Registration Guide - Glossary of Terms

Academic Calendar (also known as the Calendar)
The university’s official publication which outlines admission requirements, fees, grading systems, academic regulations, course offerings, and other information. Students admitted in a particular year are bound by the regulations described in the Academic Calendar for that year.

Academic Year
The regular academic year at StFX runs from September to April. The first term lasts from early September to mid-December and the second term, from early January to late April. See also spring and summer sessions.

Advanced Standing
Students may enter a higher level of courses in a subject when they have mastered the lower, usually introductory, level. This is normally permitted after completion of international baccalaureate (IB) or advanced placement (AP) courses. See sections 1.3 h. and 1.3.i of the Academic Calendar. Advanced standing does not reduce the number of credits required for a degree.

Audit
Audit means to listen. A student may attend a course without working toward or expecting to earn credits for the course. Only courses without a laboratory or hands-on component may be audited. Fees for a course taken for audit are normally one-half of the usual fee.

Bachelor’s or Baccalaureate Degree
The degree usually awarded after three or four years of study and successful completion of course and program requirements. A bachelor’s degree may be awarded in arts (BA), science (B.Sc.), business administration (BBA), education (B.Ed.) or information systems (BIS); some may be earned with honours, with advanced major, or with major. See page 3 of the Academic Calendar for more information on bachelor’s degrees at StFX.

Banner Self-Service
This is the name of the self service web application which is used by students to register in courses and to obtain their T2202A tax forms. Students log into Banner Self-Service using their ID number and their secure PIN.

Bursary
A monetary award based on financial need and reasonable academic standing.

CRN
This is the abbreviation for Course Registration Number. Each section of a course has a unique CRN which can be used to register for that class in Banner Self Service.

Chair
The head of an academic department, for example, the chair of the Department of Celtic Studies.

Concentration
A tertiary subject or area of study, normally at least 18 credits in one subject.

Convocation
The graduation ceremony held every spring and fall at which degrees and diplomas are awarded.

Course Level
Courses are numbered and referred to according to the normal year of study in which a student would complete them,  as in 100-level (first year), 200-level (second year), 300-level (third year) and 400-level (fourth year) courses.

Credit
The value assigned to a course. A course with three or more contact hours per week for the academic year has a value of six credits and is called a full course. A course taught for three hours a week for one term has a value of three credits and is called a half course. When students successfully complete a course, they are said to have credit for the course.

Dean
At StFX, there are four deans: The Dean of Arts, the Dean of Business, the Dean of Education and the Dean of Science.

Dean’s List
An academic honour granted to students who achieve high grades while enrolled in 30 credits. See section 3.19 of the Academic Calendar.

Decile
The student decile ranking in a course (10 high, 1 low) recorded for courses with 15 or more registrants.

Diploma
An earned document which follows a program of study typically lasting two years or less.

Distinction
A designation awarded to students whose general average over their final three years of study is 80 or higher. Minimum averages each year may also apply. See section 3.20 of the Academic Calendar.

Electives
Courses which are not specified in a degree program. Electives may be open, that is, chosen by the student, or approved. Approved electives require permission from either the chair of the department of the student’s major, or the chair of the department in which the student wishes to take a course. "Arts/Science" electives cannot be from the professional or applied program departments of aquatic resources, business administration, engineering, information systems, human kinetics, human nutrition or nursing.

Faculty
A grouping of departments which give academic instruction in related subjects. At StFX, there are four faculties: the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Business, the Faculty of Education and the Faculty of Science. The Faculty of Arts is comprised of subjects in the humanities and social sciences. Within the Faculty of Business are the business administration and information systems subjects. The Faculty of Education includes education courses at the undergraduate, graduate and doctoral level. The Faculty of Science contains the life, earth and physical sciences, as well as engineering, human kinetics, human nutrition, nursing and mathematics, statistics, and computer science. The term faculty is also used to describe members of the teaching staff of the university.

Full Time/Part Time
There are several definitions of full time/part time. Normally a student carries 30 credits for an academic year. Only students carrying at least 30 credits are considered for in-course scholarships. For the purpose of billing students, the business office considers a student carrying 24 or more credits to be full time. For the purpose of student loans 18 to 24 credits, or 60 percent to 80 percent of the normal load, may be considered full time by agencies which administer loan programs. For purposes of reporting to Statistics Canada full time is defined as 18 credits or more.

Grade Appeal
The process by which a student appeals his or her final grade for a course. See section 3.13 of the Academic Calendar.

Graduate Degree
Master’s or doctoral (Ph.D.) degrees require completion of an undergraduate degree first.

Honours
A degree which requires not only depth and breadth of subject study, but also superior academic achievement.

Humanities
The study of human thought which includes literature, philosophy, history, religion, languages, and the fine arts.

Invigilator
A person who, in the absence of the professor, administers and oversees examinations.

Junior
A third-year student.

Major
A student’s primary subject. StFX also offers joint major programs in some areas, allowing students to concentrate their studies in two subjects.

Mature Student
A candidate who has not fulfilled the normal admission requirements and has been out of school for at least three years.

MesAMIS
The name of the web application which students use to view their personal information such as grade reports, class and exam schedules and financial account information and also to submit web forms that are personalized with information from Banner. Some examples of these web forms are applications for late registration, course overload, registration error overrides, letters of permission and degree program change.

Minor
The secondary subject or area of study, normally at least 24 credits in one subject.

