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As Canada and the world respond to COVID-19, Carleton is monitoring the situation very closely. We are dedicated to ensuring students receive the help they need at all times, especially now. It goes without saying that the safety of students, faculty and staff is our first priority. Find out how Carleton University is responding to COVID-19.

Carleton will continue to work with you individually based on your circumstances. We are working on plans to ensure that all admitted students will have the opportunity to study at Carleton in September 2020.

Students who have questions about their application or about the submission of documents should email us at admissions@carleton.ca or connect with us through our online chats.

We are continuing to update this page as more information becomes available.

Undergraduate Admissions: Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Will classes go ahead in September / Will classes be online in the fall?

We are hopeful that the university will be able to reopen our physical spaces partially over the coming months and offer some optional in-person instruction when it is safe to do so.  That said, to prioritize safety, and in line with public health information available at this time, Carleton has made the decision to guarantee the online delivery of all first-year courses. Read the latest message from Carleton’s President.

Q: How will taking classes online change my university experience?

Over 13,000 Carleton students are currently taking courses in our fully online summer semester. Our whole community has mobilized to ensure a high-quality online education and experience for all students. We look forward to sharing more details soon about how our faculty members are preparing and designing engaging learning experiences.

Q: How can I access services?

We are putting everything in place to support your success in these exceptional circumstances. For example, we can assure you that Carleton will provide:

  • Easy access to virtual mental health counselling and support
  • Online peer-to-peer mentorship programs
  • Creative virtual social spaces and activities for students to help combat isolation
  • An inclusive learning environment that can be accessed from anywhere in the world

This means that if you are unable or choose not to live in Ottawa this fall, you will have everything you need to successfully begin your studies at Carleton from a distance.

Q: If classes are online in September, will tuition be reduced? 

Tuition adjustments dependent on program delivery method have not yet been determined. As plans evolve, this information will be communicated.

Q: Can I start in January instead of September?

We do have a ‘Winter’ (January 2021) term, however not all programs are available for entry in January.

All students are encouraged to begin their studies in September if possible. Although you may be able to start in January with optional credits and/or ESL courses, not all of your program courses will be available and it may take longer to complete your degree program.

Q: Can I defer my offer of admission? 

Students with an offer of admission may request a deferral – with the exception of those with offers to study portfolio programs.

A list of the programs that are available for Fall deferral and deferral to Winter are listed on our deferral page, along with the form to request a deferral (the form will be available June 19).

To defer your offer of admission, you must first accept your offer of admission, and declare that you will not be studying elsewhere. There is no fee to defer.

Typically, deferrals are only processed after final grades are received. Please be sure to provide requested documents as soon as they are available.

Q: Can Carleton extend the deadline to accept my offer? 

In order to ensure a place in the program, you are encouraged to accept your offer of admission prior to the deadline stated in your offer. If you had a deadline of May 1 to accept your offer, we have extended May 1 deadlines to June 1.

Accepting also does not preclude you from later changing your mind and accepting another offer. Please feel free to reach out to us to talk about your options.

Offers may still be accepted after the deadline, subject to availability in the program. Please note that some competitive or limited enrolment programs (such as portfolio programs) may not allow for late acceptances.

Q: Can I live in residence? 

Even if courses are online, many students will still want to live in residence. Carleton is working closely with Ottawa Public Health to adapt our spaces in residence and ensure that living on campus will be safe and will remain an exceptional experience for students. The steps being taken include, but are not limited to, single room spaces in traditional- and suite-style residences, increased cleaning practices in communal areas, support for those requiring isolation immediately before or during their time in residence, and decreased density in all areas.

Some dates, deadlines and fees to be aware of:

  • Students accepting their offer of residence by 4:30 p.m. on June 8, 2020 will be guaranteed a space in residence for either September-April or January-April.
  • Students must confirm their commitment to join us in residence, for either a September or a January start date, with Housing and Residence Life Services by 4:30 p.m. on July 15, 2020.
  • Students joining in September will have single occupancy in either a single room or a double room.
    • Those living in a single room will be charged a single room rate.
    • Those living in a double room may be placed with a roommate if restrictions are lifted. These students will be charged a double room rate.
  • Students wishing to cancel residence for September-April with a full refund of the deposit may do so by 4:30 p.m. on July 15, 2020.
  • Students wishing to cancel residence for January-April with a full refund of the deposit may do so by 4:30 pm on October 30, 2020.

Q: What will my orientation experience look like? 

Our amazing orientation team is working on options and new initiatives that we are excited to share with you soon!

Q: My school has cancelled or postponed exams – how can I send in my grades/transcripts? Will I still be considered for admission without my final grades?

Yes. If your final exams are cancelled or postponed, we may be able to assess your application using your most recent school grades. We will consider each student’s application on a case by case basis. We are dedicated to making sure you have every chance for success with your future studies.

