Queen's is Canada's leading university in the field of Employment Relations. Here you will find some of our most frequently asked questions. If you have a question not covered here, please email us at mir.program@queensu.ca or call 613-533-6000 x77319.

Applying from outside Canada? Read our FAQs for International Students


About the Full-Time MIR Program

What is the MIR Program?

The MIR Program is a one-year, full-time course based Masters. The majority of applicants are recent university graduates who are looking to develop their skills and knowledge in Labour Relations and Human Resource Management.

Our best students possess the same skills and characteristics that make for success in the working world. Conscientious self-starters, those with good time management skills, a comfort (or willingness to become comfortable) with public speaking, openness to challenging ideas and perspectives, and strong teamwork skills are key to maximizing the MIR experience. Candidates willing to seek-out and pursue opportunities to grow academically, professionally and personally, as well as those who build positive connections with colleagues, faculty and alumni will get the most out of the program.

What is the difference between a Master of Industrial Relations degree and an HRPA/CHRP (Certified Human Resource Professional) designation?

The main difference between a MIR degree and an HRPA designation is that one is a university degree and the other is a professional development certification. While both are recognized within the industry, the long-term career goals of those with only a CHRP designation tend to diverge from those with a MIR or both.


In fact, the HRPA now has an Alternate Route to meeting their coursework requirements for obtaining your HRPA Designation. ​The Alternate Route is intended for individuals with advanced HR education.  The requirements necessary to write the HRPA Comprehensive Knowledge Exam (CKE 1 or CKE 2) can now simply be met with your Master of Industrial Relations degree.

For full details on how to apply a MIR degree towards a HRPA designation, please see the HRPA Alternate Route page. 


May I begin my studies in January or May?

No.  The MIR program has just one intake period (each September). Core courses offered in the first term provide a foundation for winter and spring term courses.

Do you offer a PhD in Industrial Relations or will my MIR degree to lead to one?

No.  At Queen's University we offer the academic program leading to the degree, Master of Industrial Relations. The program is heavily course based, and thus does not automatically lead students into a PhD program, after completion. Most students in the Master of Industrial Relations program are focused on moving directly into their career path after obtaining their degree.

What important dates do I need to know?

Admission Qualifications

I have some work experience. Will this positively affect my application?

If you have substantial and relevant employment experience, you may indicate this on your online application. Applicants with substantive work experience in the field should strongly consider the PMIR program designed for working professionals. Admission to the MIR and PMIR programs is based on the criteria that is required. All applicants are measured on the same factors for admission. Work experience can never be substituted for an academic standing that does not meet the University's minimum qualifications for admission to the School of Graduate Studies.

I have a post graduate certificate/diploma (CHRP, HRPAO, college). Will you consider this education when reviewing my admissions file?

While applicants who have completed diploma/certificate programs must include this information in the application, only the final two years of study in your undergraduate degree will be used to calculate your competitive placement in the applicant pool.

I am very interested in enrolling in the MIR program but do not have a "B+" standing in my last two years of study. How can I improve my eligibility for admission?

Candidates who do not have a minimum upper second class standing in their last two years of university study are not likely to be successful in their application. On the rare occasion, we will consider students who do not need the criteria should we believe that they will succeed in the program, however they would be required to meet stringent academic requirements during their first term with us.

Individuals who do not meet the minimum academic qualification for admission can increase their competitiveness for acceptance by having completed at least one additional year of post-degree studies, at the senior undergraduate or graduate level, preferably with a minimum "A-" (or 80 percent or 3.6 GPA) average standing.

I have a three-year general bachelor's degree. Can I enroll as a qualifying student to complete the MIR program?

Admission candidates who do not have a four-year degree must complete an additional year of full-time study at the senior undergraduate or graduate level, earning a minimum upper second class standing to be considered competitive for admission. Post-degree studies can be completed at any accredited post-secondary institution recognized by the Association of Universities and Colleges and Canada (AUCC).

