Graduate Studies










Summer, Fall and Spring
Program Components: 

Coursework + Thesis

Registration Options: 

Full-time and Part-time


The Master of Arts program offers students in a wide range of disciplines the opportunity to earn a master’s degree by writing a thesis and successfully completing a limited number of courses. 

Students are required to secure a potential supervisor prior to submitting an application for this program (except for Economics major).​ For further information please visit our Search Supervisors page. ​The Thesis forms the central requirement of the program which involves close collaboration between supervisor and student. The Thesis route expresses the fundamental tradition of academic scholarship, and the creation of a Thesis in any discipline calls for a range of skills which are central to the liberal education tradition, including analysis and synthesis of ideas, empirical investigations, the construction and articulation of arguments, and writing skills.

Students may complete their degrees in either a full- or part-time capacity. Full-time students complete a 24-month program while part-time students complete a 48-month program. 

In case of discrepancies between this page and the Graduate Studies Calendar and Course Catalogue, the Graduate Studies Calendar and Course Catalogue shall prevail.

Admission requirements

Applicants will meet the following minimum requirements to be considered for admission:

  • Hold a baccalaureate degree (i.e. an undergraduate degree) in a related discipline from a recognized degree-granting institution
  • Have a minimum grade point average of 3.00 (based on 4.00 scale) on the last 20 graded university-level term courses OR calculated on the most recently completed master’s degree if the applicant is applying for another master’s degree
  • Demonstrate English language proficiency (ELP) for graduate student
  • Secure a potential supervisor (except for Economics major)

See here for information regarding international graduate-level admission requirements

Application process

Step 1: Prepare Supporting Documents

See Supporting Documents for the Master of Arts program below. If additional documents are required, the School of Graduate Studies will contact you. 

Step 2: Find a Supervisor

To find a potential supervisor, you will need to contact a uLethbridge faculty member with expertise in the your research area. Please visit Search Supervisors page to find a potential supervisor.

Step 3: Submit Online Application by Deadline

Submit your complete application by midnight (MST/MDT) on the deadline date.

Step 4: Arrange for Official Documents

Official documents (e.g., transcripts, English language proficiency test scores) are required prior to registration.
Note: Applicants who have attended or are currently attending an institution participating in ApplyAlberta do not need to arrange for official transcripts to be sent to uLethbridge from the issuing institution. A list of participating institutions is available at

Step 5: Admission Decision Process

The departmental committee reviews your application and makes a recommendation on admission to the program committee. You will be notified of your official admission status by the Registrar’s Office no later than April 1 (February 1 deadline), July 1 (May 1 deadline) or December 1 (October 1 deadline).

*Note: Students who are graduates of non-Canadian universities must provide notarized English translations of all documents not in the English language.

For more details please see the Graduate Studies Calendar and Course Catalogue.

Admission criteria

Because the capacity of the program is limited, not all students who meet the minimum admission requirements can be admitted. Criteria used for admission include:

  • your record and letters of recommendation
  • your proposed supervisor’s record of scholarship, completed and current, especially in relation to your proposed work
  • the feasibility of your project in the light of available resources
  • your financial support

If the program committee feels that you are eligible for admission, but are lacking in necessary preparation, you may be admitted subject to relevant conditions. In these cases, candidates may be given one of two options:

  • The required preparation may be undertaken prior to admission, with the permission of the program committee
  • It may be taken after admission and within the maximum time limit of 24 months for full-time students and 48 months for part-time students

In either case, the program committee establishes a definite date by which all conditions must be fully satisfied.

Supporting Documents for Applying to the Master of Arts Program


Unofficial Transcripts
You will need to upload and submit your unofficial transcripts, including proof of graduation for your completed degree(s) and transcripts of all post-baccalaureate work, if any, via the online application system.

Official Transcripts
You will also need to arrange for your official transcripts to be sent to the Registrar’s Office. Your official transcripts are required to be received prior to course registration.

