Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum Studies (PhD)

Overview

Graduate programs in the field of Curriculum Studies encompass, but are not limited to, investigations into: teacher education, the social construction of knowledge, the curriculum as culturally and politically situated, contemporary curriculum and instructional discourses, and the role of curriculum and curricular reform in K-12 and other learning environments. Students learn about issues of planning and development, program implementation and evaluation, and pre-service and in-service teacher education. Inquiry in the field is multi-disciplinary and includes numerous perspectives and orientations such as: cultural studies, historical consciousness, post structuralism, feminism, multicultural education, semiotics, and critical theory.

 
 

Program Enquiries

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Admission Information & Requirements

1) Check Eligibility

Minimum Academic Requirements

The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies establishes the minimum admission requirements common to all applicants, usually a minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC). The graduate program that you are applying to may have additional requirements. Please review the specific requirements for applicants with credentials from institutions in:

Each program may set higher academic minimum requirements. Please review the program website carefully to understand the program requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission as it is a competitive process.

English Language Test

Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.

Minimum requirements for the two most common English language proficiency tests to apply to this program are listed below:

TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language - internet-based

Overall score requirement: 92

Reading

22

Writing

22

Speaking

22

Listening

22

IELTS: International English Language Testing System

Overall score requirement: 6.5

Reading

6.0

Writing

6.0

Speaking

6.0

Listening

6.0

Other Test Scores

Some programs require additional test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Test (GMAT). The requirements for this program are:

The GRE is not required.

Prior degree, course and other requirements

Prior Degree Requirements

A Master's degree with high standing in a relevant educational discipline.

Document Requirements

A letter of intent describing the focus of the proposed research and a sample of work demonstrating scholarly writing,

2) Meet Deadlines

September 2023 Intake

Application Open Date
01 October 2022
Canadian Applicants
Application Deadline: 01 December 2022
Transcript Deadline: 07 December 2022
Referee Deadline: 07 December 2022
International Applicants
Application Deadline: 01 December 2022
Transcript Deadline: 07 December 2022
Referee Deadline: 07 December 2022

3) Prepare Application

Transcripts

All applicants have to submit transcripts from all past post-secondary study. Document submission requirements depend on whether your institution of study is within Canada or outside of Canada.

Letters of Reference

A minimum of three references are required for application to graduate programs at UBC. References should be requested from individuals who are prepared to provide a report on your academic ability and qualifications.

Statement of Interest

Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.

Supervision

Students in research-based programs usually require a faculty member to function as their supervisor. Please follow the instructions provided by each program whether applicants should contact faculty members.

Instructions regarding supervisor contact for Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum Studies (PhD)
Applicants should browse faculty profiles and indicate in their application who they are interested in working with. No commitment from a supervisor prior to applying is necessary, but contacting faculty members is encouraged.

Citizenship Verification

Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.

4) Apply Online

All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.

Tuition & Financial Support

Tuition

FeesCanadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / DiplomatInternational
Application Fee$110.00$168.25
Tuition *
Installments per year33
Tuition per installment$1,767.18$3,104.64
Tuition per year
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
$5,301.54$9,313.92
Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible) $3,200.00 (-)
Other Fees and Costs
Student Fees (yearly)$1,057.05 (approx.)
Costs of living (yearly)starting at $17,366.20 (check cost calculator)
* Regular, full-time tuition. For on-leave, extension, continuing or part time (if applicable) fees see UBC Calendar.
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. Tuition fees are reviewed annually by the UBC Board of Governors. In recent years, tuition increases have been 2% for continuing domestic students and between 2% and 5% for continuing international students. New students may see higher increases in tuition. Admitted students who defer their admission are subject to the potentially higher tuition fees for incoming students effective at the later program start date. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Financial Support

Applicants to UBC have access to a variety of funding options, including merit-based (i.e. based on your academic performance) and need-based (i.e. based on your financial situation) opportunities.

Program Funding Packages

All full-time students who begin a UBC-Vancouver PhD program in September 2021 or later will be provided with a funding package of at least $22,000 for each of the first four years of their PhD. The funding package may consist of any combination of internal or external awards, teaching-related work, research assistantships, and graduate academic assistantships. Please note that many graduate programs provide funding packages that are substantially greater than $22,000 per year. Please check with your prospective graduate program for specific details of the funding provided to its PhD students.

Average Funding
Based on the criteria outlined below, 35 students within this program were included in this study because they received funding through UBC in the form of teaching, research/academic assistantships or internal or external awards averaging $31,764.
  • 16 students received Teaching Assistantships. Average TA funding based on 16 students was $5,658.
  • 22 students received Research/Academic Assistantships. Average RA/AA funding based on 22 students was $8,721.
  • 34 students received internal awards. Average internal award funding based on 34 students was $20,434.
  • 6 students received external awards. Average external award funding based on 6 students was $23,889.

