Admission Procedure of Doctoral Degree for Canadian Students

Doctoral Degree programs are offered by Universities and Private Colleges. Entry into higher education- Doctoral Degree courses in Canada is highly competitive, and a high standard of English or French language is required for Doctoral Degree study. The doctoral research degree allows the applicants to uncover new knowledge either by the breakthrough of new facts, the formulation of theories or the modern reinterpretation of known information and conventional ideas. Doctoral degree is for graduates who want to investigate and contribute knowledge in a particular academic discipline. Doctoral degrees recognize a considerable original contribution to a given field in the form of new knowledge or the adaptation, application and interpretation of existing knowledge.

There are two forms of Doctoral Degree: the Doctoral Degree (Research) and the Doctoral Degree (Professional).
  • Research Doctorate (PhD): These consist primarily of supervised research resulting in the culmination of a dissertation. Entry requires a Masters degree by research or a bachelor degree (Honours).

  • Professional Doctorate: The combine research and coursework for professionals desiring to advance their knowledge without the research commitment of a PhD. The entry to this program requires a master degree by research or a honours bachelor degree. In addition, considerable professional experience is required either before or while pursuing the course.

Entrance Test/Admission Requirements

Entry into Doctoral Program in Canada, most important prerequisite is English or French language proficiency. At all Canadian universities, English or French is the language of instruction. An applicant has to provide evidence of proficiency in the English language.

Other Requirements

Each Education provider will have different entrance requirements such as prior knowledge in certain subject, Work History details Official academic transcripts, Statement of Purpose, Letters of Recommendation, and Research Proposal.

Statement of Purpose: Imperative to mention your area of interest, reasons to join the course and the university, background, educational details, and your goals. SOP depicts your personality.

Letter of Recommendation: A letter of recommendation is a signed letter written by a person who knows you well professionally and has had a detail encounter with you during your learning process. Letter of recommendation includes your strengths and weaknesses, skills, accomplishments, and personal qualities. A letter of recommendation provides insights that cannot be gleaned by simply reviewing an applicant's score. At least two letters of recommendation are required.

Research Proposal: The research proposal can be given by the student pursuing a doctoral degree or a post graduate research course and also needs to submit the following documents:
  • Detailed Research Proposal
  • Abstracts, Research Publications, etc.
Resume: The resume should include your postsecondary institutions attended, academic honours and awards, publications if any, and academic and professional qualification details.

Sample of Written work (if any): Depending upon the requirement of the university/institution. It includes am article, thesis chapter, etc.

Eligibility Requirements

For admission to a doctoral degree program an applicant normally shall have studied for a minimum of four years in a tertiary institution and at least one of the following entry requirements must be met:
  • Graduated with or qualified for the award of the degree of master within the University which requires the completion of a publicly available thesis or research project to an acceptable standard.
  • Graduated with or qualified for the award of the degree of bachelor with first class honours or upper second class honours within the University.
  • Graduated with a bachelor degree and completed a postgraduate diploma or its equivalent, or completed a master degree by coursework, with, in both cases, a course-weighted average of not less than 70 per cent within the University.


The duration of Doctoral degree program is generally four and six years, up to maximum of seven years. For two to four years, students are involved in research work and ending the course with a thesis. During the preparation of the dissertation, they would have to be prepared for an open discussion that might initiate among a few universities. If successful, this completes the Doctorate Degree.

Academic Calendar

Starting dates vary widely depending upon the course undertaken. Applicants opting for doctoral degree or other research degree can negotiate an alternative starting date with their project supervisor.

Admission Procedure

The admission process involves following steps:
  • Application Forms
    - Requesting Application Forms via email: You can request application forms from the universities website. Most universities have a form on their website which can be completed online to request application material.
    - Downloading from the university website: Many universities have a downloadable and ready to print versions of their application forms on the internet. These can be used for applying just as regular forms.
           In the form, fill the following sections and submit:

         - Personal Details
        - Academic History
        - Supplement Information
        - Course chosen
  • Supporting Documents
    Submit Supporting documents such as transcripts from all high school coursework, Letters of Recommendation, Work History, Reference/Personal Statement and Research Proposal.

Research Proposal:

Students pursuing a post graduate research course or doctoral degree need to submit the below documents as well.
  • Detailed Research Proposal
  • Abstracts, Research Publications, etc.
  • Acceptance Letter
    If the application is successful, the applicant will receive “Acceptance Letter”. On receiving this, you need to pay a portion of the fees within a stipulated time period, to confirm your admission. During enrollment, you must carry copies of the acceptance letter, study/work permit and any other details that are mandatory for admission. The payment of fees varies according to the university you have chosen.

Financial Aid

Funding for PhDs in Canada can be given in the form of an award, where the amount awarded covers the total tuition fee for the first four years. This is usually referred as tuition deferral or a waiver. A Ph.D. student can also receive financial assistance in the form of teaching jobs under the supervision of their faculty. A few universities in Canada offer aid in the form of scholarships and bursaries.
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