Three levels of graduate study are available in the Faculty of Science: pre-M.Sc., M.Sc. (Master of Science) and Ph.D. (Doctorate).
- The pre-M.Sc. is designed for students wishing to take an M.Sc. but who do not have a qualifying undergraduate degree (typically equivalent to a four year honours degree). A pre-M.Sc. degree is normally one year in duration.
- An M.Sc. degree (research or course based) is the normal first graduate degree and is designed to require approximately two years of study. An M.Sc. degree must "show mastery" of a subject area but commonly also includes a research contribution as well.
- The Ph.D. degree is the highest graduate degree available and normally requires completion of a previous research-focused M.Sc. degree. Ph.D. degrees typically take at least three years to complete and four years is not uncommon. Obtaining a Ph.D. degree demonstrates the student's ability to complete a research project and effectively present the findings associated with it. A Ph.D. is normally required for academic positions after graduation and is sometimes a pre-requisite for high-end research positions in industrial and government labs. Sometimes, for students who are performing exceptionally well, transfer between programs is possible. This is most common for M.Sc. students who transfer to a Ph.D. program part way through their M.Sc. degrees.
M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees are normally awarded within a given department. Details on specific requirements may be found in the graduate calendar on the Faculty of Graduate Studies Calendar and Publication page. Additional information may also be found on departmental research web sites found in the Faculty of Science Departments table.