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Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find a list of frequently asked questions from online, on-campus and current students. They have been sorted by category, but if you cannot find the answer to your question, please reach out to our Bachelor of Health Sciences program office at bhsc@queensu.ca

I have been out of school for a while, but am ready to start again. How do I apply?

The online BHSc program has various routes of admission depending on your academic background. Generally, where you studied last is the application route you should consider. For example, if you completed high school, but have not been in school for 10 years, you would apply through the high school route. If the last institution you attended was a college, then you would look at the college application route. Check out the various routes of admission into the online program here. If you do not meet the requirements for the route you qualify for, check out our Non-Degree Interest route.

Is it possible to take on-campus courses at Queen’s even though I am in an online degree program?

Unfortunately, no. Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Health Sciences online degree program are limited to the selection of online courses presented on the website. An exception to this rule is an optional on-campus laboratory course offered to online BHSc program students in the Spring/Summer term of the second and/or third year. If you require an on-campus laboratory course to fulfill prerequisite requirements for application to a professional program, touch base with a BHSc Academic Advisor for advice (bhscadvisor@queensu.ca).

Can online BHSc students transfer to the on-campus BHSc program?

If you have taken more than 6 units (2 one-semester courses) at university, you are ineligible for the on-campus BHSc program at this time.

If you are a current BHSc online student and feel that an on-campus program would better suit you, you may be eligible to transfer into another on-campus program. Any student who has completed 24 units may be eligible to apply to transfer into an on-campus degree program as an upper-year transfer student, provided that there is capacity in the desired program and that minimum GPA requirements are satisfied. Applications to transfer are not automatically approved; it is a competitive process and capacity and GPA requirements vary each year. Applications to transfer are available each February from the Ontario Universities' Application Centre (www.ouac.on.ca) for the following Fall term.

Is there an application fee?

Yes. If you apply through the Queen's Webapp, there is a $100 application fee. You can apply to up to 3 Queen's programs for one application fee.

Can I defer my acceptance?

Applicants with extenuating circumstances who have accepted their offer of admission by the deadline date may request a deferral of admission to that program for a period of one year. An online request, explaining the reason for the deferral request, is required before August 30. We will begin accepting requests for Deferral of Admission on June 2. The decision of the Admission Committee to grant a deferral is based on the reason provided and final grades. Students granted a deferral are not permitted to attend another post-secondary institution in the interim. Submit a Request for a Deferral of Admission here.

Will I receive a Queen's student card?

As an online program student, you are considered an off-campus student and will not be automatically issued a Queen's student ID card. However, it is highly recommended you request a student card, especially if you have any proctored final exams, in order to avoid paying a fee. If you would like an off-campus (non-photo) student card, they are available upon request for NEW students. Validation stickers for RETURNING students can be requested each academic year you are studying with us. If at anytime you become an on-campus Queen's student, you will need to exchange your off-campus student card for a photo ID student card (at no charge). Please send a request for a student card via your @queensu.ca email address to student.card@queensu.ca .

Include the following in your request:

  • Full name
  • Student number
  • NEW or RETURNING student
  • Faculty and program you are in
  • Term (i.e. fall, winter, or summer)

This information is also available online at http://www.queensu.ca/registrar/studentid. Students should select the "I am studying off campus, do I need a student card?" option.

Your validated off-campus student card (NEW student) or your validation sticker (RETURNING student) will be mailed to your mailing address in SOLUS. Please ensure this is up-to-date at the time you submit your request. Full details on how to do this are available at http://www.queensu.ca/registrar/solus

Why would I need a student card?

Queen's Libraries offer off-campus access. Details are available on the Library website at http://library.queensu.ca/help-services/frequently-asked-questions?topic=286. We have found that the majority of off-campus students do not require an off-campus student card. It's up to you and we are happy to provide a card if you request one. If you have questions, please contact the Photo ID Assistant in the Office of the University Registrar by email at student.card@queensu.ca or by phone at 613-533-2040.

