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Your first few weeks at the University

Orientations and information sessions

Graduate Student Orientation

All new September-start graduate students are encouraged to attend Graduate Student Orientation. Students starting in January and May will also have the opportunity to attend an orientation session at the start of the winter and spring/summer terms.

You will learn a wealth of important information related to your graduate education. You will also have the opportunity to meet other new graduate students and learn about campus services.

Learn more and register

Faculty and program-specific orientations

Some faculties and/or programs may host their own orientation activities for new students. Be sure to inquire with your graduate program assistant or graduate program director to see if there are any program or faculty orientation events you should attend.

International Student Orientation

Students will have the opportunity to meet other new and returning international students and gain valuable information about Canada and the university. This session, coordinated by the Student Experience Centre, is held before the fall and winter semesters begin.

Learn more

Teaching assistant orientation sessions

Orientation sessions for new teaching assistants (TAs) are held every August and January to provide information on how to run effective tutorials/labs, tips for marking and strategies for helping students. New TAs are contacted directly by the Teaching and Learning Centre with an invitation to attend a teaching orientation session.

Scholarship information sessions

The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies hosts scholarship information sessions throughout the fall. These are a great way to learn about the many scholarship opportunities available to you.

Learn about scholarships


Obtain your student ID card

Your student ID card is a valuable piece of identification. Your ID card is needed for exam identification, acts as your university transit pass and gives you retail discounts on and off campus. Your student ID card also grants you access to a number of resources on campus including, but not limited to, library resources, student health plan access and campus recreational facilities.

Visit student ID website


Public transportation

All full-time students receive a Universal Transit Pass (U-Pass), which provides you with unlimited access to Durham Region Transit (DRT) during the academic year. The cost of the U-Pass is included in your full-time student fees.

Visit DRT website

Please note that full-time graduate students in the MA in Education, MEd and Graduate Diploma in Education and Digital Technologies programs are exempt from the U-Pass fees.


Obtain a proximity card

Some faculty labs on campus require proximity card access. In order to receive a proximity card, a designated faculty representative. If you require proximity card access, contact your graduate program director at the start of the term.