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 2021.  Applications will be made available on October 15, 2020, and are due January 8th, 2021 for PhD applications and January 15, 2021 for MA applications.

Applications to the Graduate Department of Political Science must be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies (SGS) through the online admissions application which is housed on a secure server in the University of Toronto. Applications are considered complete and can be reviewed only after all documentation is received by the Department of Political Science (this includes letters of reference submitted online by referees). All documentation must be received by the document deadline date (see below).

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 this application including whether we have received your supporting documents.

If for some reason you cannot use the online admission application, please contact the Department by emailing Louis Tentsos .

Please note: For the purposes of the application, we do not require hard/paper copies of any application materials or documents.  All documents can be submitted electronically through the online application.  If you are made an offer of admission, at that point we would request official copies of transcripts, etc.

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 THREE referees (FOUR for the PhD program). Be sure to inform your referees that you are doing this and that the University of Toronto, School of Graduate Studies will be contacting them by 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. If, 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 here.   The form must be received by the Graduate 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. Submit your payment (online payment is preferred but mail-in payment is available).
  5. Transcripts of all post-secondary education (including exchanges and transfer credits) must be scanned and submitted through the online application electronically.   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. Be aware of the deadline dates for application and documents.
  7. 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, you must submit proof of English language proficiency. Check the SGS page for the various recognized English tests. Students must arrange for their score to be reported electronically to the University of Toronto (Enrolment Services) by the testing agency. The institution code for U of T is 0982. There is no need to specify a department.
  8. If you are applying to an interdisciplinary (Collaborative) program, please visit the appropriate website to review the application procedures and any special admission requirements of that program.
  9. 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 Political Science course, a portion of an MA (or undergraduate) thesis (but not the whole thing), or an analytical policy document (written only by you). For PhD applicants, if you have such a sample that is similar in its subject matter to the work you propose undertaking in your thesis, it would be helpful. Additional pages to the 30 allowed pages will be removed and discarded before the admissions committee sees the writing sample (this includes bibliographic material). Submit the sample through the on-line application by following the “submit” link on the document status page.
  10. 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 Scholarly Intent”. 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 our Department is an appropriate academic environment for engaging in that work. Please do not make this an autobiography. Some background information may be relevant, but what we really want to know is what interests you analytically. 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 on-line application by following the “submit” link on the document status page.  NEW:  PhD applicants should indicate at the end of the statement the names of 2 faculty members with whom they would be interested in working with.
  11. 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 work experience relevant to your scholarly interests, academic awards, conference presentations, and publications. Submit the c.v. through the on-line application by following the “submit” link on the document status page.
  12. 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 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.

Application Deadline

PhD – Friday, January 8th, 2021
MA – Friday, January 15, 2021

Please ensure that all elements of the online application are submitted by this date.

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 deadlines.

Proceed to the SGS online admissions application now.

If required, our mailing address is:

Graduate Office
The Department of Political Science
University of Toronto
100 St. George Street, Rm. 3025
Toronto, Ontario
M5S 3G3

Please note: If you are in the process of applying to graduate programs for next fall 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).

OGS holds a competition for which Canadian Citizens Permanent Residents and non-Canadians (Visa students) who are Ontario residents at the time of application are eligible. All applicants who wish to be considered for an OGS in support of anticipated participation in a graduate program in the Department of Political Science at the U of T must apply through the Department’s Graduate Office.   If you are applying elsewhere OGS applications are required for each program you wish to be considered for.

SSHRC holds a competition for both master’s and doctoral fellowships available only to Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents who are entering a graduate program. For the masters competition, if you are currently registered you apply through your current university.  If you are not currently registered but graduated recently check with the institution you were registered with.  In some cases you can apply through your university and in others you have to apply directly to SSHRC.

For  the doctoral competition, if you are currently registered, you apply through the university at which you are currently registered.  If you are not a registered student this fall you must apply directly to SSHRC.

If you are applying through our office,  SSHRC deadlines are fast approaching.  Please check the Important Dates page for deadlines.

OGS info