Housing, Policy on Student [June 29, 2006]

University of Toronto Governing Council

Policy on Student Housing

June 29, 2006

To request an official copy of this policy, contact:

The Office of the Governing Council Room 106, Simcoe Hall
27 King’s College Circle University of Toronto Toronto, Ontario
M5S 1A1

Phone: 416-978-6576
Fax: 416-978-8182
E-mail: governing.council@utoronto.ca
Website: http://www.governingcouncil.utoronto.ca/

Policy on Student Housing


Student housing is an important part of the University of Toronto student experience. The University’s purpose in relation to student housing is to encourage the development of high-quality communities on and off-campus that support the academic and educational aims of the University community. To this end, student housing shall be administered in a manner that promotes safe, secure and stimulating environments that are conducive to students’ academic success and personal growth, and foster a sense of community, civic responsibility, and an appreciation of the diversity of the University community.


  1. Recruitment and Retention:

As the attraction of highly-qualified applicants is crucial to the University’s academic mission, and as the availability of student housing is an important consideration to many prospective students, residences shall be regarded as one of the tools to be used in the recruitment and retention of highly-qualified students at both the undergraduate and graduate level, including international, exchange, and transfer students.

  1. Student Life:

Student housing shall be administered in a manner that endeavours to provide residents with an educationally purposeful community that values learning and supports the intellectual growth of those who choose to live in residence. As the experiences and needs of those living in student housing vary widely, those charged with fostering residence life shall endeavour to provide a varied, rich environment that:

  • facilitates a student’s academic success;
  • promotes and facilitates opportunities for students to lead a balanced lifestyle;
  • allows for the expression and development of students’ personal, intellectual, religious and spiritual values within a context of respect for others;
  • provides for disciplined communities, where students accept their responsibility for maintaining the order and good management of the community and adhering to the University community’s standards for good behaviour;
  • enables students to be involved in the civic and cultural lives of their communities;
  • provides inclusive, fair and equitable communities, where individual differences are acknowledged, welcomed and accepted within a context of respect for others.
  1. Common Standards:

Residents in student housing expect the University to set and maintain an acceptable minimum level of student residence experience across all divisions of the University and consistency of official response on serious issues. Common acceptable minimum standards on major issues in student housing shall be established across the University.

The mechanism for establishing these common standards shall be by means of template codes, response protocols and communications on core residence issues that are consistent with the Student Housing Policy Implementation Guidelines. These templates shall be generated through broad discussion, shall incorporate best practices and may be adapted and implemented locally to particular circumstances. Developing these templates shall be the responsibility of the Student Housing Advisory Committee.

  1. Student Housing Advisory Committee:

A Student Housing Advisory Committee, as established by the Vice-President and Provost, shall be struck each year with representation from all three campuses and from all colleges and divisions, including the Federated Universities, to monitor housing practices and policy issues across the University, to develop common standards and to advise the Provost on critical issues.

  1. Accessibility:

Student housing at the University shall be administered in a manner that is conscious of the varied needs of our highly diverse student population, including single students, students with families, students with disabilities, students with differing sexual orientations and students from a variety of ethno-heritage and religious backgrounds.

The University of Toronto, together with the Federated Universities and other housing partners, are committed to offering housing for all students with disabilities who desire on-campus accommodation and who have registered with the Accessibility Service on their campus, where it is appropriate and reasonable to do so.


As the purpose of student housing relates directly to the University’s academic mission, responsibility for student housing policy, planning and management in respect of the residences of the University of Toronto (but not in respect of the residences of the Federated Universities) shall lie with the Vice-President and Provost. In recognition of the University’s unique relationship with the Federated Universities, the Vice- President and Provost and the heads of the Federated Institutions (as specified in the Memorandum of Agreement between the University of Toronto and the Federated Universities [July 1, 1998]) shall cooperate on matters of student housing.

Guidelines for the administration of University student housing will be set by the Vice-President and Provost, in cooperation with the heads of the Federated Institutions as specified above, in the Student Housing Policy Implementation Guidelines and will be reported for information to Governing Council. The Implementation Guidelines will direct the Student Housing Advisory Committee in development of mechanisms for implementing student housing policy.

Authority for periodically revising and ensuring implementation of the Guidelines is delegated to the Vice- President and Provost, in cooperation with the heads of the Federated Institutions as specified above. Any changes to the Guidelines will be presented to Governing Council for information.

June 29, 2006, replacing Policy on Student Housing (March 9, 1989)