Why pursue a Doctorate in Geography, Urban and Environmental Studies?
The PhD in Geography, Urban and Environmental Studies provides students with the theoretical foundation and analytical tools they need to better understand human interventions in the environment.
The PhD program provides a stimulating intellectual environment in which students are encouraged to explore multidisciplinary perspectives for critical analysis of human interventions in the environment. Students examine and apply various conceptual and methodological frameworks that fall within three broad environmental categories:
Natural or bio-physical environment
Human, cultural or behavioural environment
Urban, built or designed environment
PhD students develop their own research methodologies while working with faculty members and other graduate students on a shared thematic issue or particular scholarly focus, such as climate change, sustainable resource management, sustainable urban development, social and environmental justice. These research collaborative efforts involve the presentation, discussion and critical analysis of information from relevant scientific literature.
PhD students also tailor their study and research options to accommodate their individual interests and career goals. Elective course work includes:
Analytical methods and procedures, as well as statistical techniques, for examining spatial distributions of phenomena, temporal dynamics and change.
Different approaches to modeling, such as system models, computer visualization and simulation that indicate how human interventions affect the environment.
Various methodologies for examining how the collective and individual responses of people can be used to guide projects, plans and policies, such as the location of commercial facilities.
Participatory concepts, principles, tools and processes that have practical applications in terms of ‘how’ community participation can affect conservation and development initiatives, such as developing sustainable transportation approaches, establishing protected areas or improving environmental governance.
Residence. The minimum period of residence is two years (six terms) of full-time graduate study beyond the master’s degree or three years (nine terms) of full-time graduate study (or the equivalent in part-time study) beyond the bachelor’s degree for those students who are permitted to enrol for doctoral studies without completing a master’s degree.
Courses. All students must take the following:
9 credits: HENV 801, HENV 802, HENV 805.
6 credits in elective courses chosen from: HENV 605, HENV 610, HENV 620, HENV 625, HENV 630, HENV 635, HENV 640, HENV 645, HENV 650, HENV 655, HENV 660, HENV 665, HENV 670, HENV 675, HENV 680, or HENV 690.
Admission Requirements. The normal requirement for admission into the PhD is a Master of Arts or a Master of Science in Geography, Urban Planning, Environmental Science, or a related field of study from a recognized university. Applicants are selected on the basis of a sound academic record, strong letters of recommendation, and a convincing statement of purpose which clearly describes their academic interest in the program and intended area of research. In addition, admission is contingent on the availability of an appropriate faculty member in the Department to serve as supervisor.
Upon recommendation by full-time members of the faculty of the Department of Geography, Planning and Environment, students registered in the Master of Science in Geography, Urban and Environmental Studies at Concordia University and who have shown themselves to be outstanding through performance in research may apply for permission to proceed directly to doctoral studies. Students transferring from the MSc program will be required to complete 90 credits in addition to the MSc required courses HENV 605 or 610 plus HENV 615.
Proficiency in English. Any student applying from outside Canada whose first language is other than English must demonstrate proficiency in the English language by writing the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and obtaining a minimum score of 95 on the TOEFL iBT or 587 on TOEFL PBT.
Applications must be received by February 1st for September admission. There is no January admission. For a complete list of application deadlines, please consult the deadlines page.
Geography, Urban and Environmental Studies
Priority will be given to those who apply within the official deadlines listed above. Some programs may continue to accept applications after these deadlines. For more information, please contact the department.
The department offers teaching and research assistantships to qualified PhD students. Funding is available for PhD students for specific projects upon the approval of the thesis supervisor. Each admitted PhD student will need to provide a detailed plan of the funding of the project. The funding will come from different sources (TA-ships, scholarships, stipend from supervisor research grants and part-time lecturing).