I am a Quebec resident with CEGEP and a 3 year degree. Does that qualify for equivalency to a 4 year Honours degree?

Yes, This education is equivalent of a 4 year degree.  One year at CEGEP is normally considered equivalent of one year (usually, the entry year) for Bachelor’s degree in Quebec. The academic qualifications for acceptance must still be met.

I am currently in my fourth year of an undergraduate program, therefore, my transcript shows grades for the first three years and some (or none) of my fourth-year courses. How will you calculate my average?

When submitting their application, most applicants are still enrolled in their final year of an undergraduate or graduate degree program. The Admissions Committee will then look at the candidate's last two years of full-time studies and their first term grades (when available) in their current year of study.

I have applied for admission to the MIR program and another graduate program at Queen's University. Do I need to submit two sets of transcripts and reference letters?

Yes. You must submit two copies of transcripts for each application that you submit to Queen's University. In addition, you must submit new letters of reference for each application. The Graduate School does not share application documents among departments.

I am a Queen’s undergraduate student. Will you get copies of my transcripts directly from the Registrar’s office or do I have to make arrangements to have transcripts sent to you?

Students who previously attended or currently attend Queen’s University will no longer be required to submit official transcripts from Queen’s University when applying for graduate study. When applicants indicate that previous study was undertaken at Queen’s University, a copy of their internal record and unofficial transcript will be printed and added to their application file by program staff.

Grades in my Master’s program are much better than at the undergraduate level. Can I be accepted to the program based on my Master’s degree grades only?

Grades in your Master’s degree program will be considered, in addition to your grades in your final two years of undergraduate study. The improvement in your grades will be noted positively.

The Application Process

When is the deadline to apply?

The program has a rolling admissions process, until the program has reached capacity. However, in order to be considered for any internal Queen’s awards or scholarships (as well as OGS), applicants must apply by March 1st of the year for which they hope to begin the program. We do however, accept applications after this time.

I am not sure what I should be putting in my “Research Interests”. Do I need to complete this section of the application form?

This section provides an opportunity for you to tell us about your specific interests. You do not need to complete this section, if you are interested in labour relations and human resources management more generally. You may enter “To be determined” and proceed to the next question.

I have many labour relations and human resource management interests. How many should I list in this section?

Remember this is a professional, not a research, graduate degree program. Sharing your general interests with us helps us to learn more about you and collectively may guide us in planning optional courses in future.

I am still completing my undergraduate degree program and do not have any professional work experience. How do I complete the section that asks for Professional Work Experience?

You may type “Not applicable” and proceed to the next question.

In the resume section, should I include all of my summer work experiences? I have had several jobs but none of them have been in relevant fields. Should I also include my volunteer experience?

In this section, you should provide us with information about your recent employment and volunteer experience (i.e. paid and unpaid work).  We are especially interested in knowing about summer or part-time employment, volunteer work and/or student leadership activities during the last three to four years (i.e. since university entrance).

How important is professional experience to winning a place in the program?

Academic standing is the primary criterion in our assessment of MIR candidates. Other activities, including work experience, volunteer roles and leadership activities, as well as the information provided by your referees help us to learn more about your strengths and capabilities. While not determinative to our admission, they are important as supportive documents.

How and when will my references be contacted?

The Graduate School will contact your references by email (if you provide this information on your on-line application) immediately following the formal submission of your application. They will be invited to fill out an online form as your reference. They may also include a letter of reference as an attachment.

May I provide more than two references?

Yes. You may provide the contact information for a third reference but you only need two references.

Please advise your referees to check their email (“IN” and “JUNK” mailboxes) for the electronic reference form. By submitting your application early, your referees are more likely to submit their letters before the application deadline. This means that your application will receive earlier consideration.

My referees are having trouble completing the on-line reference form. Can you help?

For assistance in completing the reference form, please ask them to contact the Queen’s Graduate School by email at grad.studies@queensu.ca or by telephone at 613.533.6100.