Q: I am an Alberta student: What happens if my diploma exam is cancelled (AB) due to my school board’s closure?

Carleton does not require provincial exam grades for admission, we will assess students based on their school grade.

Q: What happens if my courses go to pass/fail and will that affect my ability to be admitted?

As long as the Pass/Fail grades were accompanied by interim and first semester grades, we will be able to use that for our assessments.

Q: Without final grades, how will Carleton determine the amounts for entrance scholarships, and when? 

We are automatically awarding entrance scholarships at the time of admission with the most recent grades available. If you receive an offer of admission, any scholarship amount will be detailed in your offer letter.

Q: Will students still receive transfer credit for completed AP exams, IB Higher Levels, or A Levels?

Yes, Carleton continues to offer advanced standing (transfer) credit for up to three subjects from these systems as usual. We recognize that much work has already gone into this years’ study in these challenging qualifications, and even though many exams have been cancelled or modified, the examination boards have indicated they will still be awarding credentials that reflect the completion of that work. Please see the official websites of your exam boards for more details. Minimum grade requirements still apply. Credit will be granted provisionally upon receipt of official results.

Q: Where can I direct my questions?

The best way to reach us at this time is to email us directly at admissions@carleton.ca or connect with us through our online chat.

FAQ: International students

Q: Can I still apply?

Yes, you can still apply, and we encourage you to apply – we would love you to become part of our Carleton family! We understand the current situation is uncertain, but we are still processing applications.

Our current posted deadline to apply is April 1, however, we are continuing to accept applications.

*Please note: Programs with early deadlines and portfolios have already closed for new applications.

Q: What if I can’t get my documents in on time?

We are flexible with deadlines. You are encouraged to apply as soon as possible – with or without documents (transcripts and/or English test scores). You can add your documents as they become available. Once you have applied, let us know via email (international@carleton.ca) how you have been impacted by cancellations or delays related to COVID-19, and Admissions Officers will review each application with your particular situation in mind. (*Please ensure all applicant inquiries are sent from the email address you have provided on your application and include your Carleton Applicant ID number.)

Q: Can Carleton extend the deadline to accept my offer? 

In order to ensure a place in the program, you are encouraged to accept your offer of admission prior to the deadline stated in your offer. If you had a deadline in May to accept your offer, we have extended May deadlines to June 1.

Please note: You can accept your offer of admission without any financial obligation until after you register for courses. Accepting also does not preclude you from later changing your mind and accepting another offer. Please feel free to reach out to us to talk about your options.

Offers may still be accepted after the deadline, subject to availability in the program. Please note that some competitive or limited enrolment programs (such as portfolio programs) may not allow for late acceptances.

Q: Should I wait for my final grades before I accept an offer of admission?

You do not need to wait for your final grades. You should accept your offer of admission by the deadline that is included in your offer letter if you wish to guarantee your spot in the program.

Q: My IB/ A-Level exams have been cancelled – what should I do?

We have received assurance that students from these systems will receive grades based on in-class work and other assessments in lieu of final exams. We will consider each student’s application on a case by case basis. We are dedicated to making sure you have every chance for success with your future studies.

Q: Will students still receive transfer credit for completed AP exams, IB Higher Levels, or A Levels?

Yes, see previous section for full response.

Q: My English as a Second Language (ESL) test has been cancelled or postponed – are there alternatives to TOEFL or IELTS?

A special online TOEFL test that students can take from home is now available in most countries – see the TOEFL website for details. It is recommended students explore this option. We are also temporarily accepting TOEFL ITP Plus scores from students in China. Please check our ESL requirements page for scores.

IELTS testing is still available in some limited locations (see the IELTS website for details).

At this time we are not able to accept IELTS Indicator, DuoLingo, or tests other than those published on our website.

If you have studied in a fully English curriculum school for three or more years, and believe you could be eligible for a waiver of the English test requirement, please contact us at international@carleton.ca.

Q: Will I be allowed to come to Canada? Should I apply for a study permit?

When you accept an offer to study at Carleton University, we recommend that you go ahead and apply for your study permit. The Government of Canada is continuing to accept and process applications, although travel restrictions are currently in place for foreign nationals. They are requesting that applications for study permits be made online only. (Get more information on how to apply for a study permit on the Government of Canada’s website).

If you would like more information about applying for a study permit, how online studies may impact your status in Canada or work opportunities, or to discuss your particular circumstances, please see the FAQs posted by our International Student Services Office, or contact our advisors directly (isso@carleton.ca).

Q: If I am able to come to Canada to start my online studies in September 2020, how can I quarantine? Will I be allowed to quarantine in residence?

Yes, Carleton will support those requiring isolation immediately before or during their time in residence.

Q: Where can I direct my questions?

If you have questions about your application or the admissions process, please contact us at international@carleton.ca.

You can also chat live with an International Admissions Officer on our website from Monday to Friday 09:00 to 16:00 EST.

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