Undergraduate Frequently Asked Questions

The following FAQs are specific to the Geography Program.

Admission to 400 level seminars/courses – Requirement to complete an Honours degree:

GPHY 401/3.0; GPHY 402/3.0; GPHY 403/3.0: Students in a BA (Honours) program must be in Level 4 AND have a GPA of 2.60 in 24.0 units in Geography AND be registered in a GPHY Major or Medial [Arts] Plan, to be eligible for registration in these seminars.

GPHY 415/6.0: Students in a BSC (Honours) program must be in Level 4 AND have completed 6.0 units from MATH or STAT at the 100 level or above AND 6.0 units from CHEM or PHYS at the 100 level or above AND a GPA of 1.90 in 30.0 units from Geography AND be registered in a GPHY Major [Science] or EGPY Specialization Plan.

These honours seminars are a core requirement for an honours degree in Geography. Students without the stated prerequisite will not be allowed to register for these seminars. No exceptions. If you need academic advice, please contact the Associate Head – Undergraduate Program, Dr. Scott Lamoureux.

Reminder: GPA requirements for Honours Degrees, see section 16.1 in the following document:

Academic Regulations

I am trying to decide whether to enhance my undergraduate program with the Certificate in Geographic Information Science. What are the benefits?

Consists of 30.0 units, the Certificate is based on the concept of a minor concentration in Arts and Science. However, being offered in the form of a Certificate rather than a level of concentration, it is open to students in a range of concentrations and degree programs. If you choose to pursue the Certificate, it will not in any way affect your program requirements, even if the courses overlap.

The basic components of the Certificate contribute to personal and professional development: communications skills, intercultural competence, resiliency and coping skills are cultivated and strengthened by the various program requirements. These skills are beneficial and valued in many professional and employment contexts, and will be a valuable asset beyond your years of university education.

Successful completion of the Certificate is recognized on your Queen's transcript, as well as with the award of a certificate upon graduation. For students intending to apply to graduate or professional schools, the entry on your transcript will demonstrate that you have opted to enhance your undergraduate studies with this formal academic option. This will also enable you to note the Certificate program on the education section of your résumé, drawing it to the attention of potential employers.

How well-recognized is the Certificate?

Senate approval of the Certificate confers the recognition and respect traditionally associated with a Queen's qualification.

Is the Certificate in Geographic Information Science open to anyone?

This Certificate program is open to any student pursuing an undergraduate degree at Queen's. Designed to enhance university studies, the Certificate is not a stand-alone option and is only awarded upon graduation with a Queen's degree.

Students whose concentration requirements coincide with the Certificate requirements, may double-count credits toward their concentration and the Certificate. Other students may complete the Certificate requirements as part of their elective credits.

How do I apply for the Certificate program?

You need to submit a "Certificate Request Application" which is available at https://www.queensu.ca/artsci/undergraduate/current-students/change-of-plan.

24 November 2011

The Geography Department has adopted a mixed marking method to evaluate student assignments and exams.  This means that instructors will assign letter grades for all essays and essay-based exams and assignments and numeric grades for exams and assignments based on short answer questions, multiple choice, true or false, etc., where letter grades are impractical.

See section 10 of the following document for more information:

Academic Regulations

Calculators acceptable for use during quizzes, tests and examinations are intended to support the basic calculating functions required by most Arts and Science courses. For this purpose, the use of the Casio 991 series calculator is permitted and is the only approved calculator for Arts and Science students. This inexpensive calculator sells for around $25 at the Queen's Campus Bookstore, Staples and other popular suppliers of school and office supplies.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

I can guess my future grades – what will my GPA be?

I want a certain GPA – what grades do I need to get?

These calculators will provide only an estimate of the grades required.

The Academic Advisement Report (AAR) is designed to give you advice on what courses you will need to complete your degree, as well as warn you if you have broken any of the various rules that govern which courses may be used in a particular degree program. While the AAR is a useful guide, the ultimate authority on all academic requirements in the Faculty of Arts and Science is the Arts and Science Calendar; if there is a discrepancy, the online Calendar requirements take precedence. An AAR may be run through SOLUS, and it is highly recommended that all upper-year students run a report at least once a year, before course selection. You should also run a report before applying to graduate. The AAR has been designed to closely parallel the layout of the Plan requirements section of the Calendar, so it may be useful to review these requirements before you run your AAR.

