MSc Dental Science (Thesis) FAQs

Prospective Students

What is the difference between the MSc Thesis and Non-Thesis programs?

The MSc Dental Sciences (Thesis) program is a research-based program. Students must have identified a supervisor and have been accepted by that individual before the application deadline. Please consult the list of Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences researchers to identify potential supervisors. Students can begin this program in the Fall, Winter, or Summer.

The MSc Dental Sciences (Non-Thesis) program is a curriculum-based program. Students do not have a supervisor and do not write a thesis. Instead, students must complete a practicum in a community health project. Students can only begin this program in the Fall.

What are the admission requirements for the MSc (Thesis) program?

Admissions requirements for MSc (Thesis)

What are the application deadlines for the MSc (Thesis) Program?

Please consult the Apply Now page for application deadlines.

How long does the program last?

The MSc (Thesis) program is a 2-year program. In exceptional cases, an extension may be granted. McGill allows a maximum of 3 years to complete the program requirements for Master’s degrees.

How do I apply?

Graduate students must use McGill's admissions platform. Please visit the Apply Now page for more information.

How do I find a supervisor?

We encourage you to review our researchers’ profiles. If you are interested in a specific professor, please contact that person to discuss the possibility of supervision. Review the Research Supervisor page for tips on contracting potential supervisors.

Our graduate programs assess applicants on a continuous (rolling) basis. That is, any application that is completed on the admissions platform will be available to all professors in our Faculty for review. Please indicate the name of the researcher you would like to work with in your online application. This will allow your application to be prioritized to this professor first. It is in your best interest to submit a completed application on McGill's Admissions Platform as early as possible since selection to our programs is highly competitive. Please pay attention to the application deadlines for each semester of study.

Applicants who have not found a supervisor and uploaded the Confirmation of Supervision and Funding from the Supervisor(s) and the Applicant to the admissions platform by the application deadline will not be considered for admission.

What topics should I discuss during the interview with my potential supervisor?

Possible topics of discussion include: the supervisor-supervisee relationship, research topics, and funding and grant applications.

Can I have more than one supervisor?

Yes, you can have more than one supervisor. However, if you have two supervisors, one will be the primary supervisor and the other will be the secondary supervisor.

When will I know if I have been accepted into the MSc Dental Sciences (Thesis) program?

McGill has a two-step admission process. The Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences does the first review of applications. Only those application packages recommended for admission are sent to McGill’s Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (GPS). The final decision regarding admissions rests with the University, which conducts its own review of applicant files and makes all formal offers of admission. The University’s decision is sent to the student 2 to 6 weeks after the Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences makes its recommendations. Typically, the University supports the Faculty’s recommendations. See the Apply Now page for more information

Applicants will receive an email from the Admissions Office when a decision has been made. Final decisions are available in Minerva. Decisions are never disclosed over the phone.

What do I do after I have been accepted?

Candidates who are offered admission are given a deadline by which they must accept or decline the Faculty’s offer. This deadline is indicated in the letter of admission. If the Faculty has not received a response by the indicated deadline, the offer of admission will be withdrawn.

Can I defer my admission by a term?

Deferrals will be accepted on a case by case basis. After 2 deferrals, you will need to reapply to the program. Contact the gradofficer.dentistry [at] (Graduate Studies Officer) for more information.

How do I connect with current students?

Please visit the McGill Dental Graduate Student Society and Graduate Student Forum webpages for contact information.

Current Students

What documents do I need to submit to the Faculty at the start of my program?

The File MSc Research Advisory Committee Form and the signed Letter of Understanding for Advisors/Supervisors and Graduate Students must be uploaded to myProgress by the end of the 1st semester.

The Graduate Student Project Description must be submitted to your Research Advisory Committee by the end of the 1st semester.

What are the key dates for Fall/Winter/Summer semesters?

All notifications pertaining to dates/registration are sent by the graduate.dentistry [at] (Student Affairs Coordinator) via email. Please refer to the Key Dates page for more information.

When are the add/drop deadlines for classes?

Please visit the Key Dates page for more information.

How many classes should I take per term?

We recommended that you spread required and complementary courses evenly throughout your first year of studies. Your second year will be spent working on your thesis and completing your Thesis Research credits.

How many credits do I need to graduate?

The MSc (Thesis) program requires 45 credits for graduation. Please refer to the Curriculum for more details.

How do I select complementary courses?

You should discuss this with your supervisor(s). For a list of examples of complementary courses, please consult the Curriculum page or the eCalendar.

Is there a list of courses previously approved as complementary but not listed on the website?

There is no such list. You are advised to discuss taking a course not listed on the Curriculum page with your supervisor.

Can I take courses offered by other faculties at McGill?

Yes. You can apply to take any course at McGill as long as the course is relevant to your thesis or program of study, you have the necessary prerequisites, you have permission from your supervisor, and you have permission from the course instructor. Please discuss this option with your supervisor.

Can I take more than the required number of complimentary courses?

