Apr 23, 2018  
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2014-2015 
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2014-2015 [-ARCHIVED CALENDAR-]

Religious Studies, Ph.D

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Candidates for the Ph.D. program may be admitted at one of three stages in their academic work:

  1. Normally, on completion of a Master’s program.
  2. Occasionally, after completion of one year of a Master’s program.
  3. In exceptional cases, an applicant with an honours degree in Religious Studies or a broad and comprehensive theological education may be admitted.

Further details and requirements for admission are specified in the Departmental Handbook.

Minimum Requirements

A candidate for the Ph.D. degree must satisfy the general regulations for the degree Doctor of Philosophy of the School of Graduate Studies. The minimum requirements for a Ph.D. candidate are as follows:

  1. Completion of the breadth requirement. Students who have not completed the equivalent of six units (one full year course) of undergraduate work in Asian religions may fulfil their breadth requirement by taking six units of undergraduate courses, or by writing two Breadth Requirement examinations, or by taking a three unit undergraduate course and writing one Breadth Requirement examination early in their Ph.D. program.
  2. A reading knowledge of two languages other than English must be demonstrated; the method, time-limit and guidelines are specified in the Departmental Handbook; additional languages may be required.
  3. At least five half courses at the graduate level at McMaster beyond the M.A. level. Two half courses may be taken outside of the Department. Additional courses may be required. Exceptions may be made by the candidate’s advisory committee. Students who have completed an M.A. elsewhere must normally complete at least three units of graduate course work in the minor area of study. Students who have completed an M.A. in the Department of Religious Studies at McMaster do not have to do additional course work in the minor area, though they are encouraged to do so. Students must also complete RELIG ST *701 Issues in the Study of Religions  if they have not already done this course during their M.A. program.
  4. Comprehensive examinations in the major and minor areas of study, which are chosen according to the regulation given above.
  5. Completion of a thesis in the major area of study. The thesis must constitute original research and make a contribution to learning in the chosen field; the thesis must be defended in a final oral examination.

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