Women & Gender Studies Institute

MA and PhD Application Procedure

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

Please follow these instructions carefully.  Below you will find a link to an online application form but you will need to refer to this page for full application instructions.  The next application cycle will be for admission in September, 2013.  Applications will open as of October 2012, and are due on JANUARY 15, 2013. 

Applications to the MA and PhD in Women and Gender Studies must be submitted through the School of Graduate Studies online admissions application which is housed on a secure server at the University of Toronto.  Applications are considered complete and can be reviewed only after all supporting documentation is received (this includes letters of reference submitted online by referees and official post-secondary transcripts, including transcript legends, submitted online by applicants).  All documentation must be received online by the application deadline of January 15, 2013.  Any applications that are missing documents after the deadline will not be reviewed by the Graduate Admissions Committee.

The online application allows applicants to manage and submit biographical and educational information as well as specific documents (ie. statement of intent, curriculum vitae, etc.) to the University immediately.  A valid email account is needed to complete the online application as the University will correspond with applicants using email. Once you access the SGS online admissions application and enter your contact information, an applicant identification number and a password will be emailed to you. You can leave and return to your application at any point until you move to the payment stage.  After you have paid, you can return to check on the status of the application including whether we have received your supporting documents.  It is your responsibility to ensure that all application documents are received by January 15, 2013 – this includes online references from your referees.

Summary of documents needed:

  • SGS online application (submitted online – see link below)
  • A statement (two pages maximum) of proposed study (submitted online – see link below).
  • Two (2) letters of academic recommendation (submitted online – see link below).  Your referees are required to fill out a web-based form via the online application system.  When you (the applicant) fill out your online application form, you will provide the email addresses of two academic referees.  Your referees will be sent an email prompt asking them to submit their online reference by January 15, 2013.  Please notify your academic referees in advance of the deadline specified above and follow up if necessary.  If for some reason your referee(s) is unable to submit a reference online, please instruct them to send WGSI a hard copy of the form by January 15, 2013.  The reference letter must be written on official university letterhead paper and contained in a signed and sealed university letterhead envelope.
  • A brief academic curriculum vitae (cv), with details of education, awards , teaching and research experience, and other information of academic interest. (Submitted online – see link below).
  • One sample of academic writing (under 30 pages) relevant to Women and Gender Studies, e.g. a course paper or conference paper (submitted online – see link below).
  • Official copies of all post-secondary transcripts, including transcript legends. Transcripts must be on official university letterhead.  When you scan each transcript, please ensure that the document is legible.  The transcript should show your course grades, and where applicable, the date of your degree conferral.   International students may include degree/diploma certificates IN ADDITION to their official transcripts & transcript legends.  However, please do not scan ONLY your diploma/degree certificates.

Application Deadline:

JANUARY 15, 2013

Please complete all parts (biography, education, program of study, reference contact and payment) of the online application by this date.  Also, please submit all supporting application documents (statement, cv, writing sample, academic references and transcripts) by this date.

International Students

Please review the School of Graduate Studies admission requirements online at http://www.gradschool.utoronto.ca/Admission_Requirements.htm.  Scroll down to “International and Exchange Students.”  Use the Equivalent Qualifications Chart to determine if your international degree is considered equivalent. Qualifications from a number of world-wide educational systems are listed.  The academic standings indicated are normally accepted as equivalent to a University of Toronto mid-B average if the degree has been awarded from an institution recognized by the School of Graduate Studies at the University of Toronto.

HOW TO APPLY

Please read through these instructions first before taking any of the steps.

