Application FAQ's

Application & Admission

Yes, you can apply with a master's degree in a discipline other than social work. Completing the PhD does not qualify you to register with the ACSW unless you hold a BSW or MSW.

Yes, you can still apply. In the Program Specific Questions section of the online application, you must provide a rationale for your low GPA.

A GPA below 3.5 may affect your eligibility for major grants and scholarships.

Researching our faculty members and their areas of research is beneficial before applying.

Future students are encouraged to contact the PhD Coordinator or potential supervisor prior to applying to the program.

Visit the PhD Funding page for a breakdown of available funding. There are also awards, scholarships, grants, and teaching and research assistantships available for graduate students. Refer to the Faculty of Graduate Studies Awards Website for further information on funding opportunities.

No, you cannot complete the program online.

For Fall 2022 intake, the PhD program will be delivered from Edmonton.


Yes. Follow this link for more details.

Your referee may have “saved” the reference instead of “submitting” it. Your referee must go back and submit the online form before the deadline.

Once the reference has been submitted, both you and your referee will receive an email confirming receipt. Your 'To Do List' will automatically update too.

Yes. It is your responsibility to ensure that all required supporting documents are received by the deadlines, including references.

Follow up with your referee if you notice that they have not submitted their reference. Missing documents will result in an incomplete application.

Official Transcripts

We accept any transcripts post-marked on or before the deadline; otherwise your transcripts will be flagged as a late submission and may impact your application. 

We highly recommend that you upload a copy of your unofficial transcripts, which will be used until your official transcripts arrive.

Transcripts are received by the Shipping and Receiving department before they are distributed to faculties. If they are not mailed directly to our office, you can expect delays.

Transcripts are updated manually. Due to the volume of transcripts received near the deadline, each applicant’s 'To Do List' may take up to 2 weeks to update.

There is no need to send your degree certificate to us, as long as your transcript shows the degree completion and conferral date.

If you have a former surname you must provide this information in the online application.

If you provided this information and your transcript shows as outstanding on your ‘To Do List’, contact Student Services. Remember to include your UCID.

Visit the Faculty of Graduate Studies website for a list of international admission requirements by country. We do not assess transcripts until you apply and submit the application fee.

English Language Proficiency (ELP)

In certain circumstances, such as when you have a undergraduate/graduate degree from a recognized institution that teaches in English, the graduate program may waive the English Language Proficiency requirement. Eligible institutions must be listed as providing English language instruction in the World Higher Education Database (WHED).

All other applicants will need to submit an English Language Proficiency test score or a request to waive this requirement.

Program Specific Supporting Documents

No. There is no page limit for your resume. Include all relevant work and volunteer experience.

References should support your ideas but not dominate – we are primarily interested in you. When used, they must comply with academic writing standards.

Although we prefer APA, alternative well-known reference formats are acceptable.

Plagiarism is a very serious offence. It is your responsibility to understand proper academic referencing and citation.

Yes. APA or another well-known academic format is required in your program proposal. The ability to write academic papers is essential for graduate school and we are assessing your potential for  success.