Printer-friendlyIrving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences /  > Chemistry > Graduate Studies > Chemistry

MSc, PhD

Chemistry

Become our colleague. Become a leader. Engage in cutting-edge research in this dynamic research-based graduate program.

Graduate Degrees

Program Components Duration
MSc Coursework and thesis 24 months
PhD Coursework and dissertation 48 months

The chemistry graduate program at the University of British Columbia's Okanagan campus in Kelowna, BC offers tier-one research-based degrees to students in a collegial, close-knit setting.

Our dynamic faculty and students are engaged in a variety of research projects, many in collaboration with partners in government, non-profit agencies or industry.

Chemistry's research-based MSc and PhD degrees provide students with theoretical expertise, practical expertise and critical analysis, as well as experience in the application of scientific results to real-world problems.

Students enrolled in the MSc program will learn useful skills and methods as well as undertake practical research on real-world problems in the field of chemistry. Graduates with the MSc degree are prepared for employment opportunities in government, management, industry, education and consulting, or for further studies leading toward an advanced degree such as the PhD.

Milestones for the program include: preparing a research proposal; engaging in independent research, both in and out of the laboratory; collecting and analyzing data; writing and defending the thesis; and publishing research results. Most MSc students become teaching assistants (TAs) for at least one semester in order to gain valuable teaching experience and to learn effective communication strategies.

The MSc degree requires a research-based thesis (18 credits) and completion of 13 credits of coursework. Additional coursework may be required at the discretion of the supervisory committee.

Exceptional MSc students can transfer to the PhD program after one year if they meet program requirements, and if they're approved by their supervisory committee and the departmental graduate program.

The PhD is an advanced research degree that requires original and substantive contributions to the advancement of our understanding of chemistry. Graduates of the PhD program are prepared for careers that involve conducting independent research and teaching in academia, government and industry.

Formal milestones for the program include: passing a candidacy examination that demonstrates breadth and depth of knowledge in the chosen field and specialization; preparing and developing a research proposal for approval by the supervisory committee; and completing and defending a dissertation. It is expected that PhD students will also communicate research results via conference presentations and publications in scientific journals. Most PhD students become TAs in order to gain valuable teaching experience and to enhance their communication skills.

At the PhD level, coursework is required only at the discretion of the student's supervisory committee, depending on previous course credits from the prior MSc degree and the nature of their research objectives.

Related Programs


Research & Supervisors

Graduate students can pursue these and other faculty research and teaching interests:

  • Analytical chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomolecular and solid state modelling
  • Catalysis
  • Cell mechanics and mechanobiology
  • Chemical biology
  • Environmental chemistry
  • Enzymology
  • Glycoscience
  • Inorganic chemistry
  • Metabolomics
  • Nanoscience
  • Organic chemistry
  • Physical chemistry
  • Plant chemistry and biotechnology
  • Single-molecule biophysics
  • Theoretical chemistry and physics

Exceptional students are invited to apply to join UBC Okanagan's vibrant chemistry graduate program.

Please contact a potential faculty supervisor before you start the application process. We look forward to hearing about your research interests and career goals.

