Progression & Graduation

Class of 2013

Progression Requirements

To remain registered and to graduate, MPA students must maintain an overall average of at least 70 percent and receive no final course grade lower than 60 percent. A final course grade lower than 60 percent is grounds for withdrawal from the program, but the final decision is at the discretion of the Program Director.

Typically, a student who receives one final course grade lower than 60 percent is given the opportunity to repeat the course once. However, if a student receives multiple final course grades below 60 percent or a grade lower than 60 percent when they repeat a course, they will normally be withdrawn from the program for failure to meet progression requirements.

Time to Completion

MPA students typically maintain continuous registration in each successive term from initial registration until all requirements for the degree are completed.

The maximum registration period for full-time MPA students is three calendar years from initial registration.

The maximum registration period for part-time MPA students is six calendar years from initial registration.

A student will normally be withdrawn at the end of their maximum registration time limit unless the Vice-Provost (Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies) has approved an extension.

Any withdrawn MPA student wishing to return to the program must reapply and be accepted into the program. Admission is competitive and not guaranteed. Normally, applications from students who have been withdrawn for two or more years will not be considered.  

Leave of Absence (LOA)

The Vice-Provost (Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies) may grant a leave of absence on pregnancy/parental, medical or compassionate grounds normally to a maximum of three terms or 12 months, on the recommendation of the Local Government Program. The date for degree completion will be extended by the duration of the time taken on leave.

Updating Personal Information

It is the student's responsibility to ensure that this information is kept up to date at all times. Keeping their personal information up to date is very important. Having the right information in our systems will ensure that information they receive from us will match their current information and arrive at the right destination. Students can request updates to their personal information (name, address, etc.) through the Office of the Registrar.

Graduation Requirements

Students must receive 12 credits in order to graduate. Each regular course counts for one credit and is completed within one academic term: fall, winter, or summer. In addition, all students must write a research report which is a program milestone and must be completed in order to graduate.

How to Apply to Graduate

Once students are in their last term of study, and know that they will meet the above requirements to graduate, they must apply to graduate via the School of Graduate Postdoctoral Studies (SGPS) online.  SGPS approves the application and forwards the potential graduate names onto the convocation office.  During the application to graduate, students will be asked to verify their name as they would like it to appear on their diploma. 


Convocation is managed by Western's Office of the Registrar, please refer to their convocation website and Convocation FAQs for all your questions regarding dates, the ceremony, tickets, your diploma, etc... There is also a link to the application to graduate on the convocation website.