Graduate Program FAQ
The First Stop: The first stop for new graduate students should be the Department Office (CW 307.14) where a Department Secretary will answer your immediate questions and assist you in contacting your supervisor or the Graduate Coordinator. The secretary will also help you obtain computer accounts and any keys, access cards, combinations, etc. that you require.
Desk: Space permitting, every full-time, fully qualified graduate student in the Department of Computer Science is assigned a desk. The desks are in professors' research space. Most likely, you will be in a room with other grad students who will be working on the same area of research and under the same supervisor.
Office Key: You can obtain a key(s) to your office from the Department Office. Each key requires a $10.00 deposit, refundable when you finish your program and return the key to the department office. If you lose the key(s), notify the department office and a new key will be order. The deposit will not be returned if you have lost your key(s).
Mail: You will be assigned a mailbox (based on your office number) in the work room (CW308.3). One mailbox is assigned for each office. The mailboxes are located in CW 308.3 and can be accessed at any time. Please see the Department Secretary for the combination to the door to CW 308.3. One mailbox key is provided in your grad office for all students. Please return this key to your office so all your office mates have access to the mailbox.
This is useful for communicating with students and faculty members, for receiving notices, forms to be filled out, and general information about what is going on. Outgoing mail for outside the University should be placed in the red mailbox in front of the Classroom building. Outgoing mail for inside the University can be passed directly to the Department Secretary.
UofR/Hyperion/Novell Account: The University of Regina provides students with computer accounts, which are variously known as "UofR accounts," "Hyperion accounts," or "Novell accounts." These terms all refer the same thing. The webmail facility on the main University of Regina website accesses these accounts.
If you need assistance with your UofR user ID and password, go to the IT Support Centre Help Desk in the Education Building, Room 549.
CS Email: The Department of Computer Science (CS) e-mail system provides quick and easy communication with the students, faculty and staff of Computer Science. The accounts in this e-mail system are known as email@example.com. There is a "grads" distribution list within the mail system to allow faculty and staff to quickly send e-mail messages to all grad students.
It is necessary that you read your CS e-mail regularly since important mesages, including deadlines for funding support applications, are only distributed by CS e-mail. You will be placed on this list when you are given your computer account. You can forward these messages by placing a file called .forward in the main directory of your account. The only content of the file is the name of the email account that you want to forward your email to. It is strongly recommended that you only forward your email to your uregina.ca email account. If you have any questions or problems with forwarding email or email in general, please refer to Resources / Trouble? Reporting a Problem.
CS Server (Venus) Account: As a graduate student, you will be given an account, on Venus. You can read your CS email conveniently using the pine program, simply by typing "pine" and hitting the enter key. If you need more disk space, you can ask your supervisor to setup your account on one of his/her research machines. It is imperative that you receive the e-mail messages sent to this account, as described above under email.
If you know your UofR/Hyperion/Novell user ID and password, you can change your CS password at: https://www.cs.uregina.ca/Password/
For assistance with your CS user ID and password, send an email message to firstname.lastname@example.org. One of the Lab Instructors will respond and make an appointment to see you. Bring your photo ID and proof of your Student Number. Your UofR Student ID Card provides both.
Computer Problems: If you experience problems with your computer (virus, network connection, not working, etc.) notify your supervisor. Your supervisor is responsible for placing a work order to the IT Support Centre. In some cases, IT Support will not proceed with the work until your supervisor provides permission and account information.
Combination Locks: Access to some Department areas is controlled by cards and access to others is controlled by combination locks. The CL105 and CL135/UDML undergrad labs require that a student have an access card. Please see the Department Secretary to obtain a card. The research labs and other facilities in CL 124.1 (Computer Graphics Lab), CL 122 (Computational Learning Theory Lab), CL 129 (Stackroom), CW 230.1, and CW 308.3 (Workroom) require a combination. To obtain a combination for the first time and then be placed on a mailing list for updates, you must see the Department Secretary. These combinations are changed regularly and you will receive the new combinations by e-mail. Never divulge these combinations to anyone.
Permission needed to register for a course: Written permission is needed to register for the following types of courses:
- Directed Reading courses
- Courses at full capacity
- Courses restricted to a Campus, Faculty, Major, Degree, or Program that you are not registered in
- Courses for which you have not completed the necessary pre-requisites
- Taking a course and the pre-requisite course concurrently
- Courses that have a time conflict in your schedule
Please go to the Department Office to obtain the required forms. You will also have to obtain appropriate permissions and signatures.
Final Examinations: Final examinations are required in some graduate courses. After these examinations have been marked, they are kept in the CS department office for six months. Exams are available for viewing but cannot to be removed from the office. Photo ID is required. If you have concerns about your exam, you may schedule an appointment to meet with your instructor.
Deferred Exams: Under certain circumstances, you may be granted a deferred final examination by the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. If you are granted such a deferral, you will need to make arrangements for the date and time of the deferred examination with your course instructor. The CS department office will provide a room and invigilator if needed.