 
Gino DiLabio | gino.dilabio@ubc.ca | 250.807.8617
Research interests: Computational studies of radical reactions involving organic, inorganic, biological and nanoscale device systems; development of efficient computational chemistry methods; development for the modelling of large molecules and molecular crystals in which non-covalent interactions are important. Much of our work is conducted in collaboration with experimental and industrial partners.
David Jack | david.jack@ubc.ca | 250.807.8747
Research interests: Chemical and physical processes at solid surfaces; phase transitions; molecular computer simulations; heterogeneous catalysis; functional surfaces; nanoscience.
Isaac Li | isaac.li@ubc.ca | 250.807.8069
Research interests: Single-molecule biophysics, programmable molecular devices and biosensors; cancer and immune cell biology; cell mechanics and mechanobiology.
Stephen McNeil | stephen.mcneil@ubc.ca | 250.807.8751
Research interests: Synthesis and reactivity of organometallic and coordination compounds of cobalt; radical intermediates in alkene addition and polymerization reactions.
Frederic Menard | frederic.menard@ubc.ca | 250.807.8225
Research interests (chemical biology): use of small molecules to study and manipulate biological systems, design of molecular tools to study the real-time dynamics of cellular events; using organic chemistry, natural products are modified to label proteins involved in cellular signalling; the biology questions studied focus on protein-protein interactions, astrocytes communication, synapse elimination, and neurodegeneration.
Susan Murch | susan.murch@ubc.ca | 250.807.9566
Research interests: Plant chemistry and biotechnology; the identification, quantification and metabolism of plant secondary metabolites; the impact of these phytochemicals on human health, and the development of technologies for mass-production of specific plant chemicals as medicines, metabolomics-guided chemical discovery.
Edward Neeland | edward.neeland@ubc.ca | 250.807.9572
Research interests: Intramolecular hetero-Diels-Alder reactions of furans; development of new synthetic reactions.
Karen Perry | karen.perry@ubc.ca | 250.807.9570
Research interests: Mineralization of organic carbon; palaeoceanography; carbon cycle and climatology.
Paul Shipley | paul.shipley@ubc.ca | 250.807.8749
Research interests: Investigating the chemistry of medicinal plants and bacteria to determine the chemical differences between species and samples. This is used to improve biological activities, optimize natural health product formulation, identify adulterated products and classify species by their chemistry.
Kevin Smith | kevin.smith@ubc.ca | 250.807.9933
Research interests: Synthesis and reactivity of paramagnetic organometallic chromium compounds of relevance to catalytic carbon-carbon bond-forming reactions; single electron transfer reactions and electronic structure effects in synthetic organometallic chemistry.
Kirsten Wolthers | kirsten.wolthers@ubc.ca | 250.807.8663
Research interests (enzyme guided radical-chemistry): use of fast reaction and spectroscopic methods to probe the interplay between protein dynamics, function and structure; rational design of biocatalysts; study of vitamin-derived cofactors by biological systems; tandem inorganic catalysts; and non-innocent ligands.
Wesley Zandberg | wesley.zandberg@ubc.ca | 250.807.9821
Research interests (analytical glycobiology): the use of modern instrumental techniques to study carbohydrates, their oligomers (glycans) and their metabolism; developing new methods to investigate carbohydrates; and using chemical and analytical tools to investigate the functions of protein-linked glycans in cells and animals.
Asst. Prof. Fred Menard
Investigating biological mysteries at a molecular level
Assoc. Prof. Stephen McNeil
Flipping the classroom to improve gains and retention

Students & Theses

Meet Our Students

See what our students are up to—check out the Chemistry Graduate Students page for their research interests, supervisors, alma maters and contact info.

CCU

The Chemistry Course Union (CCU) is a chemistry student union dedicated to connecting students with each other, the university and the community in order to enhance their social, research, learning and overall experience at UBC Okanagan.

Theses and Dissertations

Search all UBC Okanagan Department of Chemistry student publications at cIRcle, the University's digital repository for published research and teaching material

Alicia Mercer, MSc Student
Using chemical probes to investigate diseases 
Stephanie Bishop, MSc Student
Environmental chemistry with an international scope

Admission Requirements

Master of Science Applicants (MSc)

Applicants to the MSc programs are expected to have a BSc in chemistry or a related field, with a minimum average of B+ (76%) or better in their third- or fourth-year classes; or at least 12 credits in third- and fourth-year classes in their intended field of study with an A- (80%) grade or better average; or significant formal training and relevant professional experience. Your background training must be sufficient for advanced work in your chosen field.

Doctoral Applicants (PhD)

PhD applicants will normally have a MSc in chemistry or a related field, with a B+ (76%) average or better in the MSc coursework and thesis. Your background training must be sufficient for advanced work in your chosen field.

In exceptional cases, applicants who do not meet the requirements stated above, but who have had significant formal training and relevant professional experience, may be granted admissions on the recommendation of the Chemistry Graduate Program Committee and approval of the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies.

MORE INFORMATION

Visit the UBC Okanagan Academic Calendar* for full admission and program requirements information; the Calendar is a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services and academic policies at the University of British Columbia.

* In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Master of Science Applicants (MSc)

All applicants to the MSc programs are expected to have a BSc in chemistry or a related field, with a B+ (76%) average or better in their third- or fourth-year classes, or at least 12 credits in third- and fourth-year classes in their intended field of study with an A- (80%) or better average. Your background training must be sufficient for advanced work in your chosen field.

English-language competence: For non-native speakers of English, minimum acceptance TOEFL scores are 550 (paper version) and 90 overall with a minimum score of 22 in Reading and Listening and a minimum score of 21 in Writing and Speaking (Internet version).

Doctoral Applicants (PhD)

PhD Applicants will normally have an MSc in Chemistry or a related field, with a B+ (76%) average or better in the MSc coursework and thesis. Your background training must be sufficient for advanced work in your chosen field.