What should I include in the statement of interest? How long should it be?

The statement of interest provides an opportunity for you to tell us more about yourself and in particular your reasons for wanting to enroll in the Queen’s MIR program, in a succinct manner. 

What do I do if I have to submit more information than there is space provided in the on-line application?

Only in exceptional circumstances should you provide us with additional written information. In that case, you may send additional information to us at mir.program@queensu.ca. Please include your name or application number on each page.

Can I send my supporting documents before I submit my application?

Yes, you may send the School of Graduate Studies your transcripts and other supporting document prior to submitting the on-line application form. We will match them with your application when we receive your application. Please include your application number (if you have it) on all supporting documents.

What additional documents do I send and where do I send them?

In addition to the application form, you must submit:

  1. two copies of your transcript from each university you have attended. You may, but are not required to, submit transcripts from diploma, certificate or other training programs. While you may have uploaded the transcripts to the online system, the Graduate School still requires hard copies of the transcript in order to consider the file complete.
  2. two references, normally from professors with whom you have studied.

These documents should be mailed to:

School of Graduate Studies
Gordon Hall, Room 425
Queen's University
Kingston, On
K7L 3N6

I would like to apply online but my professors would like to send their reference in hard copy format. Do you accept references in letter format?

From the online application site, you may print off the standard reference form (as a .pdf) for your references to complete and submit to the address posted above. Referees may choose to include a letter with their reference form.

When can we expect notice of an admission decision?

Our goal is to provide notice of decision to MIR admission candidates (who have submitted a completed application) by April; however, we typically continue to consider applications beyond April and therefore notice of decisions may occur after April.

I have received an offer from the program. Is there a deposit required or a deadline to respond?

Congratulations! We will be anxiously waiting your response, after the offer has been made. During the time that you are made the offer and you eventually join the program, we will want to share information with you on the upcoming year and ensure you are properly prepared to join us. Of course, we can only do that if you have accepted our offer.
There is no hard deadline for acceptance of our offer, but a long delay in providing us with one may lead to eventual administrative delays in registrations or financial set up for any offered awards.
The sooner you can provide us with your firm decision, the better all around.

The program does not require a deposit when accepting an offer.

How will I know when you have received my transcripts and reference letters?

You may check the on-line application service to see what documents we have received, noting that it may take us a few days to update your status on-line at peak times in the winter months. You will receive an email from the system confirming each time a document is received.

Deferment and Reapplication

I have been accepted to the program but am unable to take your admission offer. Can I defer my admission to the next academic year?

Normally, The School of Graduate Studies does not defer admission offers. Candidates who do not accept an admission offer may reapply for admission at a future date. During the Covid 19 crisis, we are trying to be flexible on this issue and requests for deferment are considered on a case by case basis.

We retain all applications on file for one year. If reapplying for admission within one year of their previous application, candidates may need only to submit a new application and application fee. On receipt of a new application, we will bring transcripts and letters of reference forward to the new application.

Candidates reapplying for admission after one year must submit new transcripts and letters of reference and complete a new application and pay the application fee.

I declined your admission offer last year. If I reapply for admission, will I be accepted?

Candidates who receive an admission offer are normally competitive for admission in a subsequent year, although there can be no guarantee of admission in a future year. Some admission candidates may improve their competitive status, depending on how they spend the intervening period.

My application was refused last year, even though I met your admission requirement. Can I apply again this year? What are my chances of my being accepted this year?

You are welcome to reapply for admission. Before reapplying for admission, it is useful to consider whether you are able to provide new or additional information that will strengthen your application and improve your eligibility for admission. For example, if you previously applied while in your final year of another program and did very well in your final term, having your final grades for the first round review may be significant to improving your competitiveness for admission.

The size and strength of the applicant pool means that we must refuse many qualified candidates. If you just meet the minimum qualifications, were previously refused admission and have no new information to strengthen your candidacy for admission, it is less likely that we will make you an admission offer.

