Degree Level Expectations

Ontario Council of Academic Vice-Presidents' Undergraduate and Graduate Degree Level Expectations

Queen's University Senate approved revisions to the Ontario Council of Academic Vice-Presidents' Undergraduate and Graduate Degree Level Expectations (DLEs) on March 29, 2022.

The additions include an explicit focus on equity, diversity, inclusion, and Indigenization. The revised DLEs align with the University's commitment to address systemic racism, and stem from specific commitments and recommendations as outlined in the:

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 Undergraduate Degree Level Expectations

 Undergraduate Degree Level Expectations

 Graduate Degree Level Expectations

 Graduate Degree Level Expectations

Undergraduate Degree Level Expectations

Blue text represents the revisions to the OCAV DLEs, specific to Queen's University

Baccalaureate/bachelor’s degree

This degree is awarded to students who have demonstrated/are able to:

Baccalaureate/bachelor’s degree: honours

This degree is awarded to students who have demonstrated the following:

Depth and Breadth of Knowledge

a) General knowledge and understanding of many key concepts, methodologies, theoretical approaches and assumptions in a discipline;


b) Broad understanding of some of the major fields in a discipline, including, where appropriate, from an interdisciplinary perspective, and how the fields may intersect with fields in related disciplines;


c) Ability to gather, review, evaluate and interpret information relevant to one or more of the major fields in a discipline;


d) Some detailed knowledge in an area of the discipline;


e) Critical thinking and analytical skills inside and outside the discipline;

 
f) Ability to apply learning from one or more areas outside the discipline;


g) Ability to identify the potential for inequities in the production and dissemination of knowledge; and


h) Ability to recognize diverse worldviews, ways of knowing, abilities, and experiences, including Indigenous perspectives.



a) Developed knowledge and critical understanding of the key concepts, methodologies, current advances, theoretical approaches and assumptions in a discipline overall, as well as in a specialized area of a discipline;

b) Developed understanding of many of the major fields in a discipline, including, where appropriate, from an interdisciplinary perspective, and how the fields may intersect with fields in related disciplines;

c) Developed ability to: i) gather, review, evaluate and interpret information, and ii) compare the merits of alternate hypotheses or creative options, relevant to one or more of the major fields in a discipline;

d) Developed, detailed knowledge of and experience in research in an area of the discipline;

e) Developed critical thinking and analytical skills inside and outside the discipline;

f) Ability to apply learning from one or more areas outside the discipline.

g) Ability to examine the potential for inequities in the production and dissemination of knowledge; and

h) Ability to explore diverse worldviews, ways of knowing, abilities, and experiences, including Indigenous perspectives.

Knowledge of Methodologies

An understanding of methods of enquiry or creative activity, or both, in their primary area of study that enables the student to:

a) evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems using well established ideas and techniques;


b) devise and sustain arguments or solve problems using these methods; and


c) describe limitations of methods they use, recognizing potential inequities, biases, or implicit assumptions.

An understanding of methods of enquiry or creative activity, or both, in their primary area of study that enables the student to:

a) evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems using well established ideas and techniques;


b) devise and sustain arguments or solve problems using these methods;

 
c) describe and comment upon particular aspects of current research or equivalent advanced scholarship; and


d) describe limitations of methods they use, recognizing potential inequities, biases, or implicit assumptions.

 

Application of Knowledge

The ability to review, present, and interpret quantitative and qualitative information to:

a) develop lines of argument;

b) make sound judgments in accordance with the major theories, concepts and methods of the subject(s) of study; and


The ability to use a basic range of established techniques to:

a) analyze information;

b) evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems related to their area(s) of study;

c) propose solutions;

d) make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources; and

e) explore problems from local and global perspectives.



The ability to review, present and critically evaluate quantitative and qualitative information to:

a) develop lines of argument;

b) make sound judgements in accordance with the major theories, concepts and methods of the subject(s) of study;

c) apply underlying concepts, principles, and techniques of analysis, both within and outside the discipline;

d) where appropriate use this knowledge in the creative process;

e) explore the complex interactions between individual, society, economy, environment, and/or technology; and

The ability to use a range of established techniques to:

a) initiate and undertake critical evaluation of arguments, assumptions, abstract concepts and information;

b) propose solutions;

c) frame appropriate questions for the purpose of solving a problem;

d) solve a problem or create a new work;

e) make critical use of scholarly reviews and primary sources; and

f) explore problems from local and global perspectives.

Communication Skills

The ability to communicate information, arguments, and analyses:

a) accurately and reliably;

b) orally and in writing; and

c) to a broad range of audiences in ways that are accessible and inclusive.

The ability to communicate information, arguments, and analyses:

a) accurately and reliably;

b) orally and in writing; and

c) to a broad range of audiences in ways that are accessible and inclusive.

Awareness of Limits of Knowledge

An understanding of the limits to their own knowledge and how this might influence their analyses and interpretations.

a) An understanding of the limits to their own knowledge and ability, and an appreciation of the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits to knowledge and how this might influence analyses and interpretations; and


b) Commitment to ongoing learning by identifying gaps, setting personal learning goals, and advancing knowledge.

