LIC Online Student Handbooks

McGill University – Skills Upgrade

McGill University

Welcome to McGill University – one of the world’s great universities. Founded in 1821, McGill has an international reputation for excellence and innovation while remaining centered on its 37,000 students. It has renowned medical and law schools and has produced 12 Nobel Prize winners, over 140 Rhodes Scholars, 3 astronauts, 3 Canadian Prime Ministers, 13 judges of the Canadian Supreme Court, 28 Olympic medalists, and 9 Academy Award winners. The beautiful campus in downtown Montreal is at the foot of Mount Royal.

McGill University has a beautiful campus right in downtown Montreal. The land the university was built on was the country summer home of James McGill (1744 – 1813), a wealthy Montreal businessman. In those days, Montreal was smaller, inside the walls of Old Montreal. When James McGill died, he left the land and £10,000 to start an English college in Montreal.


This is a link to McGill's official online map.

You can also see a simple map with this program web page.

And this is Google Maps' link to McGill.

If you are on a short program with us, you will get a campus tour with your monitor at the beginning of the course. If not, you can look at this pdf brochure for a self-guided tour of the downtown campus, or request a campus tour at the Welcome Centre.

Our Building – 680 Sherbrooke West

The campus home of the School of Continuing Studies (SCS) is the 20-floor tower building at 680 Sherbrooke West, on the corner of Robert-Bourassa Boulevard, which continues north as University Street.


There are two ways to get in the building from the street. The main door is at 680 Sherbrooke Street, just at the bus stop for the #24 bus, behind the inukshuk sculpture. Sometimes there is a line-up for the elevators, because there is a rush-hour in our building at the beginning of classes, and sometimes after lunch. Sometimes, the wait for the elevator is long, so it is sometimes faster and more convenient to take the stairs between our classroom floors.

Finding Your Classroom

In our language school, all the classrooms are on the 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th floor. If you aren't sure what floor your classroom is on, just look at the first two numbers.

Floor Classrooms
  10th 1017, 1025, 1041, 1047, 1051, 1055, 1061, 1065, 1076, 1078, 1085, 1088, 1091, 1093
  11th 1145, 1151, 1155, 1161, 1165, 1181
  12th 1255, 1261, 1265, 1271, 1279, 1285, 1295, 1299
  13th 1342, 1351, 1355, 1361, 1365, 1371, 1395, 1399


Each floor in our building has a men's washroom and a women's washroom. The men's is on the west side of the building, next to the west stairs and the drinking fountain. The women's is on the east side, next to the east stairs. The washrooms are in the same place on every floor.

Drinking Fountain

The tap water in Montreal is safe to drink, so it is not necessary to buy bottled water. On each floor, there is a drinking fountain in the hallway, next to the men's washroom. These fountains have a cooling unit to make the water extra cold. Some of the fountains have a special tap to easily fill reusable water bottles or cups.

2nd Floor

The second floor of our building is where you get the elevators to the upper floors. There is also a bank machine (ATM), an orange juice machine, a uPrint photocopier/printer and a walk-in computer service center. If you have problems with your computer, your wifi, your smartphone or other device when you are using McGill's systems, the McGill IT Walk-in Help office in room 285 can help. They can usually fix your problem in a few minutes. They are open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday.

Also on the the 2nd floor is the MCLL: the McGill Community for Lifelong Learning. This is a part of the School of Continuing Studies, and Languages and Intercultural Communication works with them for the SPEAK conversation partner program and the Brainy Bar workshops.

11th Floor

The 11th floor is home to the offices of Languages and Intercultural Communication in 1181. You should go there if you need to see the Program Coordinator for your program or to see a member of the administrative staff. The door is usually locked. Just knock on the door, and someone inside will press a button to let you in. Wait for the “buzz” then push on the door.

Also on the 11th floor is Client Services. This is the big service counter you can see on the right when you get off the elevator. This is the place where students in regular programs register for courses and pay their fees.

You will get your student card at Client Services. They will take your photo and you will sign your name, and wait a few minutes to get your card.

12th Floor

All our computer labs are on the 12th floor of our building. To go to the computer labs, you go left from the elevators, through the glass doors. You can't use the door on the right side – it has an alarm, and is for emergencies only.

If you are with your teacher, he or she will open the door of the lab to let you in. There is a public lab (1271), that is open from 9:00 AM in the morning to 9:00 PM at night. To use the public lab, ask the lab monitor who is sitting at the counter in the hallway. There is a uPrint photocopier/printer near lab 1299.

13th floor

The 13th floor has classrooms, teacher's offices and a small student lounge and a small lunch area with a few microwave ovens and vending machines.

No Smoking

All McGill buildings are non-smoking. You have to go outside to smoke – even in winter!

McGill has computer services for all students. The technical support for all technology at the University is ICS – IT Customer Support. You can email them at or call 514-398-3398 (there is a direct line to them from the telephones in the classrooms). When you contact ICS, you need to tell them your 9-digit McGill ID number. It is on your student card. Also, you can go to their Walk-in service desk in our building – 688 Sherbrooke West on the 2nd floor, room 285. You can also search for answers in McGill's IT Knowledge Base.

Minerva Login

Minerva is the basic computer system for everyone at McGill. Before you can do anything with computers at McGill, you have to log into Minerva. The first time you login, you need your 9-digit McGill ID number (on your acceptance letter, your McGill ID card, or your Blue Cross insurance card), and your Minerva PIN.

