PhD in Forestry


Doctor of Philosophy in Forestry (PhD) students conduct focused research under the supervision of one of our faculty members. Faculty members’ research is often interdisciplinary and applied in nature, distilling the utility and impact of discoveries and enabling partnerships with the public, private and non-profit sectors. Successful candidates come from a variety of backgrounds including biology, botany, ecology, economics, environmental studies, engineering, forestry, agriculture, mathematical and computer science, physical and social sciences, and zoology.

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The PhD in Forestry minumum requirements include: 

  • 2.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:
    • A minimum of three elective half courses (1.5 FCEs) must be taken. Depending on the student’s background and academic goals, additional or alternative coursework may be required by the student’s supervisory committee, including courses outside the Faculty of Forestry.
    • FOR 1001H Graduate Seminar (0.5 FCE). Transfer students require credit for FOR 1001H only once.
  • Successful completion of a qualifying appraisal examination. The examination will be oral and will ordinarily be taken prior to the completion of 16 months in the program. There are three possible outcomes: pass, decision deferred pending supplementary undertakings, or unsatisfactory. If there is more than one negative vote, the outcome will be judged unsatisfactory. Students are permitted one further attempt.
  • Preparation and defence of a thesis that is an original and independent research work adding significantly to the existing body of knowledge.

Students are admitted to the four-year PhD program via one of three routes:

  1. Master’s degree: an appropriate master’s degree from a recognized university with at least an A- standing, in a discipline appropriate to the intended field of doctoral study and research.
  2. Direct entry: in exceptional circumstances, an extraordinarily strong applicant with an appropriate bachelor’s degree from a recognized university may be admitted to the PhD program via direct entry.
  3. Transfer from MScF to PhD: under certain specific conditions, outstanding registered MScF students may be considered by the end of their first year in the MScF program for transfer to the PhD program.