The PhD program focuses on the development of advanced skills in critical thinking, scholarly communication and the conduct of rigorous research related to the student’s selected topic of inquiry. Students develop an individualized program of study and research training in collaboration with their thesis supervisor(s) that builds on their previous knowledge, experiences and area of research interest. Our doctoral students gain advanced knowledge in both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies and have access to a variety of affiliated research centres/institutes for additional training opportunities.

Students in the PhD program are required to complete a minimum of 18 credits of coursework (3 compulsory 3-credit doctoral nursing courses, 3 1-credit doctoral seminars, and 6 credits of elective courses), a research proposal, a comprehensive examination, a research-based dissertation and finally the dissertation defense. Students are also mentored to apply for funding, prepare manuscripts for publication and present their work at conferences or other academic forums throughout their studies.

Whereas the PhD program is designed to be completed in 4 years of full-time study after a master’s program, an option for half-time studies is available during the student’s coursework. A distance option for students who cannot relocate to McGill for the duration of their studies may be negotiated following completion of required courses, depending on the availability of complementary courses and research mentors in the student’s home location.

Although the formal language of instruction at McGill is English, students may submit their written works in French and all doctoral students may take their required program courses either at McGill or University of Montreal’s PhD in Nursing program. Free courses to develop English writing and communication skills are also available for all Francophone and international students through Graphos, the McGill Writing Center’s program to enhance communication skills among graduate students.

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