IX. Graduate Programs

Political Science

PhD Program

The PhD program offers students the opportunity to pursue studies in two fields: 1) comparative politics; and 2) public policy and governance. Students are required to major in one field and minor in the other. Within comparative politics, students can focus their studies thematically or regionally. The department has expertise in developing, transitional, and advanced-industrial countries. Within the field of public policy and governance students can pursue studies in a wide range of areas, including health care, law, criminal justice, environmental policy, social policy, security policy, trade policy, federalism and intergovernmental relations, and multilevel governance.

Application Procedure

Graduate students are admitted each Fall semester. Program offices should be consulted for admission deadlines and required documents https://www.uoguelph.ca/polisci/masters/how-apply . All applications must be submitted on-line. Complete application submission instructions can be found at http://www.uoguelph.ca/graduatestudies/apply

Admission Requirements

Students are expected to have a completed an MA in Political Science with at least an A- average for consideration for admission to the program. Students are also required to have successfully completed a graduate course in quantitative and qualitative Political Science methods. Students not satisfying this requirement may be admitted with the provision that it be satisfied by completing the requisite extra course. Students with a MA in a Social Science other than Political Science, are encouraged to apply on the condition that they take additional courses upon their entry into the program.

Degree Requirements

Students will be required to successfully complete a minimum of four graduate courses:

  • Two PhD core courses (see Department’s Graduate Handbook in the student’s major field and minor field (selected in consultation with the student’s Advisor)

  • Two of the following courses as electives:

    1. One or two of the other existing graduate courses offered in the Department

    2. A graduate course offered in another department at the University of Guelph (selected in consultation with the student’s Advisor).

  • A written qualifying exam and an oral qualifying exam.

    The qualifying examination will take the form of a written take-home examination followed by an oral examination and will be based on the reading lists for the core courses in the major and minor field. Normally the examination will involve three questions based on the major field of study and two questions from the minor field.

  • A thesis

    Each candidate will be required to write and submit a thesis on the research carried out by the candidate on a topic approved by the Advisory Committee. The thesis is expected to be a significant contribution to knowledge in its field and the candidate must indicate in what ways it is a contribution. A thesis is expected to be no less then 200 pages in length. The thesis must demonstrate mature scholarship and critical judgement on the part of the candidate, and it must indicate an ability to express oneself in a satisfactory literary style. Approval of the thesis is taken to imply that it is judged to be sufficiently meritorious to warrant publication in reputable scholarly media in the field.

University of Guelph
50 Stone Road East
Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1