Degree Requirements

MA Degree Requirements

Both full-time and part-time study are possible. The MA degree takes a minimum of 3 terms (1 year) to complete if pursued on a full-time basis or a minimum of 6 terms (2 years) if pursued on a part-time basis.  There is a maximum program time limit of  12 terms (4 years) to complete the program under the Faculty of Graduate Studies regulations.

Admitted students are expected to maintain continuous registration upon admission as well as throughout their duration of studies.

MA students will be expected to take three full course equivalents (18 credits in total) in fulfillment of their degree requirements.

Core Courses

The core courses include:

  • CDIS 5100 6.0: Disability Studies - An Overview
  • CDIS 5110 3.0: Methodology
  • CDIS 5120 3.0: Critical Disability Law
  • MA Research Seminars
  • CDIS 6001 0.0: MA Major Research Paper. List of completed Major Research Papers

Elective Courses

In addition to the core courses listed above, MA students will be expected to take two elective courses from those listed below or in cognate areas.

Note: not all electives will be offered every year.
  • CDIS 5020 3.0: Social Justice in the Labour Force
  • CDIS 5025 3.0: History of Health Care Ethics from Ancient Times to the Present
  • CDIS 5030 3.0: Pedagogy and Empowerment
  • CDIS 5035 3.0: Mad People’s History
  • CDIS 5040 3.0:Experience, Identity, and Social Theory
  • CDIS 5045 3.0: Health Equity and Mental Health Policy
  • CDIS 5050 3.0: Disability in Cultural Context
  • CDIS 5055 3.0: Knowledge Production
  • CDIS 5060 3.0: Disability in an Age of Information Technology
  • CDIS 5065 3.0: Health Systems, Issues and Inequities in Comparative Perspective
  • CDIS 5070 3.0: Geography of Disability
  • CDIS 5080 3.0: Language, Literature and Disability
  • CDIS 5090 3.0: Public Policy and Disabilities
  • CDIS 6120 3.0: Social Inclusion: Theory and Practice in Education and Social Policy
  • CDIS 6130 3.0: International Development in Disability and Human Rights
  • CDIS 6140 3.0: Health and Disability
  • CDIS 6150 3.0: Critical Interpretations of Disability History

Student Progress Flow Chart

Below is a chart depicting student progress throughout the MA program.

Notes:

1.    All full-time and part-time MA students must take CDIS 5100 6.0 in the 1st year of study.
2.    CDIS 5110 3.0 is offered in the Fall.
3.    CDIS 5120 3.0 is offered twice a year – in the Fall term and Winter term.
4.    Students must have successfully completed all three core courses (CDIS 5100 6.0, CDIS 5110 3.0, CDIS 5120 3.0) and two 3.0 credit elective courses prior to starting any research for the Major Research Paper.

Note: not all electives will be offered every year.

Full-Time Studies

Term 1

  • CDIS 5100 6.0
  • CDIS 5110 3.0 or CDIS 5120 3.0
  • 1st elective course

Term 2

  • continue with CDIS 5100 6.0
  • CDIS 5110 3.0 or CDIS 5120 3.0
  • 2nd elective course

Term 3

  • Major Research Paper

Part-Time Studies

Compared to full-time students, part-time students have a more flexible study plan. Other than the above stated restrictions, they are free to enrol in either core or elective courses in any term from term 1 to term 5.

In short, part-time students will take on a 6.0 credit course load within one term from term 1 to term 5.

The following is a suggested study plan:

  • Term 1 - CDIS 5100 6.0 and may be a core or elective course
  • Term 2 - continue with CDIS 5100 6.0 and may be a core or elective course
  • Term 3 - either one or two elective courses
  • Term 4 - either a core or elective course
  • Term 5 - either a core or elective course
  • Term 6 - Major Research Paper

PhD Degree Requirements

Unlike Master's-level studies, only full-time study is available at the doctoral level. The PhD degree takes a minimum of 12 terms (4 years) to complete under full-time study. With successful petitions for an “Extension of Program Time Limit”, students may be granted  up to 3 additional terms by the Faculty of Graduate Studies if a student did not complete at 18 terms (or 6 years).

Admitted students are expected to maintain continuous registration upon admission as well as throughout the course of study at the full-time status.

All PhD candidates will be required to develop a plan of study providing an integrated, coherent rationale for their studies as they relate to coursework, the comprehensive examination and the dissertation.

The plan of study must demonstrate the use of critical theory in disability studies as well as an interdisciplinary approach that will chart new areas in scholarship in this field.

Upon admission, each student will be assigned an advisor (based on student’s field of interest as indicated in statement of interest and advisor’s area of expertise) with whom the student will meet to decide on the plan of study. The plan must be approved by both the student’s advisor and the Program Director during the first term of study. By the end of the second term, the student will submit a finalized plan of study, which will be a refinement of the first.

Upon completion of their first year of study, students will be required to choose a supervisor, who may or may not be their original advisor, to oversee their dissertation process. From this point on, the new supervisor will assume the academic duties of the original advisor.

