Frequently Asked Questions

Please note that this document contains information relevant to admitted/registered graduate students. M.Ed. students should also review the School of Education's FAQ document at:
M.Ed. students should also consult:

Updated November 2020

> Due to COVID-19, what is the Winter (January 2021) start date for my program?

In preparation to welcome students on campus with a continued focus on health and safety of our community, start dates for graduate programs will vary. Please check with your Department/School.

Please keep in mind ---- Students may require extra time after arriving in Wolfville to participate in the following preparations:

  • introduction and implementation of new academic support systems (inclusive of technology, improved access, and resources designed to help you succeed);
  • orientation, education, and training of COVID-19 related health & safety measures and protocols; and,
  • 14-day self-isolation, if necessary.

International Students: Please note you are required to arrive in Nova Scotia early in order to accommodate for self-isolation. Based on current Canadian border restrictions and study permit requirements, it is in your best interest to book flexible flight options in the event you are unable to join us in January.

> I am an International student. What should I know as I prepare to leave my country and come to Nova Scotia?

If you are an international student, you should read the following Pre-Departure Guide as you get ready to leave your country and come to Nova Scotia. 

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please read the document carefully --- In some instances, the information only pertains to undergraduate students.

> Where can I find a list of off-campus accommodations?

If you are interested in off-campus accommodations, the Graduate Studies Office would be happy to send an email on your behalf to the Acadia community. Please email the Graduate Studies Officer with the particulars on what you are looking for (ie., how far from campus you are willing to live, the amount you wish to pay in rent, the number of rooms required, if you are looking for a room in a house vs an apartment, etc.).

> Who is my Graduate Coordinator?

Applied Geomatics - Dr. Ian Spooner
Biology - Dr. Mark Mallory
Chemistry - Dr. Anthony Tong
Community Development - Dr. Gabrielle Donnelly
Computer Science - Dr. Elhadi Shakshuki
Education - Dr. Gregory MacKinnon
English - Dr. Anne Quema
Environmental Science - Dr. Nelson O'Driscoll
Geology - Dr. Sandra Barr
Mathematics and Statistics - Dr. Franklin Mendivil
Political Science - Dr. Can Mutlu
Psychology - Dr. Lisa Price
Social & Political Thought - Dr. Geoffrey Whitehall
Sociology - Dr. Sarah Rudrum

> How do I register for graduate courses?

You will be registered in the thesis course (if applicable) by the Graduate Studies Officer at the start of each semester for the entirety of the degree program until the requirement is either met, or the time limit is exceeded.

To register in courses other than your thesis, you are required to meet with your Graduate Coordinator when you arrive on campus to establish your schedule. The Graduate Coordinator will forward this information to the Graduate Studies Officer for entry into the student system.

If you are enrolled in a program with a set curriculum (MA in English, MSc in Psychology), you will automatically be registered in those courses by the Graduate Studies Officer once she receives the necessary info from your department.

Registration is only complete once you have paid the required fees through the Student Accounts Office.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If your program start date is Intersession (May) you will be registered in the thesis course in early May. Registration does not take place on a specific date as there are procedures that need to be completed before registration is opened. A current undergraduate student at Acadia can not be registered until after convocation takes place. If your program start date is Fall (September) or Winter (January), you will be registered in the thesis course well in advance.

> How do I add/drop a course after my initial course registration?

To add/drop a course, please contact your Graduate Coordinator. Keep in mind the following Academic Calendar deadlines:

September 30th - Last day to add/drop any Fall or full-year course registrations. Fall or full-year courses dropped after this date will appear on your transcript with a "W".

November 13th - Any Fall course dropped after this date will receive an "F" grade.

January 20th - Last day to add/drop Winter course registrations. Winter courses dropped after this date will appear on your transcript with a "W".

January 20th - Any full-year courses dropped after this date will receive an "F" grade.

March 5th - Any Winter course dropped after this date will receive an "F" grade.