Non-Degree Student
A student who is not registered in a degree program but is enroled in courses either part time or full time.

Orientation
A program for new students providing an academic and social introduction to university life, held during the three days prior to the beginning of classes in September.

Pair
Twelve credits in one subject, with six credits at the 200-level or higher. As exceptions, language pairs in French, Celtic Studies and Classics may be composed of 12 credits at the 100-level. A student may complete only one pair from a department, and may not complete a pair in the major or minor subject. A pair may not be completed in any of the professional or applied program disciplines: AQUA, BSAD, ENGR, HKIN, HNU, INFO or NURS.

Passing Grade
The passing grade for all undergraduate courses is 50. See chapter 3 of the Academic Calendar. For education, see chapter 4. For graduate studies, see chapter 8.

Pattern
The recommended or suggested series of courses a student takes in order to fulfill degree requirements.

Placement Test
Incoming students who wish to study music or modern languages must take placement tests to determine their eligibility for, and appropriate level of, study. See department guidelines in chapter 9 of the Academic Calendar.

Plagiarism
A form of cheating in which a student attempts to pass off as his or her work the words or ideas of another person or another writer. See section 3.8 of the Academic Calendar.

Prerequisite
A course which must be completed before taking another course.

Program
An approved set of courses, requirements and study pattern, leading to a degree, diploma or certificate.

Rank
The student’s rank in his/her group and year of study. Ranking is not recorded for students enrolled in less than 18 credits or for those who withdraw during an academic year.

Registrar
The university officer responsible for managing academic information and processes and enforcing the regulations contained in the Academic Calendar as they pertain to students’ academic performance.

Registration
The process of formally enrolling in courses.

Repeated Course
When a student repeats a course, the original grade remains on the transcript and in the calculation of the student’s term average. However, if credits were orginally earned, they are removed from the student’s transcript.

Scholarship
A monetary award based on academic merit or excellence.

Section
Courses may have two or more sections. Sections are unique instances of courses that are identical except that they may be offered in different timeblocks and often with a different professor. The section of a course is denoted by two digits following the course number, and each section of a course also has a unique course reference number or CRN

Senior
A fourth-year student.

Service Learning
Service learning is an innovative way to integrate experiential learning, academic study and community service. It is an opportunity for students to apply what they are learning in the classroom in a community setting. The goal is to blend service and learning so that the service reinforces, improves and strengthens learning. Service learning is possible in many academic disciplines and through a broad range of courses and service experience.

Social Sciences
The systematic study of human behaviour, including anthropology, development studies, economics, political science, psychology, sociology and women’s and gender studies.

Sophomore
A second-year student.

Special Needs Student
A student with a physical or learning disability. See section 1.1 of the Academic Calendar.

Spring Session
An eight-week term from early May to late-June.

Student Loan
A sum of money which must be repaid. Loans to university students are obtained through the Canada Student Loan Plan.

Student Level
A student's level corresponds to the level of his/her degree program.  The most common student levels at StFX are UG (Undergraduate), ED (Bachelor of Education) and GR (Graduate).

Study Abroad
The opportunity for a student enrolled in a four-year program to study at another accredited university as part of a degree from StFX. See section 3.18 of the Academic Calendar.

Subject Abbreviations
The abbreviations below are used throughout the Calendar and on transcripts:
ADED Adult Education
ANTH Anthropology
AQUA Aquatic Resources
ART Art
BIOL Biology
BSAD Business Administration
CATH Catholic Studies
CELT Celtic Studies
CHEM Chemistry
CLAS Classical Studies
COML Comparative Literature
CSCI Computer Science
COOP Co-operative Education
DEVS Development Studies
ECON Economics
ESCI Earth Sciences
EDUC Education
ENGR Engineering
ENGL English
ENSC Environmental Sciences
FREN French
GERM German
HIST History
HKIN Human Kinetics
HNU Human Nutrition
IDS Interdisciplinary Studies
INFO Information Systems
MATH Mathematics
MIKM Mi’kmaq
MNST Ministry
MUSI Music
NURS Nursing
PHIL Philosophy
PHYS Physics
PSCI Political Science
PSYC Psychology
RELS Religious Studies
SOCI Sociology
SPAN Spanish
STAT Statistics
WMGS Women’s and Gender Studies

Subsidiary Subject
When the study of two subjects is combined such that one is subordinate to the other, the second is considered a subsidiary to the first. Within the BA Honours with a subsidiary program, the subjects in which an honours is possible are those in which one may complete a single honours, with the added exception of development studies. A subsidiary is possible in those fields in which one may complete at least a major with the added exception of art history.

Summer Session
A six-week term scheduled from early July to mid-August.

Thesis
The lengthy paper required for an honours or graduate degree.

Transcript
The record of a student’s program of study, courses taken, and grades achieved. See section 3.15 of the Academic Calendar for more information on academic records.

Transfer Credit
Courses taken at another university or college are given equivalent StFX course numbers and credit value for transfer credit.

Undergraduate Degree
A first degree completed at a university or college. At StFX, the first degree is the baccalaureate degree which takes four years of full-time study to complete.

Year of Study
Most four-year degree programs require the completion of 120 credits, normally at 30 credits per year for four years.  Students' year of study is based on the number of credits they have earned towards their current degree.  Students are "promoted" to the next year of study when they are within six of the required number of credits for that year.  For example, a student who has earned 54 credits is considered to be a third year (junior) student.