Are you a currently enrolled in the Prairie Horticulture Certificate?

This site is intended for students who are currently enroled in this program. For program information including admission and tuition, please visit the PHC page on the University of Saskatchewan’s admissions website.

The Prairie Horticulture Certificate is an online program specifically designed for the Prairies. It is collaboratively offered by the University of Saskatchewan (Saskatchewan), Assiniboine Community College (Manitoba) and Olds College (Alberta).

To obtain your Certificate, complete the required number of core courses along with your choice of courses from your chosen stream and maintain an overall average of 60%. A total of nine courses equal to 360 hours (36 credit weights) meets the minimum requirement.

Connect with us

Become familiar with PAWS

PAWS is your personalized access to web services at the University of Saskatchewan. It is a customizable web environment used by all members of the university community. This is where you will find information about classes, registration, tuition and fees, scholarships and bursaries, textbooks and more. After you have been admitted to the University of Saskatchewan, log in to PAWS to update your profile, including your preferred name, contact details and more.

Recommended PAWS channels to add to favourites are:

  • Registration
  • My Textbooks
  • Course Tools
  • Tuition and Fees
  • My Final Grades
  • Transcripts and Degree Confirmation

You should have received your network services identification (NSID) and a temporary password at the time of your acceptance to the University of Saskatchewan. If you forget your NSID or password, contact the ICT Service Desk at 306-966-2222 or 1-800-966-4817 (toll free in Canada).

USask email

We keep in contact with you through your USask email account, which is automatically created when you are admitted to the University of Saskatchewan. All course information will be provided to you through your PAWS and any email communication with our office and instructors must be done through PAWS; please ensure that you check this email account on a regular basis. You can also set up your smartphone and other devices to receive your USask email directly.

Register for classes

Class registration is done through your PAWS account.

Please take note of the Course Reference Number (CRN) for each class. Before you register, know that it is your responsibility to ensure that you have met any class-specific requirements. Ensure that classes selected are appropriate to your chosen stream. If you have any questions please contact us.

All students are strongly encouraged to register early in advance of the final registration deadlines for each term to ensure that any course materials, such as textbook purchases, arrive before the start of classes. This is particularly important for Term 2 courses as all University of Saskatchewan services (including the University Bookstore) are closed for the winter holiday season between December 25 and January 1.

All the courses in the PHC program are offered in a distance education format through online delivery or independent study. Courses with insufficient enrolment prior to the first day of classes each term may be subject to cancellation.

Late registration fees

You must register online by the deadline dates listed in the calendar or you will be charged a late registration fee of $35.00, whether or not permission to register late has been granted. Late registration fees are nonrefundable and registration automatically results in a financial obligation. 

Audit provisions: You may choose to take courses on an audit basis. Fees are the same and you will have the same access to your instructor, you may write term tests and complete assignments but you will not be permitted to write the final exam and a final mark will not be assigned for an audited course.

How to access your class

  1. Approximately one week before the start of term, ensure that you are able to log in to paws.usask.ca using your NSID and password.
  2. Click on the Course Tools link located in the left hand menu and familiarize yourself with the system layout.
  3. If you are new to the Blackboard Learning System, click on the Help tab in the top banner to view blackboard tutorials, help documents and videos.
  4. Once you have reviewed the help information, click on the My Courses tab in the top banner. Click on the course(s) listed, if available. Note that course information may not be available before the first day of classes in the term.
  5. Course modules, assignments, course content and messages (course mail) will not be available until the first day of term.
  6. Review the class home page and the class syllabus for information on required materials, textbooks, your instructor and how to submit assignments.
  7. All electronic contact with the course instructor will be through messages (course mail) found in the menu of this course. Instructors will not be available before the first day of class.

USask Students registered in Consortium classes

As a University of Saskatchewan student, you should follow regular registration procedures through PAWS for all classes in the PHC Program. When appropriate, the PHC Program Office will forward your registration information to the appropriate consortium partner. You will receive a confirmation of registration and course information directly from the consortium partner institution. You will not receive any course information from the U of S and will not access any content through PAWS. While registered with a consortium partner, you remain a University of Saskatchewan student.  All U of S policies and procedures remain in effect (i.e. course cancellations and tuition deadlines, add/drop dates, exam procedures, academic integrity and student conduct, etc.).

Consortium Students registered in USask classes

If you have chosen one of our consortium partners as your home institution, please check for an email that would have been sent to you by the University of Saskatchewan PHC office. It will provide information on how to access any PHC classes offered by USask. If you have not yet received this email, please email us.

