Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
ISGP is a unique program that gives students the freedom to create their own individualized graduate program based on specific research interests. It allows students to bridge two or more academic disciplines.
ISGP gives you the opportunity to:
- pursue interdisciplinary research that is individually designed by the student
- "think outside the box"
- select courses and research supervisors from every department at UBC
- participate in interdisciplinary lectures, workshops and seminars
- apply for funding for exceptional students
- participate in interdisciplinary lectures, workshops and seminars.
Meet a UBC representative
Q&A with UBC Graduate Student Ambassadorswebinar
Date: Thursday, 26 July 2018
Time: 12:30 to 13:30
Join our Graduate Student Ambassadors Samuel Adenyanju (MSc Forestry, Nigeria), Federico Andrade (PhD Public Health, Colombia), Maria Angélica Guerrero (MA Educational Studies, Colombia), Xining (Linda) Yang (PhD Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, China) and Dorine Akwiri (Master of Public Policy and Global Affairs, Kenya) who will be available to answer questions about their experiences at UBC, including topics such as accommodation, moving to a new city/province/country and settling in, making friends, being an international student, and more. This session is open to participants interested in different programs across all faculties at UBC. Please note that we will not be able to provide answers to questions regarding application or admissions policies or any that involve specific personal information.
TOEFL (ibT) Overall Score Requirement
IELTS Overall Score Requirement
Supervisor commitment required prior to application?
All full-time students who begin a UBC-Vancouver PhD program in September 2018 or later will be provided with a funding package of at least $18,000 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 $18,000 per year. Please check with your prospective graduate program for specific details of the funding provided to its PhD students.
72 students graduated between 2005 and 2013. Of these, career information was obtained for 66 alumni (based on research conducted between Feb-May 2016):
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 EducationUniversity of British Columbia (11)
Simon Fraser University (7)
Western University (Ontario)
Swinburne University of Technology
University of Alberta
Providence University College
Sample Employers Outside Higher EducationVancouver Coastal Health (2)
BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS
Child Health BC
St. Michael's Hospital
BC Centre for Improved Cardiovascular Health
Nigel Haggan & Associates
Government of Canada
The White Mountain School
Sample Job Titles Outside Higher EducationConsultant (5)
International Chief Evaluator, President
Veterinarian, Animal welfare advocate
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
PhD Career Outcome SurveyYou may view the full report on career outcomes of UBC PhD graduates on outcomes.grad.ubc.ca.
DisclaimerThese 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.
Tuition / Program Costs
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,632.61||$2,868.22|
|Tuition per year||$4,897.83||$8,604.66|
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||$3,200.00 (-)|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$923.38 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $16,884.10 (check cost calculator)|
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. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.
Completion Rates & Times
Upcoming Doctoral Exams
Tuesday, 31 July 2018 - 12:30pm - Room 207, Anthropology and Sociology Building, 6303 NW Marine Drive, V6T 1Z1
Wednesday, 1 August 2018 - 9:00am - Room 207, Anthropology and Sociology Building, 6303 NW Marine Drive, V6T 1Z1
Tuesday, 7 August 2018 - 9:00am - Room 300, Liu Institute for Global Issues, 6476 NW Marine Drive
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.
Kerr, Thomas (harm reduction, injection drug users, HIV / AIDS, safe injection site, addiction, HIV/AIDS, injection drug use, health policy and service evaluation, and community-based research methods)
Kornelsen, Jude (providing an evidence base to inform decisions on the planning of rural maternity services; advancing our understanding of women)
Kuhl, David (understanding compassion fatigue/vicarious trauma, burnout, moral distress, grief, and psychological well being in health care providers)
Kwon, Brian (Spinal cord injury)
Loock, Christine Ann (Brain, Behaviour & Development; Social Pediatrics; Health Inequities; Child-health medical-home: children/families, integration / patient care / community services; Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders; Pediatric Sleep Disorders)
Ogrodniczuk, John (Mental Health and Society, Psychodynamic Psychotherapy, Personality Disorders, Group Psychotherapy, Men’s Mental Health, Alexithymia, Athletes)
Shannon, Kate (epidemiology, HIV/AIDS, sex work, public health, community health, gender epidemiology, health prevention, social determinants of health, community-based research, gender inequities, sexual health, vulnerable populations, structural determinants, qualitative evaluations, HIV/STI prevention, Social determinants of sexual health, HIV/AIDS and access to care among marginalized populations, particularly youth, sex workers, and women at-risk and living with HIV)
Recent Doctoral Citations
- Dr. Robert Rivers
"Dr. Rivers investigated school connectedness and problem substance use among street-involved youth in British Columbia. Results differed by gender and in the presence of known risk factors faced by youth. His research advances the understanding that increasing positive school connectedness could decrease levels of problem substance use." (May 2018)
- Dr. Kilim Park
"Dr. Park studied the return experience of Indonesian migrant women workers who worked as domestic workers in Asian urban centres. By gathering and working with stories told by the Indonesian returnee women, Dr. Park uncovered and highlighted their contribution to the understanding of transnational migrant lives and women's life in cities." (May 2018)
- Dr. Catherine Elisabeth Tong
"Dr. Tong worked closely with community partners to conduct a study on the physical activity and mobility of foreign-born older adults in South Vancouver. Her mixed-method project was done in five languages and advances our understanding of the health behaviours of marginalized older adults who have often been excluded from academic research." (May 2018)
- Dr. Eva Ziemsen
"Dr. Ziemsen developed a learning model that allows students to produce films online and in a virtual world using a process called machinima. Her goal was to help democratize film education. She engaged in her research as an a/r/tographer, by directing and producing two films and developing an online film production curriculum." (May 2018)
- Dr. Jennifer Mary Selman
"Dr. Selman examined the lasting impact of the compassion of strangers. She describes how it broadens perspectives of strangers, builds gratitude, and positively alters one's sense of self. She presents her work as an a/r/tographer, an innovative means of demonstrating the value of addressing and appreciating the role of compassion in our lives." (November 2017)