Is there a difference between Queen's online BHSc degree and an on-campus BHSc degree?

No, there is no difference. Both the on-campus and online BHSc degrees are 4-year honour's degrees approved by the Ministry of Training, Colleges, and Universities. All students are awarded a Bachelor of Health Sciences degree from the Senate of Queen's University. Official transcripts will not indicate how the degree was completed (i.e. online or on-campus).

Can the degree program be completed on a part-time basis?

Yes. Students have the option of completing an online Bachelor of Health Sciences degree on a part-time (3.0 - 9.0 units per term) or full-time (9.0 - 18.0 units per term) basis.

How do I progress from being an interest student into being a BHSc online program student?

An academic advisor will contact students' official Queen's email addresses regarding their eligibility to progress into degree studies. Send your "Request to Progress into Degree Program" form to bhsc@queensu.ca to be formally assessed. Typically this form will be submitted during the term in which you are completing the final progression course(s) required. Alternatively, you could apply the term prior to wanting to become a BHSc program student, if those terms are not the same.

How does tuition work?

For the online BHSc, tuition is calculated based on the number of units you are enrolled in each term. Tuition Fees for domestic students are $608.31/3.0 units and $1216.62/6.0 units. For international students, the fees are $2577.00/3.0 units and $5154.00/6.0 units

Do students qualify for OSAP?

Students who are registered in the Bachelor of Health Sciences degree program and who take a minimum of 9.0 units per term are eligible to apply for OSAP. Contact Queen's Student Awards for more information.

Do online students pay student fees? Why would I want to pay student fees?

Students registered in the Bachelor of Health Sciences online program are not automatically charged student fees collected by Queen’s student government, the Alma Mater Society (AMS). Online students can opt-in and pay student fees should they wish to receive the benefits associated with those fees. Such benefits include the AMS Health Plan and the AMS Dental Plan. Local students who are studying online would have the opportunity to participate in intramurals and clubs as well. To learn more about student fees, please visit the AMS website at:https://myams.org/student-activity-fees/.

How will my online degree be viewed by medical and other professional schools?

The Bachelor of Health Sciences degree is issued by the Senate of Queen's University and is viewed as equivalent to a degree achieved through on-campus study. Furthermore, there is no indication on the student transcript indicating that the degree was completed online.

A transcript is only one part of the application process to medical and other professional schools. Other factors considered in admission decisions may include performance on an entrance exam (e.g. Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)), autobiographical sketch, personal essay, supplementary materials, reference letters, and interviews.

What are the technical requirements for the online BHSc program?

To be able to successfully access BHSc program materials and fully participate in the online experience, including discussions, tutorials, and exams, students will need the following minimal technical requirements.

1) Hardware Required:

  • An Internet connected computer; the BHSc program is accessible on most modern laptop and desktop computers running Windows 7+ or Mac OS 10.8+.
  • Soundcard with speakers and a microphone, or preferably a headset.
  • Web camera (built-in or external).
  • Note: A printer is not required, but is optional for student interested in printing notes or study aids.

2) Internet

  • Reliable access to high-speed internet, preferably at least 15 Mbps download and 10 Mbps upload speeds. Due to regular use of streaming video and collaboration, your monthly bandwidth usage may exceed 150 GB of transfer. Please ensure that your internet package can reasonably accommodate this.
  • An up-to-date internet browser such as Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Microsoft Explorer/Edge, with the most recent version of Adobe Flash Player installed.
  • Microsoft Office 365 Email, the official Queen's email service; provided free to all Queen's students.
  • Ability to check messages in onQ, BHSc Portal, and Queen's email address several times per week (minimum) to be able to stay on track in courses (assessments, deadlines, group work, etc.).

3) Software/Plug-Ins:

  • Microsoft Office 365 Pro Plus (provided free to all Queen's students).
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader (available for free download).
  • Skype (available for free download).
  • Zoom (access will be provided by BHSc when required).
  • Flash (to update to the most recent version visit: https://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/ )
  • You may be required to download other course-specific applications; you will be notified upon starting a course if this is the case.
  • Sufficient antivirus and malware protection software to protect your computer.

