Rehabilitation Sciences constitutes the study of physical and occupational performance with special emphasis on individuals with impairments and disabilities. Encompassing the three dimensions of health as determined by the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (body structure and function, activity, and participation), Rehabilitation Sciences spans the individual, community, and social levels of society. 

The Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Sciences (PhD) is designed to: 

  • Prepare students to conduct independent and collaborative research in the discipline of rehabilitation sciences.
  • Facilitate students to conduct significant and original research which will contribute to the body of evidence-based rehabilitation practice.
  • Prepare rehabilitation scholars and scientists for leadership roles in academia, public health, education and industry.
  • Fill a societal demand for the need of doctoral trained individuals in the discipline of rehabilitation to fill current and expected faculty vacancies in Canada.
  • Enhance the links between theoretical advances and practice through the development of the conceptual knowledge base of rehabilitation.
  • Develop leaders in rehabilitation research who can initiate and complete novel, innovative and effective rehabilitation treatments.

A thesis-based Master’s degree in rehabilitation sciences, or other related fields of study along with appropriate undergraduate and graduate courses, are generally required for admission. Appropriate coursework will be selected in consultation with the candidate’s committee and will depend on the student’s background and field of study. 

“The rehabilitation sciences program stood out to me for its diverse and accomplished faculty, as well as a highly collaborative research environment.” – Gordon Tao, PhD Student

All candidates are required to complete a written and oral comprehensive examination after completion of all course work. Following the comprehensive examination, the student will present a formal thesis proposal for approval by the candidate’s committee before proceeding to research work which will culminate in a formal thesis defence. The major requirement of the PhD is completion of a research thesis demonstrating the ability to conduct significant and original scientific research.

Being interested in health care and having a background in Kinesiology, the Rehabilitation Sciences graduate program gave me the opportunity to continue pursuing research related to exercise physiology while providing experience in the healthcare field, which is important if I were to decide to shift from an academic to clinical driven career.
– Reid Mitchell, PhD Student