Remember: when you take classes from consortium partners that are not your chosen home institution, all activities such as registering for classes, fee payments, withdrawing from classes etc., are only done through your home institution.

Your class syllabus

Your class syllabus and materials will be posted online in Blackboard, which you will access through your PAWS account on the first day of classes. You can also find it at ocw.usask.ca. Your class syllabus provides important information about:

  • learning outcomes
  • textbooks and required materials
  • reading schedules with assignment and exam dates
  • relative marking weight of assignments and examinations
  • instructor contact information and availability

To obtain your syllabus for classes that are delivered by Assiniboine Community College (ACC) and Olds College, please review your class registration letter. If you have not received your class registration letter one week before the start of the term, please contact the PHC Program Office.

Textbooks

Information for required and recommended textbooks for classes delivered by the University of Saskatchewan will be included in each class syllabus as well as the My Textbooks channel in your PAWS account. We recommend you place your textbook orders early to avoid delays.

You are encouraged to register for your classes and order any textbooks early. Late registration may result in textbook shortages and delays. In particular, internationally-located students are encouraged to register in courses and order textbooks as soon possible after they are informed of acceptance as international shipping timelines can be significant and can take up to six weeks in some cases. 

 For information regarding textbooks for classes that are delivered by Assiniboine Community College (ACC) or Olds College, please see your class syllabus and the following bookstores.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition for the PHC program is assessed class-by-class based on registration. If you are not a citizen or Permanent Resident of Canada, you will be assessed tuition using the international student schedule. Students enrolled in online distance education courses are also subject to off-campus student fees. Registration, tuition and fee payment, and withdrawal deadlines apply to all students, including off-campus and international students. 

Remember: a non-refundable late registration fee of $35.00 per class will be assessed to students who register after the registration deadlines in each term.

Exam information

Please note that all final exams in the PHC program are written in an online format. Online exams are evaluated and monitored for irregularities; collusion, collaboration, copying, and any other forms of academic dishonesty are very serious offenses and may result in expulsion from the University of Saskatchewan. Online exams are available between a set time period; once accessed, a timer will begin and the exam will automatically close after the allotted time has passed. Please be aware that you cannot leave an exam or attempt to navigate to other sections of a course. You are only allowed one attempt at an exam; if you leave the exam window, your progress will automatically save and submit. Details regarding final examinations can be found in your class syllabus.

Examination dates can be found on the Important Dates page.  If you have questions about your final exam, please contact your class instructor. If you need assistance, please contact the PHC Program office.

Examination regulations

All final exams are scheduled by University of Saskatchewan administration during the exam period identified in the academic calendar. Therefore, you must regard registration in a class as a commitment to accept the final exam date and the policy on deferred examinations at the University of Saskatchewan. You are expected to write the final exams for all courses on the regularly scheduled examination dates for the term in which you registered and in accordance with the normal invigilation procedures.

If you are unable to write a deferred or supplemental exam as scheduled, you must notify the PHC Program Office in writing within three business days. In the same manner as with a regularly scheduled examination, satisfactory evidence of your inability to be present at the deferred or supplemental exam must be provided.

Access and Equity Services

If you require accommodations based on a diagnosed learning, medical, physical, or mental health disability; religion; family status, including pregnancy; and/or gender identity, you must register with Access and Equity Services (AES) in order to access AES programs and supports. For AES exam accommodations, please ensure that you compete the AES Exam Accommodation form within the applicable deadlines.

Deferred examinations

There are set rules and regulations that govern deferred exam requests at the University of Saskatchewan. Applicable circumstances include those such as for compassionate, health-related, and other legitimate unforeseen and uncontrollable reasons. A written request for a deferred exam must be directed to the PHC Program Office by email or fax within three business days of the missed exam. Upon receipt of this request, a deferred application form will be provided to you. The application form as well as detailed documentary evidence outlining the reason(s) for the request must be returned to the PHC Program Office by deadlines outlined in the academic calendar. The applicable deferred examination fees, which are set by University of Saskatchewan policy, will be assessed prior to processing deferral requests.

Supplemental examinations

If you obtain a failing final grade between 40% and 49%, but you have completed and passed all other coursework, you may apply to write a supplemental exam. The application form must be returned to the PHC Program Office no later than the deadlines outlined in the academic calendar. The applicable supplemental examination fees, which are set by University of Saskatchewan policy, will be assessed prior to processing supplemental requests.

Study resources and support

Study Skills

Distance education classes can require a great deal of persistence and self-discipline. You can expect to work six to eight hours per week per 60-hour course. Remember that each course is only ten weeks long so keeping on top of your coursework will help alleviate stress associated with assignments deadlines and exams. Academic support is always available through your course instructors and the PHC Program Manager. It is essential that students communicate any issues with course material with their instructors. Study Skills Help is available through the University of Saskatchewan Library.

