Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Sciences (PhD)

Overview

The Graduate Programs in Rehabilitation Sciences (RHSC) is jointly run by the Department of Occupational Sciences and Occupational Therapy (OSOT) and the Department of Physical Therapy (PT). It is a program for advanced research study and original investigation in areas relevant to the Rehabilitation Sciences at the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) level. It focuses on the discipline of Rehabilitation Sciences - the study of providing treatment and education to persons with temporary or permanent disability to return them to maximum function, well-being and personally-satisfying levels of independence.

It encompasses the three dimensions of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (body structure and function, activity and participation) and thus spans the individual, community and society. Our faculty have active research programs that cover this diverse spectrum.

In the Graduate Programs in Rehabilitation Sciences, we strive to create outstanding learning and research experiences for occupational therapists, physical therapists and others with various health-related disciplines. Through these opportunities, in combination with the PhD thesis, graduates advance the science of rehabilitation which aims to promote physical, mental and social well-being among people of all levels of ability. Our collaborative initiatives result in a reciprocal transfer of new knowledge among academic, clinical, and community settings.

What makes the program unique?

Our faculty have an outstanding record of scholarly productivity, receiving funding from provincial and national research granting agencies. Over 30 graduate students from a broad range of backgrounds including occupational therapy, physical therapy, recreation therapy, social sciences, human kinetics, and engineering have graduated from our program. These students have authored numerous peer-reviewed journal publications and won various scholarships and awards.

Program faculty members are well integrated with several of the world class research facilities established here in BC including: Arthritis Research Centre, Brain Research Centre, Centre for Hip Health, International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries, Centre for Heart and Lung Innovation, Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute, Providence Health Care Research Institute, GF Strong Rehabilitation Centre, and the BC Children's Hospital Research Institute.

Quick Facts

Degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Subject
Health and Medicine
Mode of delivery
On campus
Registration options
Full or Part-time
Specialization
Rehabilitation Sciences
Program Components
Dissertation
Faculty
Faculty of Medicine

Meet a UBC representative

Q&A with UBC Graduate Student Ambassadors

webinar
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.

Requirements

TOEFL (ibT) Overall Score Requirement

100
23
23
23
23

IELTS Overall Score Requirement

7.5
7.0
7.0
7.0
7.0

Supervisor commitment required prior to application?

Yes

GRE required?

Required by some applicants (check program website)

Prior degree requirements

Completion of a recognized baccalaureate degree and thesis-based master’s degree in Rehabilitation Sciences, or other related field.

Prerequisites / Course Requirements

A minimum of 3 credits in research methods or statistics

Other Requirements

Applicants from non-Canadian or United States universities may be required to provide general (GRE) (Graduate Record Examination) scores as part of their application at the request of their proposed supervisor. Scores must be valid within the past 2 years.

Funding Sources

PhD students will be provided with a Minimum Funding Package for each of the first four years of a PhD. The funding package may consist of internal or external awards, scholarships or bursaries, teaching and research assistantships, or any combination of the above. This policy only applies to full-time students. The minimum funding amount will be equivalent to the UBC Four-Year Fellowship (4YF) stipend (excluding the tuition waiver) for a given academic year.

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.

Career Outcomes

18 students graduated between 2005 and 2013. Of these, career information was obtained for 18 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 Education
Simon Fraser University (3)
McGill University (2)
Universite de Montreal (2)
University of British Columbia (2)
Saad College of Nursing & Allied Health Sciences
McMaster University
Douglas College
Trinity Western University
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Sample Employers Outside Higher Education
Burrard Physiotherapy
Sanctuary Ministries
Vancouver Coastal Health
Fortius Sport and Health
Sample Job Titles Outside Higher Education
Physiotherapist
Founding Director
Physical Therapy Teaching Supervisor
Co-founder
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.
Career Options

Graduates from our programs go on to become faculty members that teach and conduct research at universities. They also work as research scientists, clinical scientists and consultants to government, health authorities and other organizations with interests in rehabilitation specifically, and health care as a whole.

Alumni on Success

Amy Kirkham

Job Title
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Employer
University of Alberta

Hana Al-Bannay

Job Title
Assistant Professor
Employer
Saad College of Nursing & Allied Health Sciences

Jill Zwicker

Job Title
Assistant Professor
Employer
University of British Columbia

Tuition / Program Costs

FeesCanadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / DiplomatInternational
Application Fee$102.00$165.00
Tuition *
Installments per year33
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)
* 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. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Statistical Data

Enrolment Data

 20172016201520142013
Applications611141015
Offers4712813
New registrations267711
Total enrolment4041443836

Completion Rates & Times

This program has a graduation rate of 90% based on 10 students admitted between 2004 - 2007. Based on 15 graduations between 2013 - 2016 the minimum time to completion is 3.66 years and the maximum time is 7.00 years with an average of 5.32 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: 9 March 2018]. 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: 29 September 2017].

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.