> What is my Username and Password?

If you've forgotten your Username and/or Password, please refer to the following document:

> Can I view my course schedule on-line?

You will be able to view your schedule on-line as soon as your course registration is completed by Graduate Studies. To do so, you need to login to Acadia Central ( Then click on the “Information” or “Schedule” tab to see your schedule.

> How do I set up my Acadia network/email account?

A full network account, including MSOffice365 (with MS Teams) and access to Wi-Fi and VPN, is created for registered students as follows:

1. Accounts for Spring/Summer are activated in mid-March and are set to expire in mid-September of the same year;
2. Accounts for Fall/Winter are activated 1 week after May convocation and are set to expire in mid-September of the same year; and
3. Accounts for Winter (January) students are activated in mid-November.

Account creation and expiry extension normally happens within one hour of registration.

Extension of expiry:
1. Fall/Winter accounts are extended to the following mid-September when a students account is marked "paid". "Paid" means the person has contacted Student Accounts and made arrangements for payment;
2. Accounts for students who have applied to graduate (May and October) and currently have an active (or recently expired) account are automatically extended to the convocation date. Upon graduating, the account is extended for life-time email but MSOffice365 access is eventually removed.

To access services at Acadia, you will need to reference your Acadia Student Number . Your username is the last six digits of this number and the first initial of your last name.

Your Acadia e-mail address will activate upon course registration. The email address assigned by Acadia University will be the only address used by Acadia for official communication with you for both academic and administrative purposes. You are responsible for checking your Acadia email account regularly so as to remain current with administrative and academic notifications. It is your responsibility to ensure that time-critical messages are accessed, read, and acted upon in a timely fashion. If you choose to forward University email to another email address, please ensure that the alternate account is active. Support and information maintained by Technology Services can be found at

As a graduate student, you have been assigned a secondary email alias ( Your preferred name is taken directly from your application form for admission. If you are unsure what is listed as your preferred name, please login to your status portal and review your personal info (

New to Acadia Checklist:


Username and Passwords:

> Where do I obtain an Acadia ID/Gym Pass/office keys and Parking Permit?

Once you are registered you will be able to acquire your student ID/gym pass through Access Control. Please visit the Access Control website for the most up-to-date instructions on how to obtain these.

ONLY Full-time students are provided access to the Acadia Athletics Complex as part of their tuition.

If your dept/school provides you with office space, it is their responsibility to arrange for key access.

A Parking Permit is available (at a cost) through the Safety and Security Department. Please visit the Safety and Security website for the most up-to-date instructions on how to obtain a parking permit.

> Where can I find a list of tuition fees/fee deadlines?

For fee information, please see our Fee/Funding page.

> I am looking for funding to pursue my graduate program. Where can I find a list of internal/external funding opportunities?

Funding opportunities can be viewed on our Fees/Funding page.

> I have funding - How do I get paid? Where do I find further info regarding payroll?

Awards are paid to you on a bi-weekly basis over the term of the award. Payroll forms can be downloaded from the Payroll website at: .

The 3 forms required are:

  • New Hire Information form
  • Federal Personal Tax Credit form
  • NS Provincial Tax Credit form.

Return the completed forms to the Graduate Studies Office. Payroll forms MUST be submitted to Graduate Studies no later than September 1, 2020.

If you have been on the Acadia payroll system in the last 12 months, you are not required to fill out the forms again, unless your banking information and/or mailing address have changed. You just need to notify the Graduate Studies Office. If the Office doesn't hear from you, it is assumed that you will be submitting the forms.

You need to have a Canadian bank account and a Social Insurance Number (SIN) in order to complete the above mentioned forms. If you do not possess a SIN, please go to the following website to find out how you apply:

If you are being hired within your dept/school as a TA/RA, please contact them directly regarding payment.

