Associate Professor and Head of the Department É.L. Simms


1. To be admitted to the program, an applicant must have completed either a Master of Arts or a Master of Science degree, or its equivalent in Geography or a related discipline. In exceptional circumstances, a candidate who has completed either a B.A. (Honours) or B.Sc. (Honours) degree, and who has spent not less than 12 months in a M.A. or M.Sc. degree program may be recommended for transfer into a Ph.D. program, provided that the candidate can demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Department of Geography, an ability to pursue research at the doctoral level. Admission into the Ph.D. program is limited and competitive.

2.  The Ph.D. degree is offered in four (4) areas:

a) Historical and Cultural Geography
b) Economic Geography
c) Physical Geography
d) Cartography/GIS/Remote Sensing

3. On admission to the program, a Supervisory Committee shall be appointed in accordance with General Regulation I.2 of the General Regulations governing the School of Graduate Studies.

4. All candidates must successfully complete Geography 6000 if that course (or equivalent) has not been included in their M.A. or M.Sc. program. In addition, all candidates are required to successfully complete a minimum of six credit hours in graduate program courses, as specified by the Supervisory Committee, obtaining a minimum grade of B in each course comprising those credit hours, in addition to courses required for the Master's degree. Although each candidate will be free to choose graduate level courses to reflect their research interests, it will be a primary responsibility of the Supervisory Committee to ensure that any serious deficiencies in the academic record of the candidate, at either the undergraduate or Master's level, be rectified.

5. All candidates must undertake a comprehensive examination which shall normally be held before the end of the third semester after admission. The minimum course requirements stipulated for the degree (4 above) shall normally be completed before sitting this examination.

The comprehensive examination will focus upon three research subject areas which shall be chosen by the student, in consultation with the Supervisory Committee, no later than the end of the first semester of the student's program. These subject areas will be selected from the following fields:
Cultural Geography Geomorphology
Historical Geography Biogeography
Population Geography Palaeoenvironmental Studies
Urban Geography Quaternary Studies
Economic Geography Resources
Transportation Geography Remote Sensing
Fisheries Geography Geographical Information Systems
Climatology Techniques and Methods of Geographical Research

The examination will be on aspects of the chosen subject areas that are broadly relevant to the student's research interests and which will be communicated to the student no later than the end of the first semester of the student's program. The examination will consist of two parts, the first of which will be written and the second oral. The written part will consist of four papers addressing questions from the three subject areas, as determined by the Examination Committee. A period of two weeks will be allotted to complete this part.

The oral part of the examination will focus upon the same subject areas selected for the written component. The oral examination will occur not more than two weeks after the written papers have been completed.

The Examination Committee for both parts of the comprehensive examination shall consist of five voting members, including the Head of Department (or delegate) who shall chair the Committee, the candidate's Supervisor, and three other members. If the Head of the Department is also a member of the Supervisory Committee, an additional representative of the Department shall be appointed to chair the Examination Committee.

6. Following successful completion of the comprehensive examination, a written research proposal shall be completed, with the approval of the Supervisory Committee, no later than the last day of classes of the fourth semester following admission to the program. This proposal must be approved before the student continues work on the thesis. Failure to secure approval by this time, will, without good cause, result in the student being required to withdraw from the program. The student is required to present a seminar on his/her research to the Geography Department during the course of his/her program.

7. Successful completion of the Ph.D. program will require examination of the completed thesis and an oral defence of the thesis, as prescribed in the General Regulations governing the School of Graduate Studies (Section J.4). Final approval of the thesis shall be the responsibility of the School of Graduate Studies.


In accordance with Senate's Policy Regarding Inactive Courses, courses which have not been offered in the previous three academic years and which are not scheduled to be offered in the current academic year have been removed from the following listing. For information about any of these inactive courses, please contact the Head of the Department.

A selection of the following graduate courses will be offered to meet the requirements of candidates as far as the resources of the Department will allow:

6000. Development of Geographical Thought
6100. Research Techniques in A Selected Field of Geography I
6101. Research Techniques in A Selected Field of Geography II
6120. Spatial Pattern Analysis and Computer Mapping
6150. Environmental Remote Sensing and Image Analysis
6200. Economic Geography I: Location Theory
6201. Economic Geography II: Regional Development
6250. Conservation of Natural Resources
6300. Problems in Fisheries Geography
6400. Fluvial Geomorphology
6401. Glacial Geomorphology
6410. Climatology
6420. Chronologies in Physical Geography
6500. Cultural Geography
6800. Urban Geography
6802. Internal Structure of Cities
6820. Cartographic Design
6990-95. Special Topics in Geography

Last modified on May 21, 2002 by MaryJane Puxley

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