Payroll: If you are expecting to be appointed to a paid position by the Department of Computer Science, check your mailbox for your letter of appointment. If you have never been paid by the University of Regina before, please either go to the Department Office to pick up the following forms or print them from the Human Resources / Payroll Forms website
These forms must be submitted to Human Resources prior to the student being paid (students receiving a scholarly award only need to submit the direct deposit form):
- TD1SK form (Saskatchewan Tax)
- TD1 form (Federal Tax)
- Direct Deposit form (to have pay deposited directly into your bank account)
- Student Union form
- Tuition/Fees deduction form (only if student wants)
All international students studying on a student visa who receive TA appointments should apply for a Social Insurance Number (called a SIN number). More information can be found at the following link: http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/en/sc/sin/index.shtml
Details on payment:
- Teaching Assistants: Teaching Assistants are paid an hourly salary, with one payment at the end of each month. Payroll is deposited directly into your bank account.
- Lab Instructors: Lab Instructors are paid an hourly salary, with one payment at the end of each month. Payroll is deposited directly into your bank account.
- Scholarships: Scholarships are paid monthly, with one payment at the end of each month. Payroll is deposited directly into your bank account.
Check your mailbox for your monthly pay stub.
Parking: You can buy a parking permit at the Parking Office on the first floor of the College West (CW) building. To be assured a spot, especially in the nearest lots, you should purchase a parking permit before the semester begins.
Stack Room: Graduate Students have an informal meeting place in the Stack Room (CL129). It also has a laser printer for the use of graduate students. Some of the people who regularly use this room have organized a co-operative venture and acquired two microwaves, a kettle, and a refrigerator, which are kept in the Stack Room for shared use. If you wish to join this group, please contact one of the people whose name is on the member list posted in the Stack Room.
Photocopies: There are photocopiers available for use by graduate students in the libraries on campus. To use them, you first need to buy a photocopying debit card (it looks like a credit card) from a machine in the library. There is an initial payment of $1.00 for the card. The photocopier in the workroom (CW 308.3) is also available to graduate students. Each copy costs approximately six cents.
Teaching Aids: The Centre for Teaching and Learning in Room 610 in the Library is a valuable resource that you should use to help you learn teaching skills. Go to LY610 or consult their web site for information about training materials and courses.
Other Information: Other information of interest to new students is given on the Student Affairs website.
The Student Services main desk in the Riddell Centre is also a good source of information about student services.
International students should familiarize themselves with the UR International Student Services:
College West, Room 109
Books and Journals: As a graduate student doing research, you will need access to books, research journals, and conference proceedings. This section will summarize where these resources are found.
- Bookstore: The U. of R. Bookstore stocks all books that are required texts for courses at U. of R. The bookstore will also order books for you directly from the publisher, but it may take several weeks for the book to arrive.
- Libraries: The main library at the U. of R. receives a selection of journals in electronic and paper form. Electronic journals are available via the Library website, with most of them occurring under the Databases tab. All paper journals are found on the shelves of the fourth and fifth floors, with the computer and engineering journals concentrated on the fifth floor. The bound journals or noncurrent unbound issues of journals may be signed out, but the current issues of journals must be read or, copyright permitting, photocopied in the library. Books may be signed out for the term by presenting your student card at the main desk. If the library does not have a book or journal you need, you may request it through Inter-Library Loans. This process usually takes two weeks unless the requested document is available at the University of Alberta, in which case it takes about two days. The library will cover the cost of this service unless you want something couriered (other than U. of A. holdings) or faxed. The library staff give guided tours of the library at the beginning of every term. There is also a science reference librarian responsible for computer science material who can help you with your searches.
- The Department has copies of textbooks in the main office. During the first few weeks of each semester, the TAs and instructors sign out the books they need for their courses. All books must be returned at the end of each semester.
- Finally, your supervisor may have copies of reference material that you are unable to obtain by any other means and may be willing to lend them to you for a brief time.
Computer Science Student's Society (CSSS): The CSSS provides an opportunity to meet other students of computer science in a social atmosphere. Taking an active part in CSSS is a good way to become involved in those issues that interest and affect you. The CSSS holds weekly meetings and arranges social and technical events. Both undergraduate and graduate students are encouraged to participate.
Student Representative: On a related note, you can also participate as a graduate student representative on FGSR committees. There is also one graduate student representative to the Department's Graduate Committee determined by election each year.
Important Deadlines: There are various deadlines for registration, completion, thesis defense, etc. It is the student's responsibility to be familiar with these deadlines. Further information can be found on the University of Regina's official website: http://www.uregina.ca/.
When you finish your graduate program: Please clean out your personal items from your office space in a timely manner. Return your office keys to the CS department office. At this time, your deposit will be refunded. Return textbooks that you have signed out as a teaching assistant/marker/sessional instructor. If you produced a thesis, arrange to have bound copies prepared. Pick up your bound thesis or provide a mailing address to ship the bound theses to.
Other: If you experience other office concerns, i.e., burned out lights, water leaks, no heat/air, etc., notify the Department Secretary.