Pay advices are viewed on-line by logging into Acadia Central at:

You should also be familiar with the Payroll schedule, cut-off dates, and the acronyms that may show up on your pay advice. Please consult the Payroll website at:

> Tips When Filling Out Your Personal Payroll Forms
  • T4's (salary earnings) and T4A's (scholarship earnings) are mailed to your permanent address prior to Income Tax filing time. If you move after submission of your personal payroll forms, you must inform the Payroll Office. You can complete and submit the Information Change form directly to HR.
  • You should only claim the Basic Personal Amount (on the TD1 and TD1NS forms) if you are NOT currently working elsewhere. If you are working elsewhere, you should claim the personal amount with the employer that is paying the most money.
  • If you are exempting yourself from paying tax (on award and/or salary earnings) by clicking the box on page 2 of 2, you can still fill out the first page with whatever amounts that pertain to you. It just means those numbers will not have any affect, as per the exemption.
  • Non-residents question (page 2 of the TD1 form) --- in order to be exempt from tax, you would be required to click the YES box, otherwise you'd be choosing NO and required to enter "0" on line 13 making it impossible for exemption.
> How do I use my funding to pay my tuition?

If you have AGS/AGTA funding or NSERC/SSHRC/CIHR/researchNS/NS Provincial Scholarship funding, and wish to use these funds to pay your tuition, please email your request to the Manager Student Accounts by email at  prior to the fee deadlines outlined in the Academic Calendar. Student Accounts will provide the Payroll Office with the amount of funds to be directed to your student account; this transfer of funds will commence upon the Payroll Office receiving your payroll documents from Graduate Studies. The Student Accounts Office will receive a bi-weekly allotment that will pay down your student account balance over the course of the academic year or funding period. 

Your payroll forms for the above mentioned awards MUST be submitted to the Graduate Studies Office no later than September 1st. If not received by this date, interest will be charged to your Student Account.

  • IF your funding is MORE than your student fees, you will be paid the balance on a bi-weekly basis over the period of the award.
  • IF your funding is LESS than your student fees, you will be responsible for making arrangements to pay the balance.

If you wish to use funds that are being paid to you through your supervisor's grant/contract, the supervisor must provide you with a letter stating the amount and period of the funding. Take this letter to Student Accounts. The letter is required prior to the fee deadlines outlined in the Academic Calendar.

> I am a recipient of an AGTA. What happens now?

As a recipient of an AGTA, your Graduate Coordinator/delegate will be in contact with you regarding your AGTA duties/responsibilities. You should also refer to the AGTA Policies document.

NOTE: You can not be set up for payment of an AGTA until the Graduate Studies Office receives the required information from your Graduate Coordinator.

> I just moved. How do I update my mailing address?

To update a mailing address/phone number, please go to: --- you will need to be logged in to make any changes. It is your responsibility to ensure Acadia has your correct local and permanent addresses.

> Where can I obtain a confirmation of enrollment letter?

MSc, MR, and MA students --- To obtain a confirmation of enrollment letter, please email your request to the Graduate Studies Officer,Theresa Starratt . During peak busy periods, letter requests can take up to 2 days to process. IMPORTANT NOTE: This letter can only be provided when a student is registered in the program.

M.Ed. students and PhD Education students --- To obtain a confirmation of enrollment letter, please email your request to the Graduate Education Course Manager, Joy Cunningham. During peak busy periods, letter requests can take up to 2 days to process. IMPORTANT NOTE: This letter can only be provided when a student is registered in the program.

> Where do I find info on/how do I get involved in the AGS?

To learn more about the Acadia Graduate Students' (AGS), please go to:

You can also follow them on Twitter at: @the_AGSA

You can also follow them on Facebook at:


> Where do I find information on Acadia's Student Health Plan?

For information on Acadia's Student Health Plan, please visit:

For information on the cost of the plan, or deadline to opt out of the plan, please look under the heading ASU Extended Health Plan on our Fee page.

> I am a member of the NS Provincial Health Plan. How does that impact my health coverage with Acadia?

