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Educational Studies


Degrees Offered: Ph.D., M.A., M.Ed.



A. Abdi, V. Andreotti, L. Andres, M. Gleason, D. Kelly, M. Kovach, A. Mazawi, A. Metcalfe, L. Roman, C. Ruitenberg, T. Sork, A. Taylor, R. VanWynsberghe, T. Webb, H. Wright.

Professors Emeriti

J. Archibald, S. Butterwick, B. Frank, C. Ungerleider, P. Walter.

Associate Professors

C. Ahenakew, J. Ellis, G. Fallon, H. Gill, S. Rocha, H. Shan, M. Stack, S. Stein, J. Walker, F. Wang.

Associate Professors Emeriti

J. Chan, D. Coulter, W. Poole.


Doctor of Philosophy

Admission Requirements

Applicants to a doctoral program ordinarily hold a master's degree in a relevant discipline or field with overall first-class standing (a minimum of A- or 80%), in exceptional cases with high second class standing (B+ or 76%). Clear evidence of research ability must be demonstrated. Professional work experience in education is highly desirable. No second language is required.

Program Overview

The Ph.D. in Educational Studies is a flexible, research-oriented doctoral program that can be pursued by students interested in any of the fields of study offered in the Educational Studies Department. Faculty specializations can be viewed here

Students in the Ph.D. program typically devote two years to coursework, and two to four years carrying out a research project designed to make an original contribution to knowledge in the area of specialization. The university allows doctoral students up to six years to complete program requirements. There is no set number of credits required for Ph.D. programs at UBC.

Program Requirements

All Ph.D. students are required to take the first year doctoral seminars (EDST_V 601A and EDST_V 601B) and the second year doctoral seminar (EDST_V 602), plus other courses determined in consultation with their faculty advisor and program advisory committee based on the student's prior academic work and their current research interests.

All students are required to successfully complete a comprehensive examination after most of their coursework is completed and before they present their research proposal. The doctoral dissertation is an original piece of research that contributes to knowledge in the student's area of specialization. Students develop research proposals that must be presented and approved by a research supervisory committee made up of a research supervisor and at least two other committee members. Research supervisory committees provide direction to the student, read and critique drafts of the thesis and, when the dissertation is complete, participate in the oral final examination.

Master of Arts

Admission Requirements

Applicants to the M.A. program are expected to meet the admission requirements of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

Program Overview

The Department of Educational Studies (EDST) offers an M.A. program in Educational Studies that can be taken full-time over a two-year period or over a longer period for part-time students. The EDST M.A. is a flexible program designed to meet the needs of a range of people interested in conducting and learning about educational research. The emphasis on educational research provides students opportunities and training to conduct their own small-scale research projects. M.A. students can focus their studies in a number of M.A. program area concentrations, or develop an independent concentration with the support and approval of a faculty advisor (Generalist Option). Current M.A. program area concentrations include: Adult Learning and Education; Higher Education; Society, Culture and Politics in Education; and Educational Administration and Leadership.

Students studying in, or who have completed, the Graduate Certificate in Higher Education (GCHIED) may apply for admission to the MA in Educational Studies, Higher Education concentration, and request transfer of up to four certificate courses (12 credits) toward the requirements of that program.

Students studying in, or who have completed, the Graduate Certificate in Adult Learning and Education (GCALE) may apply for admission to the MA in Educational Studies, Adult Learning and Education concentration, and request transfer of up to four certificate courses (12 credits) toward the requirements of that program.

The EDST M.A. is excellent preparation for continuing doctoral work in education (Ph.D. and Ed.D.) in addition to providing a rich and satisfying educational experience in its own right.

Program Requirements

The EDST M.A. is a 30-credit program that culminates in the completion of a research thesis. The degree provides beginning researchers excellent preparation for their own research projects and a rich learning environment about educational research given then breadth of educational theories, methodologies, and problems.

Students typically enrol in two to three courses per term, and complete the two required M.A. courses (6 credits) within the first year. Students enrolled in the M.A. program must complete:

  • 6 credits of required M.A. courses (EDST_V 571, 3 credits; EDST_V 572, 3 credits)
  • 3 credits of research methods coursework
  • 15 credits of coursework in an M.A. concentration
  • a 6-credit M.A. thesis

To accommodate both full- and part-time students, required M.A. courses are offered in evening time slots or on weekends.

In addition to the 30-credit requirement, students are expected to write a thesis proposal and have this proposal approved by the supervisory committee before writing the thesis. At the completion of the research and thesis, students present and answer questions about their thesis in a public oral examination. This oral examination is predicated on the belief that educational research is a public enterprise and that educational researchers work and share their work with others.

Master of Education

Admission Requirements

Applicants to the M.Ed. program are expected to meet the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies' admission requirements.

Program Requirements

The M.Ed. program is considered a professional degree. It is a 30-credit program with required and elective courses, a 3-credit graduating paper or a capstone course and a minimum of 18 credits of coursework at the 500-level or above. Detailed information on the various M.Ed specializations and course requirements is available from the Program.

Contact Information

Department of Educational Studies
Education Centre at Ponderosa Commons
6445 University Boulevard
Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1Z2
Tel: 604.822.6647
Fax: 604.822.4244
Web: Graduate Program Assistant

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