Mar 28, 2023  
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2019-2020 
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2019-2020 [-ARCHIVED CALENDAR-]

Medical Sciences, Ph.D

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Ph.D. Degree


A candidate for the Ph.D. degree must comply with the School of Graduate Studies Regulations for the Degree Doctor of Philosophy, including the completion of the equivalent of three
half graduate courses beyond the B.Sc. or one additional half course in Medical Sciences beyond those required for the Master’s degree. The three half courses beyond the B.Sc. must
include at least one 700-level graduate half course in Medical Sciences, and two graduate-level half courses in Medical Sciences or any other Faculty (with approval from the supervisory committee and Assistant Dean of Medical Sciences).If the additional half course beyond those required for the Master’s degree is taken outside of the Faculty of Health Sciences, the approval of the candidate’s supervisory committee and the Assistant Dean is required.

Candidates must also:

  1. Obtain at least B- standing in course work.
  2. Pass a Comprehensive Examination before the end of the twenty- first month following the start of their doctoral studies at McMaster. The examination, which consists of a written and oral part, gives students an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to acquire information about major issues in biomedical sciences and to evaluate critically such information. The written component of the Comprehensive Examination is a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)-style grant proposal. In the oral component of the Comprehensive Examination, the student is expected to provide reasoned arguments in support of his/her interpretation of the scientific area under study, to demonstrate his/her ability to use the information acquired to formulate a hypothesis, and develop an experimental plan that addresses the hypothesis, to rationalize weaknesses and strengths of the experimental approach. The student and supervisory committee will agree on a topic that is of interest and value to the student and merit independent study. Further information regarding the comprehensive examination is contained in the relevant sections of the Medical Sciences Handbook, which is available in the Medical Sciences Program Office, HSC-4H4.
  3. Present a thesis on an approved topic and defend the thesis at a final oral examination.

All graduate students in Medical Sciences are expected to present at least ONE research seminar during their M.Sc. and their Ph.D. studentships at McMaster.

MD/PhD Option

The MD/PhD program is available for students in Medical Sciences.  Please refer to the Combined MD/PhD  section of the calendar for more information.

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