Language and Communication Services
Doctoral students focus on critical and contemporary issues at the intersections of language and literacy learning and cultural and societal transformation. Students in our programs are teachers and other professional educators who engage in courses, conversations and research addressing a broad range of issues and contexts – in and out of schools, nationally and internationally, and across the lifespan.
Students will gain expertise in topics such as identity and language/literacy, cultural literacy and language practices, interculturality, Indigenous languages and literacies, family and community literacy practices, literature and new media, digital cultures, poetry, literacy in global contexts, literacy development across the lifespan, educational linguistics, discourse and multimodal analysis, critical perspectives on literature and cultural texts for children and youth, EAL (English as an additional language) literacy, assessment, teacher education. drama and theatre education, creative/arts-based approaches to literacy learning, and communication ecologies/studies. Students with a specific interest in language education will engage with topics in applied linguistics and critical applied linguistics, second/additional language theory and practice, bi-/multilingual pedagogies, second language acquisition and reading/writing/vocabulary learning, language socialization, technology integration in language education language policy and planning, assessment of second language learning as well as related research methods.
Literacy studies have expanded dramatically in recent years and our internationally known Faculty draw on many disciplines, knowledge systems and worldviews that inform the study of language and literacy education, including Indigenous, cognitive, linguistic, anthropological, cultural, literary, critical and post-structural perspectives and drawing on First Peoples Principles of Learning, sociolinguistics, linguistic anthropology, social psychology, cultural studies, and other related fields. In our courses we invite students to reflect critically on contemporary language and literacy practices in and out of schools, spanning Indigenous, local, national and global contexts.
As an international student, I found the opportunity of being part of the UBC community exciting as it would enhance my learning and engagement in research and expose me to a learning culture that would challenge me to realize my full potential. Provisions of scholarships and awards for graduate students were also a motivator for me to choose UBC for my graduate studies.
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.
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:
Overall score requirement: 92
Overall score requirement: 7.0
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.
Master’s degree with high standing in a relevant educational discipline
Awards; fellowships; scholarships; and distinctions. Relevant professional and academic experience including conference presentations, professional workshops, and publications. At least two years of successful teaching experience or equivalent.
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.
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.
Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.
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.
There is no need to find a supervisor prior to applying for the program. If you are successful in the application process, you will be assigned a pro-tem supervisor whose research is closest to your area of interest. However, if you are interested in working with a particular faculty member, you can indicate it in your statement of interest or in the application form.
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
The Department takes a critical and social justice approach to theory and research. Faculty members in the Literacy program have expertise in the following areas:
Students in our program engage with critical societal issues that impact topics such as equity and inclusion, immigration and globalization, gender, youth culture, relationships among communities and educational institutions, and public policy. The Department takes a critical and social justice approach to theory and research.
Faculty members in the Literacy program have expertise in the following areas:
The program consists of 18 to 24 credits of course work (including the LLED 601 and 602 Doctoral Seminars), comprehensive exam followed by an oral examination, a dissertation proposal, and a doctoral dissertation.
The program accepts well-qualified students from around the globe into a richly international and multicultural academic community.
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,732.53||$3,043.77|
|Tuition per year|
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||$3,200.00 (-)|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$969.17 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $17,242.00 (check cost calculator)|
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Applicants have access to the cost calculator to develop a financial plan that takes into account various income sources and expenses.
14 students graduated between 2005 and 2013: 1 is in a non-salaried situation; for 0 we have no data (based on research conducted between Feb-May 2016). For the remaining 13 graduates:
These statistics show data for the Doctor of Philosophy in Language and Literacy Education (PhD). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.
|2019||Dr. Taylor examined experiences of gender minority breast and gynecologic cancer patients. Findings show that cisnormative and heteronormative narratives shape cancer care knowledge, while non-normative narratives of gender shape patient decision-making and knowledge mobility. This research evidence can inform the design of culturally effective cancer care.|
|2019||Dr. Darvin examined how migrant Filipino youth in Vancouver, of contrasting social classes, are socialized into unequal digital practices. He identified critical issues that emerge from the integration of technology in education and designed a framework for digital literacy instruction. His work will help students navigate online spaces in empowering ways.|
|2018||Dr. Teichert examined digital literacy practices of children in their homes before and after kindergarten entry. She found children moved fluidly between digital and non-digital activities during play, but that parents had concerns about their children's use of digital devices and preferred that their children engage in non-digital activities.|
|2018||Dr. Nayebzadah studied the representation of Afghan-Canadian Muslim diaspora in postcolonial fiction through the practice of a/r/tography. Her work raises questions about biases, presuppositions, and world-views on Muslims. This research informs discussion around the role of authors as constructing and consolidating notions of "self" and "other".|
|2018||Dr. Pena tracked understandings of "Visual Literacy" across disciplines through the last century. He curated a full-text database of scholarly writing on the topic and designed a text analysis tool to visualize relationships among writings. This study advances understandings of Visual Literacy and provides a unique tool for text analysis.|
|2018||Dr. Shigematsu wrote and performed a theatrical one-person show called Empire of the Son, in which he explores his relationship as an Asian Canadian with his traditional Japanese father. This research illuminates the complexities and emotional labor involved with writing, performing and touring the world with an autobiographical work of theatre.|
|2018||Dr. Ahn explored the powerful role images can play in how we perceive the environment and environmental issues. Specifically, she investigated how visual rhetorical modes in environmental documentaries influenced viewers. Her work will further our understanding of how visual rhetoric can engender awareness and a willingness to act in more eco-conscious ways.|
|2018||Dr. Prendergast explored early literacy in the lives of children with disabilities. She examined informational materials and interviewed parents and children's librarians and found that children with disabilities are often excluded from community-based early literacy. Her work offers recommendations for creating more inclusive programs.|
|2018||Dr. Bridge explored the challenges and opportunities for educators to engage in the processes of reconciliation in their teaching practice. Her study builds on a body of research exploring Indigenous pedagogical frameworks in land and place-based learning.|
|2018||Dr. Stranger-Johannessen investigated the African Storybook, a digital initiative that promotes multilingual literacy. Findings indicated that teachers' use of stories expanded the repertoire of teaching methods and topics. The teachers began to imagine themselves as writers and translators, change agents and multimodal, multiliterate, digital educators.|
Language and Literacy Education focuses on critical and contemporary issues at the intersections of literacy learning and cultural and societal transformation. It covers topics such as identity and literacy, cultural literacy practices, Indigenous literacies, family literacy, literature and new media, digital literacies, poetry, literacy in developing contexts, literacy development across the lifespan, educational linguistics, discourse and multimodal analysis, critical perspectives on children’s and young adult literature, EAL (English as an additional language) literacy, assessment, teacher education and creative/arts-based approaches to literacy learning.
Students engage with critical societal issues that impact these topics, such as equity and inclusion, immigration and globalization, gender, youth culture, relationships among communities and educational institutions, and public policy.
The reason I applied to study at UBC is because of the prestige of the Faculty of Education in producing world-leading research. I have also admired the scholarship of applied sociolinguistics, such as Ryuko Kubota, Patsy Duff, Bonny Norton, and Guofang Li (to name a few), at the Department of...
Through my work as an independent filmmaker, research project manager, teacher, as well as mentor for community-based filmmaking groups, I became fascinated by the promise of inquiry-based learning, rooted in multimodal composition, for youth education. My motivation to study how this process works...