VIII. Graduate Programs
The Department of Economic offers a PhD in Economics with fields of specialization in econometrics and labour economics. PhD candidates may write a dissertation in these fields or in any of the areas of expertise of the graduate faculty in the department. In addition, the Department offers a PhD program in Resource and Environmental Economics in collaboration with the Department of Agricultural Economics and Business. (See PhD in Resource and Environmental Economics).
The objectives of the PhD program are to train individuals that already have a strong background in economics to become independent and skilled researchers in the fields of economics offered in the program. Graduates are expected to have demonstrated competence at an advanced level in the core areas of Microeconomic theory, Macroeconomic theory, and Econometrics, to have demonstrated competence at the cutting edge of knowledge in their chosen field of specialization and advanced competence in a second field, and to have demonstrated mature scholarship and research and communication abilities. At the same time, the objective of the PhD program is to prepare graduates for either an academic career or a career in the private or public sectors.
Applicants to the PhD program should have a master's degree in economics with a minimum average of 80% (A-) in their postgraduate studies. Applicants without a master's degree but with an outstanding record at the baccalaureate level, may be admitted initially to the MA program in economics. For students who achieve a superior record and show an aptitude for research, The Board of Graduate Studies, on the recommendation of the Department, may authorize transfer to the PhD program without requiring the student to complete a master's degree.
The program requires the satisfactory completion of a minimum of 12 courses covering core theory, econometrics, and field courses. (Students with an MA will be given credit for courses already in hand, where appropriate). The following summarizes the program requirement:
All students must satisfy the requirement by successfully completing the following four courses and by successfully completing the comprehensive examination in economic theory.
All students must select two fields of specialization from the list below and must successfully complete the indicated course requirements in each field and successfully complete a comprehensive examination in each field.
During the summer of the second year and only after the theory comprehensive exams are passed, students must prepare a research paper under the supervision of a faculty member. Once the paper is deemed to be acceptable, the advisor notifies the Graduate Coordinator who in turn notifies the Dean of Graduate Studies that the student has passed the "Qualifying Examination" requirement as set out by the Faculty of Graduate Studies. At this point, the student becomes a "candidate" for the PhD.
Submission and defence of an acceptable thesis on a topic approved by the student's advisory committee completes the requirements for the PhD. The thesis is expected to be a significant and original contribution to knowledge in its field and must demonstrate scholarship and critical judgement on the part of the candidate. Theses must be submitted within 48 months of completing the minimum duration.