Canadian and International graduate students who have access to the NS Provincial Health Plan for basic medical services, must be registered full-time in order to also be eligible for the extended health and dental benefits through the ASU.

> I'm sick/hurt/etc. Where do I go?

The University offers Student Health Services, which is located in Dennis House. The health team is available to provide medical care and education to Acadia students ONLY! They do not provide services to student spouses or children. They can be reached at 585-1238. You may also want to consult the following website:

There is a public clinic located in the Eastern Kings Memorial Hospital on Earnscliffe Avenue. The clinic is open weekly from 5-9 pm and 10 am-5 pm on Sunday.

In an emergency, you should go to the Valley Regional Hospital in Kentville. This is approximately a 20 minute drive from Wolfville.

If you are in need of a family doctor, please call (902) 424-3047. This is an automated service. Leave your name, phone number and area of residence and someone will return your call if there is a doctor taking patients in your area.

> Is there conference travel funding available for graduate students?

If you have been invited to participate at a conference and are looking for funding to attend, please try the following avenues:
1. Apply to the ASU Student Activities Fund at: 
2. Approach your supervisor/Head/Director;
3. Apply for conference funding through Graduate Studies; and/or
4. Approach your Faculty Dean

> How do I apply for a Leave of Absence from my program?

The Leave of Absence policies are covered in another section of our website. Please see:

> How do I apply for a Thesis extension?

To request a thesis extension, please see our page at:

> Where can I find info on setting up/preparing for my thesis defence?

Information and documentation on theses defenses can be found on our Master's Thesis page.

> Will I have to pay fees if I defend my thesis in the current semester?

If you are a part-time (continuing) student, and plan to graduate in the Fall, your final thesis (i.e., with post-defense changes) MUST be submitted to Graduate Studies by September 18, 2020. Your 2020-21 thesis course registration and continuing fee will be removed from your account upon receipt of your Request for Oral form. 

If you are a part-time student and defend your thesis within the Fall semester (after September 18 but before December 18), all requirements, including final thesis submission, must be completed by December 18. Otherwise, you are AUTOMATICALLY charged the Winter continuing fee.

If you are a part-time student and defend your thesis within the Winter semester (between January but before April 23), all requirements, including final thesis submission, must be completed by April 23. Otherwise you are AUTOMATICALLY charged the Spring/Summer continuing fee.

If you are still within your full-time residency, you will be required to pay the remainder of your full-time fees.

> How do I withdraw from Graduate Studies?

If you decide to withdraw from a graduate program, you must first consult with the Graduate Coordinator in your department/school, but then must contact the Graduate Studies Officer (Theresa Starratt) directly. If you have not contacted Graduate Studies, you will be charged the current tuition fees for the academic semester(s).

> Is graduation automatic?

If you have completed all degree requirements for your program, you MUST apply to graduate by the deadline date. The deadline to apply for Fall Graduation is August 30th; the deadline to apply for Spring Convocation is January 6th.

To apply to graduate, sign-on to Acadia Central(Students) under “My Links” you will see an “Apply to Graduate” link.

IF you have missed the deadline to apply, you can find the required form on the Registrar's website. There will be a late fee charged.

By filling out the form, you are listed as a "potential graduate" until the list is reviewed and approved by Senate.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you are a thesis student and DO NOT meet the final thesis submission deadline, your name will be AUTOMATICALLY removed from the potential graduate list.

> Where do I find information on Spring Convocation?

For details on Convocation, please check the Convocation webpage.

> I have met all my degree requirements and require a degree completion letter. Where can I obtain one?

MSc, MR, and MA students --- To obtain a degree completion letter, please email your request to the Graduate Studies Officer, Theresa Starratt . During peak busy periods, letter requests can take up to 2 days to process.

M.Ed. and PhD Education students --- To obtain a degree completion letter, please email your request to the Graduate Education Course Manager, Joy Cunningham . During peak busy periods, letter requests can take up to 2 days to process.