Continuing from the MSc to the PhD Program

As per SGS regulations, all students applying for admission are required to submit and pay the posted application fee; this includes those currently registered who wish to continue on to a second program of study.  Full application must be made by all applicants by the posted application dates.

Eligibility for the Ph.D. Program:

To be eligible, the student must have achieved an average grade of at least B+ or higher in their Master's degree courses.

Continuing from the M.Sc. to Ph.D. program in Pharmacology may be carried out in one of two ways:

  1. For those Pharmacology M.Sc. students in the thesis-based program who have already obtained a Ph.D. supervisor and proposed Ph.D. project, there is the opportunity to screen at their Master's defense. This Defense+Screening option is usually for students who are continuing on in the same laboratory with the same supervisor. Please note that an online application must be completed since the student is applying to enter a new program of study. However, the process can be slightly faster - e.g., the admission interview is normally waived, and the student usually has only one condition on the admission offer - i.e., that of completing their M.Sc. degree.
  2. M.Sc. Pharmacology graduates who do not screen at their outgoing M.Sc. defense must also apply via the SGS on-line application system. As with all other applicants to the Ph.D. program, these students will be admitted based on their academic qualifications, references and a detailed examination of the full application package. An admission interview may or may not be required. See Admission Requirements.

Ph.D. Screening (Option #1):

Application to screen at the M.Sc. defense must be made to the Graduate Education Committee at least SIX WEEKS ahead of the proposed date of the defense (i.e, in time for the GEC to evaluate the application and PhD proposal prior to the proposed Defense+Screening.

Continuing students may enter the PhD program either in September or January.

Application is made via the online application system and applicants must pay the processing fee and comply with the posted deadlines and required documentation rules. SeeApplication Deadlines.

The application must include:

1. Three references. One from the current M.Sc. supervisor, which states that the current project is suitable for a PhD project and that the student has the qualities and potential for the PhD program; the second should be from a faculty member (e.g., the M.Sc. Advisor) who is well acquainted with the student's work. [For students proposing to change supervisors for the Ph.D. program, an additional letter from the proposed Ph.D. supervisor discussing the suitability of the proposed project should be included.]

2. Brief Ph.D. Proposal - including a one-page Summary of the Research Proposal. (Upload this document instead of the List of Proposed Supervisors and Proposed Research Areas of Study.)

The proposal should be 5-10 pages of single-spaced text, excluding references and figures. It should include the following components:

  • Review of background literature;
  • A statement of hypotheses and/or goals;
  • A progress report on work accomplished to date (if applicable);
  • A research plan for experiments to be completed in the PhD program;
  • A statement of the overall significance of the research project.

3. C.V. (be sure to include publications if any). Either Upload this as part of the PhD Proposal; or email directly to the Graduate Office.

Once the application to screen has been approved by the GEC, a standard M.Sc. examination committee must be assembled. Two additional Graduate Education Committee members will be added to the examination committee to evaluate the Ph.D. screening. These two additional Screening Committee Members are not required to have a copy of the thesis, unless specifically requested.

The student undergoing simultaneous M.Sc. Defense/Ph.D. Screening should be prepared to give an oral presentation (20 mins) that outlines the M.Sc. thesis research and a very brief description of the proposed Ph.D. project. Questions at the M.Sc. Defense/Ph.D. Screening can involve the M.Sc. thesis research, the proposed Ph.D. work, and general principles of pharmacology.

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