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Collaborative Specialization Reviews

Under the University of Toronto Quality Assurance Process (UTQAP), all graduate collaborative specializations are subject to cyclical review a minimum of once every eight years. The Collaborative Specialization Guidelines (PDF) provide full details of the review process which incorporates the key stages of development, review, governance and oversight. An overview of these stages is provided below.


The schedule for collaborative specialization reviews is determined by the VPAP office in consultation with the Deans of the lead Faculty for each collaborative specialization. While a collaborative specialization review may be included as part of a review of the academic unit(s) in which the specialization resides, there may be some benefit in reviewing the collaborative specialization separately. The Dean of the lead Faculty is responsible for commissioning the review.

Terms of Reference

A Word document outlining the terms of reference (ToR) should be developed for each collaborative specialization under review and should derive from these quality indicators such as the clarity and appropriateness of specialization requirements supporting the learning outcomes and the vitality of the collaborative specialization.


The director of the collaborative specialization should prepare a self-study addressing the ToR. The self-study should use enrolment and graduation data to support the narrative; consultation is key in the development of the well-informed self-study. A final copy of the self-study is provided to the lead Dean.

The Review

The lead Dean or designate(s) reviews the self-study, prepares a short summary assessment evaluating the performance of the collaborative specialization against the quality indicators, and makes a recommendation as to whether the collaborative specialization should continue. This summary assessment is shared with the academic leads of all participating programs and their respective Deans, the Dean of the School of Graduate Studies and the VPAP office, and their responses solicited. The final summary assessment prepared by the lead Dean is shared with the collaborative specialization director.

Outcome of the Review

The final summary assessment may result in recommendations such as: the renewal of the Memorandum of Agreement (MoA), amendments to the quality indicators, the suspension of admissions or the submission of a proposal to close the collaborative specialization.

Governance & Oversight

The summary assessment is submitted to the VPAP office with the renewed MoA or notice that admissions to the collaborative specialization have ceased and that a proposal to close the collaborative specialization is being prepared. The VPAP office will prepare a final assessment report and implementation plan (FAR/IP) consolidating all collaborative specialization reviews undertaken during that academic year and summarizing their outcome. The FAR/IP of collaborative specialization reviews is taken forward for information as an annual report to the Committee on Academic Policy and Programs (AP&P). A final, consolidated FAR/IP is sent to the Quality Council for reporting purposes.

Final Assessment Reports & Implementation Plans

As of October 2016, the nomenclature on collaborative programs has changed to collaborative specializations. Going forward, the FAR/IPs will reflect the new nomenclature.

2017-2018 Collaborative Specialization Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)

2016-2017 Collaborative Specialization Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)

2015-2016 Collaborative Program Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)

2014-2015 Collaborative Program Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)

2013-2014 Collaborative Program Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)

2012-2013 Collaborative Program Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)

2011-2012 Collaborative Program Final Assessment Report & Implementation Plan (PDF)


Collaborative Specialization Guidelines (PDF)

University of Toronto Quality Assurance Process (UTQAP) (PDF)

For collaborative specializations under review: Before using the materials below, please contact your Dean’s office to see if customized templates or supplementary materials are available.

Template: Collaborative Specialization Terms of Reference (Word)

Template: Collaborative Specialization Self-Study (Word)

Template: Collaborative Specialization Memorandum of Agreement (Word)

Template: Collaborative Specialization Summary Assessment Report (Word)

Sample: Collaborative Specialization Review Commissioning Letter from Dean (Word)

Sample: Collaborative Specialization Summary Assessment Report for Circulation Memo (Word)


Erin Meyers