English-language competence: For non-native speakers of English, minimum acceptable TOEFL scores are 550 (paper version) and 90 overall with a minimum score of 22 in Reading and Learning and a minimum score of 21 in Writing and Speaking (Internet version).

In exceptional cases, applicants who do not meet the requirements stated above, but who have had significant formal training and relevant professional experience, may be granted admission on the recommendation of the Chemistry Graduate Program Committee and approval of the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies.

MORE INFORMATION

Visit the UBC Okanagan Academic Calendar* for full admission and program requirements information; the Calendar is a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services and academic policies at the University of British Columbia.

* In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Required Grades and Credential Guide

Grades and degree credentials required by UBC vary by country. Search the Required Grades and Credential Guide—a guide to assist international students in estimating their eligibility.

International Advisors

An international student advisor can answer questions about immigration, medical insurance and the transition to UBC's Okanagan campus in Kelowna, BC, Canada. Go to the International Programs and Services website to meet the team.


Tuition & Funding

Tuition

Program Schedule Domestic (per year) International (per year)
MSc Full-time $4,707.66 $8,270.55
PhD Full-time $4,707.66 $8,270.55

Tuition is paid three times a year at the beginning of each term, as per the Academic Calendar: Winter Term 1, Winter Term 2, and Summer Term.

Visit the UBC Okanagan Academic Calendar* for full admission and program requirements information. The Calendar is a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services and academic policies at the University of British Columbia.

* In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Graduate student stipends are funded through a combination of internal and external funding awards, teaching assistantships (TAs) and research assistantships (RAs). This funding is guaranteed to the minimums stated below, assuming both satisfactory progress in the program and satisfactory performance as a TA (if applicable).

Students are expected whenever possible to apply for relevant scholarships and fellowships. These include principally, but are not limited to, Canadian Tri-Council scholarships, University Graduate Fellowships and Graduate Dean's Entrance Scholarships.

Stipends

The Department of Chemistry offers the following funding to eligible students through a combination of internal and external awards, teaching assistantships and research assistantships:

Program Minimum Annual Stipend Duration
MSc $17,500 per year 2 years
PhD $19,500 per year 4 years

Check the Assistantships tab for more details.

Teaching Assistantships

Teaching Assistantships (TA): TAs allow graduate students to develop skills in teaching, supervision, facilitation and student assessment while earning money to support their degree program. TAs may lead laboratory sections, hold office hours and/or assist in student evaluations and marking. TAs are mentored by the laboratory coordinator, the professor in charge of their section and via the Centre for Teaching and Learning.

Research Assistantships (RA): As a paid research assistant, RA students assist their supervisor or other researchers in conducting high-level research, which often contributes to the student's thesis. RAs are typically funded by the supervisor's grants, contracts or other sources of funding.

Scholarships & Awards

UBC Awards: The College of Graduate Studies administers merit-based graduate awards at the Okanagan campus. The College manages a number of award competitions each year and administers payment of all internal awards and selected external awards.

External Awards: All prospective graduate students (Domestic and International) should explore and apply for external awards and fellowships, including awards offered by Canada's three research councils: CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC.

Graduate scholarships and awards may also be available from foundations, private organizations or foreign governments (check with your country's education authority).


How to Apply

Find a Supervisor

Please contact our faculty before starting your application. Admission to the program requires the support of a faculty supervisor as well as meeting program-specific criteria for admission.

A complete application package will contain:

  • Online application and application fee
  • Official transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended
  • English language test (for non-native speakers of English)
  • CV or resumé
  • Three reference forms or letters

Applying takes time. We recommend you start your application two months in advance.

For full consideration students should apply by the following deadlines:

Intake Apply Before
Domestic applicants
September January 31
January June 2
May October 13
International applicants
September January 31
January June 2
May October 13

UBC's Okanagan Campus

The University of British Columbia is a global centre for research and teaching, consistently ranked among the 40 best universities in the world. In the chemistry graduate program at UBC's Okanagan campus, you gain all the benefits of attending a globally respected university while studying in a close-knit learning community.

UBC Okanagan

UBC's Okanagan campus borders the dynamic city of Kelowna, a hub of economic development with a population of more than 150,000 people—the fourth fastest growing population in Canada. In fact, the Okanagan Valley is rated one of the best communities in Canada to grow your business.

