Promotion to the Ph.D. Program from the M.Sc. (Fast-Tracking)

Students who are already registered in the M.Sc. program in Experimental Medicine may transfer to the Ph.D. program by applying to the Graduate Admissions Committee. This option is open to students who have shown superior research progress and who meet the following requirements at the time of application:

  • The student must have completed a minimum of 2 full-time terms in the Master's program (excluding the summer term) and up to a maximum of 4 full-time terms. 
  • The student has completed or is in the process of completing, at the time of application, the 9 course credits required and has a cGPA of not less than 3.5 in his/her M.Sc. studies to date (Note that if the student is still in the process of completing the required course credits, the file will be judged on the student's record to date (both undergraduate and graduate) and the plausibility of the student's meeting the cGPA requirement for fast-tracking. Also, students who wish to fast-track for the January semester must have completed at least 6 of the 9 course credits in the terms previous to the fall term in which they apply.
  • The student has had his/her first annual Thesis Committee meeting and has obtained a favorable assessment from the committee. The student MUST have informed the committee of his/her intention to fast-track to the Ph.D. program IN ADVANCE (i.e. at the time when the notice of the meeting is sent to all committee members). Information regarding annual meetings can be found under '''Guidelines" (PDF). It should be emphasized that fast-tracking represents a serious long-term commitment by both student and supervisor and, to warrant a favorable assessment, the Thesis Committee must judge that the student has a good understanding of the scope of his/her project and knowledge of background material to complete a Ph.D. The Committee will review the application to judge the likelihood of successful completion as a Ph.D. thesis. The decision to promote a student will be based on the student’s performance in course and seminars, progress in research, as well as the supervisor’s recommendation.


To fast-track, the student must contact the Division to notify us that they meet all of the criteria and intend to apply to fast-track, (DO NOT APPLY WITHOUT FIRST HAVING NOTIFIED US!). The Division will then create a profile on uapply and then notify you via e-mail to submit an application via uapply. This will make it possible for the student to apply to fast-track without having to once again submit all required documentation normally required. Once notified that he/she may apply, the student can then go to www.mcgill.ca/uapply. Note that the deadlines are the same as those for new students. Additional details about the deadlines is available here.

The following documents must be submitted to our office (via e-mail) by the deadline:

  • a letter of support from the student’s supervisor which details the student’s research progress and which recommends the student’s promotion to the Ph.D. program
  • the minutes of the Thesis Committee meeting which recommends the student for fast-tracking
  • a "Confirmation of Supervision" form (PDF) signed by both the student and supervisor
  • a preliminary research proposal.


Please note that NO EXCEPTION can be made to these deadlines.

Following acceptance of the application by the Committee, the student will be transferred to the Ph.D. program at the Ph.D. 2 level. The student will be expected to complete 9 additional credits (in order to bring their total credits to 18).