Doctor of Philosophy

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), a thesis-based, on-campus degree

A research-intensive (thesis-based) degree, our Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is intended to prepare scholars for careers in research and teaching. This program is full-time, and is delivered on campus. Students work with a supervisor (assigned upon admission) to complete doctoral coursework, research, writing, and defense of doctoral candidacy and the dissertation.

Graduate Programs in Education offers the PhD program in several specializations.

Program Details

  1. Candidacy Examination

    Candidacy must be completed within 28 months from the program start date.

    For guidance in preparing the research proposal, please refer to the Werklund School of Education Candidacy Requirements.
    For guidance in preparing the final thesis/dissertation, please refer to the GPE - Thesis & Dissertation Rubric and the GPE - Student Guide to the Thesis Oral.

  2. Dissertation

    Dissertation

    The Doctoral dissertation is the focus of the degree program. In consultation with the supervisor, the student should formulate an appropriate thesis topic as early as possible in the program because the nature and type of proposed doctoral research will affect the time needed to complete the program.  The student’s research problem, research questions and the development of the research proposal will be tied to engagement in coursework and the preparation needed in order to complete the program. The thesis proposal must be approved by the supervisory committee before continuing towards candidacy. 
    For guidance in preparing the research proposal, please refer to the Werklund School of Education Candidacy Requirements.
    For guidance in preparing the final thesis/dissertation, please refer to the GPE Thesis/Dissertation Rubric and the Student Guide to the Dissertation Oral.

    Werklund School of Education Guidelines for a Doctoral Manuscript Based Thesis

    In consultation with their Supervisor, students may choose to compose their theses using the traditional thesis style or the manuscript-based thesis style. A manuscript based thesis is intended to provide an alternate format for those students who are both inclined toward and adept at writing articles for peer review and publication.  A manuscript based thesis is a coherent and organized document that contains a related set of papers judged to be publishable, of which the student is the sole author and/ or the first co- author, and which adheres to the Manuscript Thesis Guidelines (See Faculty of Graduate Studies Calendar) and meets the criteria specified in the Werklund School of Education Guideline, approved April 2016.  

    Ethics approval is required for all research projects involving the use of human subjects before data collection begins. Prior to submitting an ethics application, students are required to complete the TCPS 2 tutorial and upload the certificate of completion into their Researcher Profile in IRISS. Do NOT upload in the documentation section of a study. Register on theTCPS 2 website https://tcps2core.ca/register. When registering, be sure to use your institution email address (name @ucalgary.ca)

    To initiate the ethics approval process, the student must submit an application to either the Conjoint Faculties Research Ethics Board or the Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board. Applications to the CFREB or CHREB are created and submitted online using IRISS. There are no paper application forms.

Doctoral Procedures Checklist

At the beginning of program:

  • Register for an eID to access myUCalgary. Keep your eID and password confidential.
  • Accept your Offer of Admission in the online Student Centre.
  • Activate your UCalgary IT account and e-mail. You will be expected to regularly check your UCalgary e-mail while in program.
  • Confirm your current e-mail address to your Graduate Program Administrator (see your Admission Letter for contact information). Please include your full name, UCID number, program, and specialization.
  • Connect with your supervisor to plan your program.
  • Initialize your registration.
  • Register for courses.
  • Check with the Faculty of Graduate Studies, Research Services, and SSHRC for possible research funding.
  • Attend orientation at the beginning of September!

Within 12 months:

  • Confirm the number of courses required for program completion with the supervisor.

Every May:

  • Submit your online Annual Progress Report form through your online Student Centre. Your progress report must be approved by your supervisor, and Graduate Program Director or designate.

Every 12 Months:

Within 15 months:

  • Consult with supervisor regarding the appointment of the supervisory committee. Complete the Appointment of Supervisory Committee form.

Within 28 months:

  • Request candidacy examination guidelines.
  • Complete all course work prior to the candidacy examination.
  • Submit a research proposal to the supervisory committee. If acceptable, this proposal is signed by the members of the supervisory committee and placed in the student's file.
  • Complete candidacy requirements and examination.

Within 4 to 6 years:

  • Have ethics application approved before collection of data.
  • Complete thesis and final oral examination.
  • Submit two unbound copies of the thesis to the Faculty of Graduate Studies along with the Thesis Clearance form.
  • Submit an Application for Degree through your Student Centre.
  • Attend convocation and celebrate!

 

Graduate Programs in Education offers PhD students funding opportunities during the first four years of the program

Funding for these positions comes from a variety of sources including:  Tri-council scholarships (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC); private, provincial and university scholarships; teaching assistantships; and sessional teaching.

PhD students will receive funding based on the following conditions:

  • must be registered as a full-time student
  • must be available on campus during office hours in the Fall and/or Winter terms (during years 1 and 2 of the program)
  • must apply for SSHRC funding (October) and the University scholarships competition (December). Failure to apply will result in a decrease or cancellation of departmental funding.
  • must maintain satisfactory academic standing in the program

Students who are offered admission to a PhD program will receive general information regarding funding in the offer package.

Details regarding specific activities to which students will be assigned will be provided after the offer of admission has been accepted.

Students may choose to waive an offer of work as a teaching assistant or sessional instructor without jeopardizing an offer of admission to a graduate program.

