First Steps

Congratulations on your acceptance to Queen’s!

As a newly admitted student, there are a few things you need to do and information you’ll want to know to prepare for your new academic journey. On this and subsequent pages, you can find important information on how to accept your offer, register, pay your tuition, among many other things. Consider visiting our Orientation page to learn about orientation events, including a video series and online modules – all meant to help you transition into graduate school at Queen’s and welcome you to our graduate community.

A Message from Fahim Quadir, Vice-Provost and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs

Congratulations on your acceptance to Queen’s University. We are thrilled that you have chosen to continue your education here and I would like to wholeheartedly welcome you to the University.VP Fahim Quadir  Graduate studies can be a transformative experience, and I know that you will find your time at Queen’s to do just that. From connecting with faculty and peers to embedding your groundbreaking work in local and broader communities, I have no doubts that you will engage in deep learning and research throughout your graduate degree that will lead us, collectively, towards a better future for our global community.

As you begin your graduate degree, I’d like to take a moment to share with you important information to get you started in the right direction at Queen’s. Below are 8 essential steps to take as you transition into your graduate program. As you progress through your studies, know that the School of Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs is always here to support you.

I wish you an exceptional graduate journey and can’t wait to see how you shape our community.


Fahim Quadir,

Vice-Provost and Dean, School of Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs

Step 1: Access your Queen’s Student Net ID

Your NetID is your gateway to Queen’s online applications and library services. Your Queen's NetID can be activated within approximately 48 hours after you accept the offer of admission to graduate studies. You need your Queen's student number to activate your NetID. Go to the Queen’s Net Id Self-serve site, click on Activate Your Net ID, and follow the instructions.

Step 2: Check out Grad Essentials - Your Orientation & Resource Hub

Grad Essentials is your one-stop-shop for all resources and information to be successful as a graduate student at Queen's. Topics include funding, wellness, people & places on campus, professional development programming, and more! Think of it not only as your orientation experience but also as a resource hub you can continue to revisit throughout your graduate degree. Grad Essentials is located in OnQ, Queen’s online learning management system. To access Grad Essentials, click on Sign In on the Queen’s homepage and then select onQ from the dropdown menu, or follow the instructions for accessing onQ or watch the onQ instructional video. Once you’ve accessed onQ, you can self-register for Grad Essentials here.

Step 3: Check Out Pre-Arrival Webinars & Register for Orientation events

A list of webinars and events in the lead up to September will be posted in June. In the meantime, the School of Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (SGSPA) wants to ensure you are all set to begin your graduate degree. Check out our 2023 recorded Pre-Arrival webinar as a starter. 

If you are an international student take a look at the various online modules and webinars Queen's University International Centre (QUIC) has. You can find all the topics and how to register, as well as the link to their pre-arrival guide on the QUIC website.

Subscribe to the SGSPA Newsletter

Step 4: Connect with Your Graduate Program & Supervisor

Your graduate program will be communicating with you about your program start-up and program orientation activities. All graduate programs have a Graduate Chair (sometimes called Coordinator/Director or Associate Dean-Graduate Studies) and a Program Assistant. If you do not know who your program contact is, you can access a listing here. I encourage you to reach out to your program should you have any questions about program start-up. Many of you will also have been assigned an academic supervisor or advisor. If you have, be sure to reach out directly to them to begin conversations about your program plan and expectations for supervision.

Step 5: Secure Housing

If you are moving to Kingston, be sure to spend some time exploring housing options and securing a place to live before the start of term. Queen’s Community Housing Services has many resources including a housing board as well as an off-campus housing resource package. Adam King, the Off-Campus Living Advisor, is available to provide confidential guidance on evaluating off-campus housing, tenant rights and responsibilities, and resources for moving in/out. 

Step 6: Connect with Our Community

Queen’s has a number of groups on campus that are here to welcome you and support you as a graduate student. Use the listing below to connect with relevant groups for you.

Queen’s University International Centre

Connection space and centre for all international students; be sure to check out their many Orientation Events.

Four Directions

Connection space and centre for Indigenous students.

Yellow House

Connection space and centre for students who identify as Queer, Trans, Black, Indigenous, and/or as People of Colour (QTBIPoC).

Ban Righ Centre

Connection space and centre for women identifying students.

Faith & Spiritual Life

Multi-faith centre and services on campus.

Step 7: Connect with Queen’s Accommodation Services

If you have previously had an academic accommodation, reach out to Queen’s Student Accommodation Services (QSAS) to ensure you register with QSAS and receive your accommodations. Intake instructions are available here.

Step 8: Set-up Your Fee Payment

There are multiple ways to pay your tuition fees. For tuition fee information, payment options and payment deadlines, visit the Office of the University Registrar website.