University of Calgary


Submitted by laflammd on Mon, 10/27/2008 - 1:58pm.

The Doctoral Program in the Faculty of Nursing is designed to educate professionals for excellence in nursing scholarship through original research with identified populations.

The program offers opportunities to become research intensive, gain core disciplinary knowledge and expertise within a substantive field (CASN 2011). Applicants are required to seek out faculty with who they believe would be a good "fit" with their focus of study prior to application. Information about our faculty members and their research areas is available on the Nursing Research Website under "Academic Staff" at

Admission Requirements

  1. 3.0 Grade Point Average:  Will vary depending on the previous degree(s) held.
  2. Scholarly work:  Examples of applicant’s written work such as publications, research reports/proposals, previous master’s thesis, etc.
  3. Curriculum vitae.
  4. Applicant’s Academic Plan:  Outlines applicant’s academic background and proposed plan of study.
  5. Successful completion of the following prerequisite courses:  One master’s level half-course in each of the following areas:  quantitative methods; qualitative methods; statistics.
  6. Supervisory Letter of Support:  Completed by the proposed supervisor which addresses the fit between the applicant’s focus of research and the supervisor’s program of research and area of expertise.
  7. Two sets of transcripts from ALL post-secondary institutions.
    NOTE Please request that official transcripts be sent to the attention of:
    Laura Thomas, Graduate Program Administrator, Faculty of Nursing, 2500 University Drive NW, Calgary AB T2N 1N4
  8. Three letters of reference:  Specific instructions are included in the PhD program application package.
  9. Eligibility for active nursing registration in Alberta.
  10. Security Clearance Letter: Alberta Health Services requires current security clearances check for all nursing students including graduate students who will be doing a practicum or research in the region. Do not apply for the police security clearance until you have received an offer of admission from the program.
  11. For applicants required to provide proof of proficiency in English submit a minimum TOEFL score of 600 (written test) or 100 (internet-based test); IELTS score of 7.0; MELAB score of 83; or Level 3 on the EAP program.

Application Deadlines:

Early Bird - December 1 for the following September admission 

February 1 for the following September admission

September 15 for the following January admission*

Please note that all supporting documentation must be received by the deadline in order for applications to be considered complete and available for faculty to review.

Program Requirements

A minimum core of six half courses is required.  The number and type of courses included beyond those courses identified as core will vary according to the applicant’s academic background, research and practice experience, and career goals.  The core courses are as follows:

  • Nursing 705, Philosophy of Science in Nursing
  • Nursing 769, Contemporary Issues in Health Care
  • Two Advanced Research Courses, one in quantitative research methods and the other in qualitative research methods, one of which must be Nursing 721 or Nursing 783
  • Nursing 711, Doctoral Scholarship in Nursing
  • Nursing 733, Doctoral Thesis Seminar

 The program must be completed within six years of initial registration.  Candidacy examination normally must be completed within 28 months of initial registration.

1st Year 2nd Year
Fall Winter Spring Fall Winter Spring
NURS 705 NURS 769 NURS 711   Candidacy or → Candidacy
NURS 721 NURS 783  NURS 733      


1st Year 2nd Year
Fall Winter Spring Fall Winter Spring
NURS 705 NURS 769  NURS 711 NURS 721 NURS 783 NURS 733
3rd Year      
Fall Winter Spring      



The University of Calgary is committed to assisting new doctoral students to achieve funding support through awards, faculty research programs, teaching assistantships, and research scholarships.  All doctoral students are expected to apply for internal and externals awards, fellowships, and studentships to support subsequent years of their program.  Funding support should be discussed with the potential supervisors at the time of application to the program.

In addition the Faculty of Graduate Studies has an excellent Website on graduate student funding offered through the University.  That location is


Doctoral Program (PhD)
PhD Program & Admission Requirements Word
Applicant's Proposed Academic Plan Word
Proposed Supervisor’s Notice of Support Word
Reference Request & Appraisal Form Word
PhD On-line Application  Link


NOTE Once an applicant has received an offer of admission to the program, the applicant will be expected to provide the following:

  • All doctoral students will be required to meet the U of C immunization standards (Click here for the Forms page).
  • Security Clearance Letter: Alberta Health Services requires security clearance checks for all nursing students including graduate students who will be doing a practicum or research in the region. Applicants should request the Police Security Clearance check no longer than 3 months prior to entering their program. The Graduate Programs Office will need to receive the original document; photocopies are not acceptable. Once the Graduate Programs Office records necessary information from a security clearance letter, the original will be returned to the applicant.
  • A copy of your current CPR Certification at the Basic Rescuer or Basic Cardiac Life Support or “C” level.

PLEASE do not submit these documents until you have received an offer of admission to the program.