Courses and Other Academic Activities

As of March 16 and continuing until at least April 3, all graduate courses across U of T’s three campuses are being delivered through alternative means (which may include existing online platforms). Students are receiving details about courses and revised session dates from their graduate program directly. Please contact your program with any questions.

The Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation (CTSI) has resources to help instructors with continuity planning, including a checklist and quick guide. CTSI staff are available assist instructors in dealing with COVID-19-related changes to teaching. 


Departmental Examinations

Most departmental examinations (e.g. qualifying, comprehensive, and/or general examinations) can take place without physical presence. More information will follow from your graduate program regarding arrangements for the completion of departmental examinations in your program.

Placements, Internships and Other Program Requirements

Please refer to your graduate program for further information.

Student Absences 

We all have a role to play in limiting the spread of COVID-19. Everyone should stay at home and self-isolate if they have flu-like symptoms.

At this time, students do not need a doctor’s note or medical certificate for cold or flu-related absences, or for self-isolation. Students should record cold or flu-related absences, as well as self-isolation absences, through the Absence Declaration tool on ACORN (under the Acorn Profile and Settings menu).

Some faculties have alternate or supplementary requirements when reporting absences, so please contact your Registrar’s Office if you have questions. Graduate students requiring modifications to their absences can contact SGS at

Absences for other illnesses should continue to be documented through the Verification of Illness (VOI) form and normal Faculty processes. 


Graduate students registered with Accessibility Services should continue to contact Accessibility Services to receive accommodations and supports.

Libraries and Graduate Spaces

Selected libraries remain open, with limited hours, limited services, social distancing measures, and with access restricted to U of T users. For up to date information, please refer to the University of Toronto Libraries COVID-19 webpage. All University buildings will be closed as of 11:59 p.m., March 17, 2020 to the general public, members of the University community will need key or fob access to enter the buildings or present University identification to campus security. We advise all students to practice social distancing in line with the advice given by Public Health authorities. Please consider carefully how this advice applies to your own circumstances and adjust your routines accordingly.

International Students

The Government of Canada has advised that study being delivered online on an exceptional basis because of measures related to COVID-19 will not affect Post-Graduation Work Permit Program eligibility for a post-graduation work permit. 

International Visiting Graduate Students (IVGS)

The situation is evolving rapidly in many parts of the world and travel restrictions may be imposed on short notice. Travellers arriving in Toronto could face a period of self-isolation or quarantine.

It is recommended that you consult the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 travel advisory website and the travel section of the U of T’s frequently asked questions.

Final Oral Examinations

The Final Oral Examination (FOE) is an important culminating experience and celebratory milestone for doctoral students. As U of T engages in the process of academic continuity planning, SGS remains committed to providing the best possible experience for the candidate while ensuring that the candidate and members of the examining committee remain safe and healthy.

To enable doctoral candidates to complete their degrees in a timely manner, SGS will be waiving the current SGS guidelines for FOEs prohibiting the remote participation of the candidate, and limiting the remote participation of members of the examination committee to two per exam.  As of March 18, 2020, all examinations must be held remotely or if the student chooses an in-person FOE, it must be postponed until a later date. Please note that this is a temporary arrangement, which has been put in place as a response to building closures at the university, travel disruptions, and the need for social distancing and/or isolation.

Back to Home