Geography

Program Overview

The Department of Geography and Planning ​offers facilities for research leading to the degrees of Master of ArtsMaster of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy. The PhD program prepares students for academic careers in teaching and research. Some may also pursue an advanced career in the public or non-profit sectors, given the rising demand outside of academia for people with a PhD credential.

In Geography, faculty members conduct research in the following areas: geomorphology, climatology, hydrology, biogeography, pedology, environmental assessment and sustainable natural resource management, international development, industrial innovation, urban and economic geography, cultural and historical geography, gender studies, social geography, regional analysis, the history and philosophy of geography, remote sensing, computer cartography, spatial statistics, topics in land/geographic information systems, and quantitative analysis. The territories of special concern are Canada, the United States, Latin America, the Caribbean, Northwestern and Central Europe, East Asia, South Asia, and the former Soviet Union.


Quick Facts

Domestic International
Application payment deadline MA, MSc, PhD:

21-Jan-2020

MA, MSc, PhD:

21-Jan-2020

Supporting documents deadline MA, MSc, PhD:

21-Jan-2020

MA, MSc, PhD:

21-Jan-2020

Minimum admission average MA, MSc:

B+ in the final two years of bachelor’s

PhD:

A- average in Master’s

MA, MSc:

B+ in the final two years of bachelor’s

PhD:

A- average in Master’s

Direct entry option from bachelor's to PhD? PhD:

Yes ( A average in bachelor’s degree)

PhD:

Yes ( A average in bachelor’s degree)

Is a supervisor identified before or after admission? MA, MSc, PhD:

Before

MA, MSc, PhD:

Before

Is a supervisor assigned by the graduate unit or secured by the applicant? MA, MSc, PhD:

Applicant

MA, MSc, PhD:

Applicant

Program length (full-time only) MA, MSc:

3 sessions

PhD:

4 years; 5 years if entering directly from bachelor’s

MA, MSc:

3 sessions

PhD:

4 years; 5 years if entering directly from bachelor’s


Master of Arts

Program Description

The MA program offers studies in areas of human geography, including historical/social/cultural geography, urban/economic geography, environmental geography and resource management and some areas of spatial information systems. Applicants should apply to the MA degree program (rather than the MSc) if their planned research contains a substantial human geography component and if two-thirds of their planned coursework comprises Geography courses accepted by the department as social science courses.

 

MA Program (Thesis Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university with a minimum standing equivalent to at least a University of Toronto B+ in the final two years.

  • Applicants are expected to have completed at least 4.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in geography or a related field. Applicants lacking the minimum requirements should consider doing qualifying work at the undergraduate level prior to application. Such work should be undertaken in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator. Applicants who hold an appropriate bachelor's degree but are changing disciplines or require further preparatory work, may be required to complete an additional year of graduate-level coursework.

Program Requirements

  • Progress into the second session is dependent on achieving an overall B average in the first session and satisfactory progress as outlined in the Graduate Geography Handbook.

  • Students undertake research leading to the preparation of a thesis (RST 9999Y), in conjunction with at least the equivalent of 1.5 FCEs in coursework including:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1105H Human Geography Core Course;

    • 0.5 FCE elective course in geography or from an approved list of courses available from the department; and

    • 0.5 FCE elective course that may be taken inside or outside the department.

Program Length

3 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S);
6 sessions part-time

Time Limit

3 years full-time;
6 years part-time

 

MA Program (Research Paper Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university with a minimum standing equivalent to at least a University of Toronto B+ in the final two years.

  • Applicants are expected to have completed at least 4.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in geography or a related field. Applicants lacking the minimum requirements should consider doing qualifying work at the undergraduate level prior to application. Such work should be undertaken in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator. Applicants who hold an appropriate bachelor's degree but are changing disciplines or require further preparatory work, may be required to complete an additional year of graduate-level coursework.

Program Requirements

  • Progress into the second session is dependent on achieving an overall B average in the first session and satisfactory progress as outlined in the Graduate Geography Handbook.

  • Students will undertake research leading to the preparation of a major research paper (GGR 1100Y, 1.0 FCE), in conjunction with the equivalent of 3.0 graduate FCEs in coursework including:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1105H Human Geography Core Course;

    • 1.5 FCE elective courses in geography or from an approved list of courses available from the department; and

    • 1.0 FCE elective courses, 0.5 FCE of which must be taken outside the department.

Program Length

3 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S);
6 sessions part-time

Time Limit

3 years full-time;
6 years part-tim



Master of Science

Program Description

The MSc program offers studies in the areas of physical geography, spatial information systems and some areas of environmental studies. Applicants should apply to the MSc degree program (rather than the MA) if their planned research contains a substantial physical science component and if two-thirds of their planned coursework comprises Geography courses accepted by the department as physical science courses.

 

MSc Program (Thesis Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university with a minimum standing equivalent to at least a University of Toronto B+ in the final two years.