  • Backman, Catherine (Lifestyle Determinants and Health, Rehabilitation, Arthritis / Osteo-Arthritis, occupational balance, activity disruption, social role participation, arthritis, chronic illness, health & well-being, occupational therapy)
  • Barbic, Skye (Mental Health and Society, mental health, measurement , recovery, community integration, Rasch Measurement Theory, Implementation Science, Patient Engagement, Supported Employment, Individual Placement Support, assessment, health and well-being, metrology, occupational therapy, youth)
  • Boyd, Lara (Plasticity / Neuronal Regeneration, Stroke, Learning and Memory, Physiology, Motor learning, Plasticity / Neuronal Regeneration , Motor System, Learning, Neurophysiology)
  • Camp, Patricia (diagnosis and management of individuals with chronic lung disease, including patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD))
  • Campbell, Kristin (Exercise, cancer prevention, cancer rehabilitation, cancer survivorship, physical activity, biomarkers, energy balance, obesity )
  • Eng, Janice (Neurorehabilitation, spinal cord, brain)
  • Forwell, Susan (Neurological conditions and their impact on chosen occupations)
  • Guenette, Jordan (exercise physiology, respiratory physiology, respiratory diseases, sport performance )
  • Holsti, Liisa (premature infants, neurodevelopment, stress, pain , measurement, technology transfer, sucrose, rehabilitation, pediatrics)
  • Hunt, Michael Anthony (Arthritis / Osteo-Arthritis, Joints (Articulations), Musculoskeletal Deformation, Neuromuscular Diseases, Orthoses and Prostheses, Rehabilitation, biomechanics, rehabilitation, musculoskeletal, physical activity, exercise)
  • Huot, Suzanne (Migrations, Populations, Cultural Exchanges, occupational science, migration studies, immigration, refugees, asylum seekers, intersectionality, francophone minority communities, francophones, bilingualism, french, community-engaged research, qualitative research, critical theory, social inclusion, social integration, gender)
  • Jarus, Tal (Motor learning with an emphasis on skill acquisition, retention and generalization, occupational performance, participation, health and well-being)
  • Li, Linda (Patient help-seeking experiences , Shared decision-making, Patient self-management , E-health, Rehabilitation and lifestyle interventions in arthritis management , Health services research, Patient engagement, Knowledge translation, Implementation science, Digital media)
  • Liu-Ambrose, Teresa (Age and Risk Factors, Mobility, Cognitive Neuropsychology of Aging, Healthy Aging, Falls Prevention, Brain Health, Sleep, Physical Activity)
  • Miller, William (disabled people with respect to mobility (wheelchairs); influence of self-efficacy with respect to participation in daily activity, social activity and general quality of life especially among disabled adults and elderly; wheelchair prescription, performance and function; outcome measurement in health care, Use of power wheelchairs, fatigue, Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation)
  • Mortenson, Ben (Quality of Life and Aging, Social Aspects of Aging, Aging Process, Mobility, Rehabilitation, Accessibility, Assistive technology, Occupational therapy, Caregiving, Social participation, Spinal cord injury, Outcome measures, Robotics)
  • Nimmon, Laura (Interpersonal Communication, Family and Care Givers, Palliative Care, Chronic Diseases in Elderly, Health Care Organization, Power and Organization, Health professions education, Qualitative research, Interdisciplinary team communication, Patient centered care, Chronic disease care, End of life care, Collaborative pratice, Teamwork, Families and Caregivers)
  • Scott, Alexander (Musculoskeletal Lesions and Repair, musculoskeletal, sports medicine, physiotherapy, physical therapy, orthopaedics)
  • Virji-Babul, Naznin (Concussion/mild traumatic brain injury, Developmental disabilities (Down’s syndrome), Developmental neuroscience (mirror neurons, perception-action coupling) )
  • Zwicker, Jill (brain development and motor impairment throughout childhood; Pediatrics, Human Development, Research Methods)

Recent Doctoral Citations

  • Dr. Chun-Liang Hsu
    "As the world's population ages, mobility and cognitive impairments are major healthcare priorities. Dr. Hsu's research advanced our understanding of the neural interplay between cognition and mobility in aging. His work facilitates the development of novel interventions to promote healthy aging." (May 2018)
  • Dr. Yi-Wen Chen
    "Dr. Chen's investigations demonstrated that musculoskeletal conditions are the most common cause of pain in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Some trunk pain is caused by arthritis of the spine and fractures related to brittle bones. Her research provides a foundation for better pain management in this chronic respiratory disease." (May 2018)
  • Dr. Susan Peters
    "Dr. Peters studied how the brain focuses attention and plans leg movements after stroke. She found that the amount of attention that is paid to sensory information during movement planning is an important factor in community balance and mobility. This knowledge will aid with developing targeted rehabilitation of balance and mobility after stroke." (May 2018)
  • Dr. Michele Rebecca Schaeffer
    "Dr. Schaeffer investigated the underlying causes of breathing discomfort and the use of supplemental oxygen for exercise in patients with interstitial lung disease. Her findings have important implications for exercise rehabilitation and symptom management in this population." (May 2018)
  • Dr. Alessio Gallina
    "Dr. Gallina showed that specific regions within the quadriceps muscle are uniquely activated in the presence of clinical or experimental knee pain. These studies further our understanding of how the human body adapts to pain, contributing to effective interventions for musculoskeletal disorders." (May 2018)

Further Program Information

 
 

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