COVID-19 Graduate Student Supports and FAQ

Graduate Studies

The Faculty of Graduate Studies (FGS) staff are currently working from home and will continue to work for you as best as possible under these circumstances. Your requests will be addressed based on priorities and time-sensitivity. Thank you for your patience. Please visit here for contact information.

Below is a list of Graduate Student Supports and FAQ

Grading Options for Fall/Winter 2019-20 and Winter 2020 Terms

Regular grading is the default option for all students, where the grades students earn are displayed on their transcript as in any other term. Please note that it is better to use your original earned grades on your transcripts unless a grade is significantly lower than you expected. If this is the case, you have two options:

  • Option 1 Revised GPA – You may request to have your final grade in a course appear on your transcript but not count toward your GPA. A notation will be added beside the grade to indicate that it is not included in the GPA calculation. It is there, however, to be used as a prerequisite for other courses as required.

Please note that other post-secondary institutions or professional bodies may not recognize this exclusion of some courses for the calculation of your GPA. All institutions have their own processes for admissions, and may include the course in their adjusted GPA even if UWinnipeg does not.

  • Option 2 Pass/Fail Grade – You may choose a pass/fail option (Standing or Fail) rather than having a grade displayed on a transcript. If you choose this option, you will receive an S (Standing) on your transcript instead of a grade, provided you passed the course. In the case of graduate courses (7000 courses), you must earn a minimum of a C+ in order to request a notation of Standing. GPA is not lowered or raised with this option.

Please note that S (Standing) will not meet the requirement as a prerequisite course if a minimum grade higher than a C+ is required in one course before taking subsequent courses. S (Standing) cannot be used to meet the requirement to achieve a minimum grade of B (3.0) in all core courses in your program. S (Standing) cannot be used to meet the requirement of maintaining a minimum academic standing in your graduate program. For these reasons, option 2 is unlikely to benefit graduate students in most situations. 

Please see the Graduate Studies Policies and Guidelines at for more information about minimum academic standing.

Making a Request for a Grade Change

Final grades will be available on WebAdvisor on May 14. You have until May 28 to make your decision and submit your request for either Option 1 or Option 2.

Your instructor will not makes these changes to your record. Complete an Alternate Grade Form and send it via your UWinnipeg webmail to Student Central at

You must consult with your Graduate Program Advisor or your Graduate Program Chair and get their sign-off on your request form, indicating that you have been advised of the potential ramifications of your choice. Some important issues you’ll want to consider are listed under the Please note sections above.

If you change your mind about your request, you can submit a grade appeal to Student Records by June 24, to be considered by the academic department in which you took the course.

Students in a Joint Master Program with the University of Manitoba

Since registration and grading in your program are administered by UManitoba, you should consult your Graduate Program Chair for advice and refer to the Graduate Studies FAQs at UManitoba.

Thesis Examinations

Supervisors may continue to schedule oral examinations to be conducted electronically using the Zoom Video Conference Platform. Please refer to the document entitled "Thesis Examinations Guideline for Video Conference Examinations for Students and Supervisors" for procedures that will facilitate the experience or contact Dylan Jones ( for further information. 

Please visit Zoom Training Resources for help on how to effectively use Zoom.

What will happen with my student loan?

To support student loan borrowers during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada and the Government of Manitoba have announced their plans to pause the repayment of student loans until September 30, 2020, with no accrual of interest. For more information visit National Student Loans Service Centre and Manitoba Student Aid. If you have other financial aid questions, visit UWinnipeg's Awards and Financial Aid website.

Emergency Loan Program

The Awards and Financial Aid emergency loan program has been adjusted to assess students with emergency need for a limited number of emergency bursaries. Students must contact an Awards Officer to discuss their funding situation and needs. They will provide an emergency funding application if they deem that it is appropriate. You may contact them at

Awards and Financial Aid just launched their new online application for Spring/Summer term bursaries. Bursaries are available to graduate students with financial need. The application is available here:

Deadline is June 1, 2020.

Travel Grants

In light of the COVID -19 pandemic and the implementation of the health and safety measures that have caused either the cancellation or postponement of this season’s academic conferences, the Faculty of Graduate Studies has decided to provide the March 2020 travel grant award winners with three options so that they may still use their travel grant award. This opportunity is extended to all students who won Travel Awards, whether or not they graduate before they take up their award.


  1. Reimbursement of non-refundable costs. The student would need the original receipts (conference, airfare) which would then be applied against their travel grant award.


  1. Deferment of the travel grant to use for another conference within the next academic year (before the end of August 2021). To use this option, the student would need to send us notice via email of their new destination and budget, along with a confirmation from their supervisor that the substitute conference is significant to their work.


  1. Underwriting the costs of an open access publication. If you need any information regarding open access publications, please contact the Scholarly Communications and Copyright Librarian, Brianne Selman, and/or Dylan Jones For some general OA resources, please visit:

International Students

If you have questions about travel restrictions, immigration rules, health coverage or anything else related to your studies, please contact

Will studying online or through alternate delivery affect my eligibility for the Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP)?

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has stated that the delivery method for your winter term classes will still be considered ‘in-class’ for the purpose of your study permit, visa applications or renewals.  Courses of study being delivered by alternate delivery modes, on an exceptional basis due to COVID-19, will not affect study visas or  post-graduation work permit program eligibility.

In addition, the IRCC has confirmed that, “if your in-class courses are being moved to an online-only format because of COVID-19", your eligibility for the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) program won’t be affected.

If you have a study permit, or have been approved for a study permit for a program starting in May or June, but cannot travel to Canada at this time due to travel restrictions, you may begin your classes while outside Canada and you may complete up to 50% of your program while outside Canada if you cannot travel to Canada sooner. Please visit the IRCC Workers, Students, and Visitors website for more information.

For more University of Winnipeg International Student FAQs, please visit the International Student FAQ.

Global Affairs Canada Information for International Students

Global Affairs Canada’s International Education Division is pleased to provide the following information and guidance that may be of assistance to international students. The resources listed provide information on study permit-related issues, as well as travel restrictions and exemptions that may affect international students, and Government of Canada programs for which international students may be eligible.

To access their resources, please visit: Global Affairs Canada Information for International Students

English Language Proficiency Test

My English exam centre is closed, what are my options?

Students will still need to meet the English Language Requirements of the university. The University of Winnipeg is accepting on a trial basis for the Fall & Winter intake 2020-2021 the Duolingo English Test to meet the English Language Requirement for admission. A minimum score of 115 is required. 

For more information, please visit the Duolingo English Test.