When making application, please try to include on the application form all the information that you think relevant to members of the Admissions Committee in considering your candidacy.

Program Questions

I have previously taken courses that are replicated in the MIR program. Will I get credits for these?

If you accept our offer to join the MIR, you are welcome to appeal to the instructor of the course from which you would like to be exempt, once you are on campus. You will be required to take a substitute course for any course from which you have been exempt.  In other words, the requirement to take 33 Queen’s credits in order to obtain your Master of Industrial Relations will still be required.

Where will my classes take place?

The MIR program generally utilizes Rooms 137, 145 and the associated breakout rooms in Robert Sutherland Hall, for all of the on campus in class sessions. We also have a private student lounge and kitchen for your exclusive use while on campus.

Where will I be able to obtain textbooks or course packs? 

Textbooks are not included in the tuition fees for the program. Textbook requirements will be listed in the course syllabi. Should you be required to obtain a textbook prior to the start of class, you will be informed of this in ample time and information on where it can be obtained will be provided to you. Most textbooks are available at the Campus Bookstore.
Courseware packs or case studies that are distributed by the program.

What does a typical weekly schedule for the program look like?

I will require academic accommodation supports? What is the process for getting these in place?

We are committed to ensuring our students are set up for success in our programs. Please make the department aware of any special learning needs you may have. For further information, please see Queen’ Student Wellness 

Program Fees

What is the tuition fee for the MIR program?

Students in the full time MIR program pay tuition based on their program registration. Full time one year students pay a flat fee for the program that is spread out over 3 terms of equal payments. It is not based on the number of courses taken during the term. Students in the part time three year Professional program pay per course.

For current fees, you will find details under the Employment Relations tab here: Graduate Fee Information.. Students will also be assessed fees for student services on campus.

Financial Support

Am I eligible for financial support?

A limited number of entrance scholarships will be awarded to domestic applicants. These scholarships vary in amount and are generally awarded on academic excellence. You will find more information on awards at the School of Graduate Studies website.

Applicants should note that as a professional Master’s degree, guaranteed funding is limited.

How do I apply for financial support?

A separate application for scholarships is not required. All qualified candidates who submit a completed admissions application will be automatically considered for an entrance scholarship or other endowed awards held by the MIR program.

Please note that scholarships and awards are competitive and only students who meet or exceed a A- average in the final 3 years of study tend to be considered.

We always recommend seeking outside funding opportunities.

Are bursaries available from Queen’s University? How do I apply for bursary support?

Non-repayable grants are available to all Queen’s students who have a demonstrated financial need. This is based on, but not restricted to, the following factors: family income, number of dependents in the family, applicant’s assets (including savings), the full cost of the program of studies, books and supplies; and basic living costs.

Generally, bursary recipients are also assessing other forms of assistance such as government loans or a personal student loan or line of credit. Further information and application form is available on the Office of the University Registrar's website.

Will indicating financial need on my application jeopardize my chances for admission to the MIR program?

No, not at all.

Living in Kingston

Is there on campus residence housing for me when I join the program?

There are limited residence accommodations for graduate level students at Queen’s as they are mainly reserved for undergraduate students. See Residence Services for more information.Kingston’s rental market is extremely competitive, most graduate students tend to look for housing beyond the “University District”, but still within walking distance. While there are many resources for finding off-campus housing, we recommend starting here or view accommodations available through Sabbatical homes.

95% of full-time students will be finished classes by the end of June. We recommend arranging for a 8-10 month lease. Our summer term will be on a very non-traditional schedule and some students opt to stay in Residence for May and June, or take advantage of some of the local B & Bs, hotels, or short term rentals.

I want to use my car when I come to Kingston. What is the parking like on campus?

Parking on Queen’s campus is extremely limited and costly. The parking lots are generally for permit holders only, with some spaces available for hourly parking. There is also street parking available but it too is usually limited. We recommend using the Kingston Transit system, cycling or walking, for most full time students