Admission to the Master’s Program

Candidates for admission to the M.A. Program must have a four-year university bachelor’s degree normally in the social sciences or humanities. (A four year bachelor degree is regarded as normally consisting of 20 full courses). Applicants with arts and science degrees must have at least a B+ standing. Applicants who have already completed a J.D. degree or its equivalent in law schools must have at least a B standing. For further information on gaining admission to the program, please check our website under F.A.Q.

Since many more people apply than we can accommodate, meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.

Masters courses in criminology are designed with the expectation that students have a sound understanding of social science methodologies, are capable of writing research and analytical papers, and are conversant with criminological theories.

Students are permitted to complete the M.A. program on a part-time or full-time basis. Full- and part-time M.A. students’ programs begin in September. In all cases students are required to complete the program within the time limits set for the M.A. degree under the general regulations of the School of Graduate Studies.

Admission to the Doctoral Program

Candidates for admission to the Ph.D. Program normally have an M.A. degree in Criminology or an equivalent masters degree. Applicants must have at minimum an A- standing (or equivalent) in their M.A. degree program. Students from M.A. programs other than the University of Toronto’s M.A. in criminology may be required to take additional courses as part of their doctoral program.

Only a very small number of students are accepted into the doctoral program in any year. Admission to the Ph.D. program is dependent not only on excellent performance at the Masters level. In addition, each student accepted into the doctoral program must have a presumptive Ph.D. dissertation supervisor. In applying, therefore, it is important to indicate which member or members of the faculty would be appropriate supervisors for your doctoral research interests. Communicating with faculty members prior to submitting an application is strongly advised.

The Centre of Criminology assumes that the vast majority of Ph.D. students will be supervised by a core faculty member with their principal appointment in the Centre. Applicants who wish to be supervised by a cross-appointed faculty member must include with their applications a statement explaining why they wish to pursue the Ph.D. in Criminology, rather than in the discipline or department where their preferred supervisor is principally appointed. This might explain why the student wishes to pursue the Ph.D. in an interdisciplinary Centre, or why the other department is inappropriate for the applicant’s range of interests. These applicants should also consult with their potential supervisor about the likely composition of their dissertation committee, since all committees must include core Criminology faculty.

Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee acceptance. Please check our website under F.A.Q. for further information on gaining admission to the Ph.D. program.

Applications to the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies must be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies (SGS) through the online application which is housed on a secure server at the University of Toronto. The Centre will consider your application only after you have entered your personal and academic information in the online application, paid the application fee, and submitted the supporting documents by the deadline date.

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. At that point you can return to check on the status of this application including whether we have received your supporting documents.

For more information on the application process please visit:

Please Note:

Applicants whose first language is not English

Applying to either the M.A. or the Ph.D. programs, must take a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with both a verbal and a written component. An overall score of 580 and a written score of 5.0 on the paper-based test are the minimum standards. With the computer-based test, an overall score of 237 and a written score of 5 are required.

With the Internet-based TOEFL test, the overall score of 93 is considered by ETS to be the equivalent ot 580 (paper-based) or 237 (computer-based) on the current test. The Writing section score of 22 equates roughly to a score of 5.0 on the Test of Written English (TWE).

Official copies of these scores must be submitted to the University before a formal offer of admission can be made. Detailed information on the TOEFL can be found on their website.

Other tests

The Centre does not require GRE scores or other aptitude or proficiency tests.