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Application process

An overview of the doctoral application process in five steps.

Submit your online application.

An application includes:

  • Application form (which you submit online through the online admissions process)
  • Research statement (which you submit online through the online admissions process)
  • Additional sample of academic writing (which you submit online through the online admissions process)
  • 3 references (submitted by the referees, not by the student; we will not consider references submitted by students; references from professors who were your instructors or supervised thesis research are most highly valued)
  • Transcripts from every school (submitted directly by the school; we do not accept transcripts submitted by students—nor do we make exceptions. Furthermore, the application is not considered complete until transcripts are received from the school). Many universities now offer options to order transcripts online and indicate where to send those transcripts.

Note: Make sure that your complete application is received by the application deadline. Please check the Application Deadlines Chart on the Graduate School website for deadlines for the coming year.

First, we prepare applications for review

During this phase, the Program Administrator reviews all applications to make sure that they are complete, that grades meet minimum entry requirements, and that English proficiency tests (required for students educated outside of Canada, or who have not completed a bachelor’s or higher degree in English) meet minimum requirements.

For degrees from academic systems outside of Canada, an assessment is made by an expert familiar with the equivalencies of different systems.

Note: We do not waive either minimum grade or language requirements. Applications that do not meet minimum requirements are not sent for further review.

Concordia University welcomes applicants from all parts of Canada, the United States and abroad. Find out everything about:

During this phase, the Education Doctoral Committee (a committee that oversees the program) reviews applications to determine which ones to consider further.

Issues considered include:

  • Ability of the applicant to conduct research independently in one or more of the disciplines of education in which we specialize — Applied Linguistics, Child Study, Educational Studies, or Educational Technology. Evidence for this is provided in your research statement and your writing sample, as well as through the interview.
  • The match between your research interests and those of our faculty, to make sure that someone on faculty can meaningfully guide you in your studies.
  • Evidence for this is provided in your research statement and your writing sample, as well as through the interview.
  • The likelihood of your success in our program. This is assessed through:
    • The record of your past accomplishments
    • Your awareness of our program, its faculty, and its strengths. Evidence for this provided in the research statement and the interview.
    • Quality of the research statement (does it demonstrate a strong familiarity with the research topic and with education, as well as propose a compelling research statement)
    • Quality of writing samples (does it demonstrate an excellent ability to communicate their ideas)
    • References (are they all from faculty who have either taught students or supervised their thesis?)

During this phase, the faculty in the specializations within the Department of Education review applications to determine which candidates to interview. Faculty considers the same issues as the Education Doctoral Committee, as well as the likely match between applicants’ and faculty’s research interests.

Members of the entire Department of Education (especially those in the area of specialization of the applicants) conduct brief (20-minute) interviews with candidates to learn more about their research interests, and to provide candidates with an opportunity to ask questions.

The criteria for assessing the interview are the same as those used for the earlier assessment of the application.

Based on the interview, the faculty determines as a group whether to admit the applicant. This ensures that the applicant has the support of the entire group, rather than just one or two faculty members.

Afterwards, the group decides who will serve as interim supervisor and interim committee members. We do consider student preferences in making these assignments, but the faculty member the student suggested might not be available to serve or the faculty might be aware of an even better match that the student might not have considered.

We only assign an interim supervisor and committee. Later in the program, when students qualify for the dissertation, they may choose their own supervisor and committee, basing their decisions on first-hand experience of having had worked with the faculty members.

Quebec university tuition is the lowest in Canada for in-province, in-country, and international students. In addition, Montreal has one of the most reasonable costs of living of any metropolitan area of its size in North America. Specifically housing, public transit, and food are especially reasonably priced.

Concordia University, whose Department of Education is among the top-ranked in the world, offers a broad-based doctoral degree in education that prepares students for positions in academia, educational leadership, research, policy formulation, and consulting.

Like all PhD programs, ours is a research degree. The primary emphasis of this program is preparing students to conduct their own research—a dissertation—in such a way that the study will withstand the most rigorous of peer reviews.

Our doctoral program offers an interdisciplinary approach, which provides exposure to the breadth of the field of education while also offering the opportunity to specialize in an area of interest.

Education itself is an interdisciplinary field—drawing on, and contributing to—many fields, including (1) social sciences, such as psychology and sociology; (2) humanities such as philosophy and history; and (3) the design and application of technology, such as human factors and social media.

Our program exposes students to four key branches of the field of education:


Applied Linguistics

Learn more about Applied Linguistics

Child Studies

Learn more about Child Studies

Educational Studies

Learn more about Educational Studies

Educational Technology

Learn more
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