For more information about Doctoral funding please contact the Graduate Programs in Education office:

Email: gpe@ucalgary.ca

As a Graduate Student you are expected to devote the time, effort, and energy necessary to engage in scholarship.  As a graduate student, you will determine the specific milestones and requirements of your program of study in consultation with the Faculty of Graduate Studies Calendar and with your graduate supervisor. 

An integral part of the masters experience is working closely with a supervisor on the development and completion of a research project.  A graduate supervisor mentors graduate students through regular meetings and research training aimed at research, scholarship, teaching and professional development. Graduate supervisors support students in the timely completion of their programs.  As a Graduate Student, you are expected to meet with your graduate supervisor on a regular basis.  While each student-supervisor relationship is unique, graduate supervisors can assist graduate students in a number of ways: advising on course selection, applying for awards and scholarships, obtaining research funds, applying for teaching assistant and sessional teaching opportunities, developing track records in refereed publications and conference presentations, getting involved in leadership and service, and encouraging and supporting apprenticeship in a research community of practice (collaborative review of papers, grants, academic writing, and data analysis). 

A supervisor is normally appointed at the time of admission.

Specializations


Adult Learning

Adult learning and education is informed by a rich heritage rooted in a commitment to human, community, and social development. Studies in adult learning draw from multiple and diverse contexts and interest areas that include post-secondary and continuing education, business and industry, NGOs, community development, and international organizations.

More on Adult Learning

Curriculum & Learning

Curriculum and learning studies compass issues of content, context, and teaching in both formal and non-formal educational settings. Students may explore contemporary themes including issues of globalization, gender, culture, power, traditions of wisdom, ecology in education, and the ideas and practices of social justice. Themes are examined from social, cultural, historical, political, discursive, ecological, and other interpretive perspectives.

More on Curriculum & Learning

Language & Literacy

Language and literacy studies prepare students to understand and conduct research on various dimensions of literacy, linguistic and cultural diversity. Our studies encompass the acquisition, use, teaching, and learning of languages, multiliteracies (multiple meaning-making systems, including print, visual, oral, audiovisual, and gestural texts), and new literacies and digital media.

More on Language & Literacy

Leadership

Studies in leadership and educational policy draw upon the social sciences and humanities to prepare our researchers and practitioners for administrative and research-related careers. Students analyze and resolve contemporary issues related to educational policy, organizational change, and the direction and management of schools, school systems, other institutions, and governmental bodies concerned with public and private education.

More on Leadership

Learning Sciences

Learning science is an interdisciplinary field of scholarship that works to further scientific, humanistic, and critical theoretical understandings of learning. Our students engage in the design and implementation of pedagogical innovations to support learning. Our primary mission is the advancement of knowledge, and the preparation of future researchers and scholars of the discipline in the learning sciences.

More on Learning Sciences

Spring 2022

Start of Classes: Wednesday, May 4, 2022
End of Classes: Thursday, June 16, 2022

Please note that specialization courses are only offered in the Summer term.

  • EDER 616 Design-Based Research Methods L01 (2231)

You may fulfill some of your program requirements by taking courses from other departments/faculties. You should seek permission to register from your supervisor and the respective unit/faculty.

Below is a list of Spring 2022 courses from other departments/units that you may consider taking. This list is not all encompassing, nor are we mandating that you take one or any of these courses. It is, as a student, your responsibility to initiate permission with your supervisor and the respective unit/faculty to take one of these courses.

  • NURS 623/723: Hermeneutic Research 

Summer 2022

Start of Classes: Monday, June 27, 2022
End of Classes: Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Please note that the delivery of Summer 2022 Graduate Programs in Education courses may be subject to change. Tentative on campus dates and times are listed in our schedule. We will communicate any updates on delivery to students. Please ensure that you regularly check your @ucalgary.ca e-mail address for updates.

For all specialization courses please contact your supervisor for recommendations.

Please note that specialization courses are only offered in the Summer term.

Fall 2022

Start of Classes: Tuesday, September 6, 2022
End of Classes: Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Please note that the delivery of Fall 2022 Graduate Programs in Education courses for PhD students may be subject to change. Tentative on campus dates and times are listed in our schedule. We will communicate any updates on delivery to students. Please ensure that you regularly check your @ucalgary.ca e-mail address for updates.

Please note that specialization courses are only offered in the Summer term.

  • EDER 701.25 Mixed Methods L01 (6557)
  • EDER 720 Advanced Approaches to Interpretive Inquiry L01 (4746)

Winter 2023

Start of Classes: Monday, January 9, 2023
End of Classes: Wednesday, April 12, 2023

Please note that the delivery of Winter 2023 Graduate Programs in Education courses for PhD students may be subject to change. Tentative on campus dates and times are listed in our schedule. We will communicate any updates on delivery to students. Please ensure that you regularly check your @ucalgary.ca e-mail address for updates.

Please note that specialization courses are only offered in the Summer term.

  • EDER 701.19 Narrative Inquiry L01 (6622)
  • EDER 701.20 Indigenous Methodologies in Education L02 (6623)

Contact Us

GPA

Have Questions?

Sylvia Parks Graduate Program Administrator (GPA) sparks@ucalgary.ca

AC

Academic Coordinator

Specialization specific AC contact info listed on specialization page.

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