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Admissions Policy

Admissions Policy Information

Date Approved: December 9, 2019
Effective Date: January 1, 2020
Date Reviewed: Spring 2019
Replaces: Admissions Policy 2007



To provide a consistent, equitable, and transparent process that facilitates the review and selection of applicants for admission to Cambrian College (‘the College’). The College assesses applications to ensure fairness, as well as to assess applicants against criteria, which indicate a strong likelihood of success in the chosen program. Admission policies have been developed in accordance with the regulations set out by the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU) and in keeping with the principles of the Human Rights Code.


Application Cycle: The Fall, Winter, and Spring terms in a given academic calendar year (Sept-Aug). For example, Fall 2019, Winter 2020 and Spring 2020 constitute the 2019-2020 Application Cycle.

Eligibility: The process by which an applicant is assessed as meeting – or not meeting – general admission requirements and program admission requirements.

English Proficiency: A person’s ability to communicate in English (including listening, reading, writing, and comprehension).

Equal Consideration Date: The date by which applicants must submit their application in order to be considered as part of the first round of offers to a program.

Home Schooled Applicant: A person who received the Ontario secondary school curriculum (or equivalent) outside of the public or private school environment.

International Student: A foreign national who is authorized under the Immigration and Refugee Act to enrol as a student in an educational institution in Canada.

Limited Enrolment Program: A program of instruction for which the number of eligible applicants exceeds the number of applicants required to fill the program.

Mature Student: A Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident who does not possess an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent, but is 19 years of age or older, on or before the commencement of the program of instruction in which they intend to enrol.

Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD): A provincially recognized credential earned on successful completion of secondary school requirements established by the Ministry of Education.

Resident of Ontario: A person who can establish legitimate residency in Ontario as a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident as defined by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) for a period of 12 consecutive months (excluding periods spent in a postsecondary institution) prior to registration in the year for which application is being made.

Resident of a Province or Territory in Canada: An applicant who is a Canadian Citizen or a Permanent Resident in a province or territory as defined by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) who can establish bona fide residency in a province or territory other than Ontario, in accordance with the Ontario residency definitions outlined above.

Application/ Scope

This policy applies to all College applicants seeking admission to postsecondary programs.

Policy Statements

  1. College Eligibility
    1. To be considered for Admission to a post-secondary program, an applicant must have one of the following:
      • An Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent
      • Mature Student Status
      • An Academic Career Entrance (A.C.E.) certificate
      • A General Educational Development (G.E.D.) certificate
      • Other requirement(s) as outlined on a program specific basis
    2. Home Schooled Applicants can have their College Eligibility equivalency assessed on a case-by- case basis. It is the responsibility of applicants to self-identify as Home Schooled. Home Schooled Applicants will be asked to submit documentation, such as curriculum outline, education plan, course descriptions, learning outcomes, examinations, and grades/results.
    3. College Eligibility equivalencies are determined at the discretion of the Admissions Office.
  2. Program Eligibility
    1. All program-level requirements are set out at the time of the program’s creation. As such, program requirements are approved by the Credentials Validation Service (CVS), the MCU, and the College Board of Governors. Changes to these requirements are governed by the annual curriculum review process.
    2. Eligibility requirements may include, but are not limited to: course prerequisites, portfolios, auditions, proof of professional licensure, entrance examinations, professional certifications, diploma/degree requirements, etc.
    3. Program admission requirements must be relevant to the program, measurable, and objective.
    4. Course prerequisite requirements cannot include secondary school university preparation courses or Ontario Academic Credit courses, except in the case of college degrees or collaborative college-university postsecondary programs of instruction governed by joint agreements and where those requirements are specifically stated in the agreement.
    5. Mature Students, G.E.D., A.C.E., and Home Schooled applicants cannot be exempt from providing official course prerequisite results. Completion of program prerequisite courses via an Ontario Ministry of Education registered secondary school (or their equivalents) is required.
    6. Program Eligibility equivalencies are determined at the discretion of the Admissions Office.
  3. Applicant Selection
    1. In cases where the number of qualified applicants exceeds the capacity of the program, applicant selection takes place according to the following principles:
      • Applicants are accepted into programs according to the following order of preference: Ontario residents, followed by residents of other provinces or territories in Canada, followed by other applicants.
      • Programs may set program-specific criteria (including, but not limited to: results in course prerequisites, portfolios, auditions, entrance examinations, questionnaires, or other tools that can objectively demonstrate a candidate’s suitability for admission to a specific program ) and these criteria may be scored and used to rank candidates.
      • In cases where an eligibility requirement is deemed to have been met via an equivalent course in another system of education, the Admission Office assigns an appropriate grade/score conversion at its discretion.
      • Any program eligibility requirements that have been met on a Pass/Fail basis, or via admissions testing, cannot be used as part of the applicant selection process. When applicants are applying for admission to Limited Enrolment Programs, it is recommended that all course level prerequisites be obtained directly.
      • All applications which have been received by the published Equal Consideration Date, (including any additional required documentation requested by the College), are given equal consideration as part of the first round of offers.
  4. English Proficiency
    1. As the language of instruction of all programs at Cambrian College is English, all applicants must demonstrate English Proficiency.
      Applicants can demonstrate English Proficiency via secondary school experience by:

