Miscellaneous Information

Faculty-Graduate Seminars

The Department holds faculty-graduate seminars on a regular basis and encourages the various sub-fields to organize seminars, lectures, workshops, and/or discussions of the literature that are open to all interested students and faculty. Consult the department website regularly for announcements for these events.


Faculty-Graduate Discussion of the Program

At least once a year, usually in May, there is a general discussion of the operation of the Graduate Program to which all faculty and graduate students are invited.


Application for Graduation

Every candidate for a degree is responsible for making their own formal and timely application for graduation. Please consult the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website for further information.


Graduate Student Publications

The department encourages graduate students to publish their research, and will assist wherever possible.  Assistance may include:  informing new graduate students (in seminar courses and other for) that publication of research papers is a realistic option; discussing publication possibilities when helping graduate students to conceptualize their arguments for papers, and when providing feedback on papers; and circulating ‘calls for submissions’ to journals, conferences, or edited volumes among graduate students who are conducting relevant research.  The department will cover photocopying and mailing costs for materials submitted by graduate students to journals, publishers, or conferences.  The Head of the department will circulate news of graduate student publications, via special memo if necessary, and will keep a file of published graduate student work when graduate students are willing to provide copies.


Graduate Students Travel Fund

Graduate students are eligible for the Graduate Student Travel Fund from the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies only once per degree program. The Travel Fund provides one-time travel support to a maximum of $500 per graduate student who presents a paper or poster at an official conference or symposium (student workshops are ineligible). Travel expenses may be reimbursed directly to students or to faculty supervisors if they advanced funds for their students’ travel. Any eligible travel expenses incurred while enrolled full-time in a degree program are eligible for the Travel Fund and may be submitted at any time to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

Reimbursements will only be made after travel is completed. It is important that the application includes confirmation that the paper has been accepted at the time of submission, whenever possible.  No payments can be released without proof of acceptance. Eligible expenses are: travel – economy airfare prices, accommodation, conference registration, meals (per diem rate of $40/day or actual receipts).  Original receipts are required for reimbursement.

Senior doctoral students are also eligible for travel grants from the Canadian Political Science Association (CPSA) to present papers at the annual meeting of the Association.  However, to be eligible, students must have been members of CPSA for two years prior to application.  Doctoral students should thus consider joining the Association early in their studies.

Please note that no funds are available retroactively for a previously attended conference.

Travel assistance may also available from the Department for graduate students presenting work at professional conferences. Details each year on how to apply will be provided to students.


Annual Statistics

The Department will make available annual statistics on the number of applications, acceptances, funding rates, attrition, and average time in the program for MA and PhD programs.  It will provide a breakdown by gender to the extent that so doing is consistent with maintaining student anonymity.  (Otherwise, multi-year trends will be reported.)


Professional Development Workshops and Teaching Instruction

Each year the Department offers professional development workshops for graduate students on areas such as Teaching Assistantships, finishing the M.A. in one year, field research, grant applications, and job market strategies. Announcements will be made in advance of each event, and students should consult the Department website.

Graduate students are also encouraged to take part in the teaching instruction and resources provided by the Center for Teaching Learning and Technology.  Students are also encouraged to consult the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website for information on workshops.


Supervision and Mentoring

Faculty should strive for the highest professional standards of fairness, accessibility, responsiveness, consistency, etc. in all graduate supervision and mentoring.  To this end, the faculty has a responsibility to be familiar with the key publications pertaining to graduate supervision.  These include the Departmental Graduate Handbook and publications of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

The Department adheres to Policy 85 on Scholarly Integrity, which states:

The University is committed to providing an environment that supports the best research and scholarly practices and that fosters UBC Persons’ abilities to act honestly, accountably, openly and fairly in the search for and dissemination of knowledge. The University community has always recognized the necessity for and importance of maintaining the highest ethical standards in the conduct of Scholarly Activities, and all UBC Persons are expected to uphold these standards. UBC Persons are personally and directly responsible for the intellectual and ethical quality of their work.


Appeal of Grades

According to University procedure, appeals of grades must be made within four weeks after the announcement of final results.  The Head should select a qualified member of the faculty to review the grade.  The identity of the reviewer should be confidential to both the instructor whose grade is being appealed and the student.  If possible, the identity of the student should be protected from the reviewer.  To facilitate a fair review, the reviewer must have access to relevant course materials and the instructor’s comments, and be appraised in writing of the basis for the student’s disagreement with the grade.  The reviewer should not be appraised of the instructor’s original grade.  Based on the reviewer’s assessment, and, if appropriate, after separate consultation with student and the instructor, the Head shall make a determination to raise, lower, or leave unchanged the grade.



Plagiarism is intellectual theft. It occurs when an individual submits or presents the oral or written work of another person as his or her own. This applies to draft work and oral presentations as well as to final submissions. Failing to properly cite the work of another also constitutes plagiarism, even if it is accidental.

According to Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies procedures, plagiarism by graduate students will be reported to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. For complete details on the process and disciplinary procedures, download the document  Dealing with Plagiarism by Graduate Students, or go to Dealing with Plagiarism in the Policies and Procedures section of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.