Student Resources

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Academic Honesty and Standards

Academic honesty is essential to the continued functioning of the University of British Columbia as an institution of higher learning and research. All UBC students are expected to behave as honest and responsible members of an academic community. Breach of those expectations or failure to follow the appropriate policies, principles, rules, and guidelines of the University with respect to academic honesty may result in disciplinary action.

It is the student’s obligation to inform himself or herself of the applicable standards for academic honesty. Students must be aware that standards at the University of British Columbia may be different from those in secondary schools or at other institutions. If a student is in any doubt as to the standard of academic honesty in a particular course or assignment, then the student must consult with the instructor as soon as possible, and in no case should a student submit an assignment if the student is not clear on the relevant standard of academic honesty.

Policy around plagiarism is specified in the UBC Calendar (Academic Regulations): Academic Honesty and Standards and Academic Misconduct:,54,111,0

ESL/EFL Resources

General Language Learning


See also:
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For all students

  • What should I discuss at my first meeting with my supervisor?

You and your supervisor should talk about what you expect from each other. Useful resources are provided by UBC Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (G+PS) ( G+PS also offers sample student-supervisor agreements (

  • How often should I meet with my supervisor?

Discuss this with your supervisor at one of your first meetings and negotiate a schedule that works for both of you. The schedule of meetings is likely to vary in different phases of the program. Some key points of the program when meetings are beneficial are as follows: making course selections; deciding on the topic of the capstone/major paper (MEd) or thesis (MA/PhD); deciding on comprehensive exam questions (PhD); discussing the research proposal; applying for human ethical review in the case of studies with human participants; creating a timeline and plan for publication and participation in conferences; drafting and revising the thesis; creating an employment strategy and application package; and preparing for defense (PhD/MA).

  • Am I expected to update my progress with my supervisor regularly?

Some supervisors appreciate an update every month. Sometimes it can be just a short note: “Everything is fine.” Regular updates are generally necessary at the key points of the program outlined in the preceding question.

For PhD and MA students

  • How can I apply for TA and RA positions?

The TA positions are announced via email and posted on the department website. Talk to your supervisor about which courses you might apply to teach. Students with relevant teaching experiences can apply. A responsible faculty member will be overseeing your teaching. If you wish to work as an RA you should ask your supervisor about opportunities. Some faculty members also call for applications for RA positions through email.

  • Will there be opportunities for me to co-author papers with my supervisor?

It is common for faculty members to write research papers or present at conferences with students who have worked on their research projects. Some students also invite their supervisors to co-author papers based on their thesis research. Based on the amount of contribution, either the faculty member or the student could be the first author. Please see the UBC Graduate Pathways to Success website for more information about authorship ( Also see guidelines on scholarly integrity

  • Am I expected to apply for grants?

Domestic PhD students are either required (for those awarded with four-year funding) or encouraged to apply for SSHRC. Students, including international students, should discuss with their supervisors other national, faculty and department awards for which they can apply.

  • Am I expected to publish?

Many LLED students publish their work before they graduate. A sustained track record of publication is absolutely essential in the contemporary academic job market.

  • How long should I expect to wait for feedback on my writing?

This is dependent on the length of your writing and the timing of submission within the academic year. The UBC Faculty of Graduate and Post-doctoral Studies suggests the "turnaround time for comments on written work should not normally exceed three weeks" ( Make sure your draft is carefully self-edited before you send it. It would also help if you can plan a calendar for your major paper or thesis so that your supervisor knows what is coming. It may take more time, however, for a supervisor or committee to respond to longer documents, such as a full draft of a PhD thesis. In LLED we suggest that, assuming your supervisor is not on holiday or sabbatical, you may expect 2-4 weeks turnaround time for every 50 pages of manuscript. Be sure to discuss with your supervisor expectations around submission deadlines and timing of feedback with a view to arriving at an agreement that works for you and all members of your supervisory committee.

  • Will my supervisor still be available when they are on sabbatical or after they retire?

Your supervisor is expected to make arrangements for ongoing supervision and communication before going on sabbatical or retiring. Most supervisors, when on sabbatical, will keep contact with you through email and Skype, or meet with you in person when they are in town. It is rare for faculty members to admit new graduate students after they retire or close to their retirement. If your supervisor retires before you graduate, the department will, in consultation with you and your supervisor, assign a co-supervisor to work with you. Some faculty members might want to identify a colleague to take over their role as supervisor and/or committee member when they retire.

Please also see the following resources for graduate student development

Career Services

Graduate Pathways for Success

Life & Career Centre (through Continuing Studies)

The Writing Centre

Research Commons

Centre for Teaching, Learning, and Technology

Supervisory resources:

Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies

Graduate Student Society

Office of the Ombudsperson for Students

Counselling Services &

Student Health Services

Crisis Line

Access and Diversity Office

Housing Office

International House

First Nations House of Learning

Student Financial Assistance and Awards office

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