faculty of environmental studies

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PhD Admission requirements & How to apply

Application deadline

January 8, 2015

Admission requirements

To be considered for admission to the PhD program, applicants must have a Master’s degree from an accredited university with an academic standing of at least a B+. If your Master’s degree is still in progress, you must submit your current transcripts and then send us final copies once you receive your degree (ie after your convocation ceremony – your final transcripts must indicate that your degree has been completed/conferred).

NOTE: Admission to the PhD program is not guaranteed by meeting these requirements. Approximately seven to twelve PhD students are admitted to the Faculty each year. Since our programs emphasize self-directed learning, PhD applicants must show evidence of interest in and suitability for their desired field of study and demonstrate their capacity to undertake graduate work in our interdisciplinary, individualized programs.

How to apply

You are required to submit the following online forms and documents to complete your application and be considered for admission:

1. The Faculty of Graduate Studies Application for Admission Form (and applicable application fee)

2. Two official sealed copies of transcripts from each post-secondary educational institution you have attended

Please have the relevant institution(s) mail the transcripts to you and submit the unopened, sealed envelopes with your application package. DO NOT OPEN THE SEALED ENVELOPE – this will render the transcripts unofficial. If you are still completing your degree, you must provide transcripts showing your interim marks and your application will be assessed using those grades. Should an offer of admission be made, it will be conditional on your forwarding us your final transcripts. Transcripts are not required for current/previous studies at York.

If you attended University in another country and/or your transcripts are in a language other than English or French, please contact us to confirm international document requirements.

3. The online Supplemental Program Information Form Please note this form will be available approximately 72 hours AFTER completing The Faculty of Graduate Studies Application for Admission Form

To access the form, login to Myfile using your York Identification number (York temporary reference number or York student number) and your date of birth. On the main page, follow the link on the left to “Supplementary Information Forms” then scroll down to click on “Fall 2012 application – Program in Faculty of Environmental Studies, PhD, Environmental Studies – Graduate Studies Supplementary Information Form”.

Important information about Supplemental Information Form questions:

Question 2 – Language skills
The PhD program does not require facility in a language other than English. Your chances of admission arenot decreased if you do not know another language.

Question 3 – Areas of specialization
The PhD program does not have areas of specialization, in part because students design their own fields of study. Please leave this section blank.

Question 4 – Professors you hope to work with
You must identify 3  professors. In preparing your Statement of Interest (item 5 below), you must review fulltime faculty members research approaches and interests, course offerings and writings as outlined in their profiles. Indicate, in order, those faculty members you think might be integral to your work.

Question 5 – other information
Do not include information that is contained in any other part of your application.

4. The online Referee Information Form Please note this form will be available approximately 72 hours AFTER completing The Faculty of Graduate Studies Application for Admission Form

To access the form, login to Myfile using your York Identification number (York temporary reference number or York student number) and your date of birth. On the main page, follow the link on the left to “Supplementary Information Forms” then scroll down to click on “Fall 2012 application – Program in Faculty of Environmental Studies, PhD, Environmental Studies – FGS Referee Information Form”.

IMPORTANT – You must submit three names. References must be academic.

5. Statement of Interest (must be uploaded electronically using Myfile)

Please include three sections in your statement:

Part A: Please provide a tentative title for your research area.

Part B: Please list five key words that best relate to your research interests.

Part C: Please write the body of your statement as follows (around 1000 words):

Describe your intended doctoral research:

i. situate your research interests and proposed work in relevant general academic fields and literature;

ii. describe your current plan for the dissertation (including preliminary research questions, theoretical frameworks, methodology, and anticipated contributions);

iii. provide details of your background preparation (previous degrees, courses, research or professional experience, community work, etc) supporting your proposed research; and

iv. after reviewing full-time faculty members’ research approaches and interests, course offerings, and writings as outlined in their profiles describe how your interests relate to those of the faculty members you identify in your Supplemental Application form (item 3 above).

6. Your résumé (must be uploaded electronically using Myfile)

Include your résumé, showing the following information, where applicable:

  • post-secondary institutions attended
  • academic honours (scholarships, fellowships, awards, etc.)
  • employment, volunteer and professional experience
  • academic/professional qualifications and memberships
  • publications and professional commissions or reports (if any are joint-authored, please provide a separate note describing your contribution)
  • work in progress
  • conference presentation
  • publications

7. Sample of written work (must be uploaded electronically using Myfile)

50 pages maximum – for example a thesis chapter, article, etc.

 

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS (if applicable):

8. Language requirement (if applicable)

If your first language is other than English, to be considered for admission you must submit evidence of an acceptable level of English language proficiency. For the MES program the minimum requirements are:

  • TOEFL (Paper-based: 600; Computer-based: 250; iBT: 100)
  • IELTS: Overall band score: 7.5; or
  • York English Language Test (YELT): Band 1.

For details please see the English language proficiency information on the York graduate admissions website.

If you have completed at least one year of full-time study at an accredited university in a country (or institution) where English is the official language of instruction, you may be exempt from this requirement. York University reserves the right to request a successful English language proficiency test result.

IMPORTANT NOTE: All material submitted becomes the property of the University and will not be returned. Additional documentation, outside the application requirements will be accepted however it may not be reviewed by the admissions committee.

TRANSCRIPTS MUST BE SENT TO ONE OF THE ADDRESSES BELOW:

By mail:
Office of Graduate Admissions
PO Box GA2300
York University
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, ON
Canada M3J 1P3

By courier:
Office of Graduate Admissions
W322 Bennett Centre for Student Services
99 Ian MacDonald Blvd
Toronto, ON
Canada M3J 1P3

In person drop off:
Admissions Reception
3rd Floor, Bennett Centre for Student Services
York University
99 Ian MacDonald Blvd 
Toronto, ON

After hours drop box open 24 hours a day/7 days a week located on the main floor of the Bennett Centre – the box is labelled “Admissions.”

All of the items listed above must be received before your application will be considered.