  • Applicants are expected to have completed at least 4.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in geography or a related discipline. Applicants lacking the minimum requirements should consider doing qualifying work at the undergraduate level prior to application. Such work should be undertaken in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator. Applicants who hold an appropriate bachelor's degree but are changing disciplines or require further preparatory work, may be required to complete an additional year of graduate-level coursework.

Program Requirements

  • Progress into the second session is dependent on achieving an overall B average in the first session and satisfactory progress as outlined in the Graduate Geography Handbook.

  • Students undertake research leading to the preparation of a thesis (RST 9999Y), in conjunction with at least the equivalent of 1.5 FCEs in coursework including:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1200H Physical Geography Core Course;

    • 0.5 FCE elective course in geography or from an approved list of courses available from the department; and

    • 0.5 FCE elective course that may be taken inside or outside the department.

Program Length

3 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S);
6 sessions part-time

Time Limit

3 years full-time;
6 years part-time

 

MSc Program (Research Paper Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university with a minimum standing equivalent to at least a University of Toronto B+ in the final two years.

  • Applicants are expected to have completed at least 4.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in geography or a related discipline. Applicants lacking the minimum requirements should consider doing qualifying work at the undergraduate level prior to application. Such work should be undertaken in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator. Applicants who hold an appropriate bachelor's degree but are changing disciplines or require further preparatory work, may be required to complete an additional year of graduate-level coursework.

Program Requirements

  • Progress into the second session is dependent on achieving an overall B average in the first session and satisfactory progress as outlined in the Graduate Geography Handbook.

  • Students will undertake research leading to the preparation of a major research paper (GGR 1100Y; 1.0 FCE), in conjunction with the equivalent of 3.0 graduate FCEs in coursework including:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1200H Physical Geography Core Course;

    • 1.5 FCE elective courses in geography or from an approved list of courses available from the department; and

    • 1.0 FCE elective courses, 0.5 FCE of which must be taken outside the department.

Program Length

3 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S);
6 sessions part-time

Time Limit

3 years full-time;
6 years part-time



Doctor of Philosophy​

Program Description

The PhD is primarily a research degree. A program of study is designed for each student to ensure competence in a field of research and to facilitate the preparation of a dissertation.

Applicants may enter the PhD program via one of two routes: 1) following completion of a master’s degree or 2) direct entry after completing a bachelor’s degree.

 

Fields:
Physical Geography and Natural Systems;
Spatial Information Systems

PhD Program

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate master's degree from a recognized university, with a minimum standing equivalent to at least a University of Toronto A–.

Program Requirements

  • Complete a minimum of 1.5 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in coursework as follows:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1200H Physical Geography Core Course. Students who have taken GGR 1200H at the master's level may take an alternative geography course.;

    • 0.5 FCE in geography courses or from a list of approved courses available from the department;

    • 0.5 FCE in elective courses which may be taken in any departments.

    • Students who hold an appropriate master's degree but are changing disciplines or require further preparatory work may be required to complete additional coursework.

  • Submit a research statement concerning the proposed PhD topic and the scope of the PhD examination by the end of April in Year 1.

  • Pass a PhD examination in the general field in which research is being undertaken between June of Year 1 and no later than December of Year 2. The scope and areas of concentration of the exam are to be determined jointly by the supervisory committee and the student. There are two components of the PhD exam:

    • A written exam (options are an eight-hour closed room exam on campus in one day or over two days, or a five-day off-campus exam).

    • An oral exam to take place within one week of the written exam.

  • A student who fails the PhD examination may retake the exam once within six months. Failure of the second exam may result in a recommendation for termination from the program.

  • Acquire knowledge of a foreign language necessary for research upon the recommendation of the supervisory committee.

  • Submit a research proposal that is acceptable to the supervisory committee, normally by the end of June of Year 2 and no later than September of Year 3.

  • Unless otherwise specified, two years of residence are required whereby the student is required to be on campus full-time and consequently in such geographical proximity as to be able to participate fully in University activities associated with the program.

  • Complete a thesis embodying the results of original investigation, conducted by the candidate, on the approved topic from a major area of study. The thesis shall constitute a significant contribution to the knowledge of the field and must be conducted while the student is registered in the PhD program.

PhD degree program details are fully described in the Graduate Geography Handbook and the department's website.

Program Length

4 years

Time Limit

6 years

 

PhD Program (Direct-Entry)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • In exceptional cases and at the discretion of the department, admission to the PhD program by direct entry may be approved for applicants with an overall A average and an appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university.

Program Requirements

  • Complete a minimum of 3.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1200H Physical Geography Core Course;

    • 0.5 FCE in geography courses or from a list of approved courses available from the department;

    • 2.0 FCE in elective courses which may be taken in any department.

  • Submit a research statement concerning the proposed PhD topic and the scope of the PhD examination by the end of April in Year 1.

  • Pass a PhD examination in the general field in which research is being undertaken between June of Year 1 and no later than December of Year 2. The scope and areas of concentration of the exam are to be determined jointly by the supervisory committee and the student. There are two components of the PhD exam:

    • A written exam (options are an eight-hour closed room exam on campus in one day or over two days, or a five-day off-campus exam).

    • An oral exam to take place within one week of the written exam.