More than 160 buses travel daily from campus to key locations such as Kelowna's cultural district and thriving downtown waterfront. The campus is two minutes from the Kelowna International Airport, one of the Top 10 busiest airports in Canada.

UBC Okanagan is situated within the First Nations territory of the Okanagan Nation, whose spirit of stewardship for the land is reflected in the university's respect for sustainability.

A diverse natural region with sandy beaches, beautiful farms, vineyards and orchards, and snow-capped mountains, the Okanagan Valley features sweeping stretches of lakeside and endless mountain trails for biking and hiking.

Check out this 360-degree video: Kelowna From Above*.

* Best viewed using Chrome or Firefox (desktop), YouTube app (mobile)

Full-time UBC Okanagan students can live in residence, which offers modern living with easy access to academic and personal support. Residences are surrounded by hiking and biking trails, plus panoramic views of the campus and valley.

The Student Residence website includes helpful information about Important Dates for living on campus, plus options and resources for Living Off Campus.

Kelowna Off Campus Student Housing is a public Facebook group that shares notes about housing options, finding roommates and vacancies in Kelowna and the Okanagan Valley.*

* UBC does not verify or endorse information shared on this third-party website, which is offered here as a public resource only.

Join the club! Make friends with similar interests, compare notes and organize and participate in academic and recreational events in the Chemistry Course Union.

There are orientation events for all graduate students, including the College of Graduate Studies' incoming graduate student orientation, Jumpstart for international graduate students, and the Create New Student Orientation series.

Stay active. Take advantage of the many opportunities to get involved and play—from workout space in the new Hangar Fitness and Wellness Centre and our 1,561 square-metre gymnasium, to athletic courts, intramurals, fitness classes and nationally ranked varsity athletics. Have a ball in Sports and Recreation.

Relax. The Graduate Collegium is a gathering place where grad students can hang out, eat lunch, spend time with their fellow students, and attend or host special events. The lounge-style room is open seven days and week and is outfitted with comfortable furniture, kitchen facilities, and individual and group-work spaces.

The College of Graduate Studies is your hub for administrative support and such things as graduate workshops for professional development, and for assisting you from the admissions process through to your graduation.

The Library's Centre for Scholarly Communication (CSC) supports graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, staff and faculty in disseminating their research. The CSC provides one-on-one consultations and workshops, including writing support for theses, dissertations, journal articles and grant proposals.

Academic support programs, such as Supplemental Learning, Tutoring, Study Sessions and Writing Support are available through Student Services. Check out what they can do to help you.

The Centre for Teaching and Learning provides support related to teaching, TA training and use of technology in educational programming.

Career Development

With a Chemistry MSc or PhD degree from the University of British Columbia, graduates are well-positioned to thrive in a variety of occupations, such as:

  • Agricultural Scientist
  • Analytical Chemist
  • Biochemist
  • Chemistry Teacher
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Chemical Information Management Specialist
  • Chemistry Research Technologist
  • Consultant
  • Consumer Product Chemist
  • Environmental Chemist
  • Food Scientist/Technologist
  • Forensic Chemist
  • Formulation Chemist
  • Geochemist
  • Hazardous Waste Management Specialist
  • Laboratory Manager
  • Occupational Safety Specialist
  • Oil and Petroleum Chemist
  • Medicinal Chemist
  • Patent Agent
  • Pharmaceutical Chemist
  • Pharmaceutical Sales Representative
  • Pollution Control Technologist
  • Process Chemist
  • Quality Assurance Technician
  • Quality Control Manager
  • Science Writer/Journalist
  • Soil Scientist
  • Technical Writer
  • Technology Transfer Officer
  • Toxicologist
  • Water/Wastewater Treatment Analyst

Career Services

Map out your future and prepare to hit the ground running with resources and services provided by the Advising & Involvement Centre.

Tell your story with resumé and cover-letter strategies, and search Work Study jobs for experience relevant to your degree and career goals. You can also book an appointment to meet one-on-one with our career advisor.

alumni UBC

alumni UBC is a member-driven association that offers a variety of lifetime programming and communications to enrich the lives of UBC graduates.

The 'Your Next Step' program offers webinars, speaker series and professional development sessions. It is designed to provide advice, tips and resources in areas of career development to graduates for life after university.

Realize the promise of a global community with shared ambition for a better world and an exceptional UBC.

Inquire

Dr. Paul Shipley
Graduate Program Coordinator
250.807.8749
paul.shipley@ubc.ca

Last reviewed shim10/25/2017 10:38:34 AM