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Studying in Canada

Lexicon — Studying in Canada

The equivalent of “Sciences humaines” and, sometimes, “Sciences sociales.”

Bachelor’s Degree/Baccalauréat
The first degree level offered at a university, usually requiring three or four years of full-time studies.

The extensive grounds of a college or university institution. A campus’s green spaces and clusters of buildings form a self-contained entity in relation to its surroundings. One institution may have several campuses, which may even be located in different cities.

(Collège d’enseignement général et professionnel)
In Quebec, a Cegep is the equivalent of a community college. Cegeps offer two-year general studies programs in preparation for university or  three-year technical programs that prepares students for the job market. In both cases, the diploma awarded is called a DEC (Diploma of Collegial Studies/Diplôme d’études collégiales).

Community College/Collège communautaire
Institution of higher education that offers technical programs or professional training that will lead to a diploma. It may also provide alternative paths to admission to university. Colleges of applied arts and technology/Collèges d’arts appliqués et de technologie are also community colleges.

Course or Program Subject to Quotas/Cours ou programme contingenté
Courses or programs that only accept a limited number of students.

A title conferred after an evaluation and attested by a diploma.

An administrative and teaching unit in an institution of higher education that groups professors together based on their field of knowledge or the relationships between their programs for educational and administrative purposes. A department is part of a faculty. (The equivalent of a “UFR” in France’s education system.)

Elective Course/Cours optionnel
The equivalent of an “U.V. libre” in a French program of study.

Graduate Studies/Études de 2e et 3e cycle
Graduate studies lead to a Master’s degree/Maîtrise, then to a PhD/Doctorat.

Master’s Degree/Maîtrise
The degree offered by a university which follows the Bachelor's degree and involves one to two years of studies/research.

The main field of studies in a study program.

Mandatory Course/Cours obligatoire
A compulsory course for all students registered in a program.

A secondary field of study in an academic program.

The third university degree, immediately following a Master’s degree/Maîtrise, ordinarily requiring three to five years of studies/research.

Program of Study/Programme d’études
All of the courses that lead to a degree or a diploma.

The department in charge of registering and admitting students, keeping files and publishing the course calendar for the entire institution.

Undergraduate Studies/Études de 1er cycle
Undergraduate studies lead to a Bachelor’s degree/Baccalauréat and then to Graduate Studies/Études de 2e et 3e cycles.

University Certificate/Diploma/Certificat/Diplôme universitaire
A document attesting that a student has completed an undergraduate program, which usually lasts no longer than four semesters. Undergraduate or post-graduate diplomas or certificates for professionals attest to the fact that they have successfully completed advanced courses in preparation for a profession.

University College/Collège universitaire
An institution of higher education that combines the traditions of university and college, and according to the program, awards a degree, a diploma or a certificate.


AB - Alberta
BC - British Columbia/Colombie-Britannique
MB - Manitoba
NB- New Brunswick/Nouveau-Brunswick
NL - Newfoundland and Labrador/Terre-Neuve-et-Labrador
NS - Nova Scotia/Nouvelle-Écosse

ON - Ontario
PE - Prince Edward Island/Île-du-Prince-Édouard
QC - Quebec/Québec
SK - Saskatchewan


NU - Nunavut
NT - Northwest Territories/Territoires du Nord-Ouest
YT - Yukon Territory/Yukon


Bachelor’s degrees

BA   – Bachelor of Arts
BACSc - Bachelor of Applied Computer Science
BASc - Bachelor of Applied Science
BApplAgrof - Bachelor appliqué en agroforesterie [Bachelor of applied agroforestry]
BBA – Bachelor of Business Administration
BComm – Bachelor of Commerce
BTA  - Bachelor of Theatre Arts
BEd  - Bachelor of Education
BEH - Bachelor of Physical and Health Education
BEng - Bachelor of Engineering
BEth – Bachelor of Ethics
BFA – Bachelor of Fine Arts
BF     - Bachelor of Forestry
BHSc - Bachelor of Health Science
BIM   - Bachelor of Information Management
BJ – Bachelor of Journalism
BKin – Bachelor of Kinesiology
BMLSc - Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science
BMRT – Bachelor of Medical Radiology Technology
BMus – Bachelor of Music
BRT – Bachelor of Respiratory Therapy
BN - Bachelor of Nursing
BPT - Bachelor of Physiotherapy
BR – Bachelor of Recreation
BSc   – Bachelor of Science
BsocSc - Bachelor of Social Sciences
BT   - Bachelor of Tourism
BTh - Bachelor of Theology
BVA - Bachelor of Visual Arts
BSW - Bachelor of Social Work
LLB  - Bachelor of Law


Graduate Diplomas (after a bachelor’s degree)

D.E.A.     - Diplôme d’études approfondies
D.E.S.     - Diplôme d’études supérieures
D.E.S.S.  - Diplôme d’études supérieures spécialisées
D.E.P.D  - Diplôme d’études professionnelles 

Master’s degrees

LLM    - Master of Law
MA     - Master of Arts
M.A.G.U. - Maîtrise en analyse de gestion urbaine [Master of urban management studies]
M.A.O. – Maîtrise ès arts en orientation [Master of arts in guidance]
MAPs  - Master of Arts in Psychology
MASc - Master of Applied Science
MArch - Master of Architecture
M.A.T.D.R. - Maîtrise en aménagement du territoire et développement regional [Master in land use planning and regional development]
MBA   - Master of Business Administration
MAEd  - Master of Arts in Education
MEd     - Master of Education – Administration of Education
MEng   - Master of Engineering
MES    - Master of Environmental Studies
MFr     - Master of French
Mgeog  - Master of  Geography
MMus   - Master of Music
MN      - Master of Nursing
M.O.     - Maîtrise en orientation
MPA   - Master of Public Administration
MPO    - Master of Speech Pathology
MPM    - Master of Project Management
MSc   - Master of Science
MScA  - Master of Urban Planning
MScF   - Master of Science in Forestry
MSI     - Master of Information Science
MSS    - Master of Social Services
MSW   - Master of Social Work
MTax   - Master of Taxation 
MTh    - Master of Theology
MUrb  - Master of Urban Studies


Doctoral degrees

PhD    - Doctorate
DEd    - Doctorate in Education
DA     - Doctorate of Arts
DMus  - Doctorate in Music
LLD     - Doctorate of Law
DTh    - Doctorate in Theology
D.Th.P.  - Doctorat en théologie pratique [Doctorate in practical theology]
MD       - Doctorate of Medicine
DDS    - Doctorate in Dentistry
DPharm - Doctorate in Pharmacy
DPs     - Doctorate in Psychology
DL     - Doctorate of Literature


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