Can I attend Convocation in Kingston to receive my degree?

Yes. All graduates are welcome to attend the Convocation ceremony in Kingston to receive their degree. If you choose not to attend, then the degree will be sent by mail.

Can this degree really be completed entirely online?

Yes. This degree can be completed from anywhere in the world as long as the technical requirements are met.

During the Spring/Summer term of second and/or third year, students have the option to travel to Queen's University's Kingston campus to complete an intensive two-week laboratory course (3rd year option - BMED 390). This optional experience immerses students in the lab full-time for two weeks, providing them with valuable hands-on lab experience in a way that is not feasible in traditional 12-week courses. In addition to this course, virtual labs/simulation/living labs have been worked into a number of our online courses, allowing students to gain similar experience to what they would be learning in a lab, without physically being in one.

Are there specific times for online learning?

Our course content is delivered in interactive online modules, therefore, students are able to complete the bulk of their course work at a time that suits them best and fits their already existing schedule. Some courses may have specific times for live discussion or tutorials, but this has been kept to a minimum program-wide. Additionally, group work within courses may need to be worked on at specific times, however these times would be determined by the group members around their collective schedules.

Do I need to travel to Kingston to write my exams?

No, all online students write their final exams online using an approved online proctoring software.

How will I get research experience in an online degree?

The online BHSc program has tried to integrate research into as much of the curriculum as possible, keeping in mind that it is an entirely online degree program. Here are some ways that we encourage research experience:

  • Virtual labs/simulation/living labs have been worked into a number of our online courses, allowing students to gain similar experience to what they would be learning in a lab, without physically being in one.
  • Students have the option to travel to Queen's University's Kingston campus to complete an intensive two-week laboratory course (3rd year option - BMED 384). This optional experience immerses students in the lab full-time for two weeks, providing them with valuable hands-on lab experience in a way that is not feasible in traditional 12-week courses.
  • Students are encouraged to reach out to local institutions to offer their volunteer services in a laboratory. Many academic labs take on undergraduate volunteer students, and this is a great way to get a feel for what research is like.
  • Queen's and other institutions hire upper year summer students in research laboratories through various means, including SWEP and NSERC. If you are hoping to apply to one of these programs, you are encouraged to do your research early to ensure you get your application and all other requirements submitted by the deadlines!

What are the high school course requirements for admission?

For Ontario residents, successful completion of the OSSD and the following prerequisite courses (English 4U*, Biology 4U, Chemistry 4U, and any 4U Mathematics), plus another two U or M level courses. Information for International Baccalaureate, Advanced Placement, international, and other educational systems are found on the Queen's Undergraduate Admissions website.

*Minimum grade of 80% in ENG4U.

What is the competitive average for entrance to the on-campus BHSc program?

A minimum average grade requirement for admission to any Queen's program is 75%. However, we anticipate the competitive average for admission to the on-campus BHSc program will be in the high 80's to low 90's.

Do I need to submit a personal statement of experience (PSE)?

While not a requirement to apply, it is strongly recommended.

How do I apply?

Students may submit their applications directly through OUAC using the code QH.

Is this program open to international students?

Yes. International students are encouraged to apply to any Queen's program. For international requirements, please visit the Undergraduate Admissions website: https://www.queensu.ca/apply/international.

How many students are admitted each year?

A total of 120 first year students will be admitted to the program for the Fall 2019.

How many people apply to this program?

Over 4,000 applications were received for admission for Fall 2019.

Can I defer my acceptance?

Applicants with extenuating circumstances who have accepted their offer of admission by the deadline date may request a deferral of admission to that program for a period of one year, An online request, explaining the reason for the deferral request, is required before August 30. We will begin accepting requests for Deferral of Admission on June 2. The decision of the Admission Committee to grant a deferral is based on the reason provided and final grades. Students granted a deferral are not permitted to attend another post-secondary institution in the interim. Submit a Request for a Deferral of Admission here: https://www.queensu.ca/admission/pathways-and-policies/procedures

Can I get a minor?