The PhD (Critical Disability Studies) program has three major components: (1) course work, (2) a comprehensive examination, and (3) the dissertation.

Core Courses

Students will be required to take one full 6.0 credit core course - CDIS 6100 6.00: Doctoral Seminar in Critical Disability Theory and Research . Enrolment in this course will be limited to students registered in the program. It is expected that students will complete this course over two terms in the first year of study.

Elective Courses

Students will be required to complete any three 3.0 credit courses from among the program’s electives. Although approval from the Program Director will be required, students will be encouraged to take courses from other graduate programs to fulfill their elective requirements. No specialization is required, as the students will obtain general competencies from engagement in all four fields. Some electives will be cross-listed with other graduate programs and open to all graduate students at York, but students enrolled in the Critical Disability Studies program will receive priority of enrolment. It is expected that students will complete their elective requirements over the first three terms of study.

Note 1:
If prior to admission, students have not taken a graduate level methodology course, CDIS 5110 3.0 will be required in addition to the three electives for a total of 4 electives.

Note 2:
CDIS 5120 3.0 Law is primarily offered to M.A. students; however it is accessible to PhD students who have not previously taken a Law course. If prior to admission, students have not taken a Law course relating to issues of disability, CDIS 5120 3.0 will be required in addition to two electives for a total of 3 electives.

Note 3:
Please note that not all electives will be offered every year.

  • CDIS 5110 3.0: Methodology
  • CDIS 5120 3.0: Law
  • CDIS 5020 3.0: Social Justice in the Labour Force
  • CDIS 5025 3.0: History of Health Care Ethics from Ancient Times to the Present
  • CDIS 5030 3.0: Pedagogy and Empowerment
  • CDIS 5035 3.0: Mad People’s History
  • CDIS 5040 3.0: Experience, Identity, and Social Theory
  • CDIS 5050 3.0: Disability in Cultural Context
  • CDIS 5055 3.0: Knowledge Production
  • CDIS 5060 3.0: Disability in an Age of Information Technology
  • CDIS 5070 3.0: Geography of Disability
  • CDIS 5080 3.0: Language, Literature and Disability
  • CDIS 5090 3.0: Public Policy and Disability
  • CDIS 6120 3.0: Social Inclusion: Theory and Practice in Education and Social Policy
  • CDIS 6130 3.0: International Development in Disability and Human Rights
  • CDIS 6140 3.0: Health and Disability
  • CDIS 6150 3.0: Critical Interpretations of Disability History

Comprehensive Examination

Comprehensive exams will take place at the beginning of the third year of study. The examination will consist of three 25-page papers, each providing a comprehensive literature review of a designated area of specialization, within the context of all three fields within the program. Candidates will be required to demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of the areas designated on the examination during a subsequent oral examination addressing the material on the reading lists in relation to significant critical and theoretical issues. In the case of failure, students will be permitted to re-sit the examination only once. The re-examination will take place within six months of the date of the first examination. A second failure will result in expulsion of the student from the program.

Students are required to submit a Notification of Comprehensive Paper Supervisors Form  to the Critical Disability Studies graduate program office (Room 409, HNES Building) as soon as the 3 supervisors are determined.

Dissertation

After successful completion of the comprehensive examination, students will begin preparation of the dissertation. The dissertation, with a concentration in one of the fields, but with broad application of all three, will make an original contribution to scholarship in Critical Disability Studies. The dissertation process will have four stages:

  • The establishment of a Supervisory Committee. The Committee will consist of three faculty members, at least two of whom will be members of the Doctoral Program (Critical Disability Studies).
  • The preparation of a dissertation proposal, of 3500 words maximum, as per Faculty of Graduate Studies standards, which must be approved by the Program Director, the student’s Supervisory Committee, and the Faculty of Graduate Studies and formally presented to the program’s standing Dissertation Advisory Committee composed of faculty in the program.
  • The writing of a dissertation acceptable to the Supervisory Committee and formally approved as examinable by the members of that committee.
  • The successful completion of an oral examination, centered on the dissertation and matters related to it, and presided over by an Examining Committee. The Examining Committee will be recommended by the Program Director for approval and appointment by the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

Supervisor & Supervisory Committee Approval

As per Faculty of Graduate Studies Regulations, for doctoral students to remain in good academic standing, they must have a supervisor and supervisory committee in place by the following deadlines:

  • A supervisor must be recommended by the appropriate graduate program director for approval by the Dean of Graduate Studies no later than the end of the fifth term of study (end of second term of PhD II). Students will not be able to register in the seventh term of study (the onset of PhD III) unless a supervisor has been approved.
  • A supervisory committee must be recommended by the appropriate graduate program director for approval by the Dean of Graduate Studies no later than the end of the eighth term of study (end of second term of PhD III). Students will not be able to register in the tenth term of study (the onset of PhD IV) unless a supervisory committee has been approved.
For the graduate program to meet the above stated recommendation deadlines, students are required to submit a Supervisor & Supervisory Committee Approval (.doc) form to the Critical Disability Studies graduate program office (Room 409, HNES Building) no later than two weeks prior to the FGS deadlines.

Student Progress Flow-Chart