VIII. Graduate Programs
Two options are available for the PhD degree:
A MSc degree in physics from an approved university or college with at least a B standing (75%) is normally required for entrance into the PhD program. Other requirements are the same as those described above for the MSc program (see web-site http://gwp.on.ca/).
PhD Co-operative Option
In addition to the admission requirements described above, admisison to the co-op option is restricted to Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
Four one-term courses not including any already taken for MSc credit are required; courses taken during the MSc program and in excess of those required will, however, be allowed for PhD credit. By the end of the first year of the program, all three of Quantum Mechanics 1 (PHYS*7010), Statistical Physics 1 (PHYS*7040) and Electromagnetic Theory (PHYS*7060) should be completed. (Exception: Biophysics students must have taken at least one of Quantum Mechanics 1 (PHYS*7010), Statistical Physics 1 (PHYS*7040), and Electromagnetic Theory (PHYS*7060) by the completion of the first year of the PhD program.) One of the required courses may be an undergraduate course outside the student's main field of study and must be approved by the student's advisory committee and the graduate co-ordinator. No undergraduate course in physics may be taken for credit.
After two or three terms in the program, PhD candidates are required to pass a qualifying examination. This is an oral examination of approximately two hours' duration before a committee that includes representation from the student's advisory committee. It is designed to test the student's knowledge of the fundamentals and applications of physics related to the thesis topic. PhD students must meet their advisory committee members at least once a year to present a written and oral report on their progress. Candidates must present a thesis embodying the results of original research conducted by them on an advanced topic. The thesis is defended before a committee which may also examine the student's knowledge of related material.
PhD Co-operative Option
Students normally enter the co-op PhD program in September, following completion of their MSc degree. The student first spends one or two academic terms on campus, taking a minimum of two courses per term and performing the regular duties of a teaching assistant. During this time, the student will discuss work term prospects with the Guelph and Waterloo personnel responsible for co-op activities and conduct interviews with potential employers. After satisfactory performance in the academic term(s), the student spends a full year in an industrial or government laboratory.
Students must complete all three of the core courses PHYS*7010, PHYS*7040 and PHYS*7060 by the end of their first two academic terms in the program. (Exception: Biophysics students must take at least one of the three core courses.) A total of four graduate courses (2.0 credits) are required (excluding those already taken for MSc credit).
The student is required to pass a qualifying examination and complete, under the supervision of a faculty member, a research project on an advanced topic. A thesis embodying the results of original research conducted by the student must be presented and defended before a committee.