DEU Writing Centre

The Distance Education Unit (DEU) Writing Centre provides tools and support to help you write effective essays, reports, or reviews. Simply submit a project draft, and a qualified tutor will assess your work and offer advice to improve your project. Tutors will not write, edit or proofread your assignments. 

Distance and Distributed Library Services

Distance and Distributed Library Services (DDLS) are available to all University of Saskatchewan students who reside outside of Saskatoon and cannot access Library collections and services in person. All students residing of outside Saskatoon are encouraged to review the full range of resources and services available. 

Withdrawing from a class

Should it become necessary to switch or withdraw from a class for any reason, you must drop the class in PAWS to cancel your registration. If you drop a class before the deadline for registration changes, all applicable tuition and student fees will be credited to your account or refunded and your grades will not be affected. 

If you drop a class after the deadline for registration changes, a portion of the tuition may be credited or refunded, depending on when you withdraw from the class, and you will receive a grade of Withdrawal (W). Failure to appropriately withdraw from a class will result in the full assessment of tuition and fees and the assignment of a 0% or failing grade.

See the Important Dates page for specific withdrawal deadlines.

Note: Students who completely withdraw from all classes prior to the registration deadline in any given term will be assessed a $30.00 minimum registration fee.

 Non-payment of fees, non-attendance and/or non-submission of assignments and exams does not constitute withdrawal from a class. You must withdraw in PAWS by the deadline dates to avoid academic and financial penalties.

Academic and Graduation Standards

The following academic standards ensure adequate progress is being made towards successful completion of the PHC program and that students meet the standards for graduation eligibility:

Probationary Admission

  • Applicants who do not qualify for regular admission may apply for probationary admission.
  • Probationary admission applicants must submit all high school, equivalent (GED, ABE, or ACE) diploma, and, if applicable, post-secondary transcripts and a resumé along with their applications
  • Students admitted on a probationary basis are permitted to register in only one course per term. Probationary students who successfully pass two courses with an average mark of 60% or better will be deemed to have met the regular admission requirements. Probationary students who do not meet regular admission requirements will be Required to Discontinue from the University of Saskatchewan.

Completion of Coursework

  • A passing grade is 50%.
  • Students must submit and pass all assignments and write and pass the final exam, if applicable, in order to be assigned a passing grade in any given course.  At the discretion of the instructor, a student may be allowed one rewrite of an assignment within a reasonable period of time during the academic term of enrollment in the course. A student may apply to write a supplemental final exam if he or she receives a failing overall course grade of no less than 45% after initial final grades are posted.

Retaking Courses

  • Students will be permitted to take the same course more than once in order to improve their final grades. The highest grade obtained in a particular course will be used to calculate a student’s overall program average.

Requirements to Discontinue

  • Students who have either failed the same course a second time or have failed two separate courses will be advised to discontinue from the PHC program. Students may re-apply for admission to the program after a period of one year.

Graduation Eligibility

  • Graduation candidates must have obtained a minimum grade of 50% in each course.
  • Graduation candidates must have achieved an overall average of 60% based on stream requirements. Only the highest grade received in repeated courses will be used to calculate the overall average.
    • Fruit and Vegetable Production
    • Greenhouse Crop Production
    • Landscaping and Arboriculture
    • Nursery Crop Production
  • Graduation candidates must have successfully completed or received credit for a minimum of nine courses. Coursework must total a minimum of 360 academic hours. Graduation will be denied and additional courses will be required to be completed if either of these requirements is unfulfilled.

Additional Certificate(s)

  • Students in the PHC Program are permitted to be awarded multiple certificates, to a maximum of one per stream. Students must successfully complete a minimum of 180 academic hours of additional coursework to be awarded an additional certificate.  This coursework cannot have been used in the award of a previous certificate.
  • Additional certificate graduation candidates must have obtained a minimum grade of 50% in each course and an overall average of 60% based on stream requirements. Only the highest grade received in repeated courses will be used to calculate the overall average.

Convocation

Students who have completed the PHC Program requirements are eligible to apply to graduate twice per year as part of the University of Saskatchewan's Spring or Fall Convocation ceremonies. Certificates are issued by the University of Saskatchewan during convocation periods only. Once you have completed the academic requirements of the Prairie Horticulture Certificate, you must submit an Application to Graduate though PAWS by the appropriate deadlines.

For more information on Convocation procedures and applying to graduate, visit the Graduation page.

Access the online application to graduate.