  1. Log in to the online application at the web address provided below.
  2. Provide the biographical and education information requested.
  3. Be prepared to submit contact information for at least TWO referees.  Work references may not be suitable for academic references.  Referees must be able to provide a thorough assessment of your past academic work and future promise for graduate study.  Be sure to inform your referees that you are doing this and let them know that they will contacted by the University of Toronto via email.  Once you have confirmed your application information by moving to payment, the system will email your referees and ask them to provide references.  They will be asked to log on to the online application through a link the School of Graduate Studies will provide. In the rare case that your referee does not have email or does not have an institutional email address, please have your referee fill in a hard copy of the form available on the WGSI website: www.wgsi.utoronto.ca.  The form must be received WGSI Program Office (see address below) in a sealed envelope with a signature over the seal.  The letter should come directly from the referee to us.
  4. In a Word document or PDF format please describe the analytical question or problem you would most like to pursue in our graduate program and call it the “Statement of Intent.”  For M.A. applicants, this should be a statement of an intended topic or area of graduate study, and summary of preparatory training in appropriate theories and methods.  For PhD applicants, please indicate the question/problem that you foresee as the most likely candidate for the subject of your thesis.  You may wish to indicate what theoretical approaches are shaping your thinking on this topic, and why WGSI is an appropriate academic environment for engaging in that work.  You may wish to name faculty with whom you would like to work, and explain why you would like to work with them.  Please do not make this an intellectual autobiography; the statement of intent is, instead, more like a research proposal.  While some biographical background information may be relevant, the statement should primarily be used to indicate in detail your intended topic or area of graduate study, why such a topic is important to study, as well as theories, methods and experiences you will bring to bear on the project.  The statement must be no more than 500 words.  If you are applying as a Direct Entry PhD make it clear to us in your statement that you wish to be considered initially for the PhD program.  Submit the statement through the online application by following the “submit” link on the document status page.
  5. Official transcripts of all post-secondary education (including exchanges and transfer credits) must be scanned and submitted through the online application electronically (be sure to include the transcript legends).   Please ensure that each transcript is legible.  For transcripts prepared in languages other than French or English, we require applicants to upload official/certified translations.  Please include the original language transcripts with the translation.   Please follow the instructions noted on the online application system.
  6. Prepare a writing sample (in Word or PDF format) of no more than 30 pages of your written work.  It may be an essay submitted for a course, a portion of an MA (or undergraduate) thesis (but not the whole thing), or an analytical policy document (written only by you).  Where possible, PhD applicants should submit a writing sample on a topic closely related to the research project proposed.  Submit the sample through the online application by following the “submit” link on the document status page.
  7. Include a resume or c.v. of up to one page (in Word or PDF format) that includes information not available elsewhere in your application package, including teaching and research experience relevant to your scholarly interests, academic awards, conference presentations, and publications.  Submit the c.v. through the online application by following the “submit” link on the document status page.
  8. Submit a proof of English language proficiency if your primary language is not English (except Canadian citizens whose primary language is French) or if you have not graduated from a university whose primary instruction is English.  Check the SGS page for the various recognized English tests.  For TOEFL score submissions the institution code is 0982 and the department code is 92.
  9. Check your document status. You will be able to check whether or not your documents have been received by the Department through the online application website.  Please allow at least two weeks after the deadline of January 15th until you contact the department regarding the status of missing documents.  Due to the volume of applications needing to be processed, it takes a few weeks for documents received by the deadline to be indicated online.
  10. Submit your payment (online payment is preferred but mail-in payment is an available option).
  11. Be aware of the January 15, 2013 application deadline.  Please complete all parts (biography, education, program of study, reference contact and payment) of the online application form and submit all your supporting documents by this date.  If the application form is not filled out and/or all supporting documents are not received by the application deadline, we will not review your application.
  12. If you are also applying to an interdisciplinary (Collaborative) program, please visit the appropriate website to review the application procedures and any special admission requirements of that program.  Provide link to Master’s Program/  Collaborative Programs section of our website.

Once all documents are received your application can be reviewed for admission.  It is your responsibility to monitor the status of your documents in the online application and to follow up with your referees if references are not received in advance of the January 15, 2013 deadline.

MAKE AN APPLICATION

Proceed to the SGS online admissions application here.

APPLYING FOR SCHOLARSHIPS

Please note:  If you are in the process of applying to graduate programs for next Fall and it is before October, AND you have an A minus average, then you should seriously consider applying to scholarship programs such as the Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) and the Social Science and Humanities Research Council masters or doctoral fellowships (SSHRC). The OGS is available to non-Canadians (Visa students) who are Ontario residents at the time of application. The SSHRC is a Masters or Doctoral Fellowship available only to Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents who are entering a graduate program.  OGS applicants must have a minimum A- average, and SSHRC applicants should have an A average to be competitive with other applicants.  Current University of Toronto students (including undergraduate students) should apply through the WGSI Program Office at UofT. If you are not a current UofT student, apply through your University, or, if you are not currently a student, apply directly to the Scholarship program.  Departmental deadlines are usually late September, so apply early!