Currently, students registered in the BHSc program at Queen's are not able to get a minor. Students can enroll in various elective courses, including courses in other faculties, which will allow for the diversity in course work that students seeking a minor are hoping to attain.

How can I specialize my degree?

Queen's BHSc students are able to focus their degree by choosing one or more learning tracks. Learning Tracks are selections of themed courses in a particular field of health sciences which give students the opportunity to study an area of specialization in more detail. Enrollment in a learning track is optional and is available to all BHSc students.

What courses will I take in my first year?

In the first year, students will take 6 core courses; Introductory Pharmacology, Anatomy of the Human Body, Human Cell Physiology, History and Philosophy of Health and Healthcare, Social and Physical Determinants of Health and Disease, and Introduction to Statistics. Students can then choose an additional 6.0 units of option courses and 6.0 units of elective courses, as defined by our curriculum: https://bhsc.queensu.ca/program-and-courses/curriculum .

What is the difference between Health Sciences and Life Sciences?

The BHSc program is a direct-entry program that has been purpose-built to provide graduates with pathways to future studies in the health professions, as well as opening the door to many direct-entry career opportunities in healthcare. Both Health and Life Sciences focus on human health and disease. Health sciences makes a conscious effort to incorporate societal and global influences of health, while Life Sciences has a more specific focus on the biomedical sciences. With considerable overlap between the focus of the two programs, students interested in human health and science will likely enjoy either program.

Queen's actually offers three programs related to human health: Health Sciences, Life Sciences, and Health Studies. All three programs offer experiential learning opportunities that embrace multi-disciplinary approaches including research opportunities. The common topic among these disciplines is the focus on the human, each providing viable paths to the health industry.

What is a flipped classroom?

The difference between traditional and flipped classrooms is summarized in this image:

Prior to class, students will learn via online modules that have been curated by their instructor. They will then come to class ready to extend and apply that learned knowledge in small group learning sessions mediated by course faculty and knowledgeable teaching assistants. This format will replace traditional lecture-style in BHSc core courses and allow students to interact closely with the content as well as the expertise of upper-year students, graduate students, and faculty members right from the beginning of the program. This format promotes the development and mastery of program competencies, allowing students to hone these skills throughout their degree.

Is this extra work since there are online modules and in-class sessions?

Course content will be primarily delivered in the form of engaging online modules, allowing students to work through the content at their own pace, spending more or less time on concepts as appropriate for the individual student. The focus of the in-class sessions will be to apply the content already learned through peer and faculty guidance, rather than being presented with new content. Specifically, important and/or difficult concepts will be reinforced in small group learning sessions with real-world examples, clinical case-studies, problem-based learning, and engaging discussion.

What scholarships are available?

Students who apply to Queen's will automatically be considered for a number of awards as outlined by the Queen's Office of the University Registrar's website. For these awards, no additional application, other than your application to Queen's, is necessary.

Queen's also has various awards with varying eligibility criteria that require an additional application. Please visit the Queen's Office of the University Registrar website to learn about the scholarships you may be eligible for.

Please contact Queen's Student Awards at awards@queensu.ca if you have any questions.

What bursaries are available?

Queen's has a number of bursaries available to their applicants, as outlined by the Office of the University Registrar's website. All students who wish to be considered for Admission Bursary assistance must submit an Admission Bursary application.

Additionally, a number of Financial Aid programs may be of interest to BHSc Applicants and are outlined here: https://www.queensu.ca/studentawards/financial-aid

Finally, applicants may be eligible for the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP), or other provincial financial aid programs, as outlined here: https://www.queensu.ca/studentawards/financial-aid/government-aid.

What is the cost of this program?

For the most up-to-date information pertaining to domestic and international tuition fees, please visit the website for the University Registrar: http://www.queensu.ca/registrar/financials/tuition-fees.

