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Undergraduate students

Information you will need as an undergraduate political science student


This section offers you a quick guide to follow as you are planning your first year. 
Please note that we cannot offer one-on-one advising, either in person or via zoom, before the start of your first term.
Touchstone Orientation sessions for newly admitted students will resume shortly. Please visit the New student advising page in mid-March 2024 for the schedule. 
In the meantime, if you are a newly admitted student and have questions about your program, please consult the guidelines below and contact

Guidelines for selecting your first-year courses

  • Take two (or maximally three) of the 4 mandatory introductory courses in each term.
    • POLI 203
    • POLI 204
    • POLI 205
    • POLI 206
    • For example, register for POLI 203 and POLI 206 in the fall, and POLI 204 and POLI 205 in the winter.
  • Combine these courses with elective courses, either other 200-level courses in Political Science or (typically 200-level) non-Political Science courses.
    • Note: you will need at least 24 credits of such non-Political Science courses for your degree, and at least six of these must be in non-social science fields such as History, Journalism, English, Biology, etc. For a full-time course load of 12 or 15 credits, you should register for two or three such courses per term.
  • Get general course descriptions by department offering the courses.
  • Search for courses in the class schedule.
  • Make sure you register for the entire academic year (fall and winter terms) as soon as registration opens.
  • Watch the following videos for helpful tips: 

        Political Science – Orientation Video 1

           Political Science – Orientation Video 2

        Political Science – Orientation Video 3    

The Orientation Guide document for newly Admitted Political Science students gives more explanations of your degree requirements; please read it carefully and in full.

Download the 2023-24 orientation guide

Read the orientation FAQ

Learn more about course registration


Academic Advising    

To book an appointment with the Political Science Undergraduate Academic Advisor, please either make an online or in-person appointment using our Bookings page

Appointments are 20-minutes long and are available to Political Science students who have completed a minimum of one term of studies in their program.

If you need to cancel your appointment, please do so at least 48 hours in advance to allow other students to take advantage of that advising time. To cancel your appointment, please click the Reschedule button on you Bookings confirmation email. You will have the option to cancel or reschedule.

If you encounter any problems while making a booking, please contact for assistance.

Grading system

Our department uses a single grading system in order to convert percentages to letter grades. Listed below are the guidelines for grading utilized by the Department of Political Science.

A+ 4.30 
85-89 % A 4.00
80-84 %
3.70 Outstanding
77-79 %  
B+ 3.30 
Very good
73-76 % B 3.00
Very good
70-72 %
B- 2.70
Very good
67-69 % C+ 2.30 Satisfactory
63-66 % C 2.00 Satisfactory
60-62 % C-
1.70 Satisfactory
57-59 % D+ 1.30 Marginal pass
53-56 %
D 1.00
Marginal pass
50-52 % D- 0.70
Marginal pass
0 % FNS
0 % NR 0.00 Grade Not Reported

An "F" corresponds to less than 50.

Passing courses required to fulfill curriculum requirements is not sufficient to graduate as there is also an academic performance requirement (Grade Point Average) in most degree programs. See the pertinent information in Section 31 of the Faculty of Arts and Science in the Undergraduate Calendar for complete details.

Note:  Final grades are subject to Department and Faculty approval.

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