in the Osgoode Professional Development program must consult their GPD for the process to opt for P/F in OPD courses.

Can I change my mind about P/F in future?

Yes. A request to change from Pass/Fail to Graded Notification exists here:

If you decide to opt back out of P/F, including those students who took a course extension, please use the form, above, but also contact the FGS Associate Director, Graduate Student Affairs, Anne Stebbins,, so that FGS can ensure manually that the P/F is changed to the evaluated course grade.


Convocation ceremonies have been moved to an online ceremony. Please see the June 2021 Convocation update.