  • A student who fails the PhD examination may retake the exam once within six months. Failure of the second exam may result in a recommendation for termination from the program.

  • Acquire knowledge of a foreign language necessary for their research upon the recommendation of their supervisory committee.

  • Submit a research proposal that is acceptable to the supervisory committee, normally by the end of June of Year 2 and no later than September of Year 3.

  • Unless otherwise specified, two years of residence are required whereby the student is required to be on campus full-time and consequently in such geographical proximity as to be able to participate fully in the University activities associated with the program.

  • Complete a thesis embodying the results of original investigation, conducted by the candidate, on the approved topic from a major area of study. The thesis shall constitute a significant contribution to the knowledge of the field and must be conducted while the student is registered in the PhD program.

PhD degree program details are fully described in the Graduate Geography Handbook and the department's website.

Program Length

5 years

Time Limit

7 years

 

Fields:
Environmental Geography and Resource Management;
Urban/Economic Geography;
Historical/Social/Cultural Geography

PhD Program

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate master's degree from a recognized university, with a minimum standing equivalent to at least a University of Toronto A–.

Program Requirements

  • Complete a minimum of 3.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in coursework including:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1110H Issues in Geographic Thought and Practice.

    • 1.0 FCE in geography courses or from a list of approved courses available from the department.

    • At least 0.5 FCE but not more than 1.5 FCE courses in other departments.

    • In exceptional cases, at the discretion of the department, up to 1.0 FCE of graduate courses completed at the master's level at the University of Toronto may be counted towards meeting some course requirements.

    • Students who hold an appropriate master's degree but are changing disciplines or require further preparatory work may be required to complete additional coursework.

  • Submit a research statement concerning the proposed PhD topic and the scope of the PhD examination by the end of April in Year 1.

  • Pass a PhD examination in the general field in which research is being undertaken between June of Year 1 and no later than December of Year 2. The scope and areas of concentration of the exam are to be determined jointly by the supervisory committee and the student. There are two components of the PhD exam:

    • A written exam (options are an eight-hour closed room exam on campus in one day or over two days, or a five-day off-campus exam).

    • An oral exam to take place within one week of the written exam.

  • A student who fails the PhD examination may retake the exam once within six months. Failure of the second exam may result in a recommendation for termination from the program.

  • Acquire knowledge of a foreign language necessary for research upon the recommendation of the supervisory committee.

  • Submit a research proposal that is acceptable to the supervisory committee, normally by the end of June of Year 2 and no later than September of Year 3.

  • Unless otherwise specified, two years of residence are required whereby the student is required to be on campus full-time and consequently in such geographical proximity as to be able to participate fully in the University activities associated with the program.

  • Complete a thesis embodying the results of original investigation, conducted by the candidate, on the approved topic from a major area of study. The thesis shall constitute a significant contribution to the knowledge of the field and must be conducted while the student is registered in the PhD program.

PhD degree program details are fully described in the Graduate Geography Handbook and the department's website.

Program Length

4 years

Time Limit

6 years

 

PhD Program (Direct-Entry)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Geography and Planning's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • In exceptional cases and at the discretion of the department, admission to the PhD program by direct entry may be approved for applicants with an overall A average and appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university.

Program Requirements

  • Complete a minimum of 3.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) in coursework as follows:

    • 0.5 FCE core course GGR 1110H Issues in Geographic Thought and Practice;

    • 1.0 FCE in geography courses or from a list of approved courses available from the department;

    • at least 0.5 FCE but no more than 1.5 FCE courses in other departments.

  • Submit a research statement concerning the proposed PhD topic and the scope of the PhD examination by the end of April in Year 1.

  • Pass a PhD examination in the general field in which research is being undertaken between June of Year 1 and no later than December of Year 2. The scope and areas of concentration of the exam are to be determined jointly by the supervisory committee and the student. There are two components of the PhD exam:

    • a written exam (options are an eight-hour closed room exam on campus in one day or over two days, or a five-day off-campus exam), and

    • an oral exam to take place within one week of the written exam.

  • A student who fails the PhD examination may retake the exam once within six months. Failure of the second exam may result in a recommendation for termination from the program.

  • Acquire knowledge of a foreign language necessary for the research upon the recommendation of the supervisory committee.

  • Submit a research proposal that is acceptable to the supervisory committee, normally by the end of June of Year 2 and no later than September of Year 3.

  • Unless otherwise specified, two years of residence are required whereby the student is required to be on campus full-time and consequently in such geographical proximity as to be able to participate fully in the University activities associated with the program.

  • Complete a thesis embodying the results of original investigation, conducted by the candidate, on the approved topic from a major area of study. The thesis shall constitute a significant contribution to the knowledge of the field and must be conducted while the student is registered in the PhD program.

PhD degree program details are fully described in the Graduate Geography Handbook and the department's website.

Program Length

5 years

Time Limit

7 years



Catia Corriveau-Dignard

“Studying in Toronto means also I can enjoy the rich cultural life.”

Catia Corriveau-Dignard
PhD Student, Spanish
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