OGS forms

SSHRC forms

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Do I require transcripts from all of the post-secondary institutions attended?

 

YES, an official transcript is required from each university attended.  You must also include the transcript legend.  Applicants who attended universities outside North America must provide notarized English translations to accompany all foreign documentation not written in English.

 

An original paper copy of official transcripts will be requested from ALL (with the exception of U of T students) applicants that are recommended for conditional acceptance.  No newly admitted student may register in graduate studies at the University of Toronto without submitting an official transcript that confirms the information provided on the scanned transcript submitted with the application.  You must arrange for your original transcript/s to be sent to our graduate office (see address below) directly from the institution you attended.  Depending on the institution, in some cases this can take weeks (or even months).  It is recommended that you consider this timeline when requesting your transcript/s.  As per UofT policy, faxed or emailed records are not considered official.  Documents will not be returned to the applicant.  If academic records are interim, pending completion of studies in progress, official final academic records indicating that the degree has been conferred must be submitted to the graduate office as soon as possible before admission can be finalized.

 

Hard copies of official post-secondary transcripts should be mailed to:

 

Marian Reed, Graduate Administrator

Women and Gender Studies Institute

University of Toronto

40 Willcocks Street

Toronto, Ontario  M5S 1C6

Canada

 

Do I have to provide academic references?

 

YES, you are required to provide TWO academic references.  Work references are not considered academic references.  Your referee(s) must fill out the web-based reference form provided via the online application system.

 

Are there reference letter forms?

 

Once you have confirmed your application information by moving to payment, the system will email your referees and ask them to provide references. They will be asked to submit an electronic copy of the reference in Word or PDF after logging into the online application through a link the School of Graduate Studies at the University of Toronto will provide.  Once they log in to this system, the referees will receive a notice which indicates the questions they are asked to address.  In the rare case that your referee does not have email address, you may collect the letter and drop it off at the WGSI Program Office by the January 15, 2013 deadline.  The letter should be written on institutional letterhead.  Ask your referee to provide you with the letter of reference in a sealed, letterhead envelope, signed across the seal.  Do not open the envelope(s).  Letters of reference will be part of the official student academic record. They are confidential and applicants/students will not have access to them.

 

What do you expect in the statement of intent?

 

Your statement should clearly describe your proposed area of study and its contribution to scholarship.  The statement (two pages maximum) should be 500 words in length. You may submit the statement online in Word or PDF format.  The document can be saved by following the “submit” link on the document status page in the online application.

 

For M.A. applicants, this should be a statement of an intended topic or area of graduate study, and summary of preparatory training in appropriate theories and methods.  For PhD applicants, please indicate the question/problem that you foresee as the most likely candidate for the subject of your thesis.  You may wish to indicate what theoretical approaches are shaping your thinking on this topic, and why WGSI is an appropriate academic environment for engaging in that work.  You may wish to name faculty with whom you would like to work, and explain why you would like to work with them.  Please do not make this an intellectual autobiography; the statement of intent is, instead, more like a research proposal.  While some biographical background information may be relevant, the statement should primarily be used to indicate in detail your intended topic or area of graduate study, why such a topic is important to study, as well as theories, methods and experiences you will bring to bear on the project

 

The statement of intent is not to be confused with the section of the online application form that ask you to talk about your “area of proposed study.”  For this section of the form, simply enter a few keywords that most relate to your proposed research area.

I have not completed 7 full courses in Women’s/Gender Studies at the undergraduate level or my  Masters degree is not in Women and Gender Studies? Can I still apply to the graduate program program?

 

Yes. We also accept relevant or equivalent courses.  At the end of your statement of intent, please list any courses which you believe have prepared you well for graduate work in Women and Gender Studies.

 

 Can I apply to the Master’s Program if I have completed a three-year Bachelor’s degree?

 

Please refer to the School of Graduate Studies, University of Toronto website for a detailed response to this and other related questions:

 

http://www.gradschool.utoronto.ca/FAQ/Admission_Requirements.htm

 

 

Mailing address for the Women and Gender Studies Institute:

Marian Reed, Graduate Administrator

Women and Gender Studies Institute

University of Toronto

40 Willcocks Street

Toronto, Ontario  M5S 1C6