Academic Progress

UPDATE: Students may request Bb Collaborate (video conferencing) for virtual meetings, defenses, group work, etc. Email the Graduate Office with your UTORmail for access.


Q: How should I obtain wet signatures for my form?

A: Ideally, all participants should digitally sign the pdf form. If faculty members are unable to sign/edit the pdf, consensus requires a response from each committee member/examiner, which could stand in place of wet signatures. The Chair (or student) should email the meeting/exam form to the Graduate Office and copy (cc) all participants with explicit instruction for members to respond. Then all committee members should confirm their approval of the form in a response to the Graduate Office using REPLY ALL.

Program Milestones

Research-stream Program Milestones

MilestonesTarget (by end of)
1Establish supervisory committee & thesis topicYear 1Year 1
2Supervisory committee meetingAnnuallyAnnually
3Qualifying exam(NB1)N/AYear 1
4Achieve candidacy (NB2)N/AYear 2
5Permission to write thesisYear 1Year 4
6Permission to conduct defenseYear 2Year 5
7Thesis defense (departmental exam)Year 2Year 5
8Final oral exam (senate exam)N/AYear 5
9Electronic thesis submissionYear 2Year 5
10GraduationYear 2Year 5

NB1: The qualifying exam may also serve as the bypass exam for students from the MASc program who wish to transfer to the PhD program.

NB2: To achieve candidacy, students in doctoral program must:

  • complete all requirements for the degree exclusive of thesis research and courses such as ongoing research seminars that run continuously through the program; and
  • have an approved thesis topic, supervisor, and supervisory committee.

Establish supervisory committee

PhD Qualifying Exam

Permission to write

Permission to defend

Departmental defense

PhD Final Oral Exam