What types of academic accommodations are available to students?

Any student with a documented disability can register with Queen's Student Accessibility Services (QSAS). Academic accommodations are put in place to equalize learning opportunities and access to the academic environment for students with disabilities.

Do I need to travel to Kingston to complete my exams?

No, online students write their final exams online using an approved online proctoring software.

How do I add/drop a course?

You can add and drop courses through your SOLUS Student centre.

When can I enroll in courses? Are there financial or academic penalties for dropping a course?

The Academic Calendar Sessional Dates lists all academic and financial deadlines, term start and end dates, registration periods, exam periods, and more dates important for students in the Bachelor of Health Sciences program.

How do I setup my Queen's email?

Once your status changes from applicant to undergrad (or other active student type) you will receive your Queen's email account. Undergrads will be notified by the Office of the Registrar via an email sent to your application email address.

Your Queen's email address is your NetID followed by @queensu.ca (NetID@queensu.ca). All university email correspondence will be sent to this account. To access your email account login into Microsoft Office 365. At the same time you can also download Office ProPlus and configure Outlook to access your email on your personal computer. Please visit the Office 365 Email Tutorial for more information.

What free software is available to students?

  • MyQueen'sU Software Centre - Use your NetID and password to log into the MyQueen'sU portal (https://my.queensu.ca ) and select the Software Centre tab. Download and install Enterprise Licenced software (MatLAB, ArcGIS, Maple, SAS, SPSS), and other software available to you.
  • Microsoft Office 365 - Using your email address and password log into Office 365 and click on the Office 365 logo in the top left corner to open the apps menu. All apps listed on the menu are available for you to use. For more details on these apps, visit the Microsoft Office 365 service page.

Do I need to take courses in the spring/summer term?

Possibly. While there are no requirements to take summer courses in order to complete the Bachelor of Health Sciences degree program, some elective courses offered by the Faculty of Arts and Science may only be offered in the summer. Some of these electives are required in order to complete specific learning tracks within the BHSc program.

I am sick and have something due; what do I do?

The Bachelor of Health Sciences Protocol for Self-Declaration of Brief Absences and Short-Term Academic Consideration is intended to guide students admitted to the Bachelor of Health Sciences, instructors, and program office staff in situations where extenuating circumstances are interfering with a student's ability to complete academic requirements related to a course(s) for a short period of time. This protocol was developed in response to the approved Senate Policy on Academic Consideration for Students in Extenuating Circumstances.

Academic accommodations may also be requested by students with disabilities.

How do I get assessed for transfer credits?

If you have completed college or university courses elsewhere and would like them to be assessed for transfer credits that can be applied to your BHSc degree, you can submit a request for transfer credits by filling out the survey and completing the directions as outlined here: Queen's Transfer Credit Assessment. A transfer credit assessment is only completed after being accepted to the BHSc degree program. Non-Degree Interest students are not eligible for a transfer credit assessment until they have progressed into the full BHSc degree program.

Are there any research opportunities for me as an online BHSc student?

The online BHSc program has tried to integrate research into as much of the curriculum as possible, keeping in mind that it is an entirely online degree program. Here are some ways that we encourage research experience:

  • Virtual labs/simulation/living labs have been worked into a number of our online courses, allowing students to gain similar experience to what they would be learning in a lab, without physically being in one.
  • Students have the option to travel to Queen's University's Kingston campus to complete an intensive two-week laboratory course (3rd year option - BMED 384). This optional experience immerses students in the lab full-time for two weeks, providing them with valuable hands-on lab experience in a way that is not feasible in traditional 12-week courses.
  • Students are also encouraged to reach out to local institutions to offer their volunteer services in a laboratory. Many academic labs take on undergraduate volunteer students, and this is a great way to get a feel for what research is like.
  • Queen's and other institutions hire summer students in research laboratories through various means, including SWEP and NSERC. If you are hoping to apply to one of these programs, you are encouraged to do your research early to ensure you get your application and all other requirements submitted by the deadlines!