Study Period: Sep 2020 to Aug 2021 - average funding for full-time PhD students enrolled in three terms per academic year in this program across years 1-4, the period covered by UBC's Minimum Funding Guarantee. Averages might mask variability in sources and amounts of funding received by individual students. Beyond year 4, funding packages become even more individualized.
Review methodology
Scholarships & awards (merit-based funding)

All applicants are encouraged to review the awards listing to identify potential opportunities to fund their graduate education. The database lists merit-based scholarships and awards and allows for filtering by various criteria, such as domestic vs. international or degree level.

Teaching Assistantships (GTA)

Graduate programs may have Teaching Assistantships available for registered full-time graduate students. Full teaching assistantships involve 12 hours work per week in preparation, lecturing, or laboratory instruction although many graduate programs offer partial TA appointments at less than 12 hours per week. Teaching assistantship rates are set by collective bargaining between the University and the Teaching Assistants' Union.

Research Assistantships (GRA)

Many professors are able to provide Research Assistantships (GRA) from their research grants to support full-time graduate students studying under their direction. The duties usually constitute part of the student's graduate degree requirements. A Graduate Research Assistantship is a form of financial support for a period of graduate study and is, therefore, not covered by a collective agreement. Unlike other forms of fellowship support for graduate students, the amount of a GRA is neither fixed nor subject to a university-wide formula. The stipend amounts vary widely, and are dependent on the field of study and the type of research grant from which the assistantship is being funded. Some research projects also require targeted research assistance and thus hire graduate students on an hourly basis.

Financial aid (need-based funding)

Canadian and US applicants may qualify for governmental loans to finance their studies. Please review eligibility and types of loans.

All students may be able to access private sector or bank loans.

Foreign government scholarships

Many foreign governments provide support to their citizens in pursuing education abroad. International applicants should check the various governmental resources in their home country, such as the Department of Education, for available scholarships.

Working while studying

The possibility to pursue work to supplement income may depend on the demands the program has on students. It should be carefully weighed if work leads to prolonged program durations or whether work placements can be meaningfully embedded into a program.

International students enrolled as full-time students with a valid study permit can work on campus for unlimited hours and work off-campus for no more than 20 hours a week.

A good starting point to explore student jobs is the UBC Work Learn program or a Co-Op placement.

Tax credits and RRSP withdrawals

Students with taxable income in Canada may be able to claim federal or provincial tax credits.

Canadian residents with RRSP accounts may be able to use the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) which allows students to withdraw amounts from their registered retirement savings plan (RRSPs) to finance full-time training or education for themselves or their partner.

Please review Filing taxes in Canada on the student services website for more information.

Cost Calculator

Applicants have access to the cost calculator to develop a financial plan that takes into account various income sources and expenses.

Career Outcomes

68 students graduated between 2005 and 2013: 3 are in non-salaried situations; for 6 we have no data (based on research conducted between Feb-May 2016). For the remaining 59 graduates:


RI (Research-Intensive) Faculty: typically tenure-track faculty positions (equivalent of the North American Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor positions) in PhD-granting institutions
TI (Teaching-Intensive) Faculty: typically full-time faculty positions in colleges or in institutions not granting PhDs, and teaching faculty at PhD-granting institutions
Term Faculty: faculty in term appointments (e.g. sessional lecturers, visiting assistant professors, etc.)
Sample Employers in Higher Education
University of British Columbia (11)
Royal Roads University (2)
Capilano University (2)
Concordia University (2)
Lakehead University (2)
University of Alberta (2)
University of Wollongong
Mount Saint Vincent University
Columbus State University
Thompson Rivers University
Sample Employers Outside Higher Education
BC School District
Alpha Secondary School
Museum of Vancouver
Government of Lesotho
TEC
Community Association for Lasting Success
Da Vinci Science Center
HR MacMillan Space Centre
Wells Fargo
Pythagoras Academy
Sample Job Titles Outside Higher Education
Teacher (2)
President
Community Artist and Contract Researcher
Teacher Principal
Senior Manager, Curatorial
VP
Science Education Manager
Personal Banker
High Commissioner to Canada
Head Start Early Education Coordinator
PhD Career Outcome Survey
You may view the full report on career outcomes of UBC PhD graduates on outcomes.grad.ubc.ca.
Disclaimer
These data represent historical employment information and do not guarantee future employment prospects for graduates of this program. They are for informational purposes only. Data were collected through either alumni surveys or internet research.

Enrolment, Duration & Other Stats

These statistics show data for the Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum Studies (PhD). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.

Enrolment Data

 20212020201920182017
Applications5356503725
Offers1113131013
New registrations999108
Total enrolment7274778076

Completion Rates & Times

This program has a graduation rate of 81% based on 48 students admitted between 2008 - 2011. Based on 30 graduations between 2017 - 2020 the minimum time to completion is 2.66 years and the maximum time is 9.00 years with an average of 5.74 years of study. All calculations exclude leave times.
Disclaimer
Admissions data refer to all UBC Vancouver applications, offers, new registrants for each year, May to April [data updated: 7 April 2022]. Enrolment data are based on March 1 snapshots. Program completion data are only provided for datasets comprised of more than 4 individuals. Rates and times of completion depend on a number of variables (e.g. curriculum requirements, student funding), some of which may have changed in recent years for some programs [data updated: 19 October 2021].

