PhD Thesis (THD9999)

A doctoral thesis must make a significant contribution to knowledge in a field of study, embody the results of original investigation and analysis, and be of such quality as to merit publication. The doctoral thesis is usually about 250–300 pages. Students are usually expected to complete their programs within four years.  The writing of the thesis must conform to the rules of methodology established by the academic unit.  If the thesis consists of a series of published articles, it must conform to university and academic unit guidelines for such theses.  It is important that the manuscript be of good quality in order to permit its reproduction.

Thesis by articles

Students have the option of submitting a traditional thesis or a thesis by articles. The conditions for theses by articles are:

  1. The plan to write a thesis by articles must be approved by the supervisor and by the Program Coordinator.  The request must be submitted in writing no less than six months prior to the final submission of the thesis.
  2. The articles replace the chapters of a traditional thesis.  The thesis by articles must include all of the information normally found in a traditional thesis, namely a unifying sociological problem or question, a detailed presentation of methods, discussion and analysis of findings, a general conclusion that articulates the sociological impact of the whole thesis.
  3. The articles must have been written for publication in peer-reviewed scholarly journals.  At a minimum, the articles must have been submitted to eligible journals at the moment of submission.
  4. To be included in the thesis, articles must represent original work, have been written in the course of the student’s doctoral programme, and not have been accepted for publication prior to approval of the research proposal (SOC 9930).
  5. The thesis must comprise of at least 3 articles.
  6. Of these, the student must be the sole author of at least two articles, and the first author of each article written collaboratively.
  7. The articles in the thesis are to be evaluated by the Thesis Committee in the same manner as other parts of the thesis, regardless of their publication status.  The Committee may require modification even if the articles have been accepted or already appear in print.


Before beginning your thesis, please read all instructions on the Submission and Evaluation site, taking into account the important academic dates and deadlines. Prior to submitting the thesis, students must have completed all of the program’s requirements and have submitted the list of examiners.

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