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Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy IHPST’s additional admission requirements stated below.

Full-Time PhD

  • ​Applicants must be admitted via one of the following routes:
    • Direct entry: an appropriate bachelor’s degree from a recognized university, with an average grade of at least a B+ in the applicant’s overall program and of at least an A- in the applicant’s final two years of study
    • A University of Toronto master’s degree in History and Philosophy of Science and Technology or its equivalent from a recognized university with an average grade of at least an A in the applicant’s program and with no individual grade less than B+. While the majority of accepted students exceed this standard, the very broad scope of the field and the variety of fruitful approaches to it also imply that many different backgrounds are appropriate. Accordingly, grades are only one criterion used to judge applicants.
  • Applications must be accompanied by a 300- to 500-word statement of interest indicating the applicant’s areas of interest in history and/or philosophy of science and technology at the graduate level. A writing sample is required.
    • Application deadline is January 15.
    • Applicants whose primary language is not English and who are not graduates of a university whose language of instruction is English must submit results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and Test of Written English (TWE) with the following minimum scores:
      • paper-based TOEFL: 580 and 5 on the TWE
      • Internet-based TOEFL: 93/120 and 22/30 on the writing and speaking sections

​Flexible-Time PhD

  • With the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies, some applicants may be admitted to a flexible-time PhD option. Applicants to the flexible-time PhD option are accepted under the same admission requirements as applicants to the full-time PhD option. This option will benefit mature students who remain active in their professional careers during the PhD, such as physicians, engineers, educators, and IT professionals. The option will enable them to engage in supervised research in the history and/or philosophy of their profession.​
  • Students will be admitted on the basis of a master’s degree in History and Philosophy of Science and Technology; admission based on a bachelor’s degree is not available.

Program Requirements

Full-Time PhD

  • Students admitted on the basis of a bachelor’s degree (direct-entry) must:
    • ​​Complete 6.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in total; of these, students must complete all of the MA program requirements including language proficiency, normally in Year 1.
    • Complete all required courses by the end of Year 2. The exception is HPS 1100Y, which should be completed at the end of Year 3.
  • Students admitted on the basis of a master’s degree must:
    • Complete 3.0 FCEs;
    • a student whose MA degree does not exhibit sufficient breadth is required to take additional courses.
  • Students must complete a research requirement:
    • The research requirement will be determined by the Director of Graduate Studies in consultation with the student’s supervisory committee. This requirement can be satisfied in a number or ways: (a) a reading knowledge of a language other than English but only if this second language is a tool that is needed to carry out the research and writing of the dissertation; (b) familiarity with research methods that are required to successfully complete the writing of the dissertation not typical of IHPST (e.g., randomized control trials, cohort studies, mathematical modelling); and (c) through IHPST course work.
    • The supervisory committee in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies may stipulate that more than one additional language is necessary, and that familiarity with research methods not typical of IHPST may not be a requirement for individual students. The IHPST Research Requirement is to be completed by August 31 (year 3 of the 4-year PhD, year 4 of the 5-year PhD).
  • All students must:
    • Arrange the balance of their curriculum in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies ​and faculty instructors.
    • Submit a proposal for an extended research paper (required for HPS 1100Y), by end of Year 1 for students who enter with a master’s degree and by end of Year 2 for students who enter with a bachelor’s degree. Students are responsible for ensuring that they have an appropriate supervisor. All supervision arrangements are reviewed and approved by the Director of Graduate Studies who assists in the search for a supervisor, if necessary. Proper supervision is a prerequisite for continuation in the program.
    • Maintain a cumulative average of at least A- with no individual grade less than B+. In addition, all students should receive at least an A- on the HPS 1100Y research paper. Students falling below these standards may be recommended for termination from the program.
    • Demonstrate other competencies crucial to conducting research in the student’s thesis area, as determined by the supervisory committee in consultation with the student and the Director of Graduate Studies. This may include, for example, competence in another language; mathematics; and a physical, life, or social science.
    • Pass a qualifying examination in areas related to the field of expected research. Examination is conducted by the student’s specialist committee, normally three faculty members.
    • Submit a thesis proposal approved by the student’s thesis supervisory committee and the Director of Graduate Studies.

Flexible-Time PhD

  • Degree requirements for the flexible-time option are identical to those listed above for the full-time PhD program, except that the program of study will relate to the student’s work and vice versa.
  • Students in the flexible-time option are required to register full-time for the first four years of the program. Thereafter, they may register part-time.
  • Transfers between the full-time PhD program and the flexible-time PhD option are not permitted.
  • Students in the flexible-time option must satisfy the SGS General Regulations and Degree Regulations in the SGS Calendar, including good academic standing, supervision, and candidacy regulations.
  • The student will develop a thesis proposal, which must be approved by the student’s thesis supervisory committee and the Director of Graduate Studies.

Program Length

4 years full-time; 5 years direct-entry (full-time); 6 years flexible-time

Time Limit

6 years (full-time); 7 years direct-entry (full-time); 8 years flexible-time