Research Supervisors

This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.

  • Petrina, Stephen (Adolescent Issues, Artistic and Aesthetic Development, Arts Education, Children & Youth, Cultural Studies, Curriculum Studies, Educational Technologies, Environmental Education, Higher Education, History of Education, Literacy, Media, Semiotics, Text Studies, Metacognition and Learning, Music, Pedagogy, Philosophy, Research Design and Method, Science Education, Social Cognition, Social Studies Education, Sociological Issues, Subcultures, Technology)
  • Phelan, Anne (Curriculum Studies, Feminist Studies, Pedagogy, Philosophy, Teacher Education)
  • Pinar, William (Curriculum, pedagogy and didactics; Education Systems; History)
  • Renwick, Kerry (Curriculum, pedagogy and didactics; Specialized studies in education; Critical Pedagogy; Educational Policy; Familial Contexts; Health Education; Home Economics; Human and Social Ecology; Public health; teacher education)
  • Ross, E. Wayne (Curriculum, pedagogy and didactics; Specialized studies in education; Critical Pedagogy; Curriculum Studies; Educational Approaches; Political Contexts; Social Contexts; Social Justice in Education; Social Studies Education; teacher education)
  • Schnellert, Leyton (Curriculum, pedagogy and didactics; Community Research; Teacher Education Research; Teacher Professional Development; Rural Education; Inclusive Education; Pedagogy; Self-regulated Learning; Middle Years Education; Literacy Education; Practitioner Inquiry)
  • Tan, Yuen Sze Michelle (Science Education, Outdoor Education and learning, collaborative teacher inquiry, and teacher education; equipping teachers (both pre- and in-service teachers) with innovative pedagogical tools to support learning, both for science learners and beyond the domains of science; teachers)

Pages

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation
2021 Dr. Melton studied how developing a sense of wonder in pre-service teachers influenced their ideas about science and science teaching. She found that exposure to wonder-inducing activities shifted the views and values of pre-service teachers towards science both in and out of the classroom and fostered a stronger connection with nature.
2021 Dr. Delgado used narrative inquiry to explore the pedagogical potential of student activism, and how the experience of activism transforms both the role of students and activists. Dr. Delgado studied the context of resistance from economics students to traditional content and pedagogies of introductory economics courses in UK universities.
2021 In a community of practice, Dr. Smith artistically explored the pedagogical possibilities and ethics of photo-based memory work in the exhibition Against Disappearance: A Photographic Search for Memory. Her work on lexical thinking and visual lifewriting expands understandings of photographic inquiry, highlighting a/r/tography's creative potential.
2021 Dr. Yanko created and investigated a novel approach for assessing arts learning experiences. He discovered how the arts can enable educators to illuminate the values and judgments of student creativity, imagination, and meaning-making. Findings show this practice to be inclusive, democratic, and tangible for all learners in a classroom community.
2021 With a focus on youth in high school, Dr. Slovin studied the conditions that structure understandings of gender nonconformity. Their work reimagines and deconstructs normative ideas of gender as visible, binary, and knowable.
2020 Dr. Namae explored why some secondary school teachers in Uganda choose to adopt technology and others do not. Her findings revealed that skills training and sheer attitude influenced technology use in schools. Her study also reveals that the presence of technology in school does not guarantee teacher change of attitude and use.
2020 Dr. Davis explored six ways to study the traumatic past, a unique area in curriculum studies. Indigenous practices of orality, listening to stories of Survivors, choosing to become a witness, and taking steps towards reconciliation were identified as the educational legacy of the TRC - Indian Residential Schools Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
2020 Dr. Tembrevilla documented an expansion in rural high school science teachers' knowledge related to technology, pedagogy, and content through science video production. This work underscores the importance of centering investments for science teachers and integrating technology and local knowledge in science education, particularly in rural areas.
2020 Dr. Day analyzed contemporary media artworks that interrogate the socio-political issues of data and algorithms. The research argues that these artworks subvert the exploitation and encoding of information capitalism through amplifying data that has been suppressed, offering critical ways to engage with information and communication technologies.
2020 Dr. Price attends to a Welsh cultural approach to contemplative connection with the living world. As a response to climate change, her writing explores ways of knowing with trees, culture, words, and ancestors. It offers a creative, devotional, and regenerative approach to environmental and contemplative education.

Pages

Further Information

Specialization

Curriculum Studies encompasses, but is not limited to, investigations into: teacher education, the social construction of knowledge, the curriculum as culturally and politically situated, contemporary curriculum and instructional discourses, and the role of curriculum and curricular reform in K-12 and other learning environments. Students learn about issues of planning and development, program implementation and evaluation, and pre-service and in-service teacher education. Inquiry in the field is multi-disciplinary and includes numerous perspectives and orientations such as: cultural studies, historical consciousness, post structuralism, feminism, multicultural education, semiotics, and critical theory.

Faculty Overview

Program Identifier

VGDPHD-F5
 
 

September 2023 Intake

Application Open Date
01 October 2022
Canadian Applicant Deadline
01 December 2022
International Applicant Deadline
01 December 2022
 
Supervisor Search
 

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