Application Evaluation Process

All PLP applications go through the following process:

1. Wait for all transcripts to arrive

After applications are submitted online, they may not advance to the next stage of the evaluation process until all transcripts are received by the PLP Admissions office.

2. Check for minimum academic requirements

The PLP advisor reviews each application to:

  • Determine whether the applicant meets the minimum experience requirement of 2 years in a paraprofessional role at the time of application
  • Calculate the GPA for the last 60 credits and ensure the applicant meets the required minimum GPA of 2.0
  • Determine whether the applicant will meet the minimum academic requirements for the grade level and/or subject(s) they wish to teach

Only those applicants that meet the minimum requirements will be passed on to the reviewing stage.

3. Review the application materials

a. Two members of the admissions committee review the online application materials and complete a reviewing form.

b. If there is something in the application materials that raises a concern (such as, but not limited to, evidence of falsified, misleading, plagiarized, or ghost-written materials), that application is put aside until the concern can be explored by the admissions administration. If the concern is legitimate, the application will be removed from consideration. Otherwise, the application returns to the regular review process without penalty.

4. Create composite scores

Once the reviews are done, the scores of the reviews are combined with the scores of the recommendation writers to create ratings in seven key dimensions. These dimensions are then combined into a composite score.

Application scoring dimensions and their weights:


Portion of Composite

Experience working with children and youth


Interpersonal proficiencies and dispositions


Proficiency with written communication


Leadership experience and potential


Work proficiencies


Experience and proficiency with supporting learning


Academic Strength


The final composite score is on a scale of 0 to 4 and can be interpreted similarly to a Grade Point Average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale.

Composite score ranges and their interpretation:

Composite range



Very strong







Less than 2.0

Very weak

5. Make decisions based on number of seats

An ordered list is made based on composite scores. The top 32 applications will receive a seat in the competition first. Those with composite scores too low to be considered are marked as ‘inadmissible.’

Students whose composite scores are acceptable, but too low on the competition list to receive an offer will be put on a waitlist. Due to a small cohort, the waitlist never exceeds 10 applicants each intake.

6. Inform applicants of decisions via email

Applicants are informed about their admission status by email, typically by mid-April of the same year of the program intake.

Applicants who are waitlisted or not accepted into the program have the opportunity to meet with the PLP Advisor to discuss their admission decision.

Appeal and Deferral Process 

Admission appeals

Reasons for appealing an admission decision

We will only consider appeals for the following reasons:

  • You have extenuating circumstances which impacted your ability to meet the Professional Programs admission requirements
  • You believe there was an error in processing your application

Please note: Additional documentation (or new documentation) may not be added to your application as part of this appeal application.

Deadlines for admission appeal

Admissions appeals must be submitted by August 15th for Spring intake programs.

Please allow 10 business days for a response to your appeal.

How to apply for an appeal

To appeal a decision, please follow these steps: 

  • Make an appointment with the Manager of Admission & Recruitment ( for the PDP or the Special Programs Advisor ( for the PLP and/or AHCOTE to discuss your application.
  • If after discussing your application you feel you have a basis for appeal you will then be directed the admission appeal form in SurveyMonkey Apply.
  • You must then submit the appeal form with the required $25 fee by the required deadline.

Defer admission

How to defer your admission

You may apply to defer your offer of admission for one intake e.g. spring 2020 to spring 2021. Deferrals are approved for students with medical conditions or with extenuating circumstances that prevent them from entering the program. Documentation is required (e.g. medical note). Requests must be submitted prior to the start of the program.

Deferrals are not granted for students who plan on attending another post-secondary institution, for employment purposes or for students who are not financially prepared to attend SFU.

To submit a deferral request please email the appropriate area.

If your deferral request is approved you will need to contact the SFU Undergraduate Admissions office and request a deferral of your admission to the University.