The Faculty of Graduate Studies

Assistant Vice-President (Graduate Studies)
Ben Bradshaw BA Trent, PhD Guelph

Associate Dean
Karl Cottenie M.Sc., MS, PhD K.U. Leuven 

Graduate Faculty

Members of regular graduate faculty are appointed from among the faculty members of the university, on recommendation of their department chair or director of a school to the Board of Graduate Studies. Membership is contingent upon continuing participation in the graduate program of the university and is subject to annual review. Faculty members in departments without graduate programs may be appointed as graduate faculty in another department.

Graduate Faculty Categories

Regular Graduate Faculty: Regular Graduate Faculty are tenured and tenure-track faculty at the University of Guelph. (Contractually limited appointments are not included in this category — see Associated and Special Graduate Faculty.) In most cases, Regular Graduate Faculty are expected to hold a PhD or the most senior degree in their particular area of expertise with an appropriate level of scholarship. Exceptions to this guideline must be accompanied by justification to the Board of Graduate Studies outlining the nature and extent of the experience or other training that equips the nominee for membership of Regular Graduate Faculty. To retain active status, individuals nominated to Regular Graduate Faculty must be involved on a regular basis with aspects of graduate education including advising students (as principal advisor or as co-advisor) and examining students and teaching graduate courses. Departments, programs and schools are expected to provide support in the form of mentoring for faculty newly appointed to the University, especially individuals who do not possess previous experience advising students. As part of the commitment to mentoring, a newly appointed Faculty Member may be required to serve as co-advisor linked in the early part of their career with a more experienced Faculty Member. Such decision shall normally not extend beyond three years from the date of appointment, and shall be reviewed by the Dean in their annual meeting with the Faculty Member, and the dean shall decide, in consultation with the Faculty Member, when the Faculty Member may commence serving as principal advisor. It is expected that the performance of Regular Graduate Faculty will be assessed as an integral part of the Promotion and Tenure process. Where there are substantiated concerns in the Faculty Member’s performance of aspects of graduate education, the Faculty Member may continue to hold active Regular Graduate Faculty status; however, restriction(s) may be placed on some or all of their graduate education activities.

Associated Graduate Faculty: Associated Graduate Faculty are appointed to serve as co-advisors and may participate in all other aspects of graduate education, but they may not serve as primary advisors. Associated Graduate Faculty status is not normally for tenure-track faculty at the University of Guelph, but rather for individuals who are Professor Emeritus/Emerita, University Professor Emeritus/Emerita, or hold a senior academic degree in their particular area of expertise and have appropriate research experience. Tenure-track Faculty Members who are not engaged in all aspects of graduate education may hold this status if they continue to be involved in some aspect of graduate education. Associated Graduate Faculty should have experience serving on graduate student advisory committees. Departments, programs, and schools are expected to provide support for Associated Graduate Faculty that is appropriate to their particular situation, graduate student advisory experience, and role(s) in the graduate program. Appointments are for a four-year term, or in the case of Contractually Limited Faculty a length of time commensurate with their appointment, renewable upon application and a satisfactory performance review conducted by the host program, department, or school.

Special Graduate Faculty: Special Graduate Faculty are appointed for specific tasks in support of graduate programs, such as teaching graduate courses and serving on advisory and/or examination committees, but they may not serve as advisor or co-advisor. The roles and responsibilities of the nominee must be defined at the time of nomination, and each revision of the roles and responsibilities must be submitted for approval by the Board of Graduate Studies. Although senior academic qualification and experience is desirable for Special Graduate Faculty, this is not essential. The term will be consistent with the nature of the appointment.

With rare exception, graduate students are not permitted to serve as graduate course instructors. Graduate students are also not permitted to serve as members on either the advisory or examination committees of another graduate student. Research associates and post-doctoral fellows may not be nominated as advisory committee members for students supervised by their faculty advisor and/or supervisor.

The complete Policy on Appointment to Graduate Faculty Status can be found at