      • Presenting at least three years of successful study at an institution where the language of instruction is English.
      • Presenting at least two years of successful post-secondary study at a recognized college or university where the language of instruction is English.
      • Presenting results from an internationally recognized proficiency test completed within two years of the program start date as prescribed by the College’s English Proficiency Requirements Procedure.
    2. English Proficiency is an eligibility requirement in and of itself. It must be presented in addition to any program-specific English pre-requisite requirement(s). Similarly, successfully demonstrating proficiency in English does not waive any program eligibility requirement(s) related to English pre-requisite courses.
  5. Conditional Offers
    1. In some cases, an offer letter will stipulate that conditions exist. Such conditions need to be satisfied in order to receive a final offer of admission. All terms of the conditional offer must be met prior to registration in the program, or before any conditional deadlines stated in the offer letter itself. Failure to satisfy the conditional requirements will result in an offer of admission being revoked.
  6. Waitlists
    1. Realistic waitlists are established for Limited Enrolment Programs. Waitlists are maintained up to the end of the registration period. At the determination of the Admissions Office, waitlists are to be realistic relative to the likelihood of vacancies occurring after all offers of admission have been sent out. On request, applicants are informed of their relative position on the waitlist as soon as their relative position can be reasonably ascertained.
  7. Readmission
    1. Any student looking to return to the first semester of their program, must reapply for that program using the Ontario College Application Service. Such applications will be subject to the selection procedures outlined in this policy. Students looking to rejoin their program in a semester other than semester 1 are bound by the terms outlined in the College’s Readmission Procedure.
  8. Required Documentation
    1. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all required documentation is submitted to the College. All documents are to be resubmitted each Application Cycle, even if an applicant has applied to the College in the past. The exception would be Cambrian College results for past and present Cambrian College students. The Admissions Office will access such grades directly.
    2. Applicants who have been educated outside of Canada must submit proof of their academic records by providing International Credential Assessment Service of Canada (ICAS) and/or World Education Services (WES) assessed credentials.
    3. Documents submitted in languages other than English must be accompanied by a certified true translation. Both the official foreign document and the official translation are required.
    4. The Admissions Office determines the validity of all submitted documentation at its discretion.
  9. Denying Admission
    1. The College reserves the right to deny admission based on a discretionary assessment. Such assessment can include, but not be limited to, the following: an applicant’s lack of previous academic progress, their academic history, if their conduct has been unsatisfactory, or if they are otherwise not in good standing with the College. Applicants denied admission for the reasons listed above may request a review of their situation via the Admission Decisions Review Procedure. Applicants may be asked to submit documentation supporting their claims.
  10. Admission Review
    1. Applicants who are unsatisfied with their admission decision, can request to have their file reviewed as per the Admission Decisions Review Procedure.

Responsibilities and Accountability

Registrar/Admissions has the responsibility to

  • Ensure the secure transmission of application data
  • Administer admissions processes
  • Ensure that College admission processes are objective and transparent
  • Inform applicants of the status of their application
  • Maintain the admissions record
  • Maintain waitlists

Academic Administrators (Deans/Chairs) have the responsibility to

  • Set admission requirements
  • Oversee and approve Program Eligibility
  • Determine program offerings and availability of spaces

Faculty have the responsibility to

  • Review and revise Program Eligibility