Future Students

The Health Research Methodology Program is offered at both the MSc and PhD levels on a part-time or full-time basis. Below are brief descriptions of each Program stream.

MSc Program

HRM at the MSc level aims to develop and refine critical and scholarly skills in the methodological aspects of applied clinical and health systems research. The specific skill domains include:

  • Research synthesis
  • Research design
  • Data gathering
  • Knowledge translation
  • Data-analysis and interpretation
  • Communication of research results
  • Selection and development 
    of measurement tools

Students may opt for the thesis-based or course-based MSc degree. Individuals from a wide range of professional backgrounds and disciplines are eligible for admission.

Health care professionals who enrol in the program are expected to become independent clinician-investigators able to conduct high quality research and advance the methodology of applied research in health and health care.

Students who enter the MSc program from non-clinical backgrounds may:

  1. Continue their studies at the PhD level (in the HRM PhD program or elsewhere) with the goal of assuming positions in academia, industry or government; or
  2. Pursue careers as MSc trained professionals, for example, research associates in university, industry or government positions where research methodology skills are a requirement of an asset.

PhD Program

HRM at the PhD level aims to prepare students for independent scholarly work that results in the creation of new knowledge relevant to enhancing the health of Canadians. Graduates possess advanced methodological skills that enable them to engage in a broad range of research investigations relevant to applied clinical and/or health systems issues.

Program objectives are achieved through a combination of

  • Formal course work
  • A comprehensive examination
  • Close interaction and collaboration with faculty members in different research environments
  • Independent research leading to a thesis

In their dissertation work, students undertake scholarly inquiry with particular emphasis on methodologic issues.

Students are expected to either:

  1. Develop new health research methods and/or analytic frameworks; or
  2. Apply existing ones to health care problems in a unique way.

PhD graduates are expected to assume leadership positions in health research methodology within academic as well as in the public and private sectors, and to contribute to the solution of clinical and health system problems nationally and beyond.

Why Pursue a Graduate Degree?

Find out more about HRM and other FHS grad programs from current students:

HRM Graduate Student Ambassador

Please find more information on this HSGS initiative here.

PhD Student Daeria Lawson, is the HRM Student Ambassador. She can be contacted at lawsod3@mcmaster.ca

The best way to contact Student Ambassador's is via e-mail. Please put "Question to Ambassador" in the subject line to ensure that your message does not get lost. Please also note that all ambassadors are volunteers as well as current graduate students with busy schedules, so kindly allow 48 hours for their responses.

MSc & PhD Fields of Specialization

The HRM Program offers students the opportunity to specialize in one of three fields. The fields of specialization are:

  • Clinical Epidemiology
  • Biostatistics (PhD Only)
  • Health Technology Assessment

All offered at the MSc and PhD level, except for Biostatistics, which is offered at the PhD level. To review the training goals and career foci for each field click here: Fields of Specialization.