Combined Program for Degrees in Medicine and Philosophy (MD/PhD)

The Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa received approval in December 2009 to launch its MD/PhD Program. The program offers exceptional students the opportunity to pursue two degrees over the course of seven years. The MD/PhD Program at the University of Ottawa enrolled its first four students in the summer of 2010 and is based on a single integrated curriculum.  That is, it combines our existing undergraduate medical school curriculum with approved doctoral graduate programs in Biochemistry, Biology, Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Human and Molecular Genetics, Microbiology and Immunology, or Neuroscience. Epidemiology will be added in the near future.

The MD/PhD Program at the University of Ottawa seeks to attract the small cadre of students that are best described by the Canadian author Malcolm Gladwell as ‘outliers’ in his book, The Story of Success. Outliers could be characterized as a small number of gifted students in incoming classes that are able to perform above the ordinary because of several complementary virtues, which include among others: an innate curiosity and passion for discovery; a well nurtured talent to process information; early involvement in scientific exploration and health care delivery; sustained commitment to hard work; and the emotional maturity to communicate well with others. Upon graduation from the MD/PhD Program you may find yourself pursuing a career in basic science research, in disease-oriented research, in research focused on patients, in health care policy making, or in a pharma/biotechnology oriented field.

The selection process for the MD/PhD Program comprises three steps:

Step 1: At the time of application to the MD Undergraduate Program, BSc Honours students with a minimum grade point average of A- and M.Sc. students first express their interest in the MD/PhD Program. Applications are first reviewed by the MD Admissions Office of the MD Program.

Step 2: The MD/PhD application committee informs the MD program which students are theoretically admissible to the MD/PhD Program based on their background. A representative of the MD/PhD committee participates in all interviews of applicants to the combined program along with representatives of the MD Undergraduate Program . Following the interviews, all candidates under consideration are ranked.

Step 3: The MD Program will send the final offer letter for admission to the combined MD/PhD Program to the selected applicants.

Thank you for your interest. We are looking forward to hearing from you. Please visit the indicated links for more information.


Dr. Michael Schlossmacher,

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Last updated: 2015.09.08