Medical Science: Medical Science PhD

Doctor of Philosophy

Program Description

The PhD program is available in a wide range of basic sciences, clinical sciences, and population health research. Under the mentorship of a faculty member, a student receives specialized training and exposure to Toronto's finest multidisciplinary research. Students conduct research in one of six fields: Bioethics; Biomedical Science; Clinical Science; Health Professions Education; Population Health/Health Services; and Radiation Oncology.

The program emphasizes hands-on research, rather than coursework. Faculty conduct research in the following areas: cardiovascular sciences, bioethics, neuroscience, membrane biology, respiratory medicine, and psychosomatic medicine. The Institute of Medical Science (IMS) is the graduate unit of choice for MDs seeking training as clinician investigators, and graduates may seek positions as academics and health-care professionals in universities, government, and industry. The IMS participates in the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons Clinical Investigator Program (CIP).

Applicants may enter the PhD program via one of three routes: 1) following completion of an MSc degree with an MSc thesis; 2) transfer from the IMS MSc program; or 3) direct entry following completion of an appropriate BSc or MD degree.

 

PhD Program

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Institute of Medical Science's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • Applicants whose primary language is not English, and who graduated from a university where the language of instruction was not English, must demonstrate facility in the English language through the successful completion of one of the following English language proficiency tests. (See amendment made on September 19, 2019.)

    • ​​​Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL):

      • a minimum score of 600 on the paper-based test and 5 on the Test of Written English (TWE); or

      • a minimum score of 100/120 on the Internet-based test and 22/30 on the writing and speaking sections.

    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS): minimum score of 7.5.

    • Certificate of Proficiency in English (COPE): minimum score of 5.

  • Applicants may be accepted into the PhD program after completing an MSc degree (with an MSc thesis) with at least A– standing from a recognized university.

Program Requirements

  • Coursework. Students must complete a minimum of 2.0 graduate full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • A minimum 1.0 graduate FCE.

    • MSC 1011Y0 PhD Student Seminars in Translational Research (1.0 FCE, if credit for MSC 1010Y has not been obtained previously).

    • Students may be required to take extra courses in addition to the degree requirements.

  • A research thesis must be submitted and the student must pass an internal examination before proceeding to the Doctoral Final Oral Examination conducted by the School of Graduate Studies.

  • At the end of Year 3, students must have completed all program requirements exclusive of the thesis research in order to achieve candidacy.

  • Students are expected to be on campus and participating full-time until all program requirements are completed.

Program Length

4 years

Time Limit

6 years

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.

 

PhD Program (Transfer)

Transfer Requirements

  • Applicants may be accepted into the PhD program via transfer from the University of Toronto MSc program. Outstanding students may be considered for reclassification/transfer into the PhD program without writing an MSc thesis.

Program Requirements

  • Students must complete 4.0 graduate full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • 1.0 graduate FCE with a minimum A– average.

    • MSC 1010Y0 MSc Student Seminars in Translational Research (1.0 FCE).

    • If recommended by the Program Advisory Committee, the student will be evaluated in an oral transfer examination within 18 to 21 months of initial graduate registration. Alternatively, the Exam Committee may decide that the student must complete the MSc degree before being considered for admission to the PhD program.
    • The successful applicant will enter the PhD program and complete:

      • 1.0 additional FCE

      • MSC 1011Y0 PhD Student Seminars (1.0 FCE, if credit for MSC 1010Y has not been obtained prior to transfer).

  • A research thesis must be submitted and the student must pass an internal examination before proceeding to the Doctoral Final Oral Examination conducted by the School of Graduate Studies.

  • At the end of Year 3, students must have completed all program requirements exclusive of the thesis research in order to achieve candidacy.

  • Students are expected to be on campus and participating full-time until all program requirements are completed.

Program Length

5 years

Time Limit

7 years

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.

 

PhD Program (Direct-Entry)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Institute of Medical Science's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • Applicants whose primary language is not English, and who graduated from a university where the language of instruction was not English, must demonstrate facility in the English language through the successful completion of one of the following English language proficiency tests. (See amendment made on September 19, 2019.)

    • ​​​Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL):

      • a minimum score of 600 on the paper-based test and 5 on the Test of Written English (TWE); or

      • a minimum score of 100/120 on the Internet-based test and 22/30 on the writing and speaking sections.

    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS): minimum score of 7.5.

    • Certificate of Proficiency in English (COPE): minimum score of 5.

  • Students are accepted via direct entry into the PhD program after completing an appropriate BSc or an MD degree, without completing an MSc degree.

Program Requirements

  • Students must pass a qualifying examination within 18 to 21 months of entry.

  • Students must complete a minimum of 3.0 graduate full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • A minimum of 2.0 graduate FCEs.

    • MSC 1011Y0 PhD Student Seminars in Translational Research (1.0 FCE).

    • Students may be required to take extra courses in addition to the degree requirements.

  • A research thesis must be submitted and the student must pass an internal examination before proceeding to the Doctoral Final Oral Examination conducted by the School of Graduate Studies.

  • At the end of Year 4, students must have completed all program requirements exclusive of the thesis research in order to achieve candidacy.

  • Students are expected to be on campus and participating full-time until all program requirements are completed.

Program Length

5 years

Time Limit

7 years

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.