Autonomy and Professional Capacity

Qualities and transferable skills necessary for further study, employment, community involvement and other activities requiring:

a) the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making;

b) working effectively with others;

c) the ability to identify and address their own learning needs in changing circumstances and to select an appropriate program of further study;  

d) behaviour consistent with academic integrity and social responsibility; and

e) behaviour consistent with exercising intercultural sensitivity.

Qualities and transferable skills necessary for further study, employment, community involvement and other activities requiring:

a) the exercise of initiative, personal responsibility and accountability in both personal and group contexts;

b) working effectively with others;

c) decision-making in complex contexts;

d) ability to manage their own learning in changing circumstances, both within and outside the discipline and to select an appropriate program of further study;

e) behaviour consistent with academic integrity and social responsibility; and

f) behaviour consistent with exercising intercultural sensitivity.

 

Graduate Degree Level Expectations

Blue text represents the revisions to the OCAV DLEs, specific to Queen's University

 

Master’s degree

This degree is awarded to students who have demonstrated the following:

Doctoral degree

This degree extends the skills associated with the master’s degree and is awarded to students who have demonstrated the following:

Depth and Breadth of Knowledge

a) A systematic understanding of knowledge, including, where appropriate, relevant knowledge outside the field and/or discipline, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, much of which are at, or informed by, the forefront of their academic discipline, field of study, or area of professional practice;


b) A recognition of diverse worldviews, ways of knowing, abilities and experiences, including Indigenous perspectives; and

c) A recognition of how one’s field of study has developed over time.

a) A thorough understanding of a substantial body of knowledge that is at the forefront of their academic discipline or area of professional practice including, where appropriate, relevant knowledge outside the field and/or discipline;


b) A critical engagement with diverse worldviews, ways of knowing, abilities, and experiences, including Indigenous perspectives; and

c) A recognition of how one’s field of study has developed over time.



Research and Scholarship

A conceptual understanding and methodological competence that:

a) enables a working comprehension of how established techniques of research and inquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge in the discipline;

b) enables a critical evaluation of current research and advanced research and scholarship in the discipline or area of professional competence, including recognizing potential inequities, biases or implicit assumptions;

c) enables a treatment of complex issues and judgements based on established principles and techniques; and

d) enables a recognition of diverse research methods, technologies, and ways of knowing to explore complex problems.

a) The ability to conceptualize, design, and implement research for the generation of new knowledge, applications, or understanding at the forefront of the discipline, and to adjust the research design or methodology in the light of unforeseen problems;


b) The ability to make informed judgments on complex issues in specialist fields, sometimes requiring new methods;


c) The ability to produce original research, or other advanced scholarship, of a quality to satisfy peer review, and to merit publication;


d) The ability to engage with diverse research methods, technologies, and ways of knowing to explore complex problems;


e) The ability to ethically engage diverse communities and participants to advance research and scholarship and to benefit communities.

Level of Application of Knowledge

a) Competence in the research process by applying an existing body of knowledge in the critical analysis of a new question or of a specific problem or issue in a new setting;

b) originality in the application of knowledge; and

c) application of context-appropriate approaches in the production, dissemination, and validation of knowledge.

The capacity to:

a) undertake pure and/or applied research at an advanced level; and

b) contribute to the development of academic or professional skills, techniques, tools, practices, ideas, theories, approaches, and/or materials; and

c) apply context-appropriate approaches in the production, dissemination, and validation of knowledge.

Professional Capacity/Autonomy

a) The qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring:

i. the exercise of initiative and of personal responsibility and accountability; and

ii. decision-making in complex situations;


b) The intellectual independence required for continuing professional development;


c) The ethical behaviour consistent with academic integrity and the use of appropriate guidelines and procedures for responsible conduct of research; and

d) The ability to appreciate the broader implications of applying knowledge to particular contexts.

a) The qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and largely autonomous initiative in complex situations;


b) The intellectual independence to be academically and professionally engaged and current;


c) The ethical behaviour consistent with academic integrity and the use of appropriate guidelines and procedures for responsible conduct of research;


d) The ability to evaluate the broader implications of applying knowledge to particular contexts; and

e) The ability to recognize inequitable power structures in the field.

Level of Communication Skills

The practice of formally and informally communicating:

a) ideas, issues, and conclusions clearly and accurately;

b) through various modes of communication;

c) to diverse audiences in ways that are accessible and inclusive; and

d) in ways that demonstrate active listening skills.

The practice of formally and informally communicating:

a) complex and/or ambiguous ideas, issues, and conclusions clearly and accurately;

b) through various modes of communication;

c) to diverse audiences in ways that are accessible and inclusive; and

d) in ways that demonstrate active listening skills.

Awareness of limits of knowledge

Cognizance of the complexity of knowledge and of the potential contributions of other interpretations, worldviews, methods, and disciplines.

An appreciation of the limitations of one’s own work and discipline, of the complexity of knowledge, and of the pontetial contributions of other interpretations, worldviews, methods, and disciplines.