Interested in studying Abroad? Information is available at the International Program Office website.

Transfer Credits from Other Universities (Letter of Permission)

Thinking of taking a course at a different university? You must apply for a Letter of Permission from the Faculty of Arts and Science. See the Faculty of Arts and Science Letter of Permission page for information on the application procedure.

If you are taking a course at an Ontario school, be sure to view the ONTransfer webpage.

You can also find information about approved transfer credits that come from institutions outside of Ontario in the Faculty of Arts and Science main office (Main floor, Dunning Hall).

Students who are unable to write an exam during the December or April exam period due to a serious, extenuating circumstance (illness, death in the family) must follow the steps below to be eligible to write a deferred exam.

  1. Obtain permission from their instructor to write a deferred exam. This requires notifying your instructor in advance or, under extraordinary circumstances, within 24 hours after the exam, with appropriate documentation.
  2. Complete and return the instructor-signed Permission for an Incomplete Grade (pdf, 177kB) form available on the Arts and Science website and return to the instructor.

Please Note: Students who do not write the makeup exam or submit the outstanding coursework will be advised to drop the course. If a student cannot write the makeup exam or submit the outstanding coursework due to a serious extenuating circumstance for which they can provide new documentation, they will either be granted a second deferral by their instructor or be supported in their appeal to drop the course after the deadline. This needs approval from the Associate Dean (Studies).

Appropriate documentation includes a signed letter from a registered health professional, Queens HC&DS, or documentation of a death such as a bulletin from a memorial service, obituary (newspaper or online) or funeral home letter. The department randomly checks document authenticity and fraudulent documents will be grounds for a finding of a major departure from academic integrity.

According to university regulations, students are expected to be available to write scheduled exams at any time during the official December and April examination periods as well as during any scheduled class times. Requests to write a make-up exam because of conflicting travel plans (e.g. flight bookings) or requests to miss an in-class exam due to other plans will NOT be considered except under extraordinary circumstances. Students are advised to wait until the final exam schedules are posted before making any travel arrangements.

Once a student has written an exam or submitted an assignment, they may not subsequently be granted accommodation such as being offered a second opportunity to write the exam or assignment or have it count for less than originally specified in the course syllabus (reweighted). Students who cannot perform to the best of their abilities due to a serious, extenuating circumstance must inform their instructor before attempting an exam or completing a course to arrange appropriate accommodation. Appeals to change a grade after the fact must be made to the Associate Dean (Studies) and will only be supported by the department in exceptional circumstances.

  • Information about admission to Queen's is available through Admission Services.
  • For advice on program-related issues, please email Dr. Beverley Mullings (Associate Head – Undergraduate Programs) at undergrad.chair.gppl@queensu.ca. Dr. Mullings’ office is located in Macintosh-Corry Hall, Room D302.
  • If you would like to ascertain whether you have or will meet all of your degree requirements - please complete a Program Assessment form for the Major, Medial or Minor BA or BSC program prior to meeting with the Associate Head - Undergraduate Program. Please bring this form or your Academic Advisement Report with you to your appointment.
  • If you are inquiring about the eligibility of courses to be taken abroad, please bring course outlines and details regarding the university to your appointment.
  • In all correspondence, please be sure to indicate if you are a GPHY student or not, and if you are a GPHY student, please identify your concentration (MAJ, MIN, MED – BA or BSc). Please include your student number in all correspondence.
  • You may also seek assistance from Sharon Mohammed, the GPHY Undergraduate Program Assistant (mohammes@queensu.ca). The Undergraduate Program Assistant can also provide guidance about course registration, program requirements, graduation, and any general questions.
  • For information on the GIS Certificate, please visit the webpage.
  • Degree information can be found at the Faculty of Arts and Science Office website.

For general information on student life and clubs at Queen's please visit the ASUS website.

Please see the following document for detailed information on Academic Integrity:

Academic Regulations

It's also recommended that you review the Academic Integrity standards at Queen's University.