PhD in Sociology
Our department is always looking for talented, self-motivated and independent scholars to join our unique doctoral program. From its inception, our PhD in Sociology has been guided successfully by two principle objectives:
Doctoral students will have an opportunity to specialize in one of four fields where our faculty is well recognized for its expertise, including:
Through course work, seminars, qualifying examinations, teaching and research assistantships, conference presentations and dissertation writing, our PhD in Sociology offer students a rewarding array of intellectual and professional challenges. Successful graduates will have demonstrated advanced theoretical and methodological competence, an ability to conduct research independently at the cutting edge of their chosen field, and an ability to communicate with precision and confidence – skills that are in high demand both inside and outside the academy.
PhD in Sociology with Collaborative International Development Studies (IDS) Specialization:
Are you interested in international development? Students can choose to combine their PhD degree in Sociology with an IDS specialization. Visit the International Development Studies page for more information. http://www.ids.uoguelph.ca/
A minimum of five semesters of full-time study must be devoted to the doctoral program. Normally, the dissertation will be formally submitted within forty-eight months of the completion of the minimum duration. The PhD program is not offered on a part-time basis. All students are required to register in the program full time.
All incoming PhD students are required to successfully complete a mininium of four courses:
Note: Students advancing to the PhD from the MA program in Sociology at the University of Guelph who have successfully completed the existing graduate course in their field of specialization are required to take three electives instead of two. They may take two graduate courses offered in another department at the University of Guelph (selected in consultation with the student's advisor).
In addition to course work, students are required to successfully complete two qualifying examinations in:
Both qualifying examinations have written and oral components.
The purposes of both qualifying examinations are: to assess students’ knowledge of the relevant subject matter and their ability to critically analyze, integrate and evaluate theoretical, methodological and substantive knowledge; to assess their ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing; and to assess their preparedness to undertake research for the PhD dissertation and to develop an analysis of their research findings.
For the qualifying examination in sociological theory and methodology, students are expected to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the foundations of sociological theories and the broader philosophical context of inquiry in sociological research.
For the qualifying examination in the substantive field of specialization, students are expected to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the broad literature in the field as well as theoretical and methodological approaches relevant to that specific field.
The dissertation proposal should be formulated at as early a date as possible and presented to the PhD advisory committee. The dissertation proposal must be formally approved by the advisory committee before the dissertation research can begin. The dissertation proposal provides a framework for the actual research.
Each doctoral candidate is required to submit and orally defend a dissertation, written by the candidate, on research carried out by the candidate on a topic approved by the advisory committee. The dissertation is expected to be a significant contribution to knowledge in its field and the candidate must indicate in what ways it is a contribution. The dissertation 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 dissertation is taken to imply that it is judged to be sufficiently meritorious to warrant publication in reputable scholarly media in the field.
Are you interested in applying for a PhD in Sociology? Visit our admission requirements page for important information.