Minerva Login Access

Your Minerva PIN is 6 characters, and it includes letters and and numbers. The first time you login, it is your birthdate, in the form YYMMDD (year month day). So if your birthdate is February 14, 1996, then your initial Minerva PIN is 960214. If your birthdate is October 5, 1997, then your PIN will be 971005, and so on.

You need to do the first login to Minvera so you can do many things – set security questions, choose a password for your McGill email and other things. Click here to download a pdf with all the login steps.

McGill Email

Your McGill Email Address will be in the form of Be careful – look at your email closely to see if there is a number in it, for example This is because there was another person with the same name at McGill University before you.

Your McGill email password will be 8 characters, and must include letters and numbers.

Your teacher will use this email to communicate with you, and your email address and password is your McGill username and password for logging in everywhere – including to wifi. The McGill email service gives you a 50 GB mailbox on Microsoft Office 365. You can access your email via the myMcGill portal or directly through the Office 365 Outlook Web App (OWA) at Sign in using your McGill Username and McGill Password.


Your English course at McGill is supported by MyCourses, which is the university's learning managagement system (LMS). Your teachers will use MyCourses for classwork, homework, online discussion forums, group projects, quizzes, surveys and assignments. You can use it to send emails to your classmates, see your grades and attendance, and see extra course material. Your username and password will give you access to MyCourses for two semesters after your last course at McGill finishes.

You can go directly to MyCourses at this address:

MyMcGill Portal

The MyMcGill portal is an easy way to access everthing you need: email, Minerva, MyCourses, the Library website, and lots of other McGill sites, all with one log in. To log into the MyMcGill portal, got to


There is wifi in all McGill buildings on campus, and in some outdoor areas. To use wifi on your smartphone, tablet or laptop computer, you need to look for the network. The username is your McGill email address and the password is the same 8-character one. You will see another network called, but it won't work.


All our computer labs are on the 12th floor of our building. To go to the computer labs, you go left from the elevators, through the glass doors. You can't use the door on the right side – it has an alarm, and is for emergencies only.

If you are with your teacher, he or she will open the door of the lab to let you in. There is a public lab (1271), that is open from 9:00 AM in the morning to 9:00 PM at night. To use the public lab, ask the lab monitor who is sitting at the counter in the hallway. There is a uPrint photocopier/printer near lab 1299.


All over the University, there are uPrint machines, and in our buildings, you will find them on all our floors. Every student has an account. You can log into the machine with your McGill email and password. You can use these machines to make copies, to print from the labs, and to scan (it sends the scan to your email).

Please note, your student account gets charged each time you print or copy. It costs 6.5¢ per page for black and white. Scanning to your email is free – it sends the scan as a pdf. To print from the computer lab, choose the printer that is called “uPrint Mono (PS2)”.

McGill University has 12 libraries and reading rooms. But on the downtown campus, the main Humanities and Social Sciences Library is the McLennan-Redpath Library, a large building on the corner of Sherbrooke and McTavish.The search the McGill Library collections online, use WorldCat. Students registered in our language programs can use McGill libraries and can borrow books using your McGill ID card.

McLennan-Redpath Library

During the regular semester, it is open every day from 8:00 AM to midnight, and the service desk is open from 10 AM to 7 PM. Check the opening hours of the library here. To use the library, you should have your McGill ID card. There are many great study spaces in the library. For summer programs, the hours are reduced.

To find out where all the different branches of McGill's libraries are, look at this map.

red mcGill hoodieMcGill Bookstore

The McGill Bookstore has a store in the main floor of the 688 Sherbrooke West building. You will find all books for language programs there, and McGill brand clothes, books, pens, cups, gifts – everything McGill. It may be a good place to get some souvenirs of your time at McGill, or a gift for someone back home.

There are lots of ways to keep in shape in Montreal.

McGill Athletics and Recreation

fitness centreThe McGill Athletic facilities are available for students’ use at approximately $8 a day (for a day pass), or $59 monthly. The facilities include tennis courts, squash courts and swimming pools. There are classes for many different activities. McGill has two swimming pools available to students. Weston Pool is located at 555B Sherbrooke St. W. and Memorial Pool is located in the main athletic complex on Pine Avenue.

McGill Athletics
Sir Arthur Currie Gymnasium Map
475 Pine Avenue
McGill Athletics and Recreation Website

very class room in our building has a telephone. To contact security, dial 3000, or press the button that says “Security”. They will contact police or ambulance for you. If you are outside of the school, call 911 for emergencies (police, ambulance, or fire).

Fire Evacuation

green exit symbolIf you hear a fire alarm at any time, you need to evacuate the building.Do not take the elevators – take the stairs only. Remember, there are two sets of stairs, one by each washroom.

When you go down the stairs, you shouldn't take your things with you. Don't use your cellphone – it is distracting and you everyone needs to walk quickly and safely. Also, please carry a coffee with you – it is crowded and it is easy to spill.

Once you leave the building, keep moving and go across the street or down the block, away from the building, for your safety and to make sure emergency workers can easily enter the building. In some buildings, the exit sign is in French and it says [ SORTIE ]. If you exit to the front of the building, go out and turn left and walk to McGill College street and wait there for instructions to return. If you go out on the Robert Bourassa side of the building, cross the street by the metro entrance and wait there.

Lost Items

Please note that the University buildings are open to the public and the University is not responsible for lost or stolen objects. For this reason, we ask that you do not leave valuable articles in the classroom. Lost and found articles are sent to the security desk on the main floor, near the elevators. You should ask there if you lose something.