Independent students

Undergraduate Independent Student Guide

As an independent undergraduate student, you do not seek a Degree or Certificate. You register in individual courses on a part-time basis.

You can apply to become an independent undergraduate student if:

  • You are over 21 years of age and are Canadian or a Permanent Resident


  • You are under 21 years of age and you meet the University’s minimum academic admission requirements 
  • You are an International student already in Montreal. International independent student status is not intended for foreigners applying from abroad because this status may not enable you to obtain the required Study Permit and CAQ to study in Canada.

Admission requirements and course registration

All independent students must satisfy minimum admission requirements. Independent student status in no way guarantees you a place in a course.

When registering for a course, independent students may register:

  • For a maximum of 9 credits per term 
  • For a course after all undergraduate degree program students have had a chance to select their courses.

Courses with prerequisites: Independent students must satisfy the University that they have completed all required prerequisite courses. In these cases, you must complete a "Prerequisite Waiver" form.

Find out more about independent student course registration.

Applying to a program

You should apply online through the MyConcordia portal if you are an independent student who subsequently wishes to enter a degree or certificate program. Any credits you earned as an independent student might be applied towards a degree or Certificate program, if they are appropriate.

How many credits you receive will depend on the program and the Faculty. For instance, in the case of the Faculty of Arts and Science, an independent student may be granted a maximum of 30 credits towards their degree.

Apply to be an independent student

If you wish to become an undergraduate Independent student at Concordia, you must complete an Independent Student Application form online.

  • The completed online form must include all relevant supporting documents 
  • There is a $15 application fee payable by credit card (Visa, Mastercard or American Express)
    •  This fee is subject to change

Academic advising for Independent Undergraduate Students

Newly-admitted Independent students are strongly encouraged to contact the Faculty/School they are interested in joining and/or taking courses in order to obtain advising prior to commencing their studies.

The general University telephone number is 514-848-2424

  • Faculty of Arts and Science – ext. 2104
  • Faculty of Engineering & Computer Science – ext. 3055
  • Faculty of Fine Arts – ext. 4612
  • John Molson School of Business – ext. 2721

Birks Student Service Centre
Concordia University
Room LB-185, J.W. McConnell
1400 De Maisonneuve Blvd. West
Montreal, Quebec

Tel: 514-848-2424 ext. 2668

Monday to Thursday: 9 a.m - 6 p.m.
Friday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Independent graduate students enrol in a particular graduate course, without enroling in the graduate program which offers the course. Normally, independent graduate students take no more than the equivalent of two graduate courses per term, and no more than the equivalent of four graduate courses from the courses of any graduate program up to 12 credits. Independent students are normally classified as graduate part-time students.

Only those who meet the prerequisite requirements for admission to the graduate course in question will be considered as independent graduate students, and in every case permission of the Graduate Program Director and/or Faculty Student Affairs Office must be obtained. Meeting the minimum requirements of an individual course does not guarantee entry to that course, as preference will be given to regular students.

Independent graduate students are subject to the fees and regulations applicable to such categories of students.

Complete information on Independent Graduate Students can be found in the Graduate Admission section of the Graduate Calendar.

Authorization to Register as a Non-degree Student

To register as an independent graduate student, the applicant must complete the graduate “Authorization to Register as a Non-Degree Student” [PDF] form.

Applicants must submit the completed form to the Graduate Program Assistant of the graduate program which is offering the course. They must also submit a copy of their most recent transcript (student copies are acceptable; normally, copies downloaded from the web are not).  View a list of Graduate Program Contacts.


A list of courses offered by the graduate program is available in the Graduate Calendar. You can access a list, along with brief course descriptions by selecting the graduate program which offers the course. Applicants should know, or have an idea, of which course they want to take.

Proof of Citizenship and Proof of Legal Name

Applicants must also provide proof of citizenship status and proof of legal name. While the Canadian passport can be used to prove citizenship status, an additional document must be provided for proof of legal name. View a list of documents [PDF] which can be used as proof for both citizenship status and proof of legal name.

Proof of Québec Residency

As per the Ministry of Education, students who are not Québec residents are charged a higher tuition rate than Québec Residents. To avoid the higher rate, all Canadian Citizens (including First Nations) and Permanent Residents must submit the required documents by the deadline. Visit the Québec Residency website for deadlines and additional information.

Code Permanent

As per the Ministry of Education, all students are required to have a permanent code in order to study in Québec. Students who do not have a permanent code will be charged an additional fee for their courses. To avoid the additional charge, applicants must make the necessary arrangements to obtain a permanent code. Visit the Permanent Code page for more information.

Permission to Register

Upon receipt of all the required documents, the Graduate Program Director will evaluate the applicant’s academic credentials to determine if the applicant is qualified to take the graduate courses. In some departments, the applicant must also get permission from the professor teaching the course. If the applicant is recommended, the Graduate Program Assistant will forward the applicant’s file to the Faculty Student Affairs Office for final approval. Upon final approval, the Faculty will forward the file to the Office of the Registrar to create the Independent Graduate status for the applicant. Once the applicant has received Independent Graduate status, the Graduate Assistant can register the applicant in courses.

As the entire procedure may take 2 or more weeks, applicants are advised to start procedures well ahead of the registration deadline. Applicants are reminded that independent graduate students register after students enroled in a degree and are not guaranteed a place in a course.

Advising for Independent Graduate Students

For advice on Graduate Independent Studies please contact the Program Assistant of the graduate program which is offering the course. View a list of Graduate Program Contacts.

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