Jul 21, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Calendar 
2023-2024 Graduate Calendar [ARCHIVED CALENDAR]

Health Sciences, PhD

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General information

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Health Sciences offers an interdisciplinary approach to health sciences doctoral training alongside depth of study in their individual field. The program prepares graduates for diverse careers within and beyond academia in tertiary institutions, research centres, hospitals, and other clinical settings, community health promotion and illness prevention organizations, health and/or government policy, public health, clinical practices (Kinesiology), post-doctoral fellowships, technology transfer and research grants officers. For those students interested in securing academic appointments post-graduation, or for those who wish to broaden their skill set in general, the university has both an Academic Success Centre and the Teaching and Learning Centre to build the teaching skills necessary to pursue an academic career trajectory. Wherever possible, we will endeavour to provide students with the opportunity to teach at least one course during their four years.

Doctoral coursework provides graduates with a framework for evaluating data and technology in health sciences research, training and practice, where the technical, ethical, social and policy implications of data collection, analysis and storage are critically evaluated and discussed in an interdisciplinary context. The mechanisms of knowledge synthesis, dissemination and exchange as well as the ethical application of knowledge in health are critically evaluated using the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) knowledge translation framework. Graduates will gain the expertise to become effective research brokers in academic, professional and research settings. Advanced communication skills will ensure that graduates can articulate the scientific and practical significance of their research to multiple audiences in multiple ways.

Admission requirements

In addition to the general admission requirements for graduate studies , PhD applicants must meet the following program-specific requirements:

  • At least two letters of support from academic referees.
  • A statement of academic intent describing the student’s intended area of research, research experiences and career aspirations.
  • Identification of a supervisor, and significant support from that supervisor, indicating the student’s exceptional academic qualities and prospects and their willingness to supervise that student.

Completion of a master’s thesis is preferred over a non-thesis master’s but is not required. Exceptional students who have demonstrated superior academic credentials and outstanding research potential in their master’s degree program will be considered on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with the dean. Similarly, master’s education in health-related areas is preferred, but applicants from other research or education backgrounds may be admitted as special cases.

Co-supervisors and committee members from other faculties will be considered wherever applicable with an aim toward enhancing the interdisciplinary nature of the program.

Under exceptional circumstances, MHSc students may transfer directly to the PhD program after completing at least four master’s courses, including the two core courses and either Biostatistics or Qualitative Methods or equivalent. Students must also meet the requirements outlined in the university’s policy on transferring from a thesis-based master’s to a PhD program .

A current list of graduate faculty is available on the Faculty of Health Sciences’ website.

Part-time studies

Part-time PhD enrolments will be considered on a case-by-case basis, as approved by the Dean of Health Sciences.

Degree requirements

Students must complete HLSC 7014G - Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Health Data and Technology  (year one), HLSC 7010G - Critical Perspectives in Research and Knowledge Translation in Health Sciences  (year two), HLSC 7012G - Graduate Seminar in Health Sciences  (for the first 18 months), one elective course and HLSC 7096G - PhD Thesis . In addition to the three courses, seminar and PhD thesis, students must successfully complete HLSC 7095G - Candidacy Examination and Thesis Proposal  which consists of a written research proposal and an oral exam.

Course listing

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