Applicants who have attended or are currently attending institutions NOT participating in ApplyAlberta must arrange to have official transcripts sent directly from the issuing institution to the Admissions Office. A list of participating institutions is available at

Official transcripts must be mailed directly from the issuing institution in a sealed envelope to:
Registrar’s Office
University of Lethbridge
4401 University Drive West
Lethbridge, AB T1K 3M4

Your transcripts are required to display your up-to-date coursework, including grades/marks received for completed coursework.

Reference Letters

Applicants to the Master of Arts program are required to submit three (3) reference letters, two (2) of which must be academic. You should have studied with at least one of your references. 

You are: Who is an acceptable academic referee?
A current or recent graduate of an undergraduate program
  • One of your course instructors who hold a terminal
    degree or a continuing position at a University
A current or recent graduate student
  • Your supervisor, or a member of your Supervisory
  • One of your course instructors who hold a terminal
    degree or a continuing position at a University
Working and completed a degree several years ago
  • Someone with whom you have studied at the
    university level
  • An employer or another person who has served
    in a supervisory capacity who can testify to your
    ability to succeed in an academic setting

Please see the Application FAQ for detailed information regarding submitting Letters of Reference.

The School of Graduate Studies is not able to:

  • Accept Letters of Reference submitted via email or regular mail
  • Re-use a Letter of Reference submitted in support of a previous application  
  • Edit/change your referees or send them reminders to submit their Letter of Reference  
  • Accept Letters of reference from a friend or family member
Curriculum vitae

Your CV is a comprehensive document with a formal structure and academic focus. It should include your background, work experience, awards, scholarships, publications, and other achievements. If you are a current or former University of Lethbridge student, contact Career and Employment Services for additional information on the content and structure of a CV. 

Letter of Intent

Your Letter of Intent for the Master of Arts program for most majors must contain:

  • Your goals or objectives for seeking a graduate degree in the chosen discipline;
  • the nature of your proposed research; and
  • the alignment of your proposed research with your supervisor’s expertise.

Your Letter of Intent for the Master of Arts with a major in Cultural, Social, and Political Thought must contain:

  • A description of the proposed research topic, including research question and methodology;
  • the rationale for choosing the interdisciplinary Cultural, Social, and Political Thought major;
  • and the proposed supervisor(s).
  • The purpose of the letter is to provide the admission committee with information on your proposed research. The maximum length is one page. 

You should address your letter to the School of Graduate Studies. 

Things to Note:

Your Letter of Intent is your opportunity to show us your passion for your proposed research. Explain how dedicated and invested you are to your proposed graduate program, and provide specific examples of key accomplishments. Be concise and include only important information – reviewers have many graduate applications to review; your Letter of Intent should generally be no more than one page in length, or up to 500 words. 

English Language Proficiency (ELP) for graduate students

English is the primary language of instruction and communication at the University of Lethbridge. Prior to registration, all applicants to the School of Graduate Studies must demonstrate English Language Proficiency (ELP) sufficient to meet the demands of classroom instruction, written assignments, research, and participation in tutorials and discussions, regardless of their citizenship or country of origin. Please see the English Language Proficiency (ELP) requirements for graduate students for detailed information. 

Student Stories

"I chose to pursue graduate studies at the University of Lethbridge because of its smaller size and quality of instruction and research. A lot of my early learning and First Nations culture was passed to me through traditional storytelling, song and dance, so I had to learn to overcome challenges with writing. Having close interaction with my professors greatly impacted my research skills, as well as my ability to write.” - Leon Crane Bear, (MA '15)
See more about Leon's research here

“My first sociology class made me rethink all of my educational and career goals,” says Rachel, who originally intended on practicing medicine. “People from different disciplines tackle problems differently. Ideas can be explored through science, art and human interactions, and connections are often made in non-linear ways.” - Rachel Sheilds, (BSc ‘11, MA ’12)
See more about Rachel's research here

“My supervisors were very supportive and helped me develop the skills I needed to succeed. With the flexibility to study and conduct research across disciplines, the individualized multidisciplinary major in the MA program provided a customized degree opportunity.” - Auburn Phillips, (MA ’12)
See more about Auburn's research here


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