Yes, but please meet your program requirements first. Some courses may not be counted towards your program and you may be charged additional fees.

Can I take the same course twice?

No – university regulations do not allow you to register for the same course more than one time during your degree progression. If you do register for the same course twice, the duplicate entry will be removed from your transcript and will not count towards your credits.

What is the minimum grade I must maintain?

You must obtain a grade of B- (65%) or better in all courses that are part of the MSc program, including complementary courses. Refer to Program Requirements for Graduate Degrees for more information.

Can I exclude a certain course from my GPA calculation?

Contact the graduate.dentistry [at] (Student Affairs Coordinator) to discuss your situation. Decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis.

What are the milestones for the 2nd year of the MSc Thesis program?

Please consult the Program Progression.

Can I defer an exam?

Please visit the Deferred and Supplemental Exams page, and contact the graduate.dentistry [at] (Student Affairs Coordinator).

What are the consequences if I need more than 2 years to complete my MSc?

Students studying full time for a Master's degree must complete the degree within 3 years of initial registration. Please consult McGill’s Time Limitation policy for more information.

How do I get a letter confirming my status at McGill?

You can easily get a copy of an official letter confirming your enrolment status at McGill by logging into Minerva. For more information on the steps to follow on Minerva, or if the letter available on Minerva does not meet your specific needs, please visit the Enrolment Letters page.

Can I change program?

Students in certain master’s programs can request to change their program option from thesis to non-thesis or non-thesis to thesis after completing at least one term in their program of admission. Upon transfer, their program progression is adjusted (see below). Students remain responsible for fulfilling all program and degree requirements applicable to the new program option.

  • Students who transfer from the non-thesis to thesis option following completion of less than 15 credits of coursework will be in Master’s Year 1 (Full-time 1st term)
  • Students who transfer from the non-thesis to thesis option following completion of 15 credits of coursework will advance to Master’s Year 1 (Full-Time – 2nd term)
  • Students who transfer from the non-thesis to thesis option following completion of less than 30 credits of coursework will be in Master’s Year 1 (Full-time 2nd term)
  • Students who transfer from the non-thesis to thesis option following completion of 30 credits of coursework will advance to Master’s Year 2 (Full-Time)
  • Students who transfer from the thesis to non-thesis option, will be required to fulfill all coursework required for the non-thesis option, will be in full-time or part-time status based on the number of credits they register for each term, and, will normally advance to Year 2 following completion of 30 credits of course work



What steps do I need to follow before I start my research?

Students in the MSc Dental Sciences (Thesis) program are expected to finish their coursework in their first year. During this time, your supervisor(s) can advise you about research. Depending on your research, field, and supervisor(s), you may need to prepare to start your research before you finish your coursework.

My research involves animals or human subjects. Where can I find more information about this?

Please visit Ethics and Compliance for general information.

Please visit the appropriate page for information on research involving:

· Animals

· Human Participants

· Export Controls and Controlled Goods

· Protected/Classified Information and Security Clearances

Please also consult the following pages for information on:

· Environmental Health and Safety

· Conflicts of Interest

Can I do my research outside McGill?

Students can look for limited-time study opportunities outside of McGill, for example, via Mitacs Globalink scholarships. These opportunities should be discussed with your supervisor.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

What is the fee structure for MSc programs?

Please visit the Fee Calculator page.

How do I access my e-bill and pay fees online?

Please visit the e-Billing page.

Where can I find job postings to become a TA?

TA opportunities are posted on Workday.

Students’ priorities should be on the timely completion of their coursework, research, and thesis. To maintain their status as full-time students, graduate students should not work more than 12 hours/week. International students must follow regulations as per their visa.


Are there any programs available for incoming international students?

The International Student Services website has more information, including about The Buddy Program. The McGill Dentistry Graduate Student Society also has useful resources for international students.

If I have a conflict with my supervisor, what should I do?

We recommend that you visit the Graduate Supervision website to familiarize yourself with the roles and responsibilities of supervisors and supervisees. Consult the information on the Supervisor-Supervisee Relationship page, in particular. If you have a conflict with your supervisor(s), you should try to speak with them about it. If this does resolve the problem, you can discuss the situation with the simon.tran [at] (Graduate Program Director). You may also consider contacting the gradofficer.dentistry [at] (Graduate Studies Officer) for a confidential discussion or seek the advice of the Ombudsperson’s office. The Ombudsperson acts as an advocate for students. As a final resort, contact the associatedeans.gps [at] (Associate Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies). The Student Support Committee of the Post-Graduate Student Society (PGSS) has additional resources and information available.

If you are unable to resolve the conflict and wish to change supervisors, it is possible to do so. Please consult the relevant McGill and the PGSS websites.


Where can I find general information and resources about writing a thesis?

Please visit the General Requirements and Thesis FAQs pages.

What are the general requirements for a Master’s Thesis?

Please visit the General Requirements page.

How do I go about preparing my thesis?

Please visit the Thesis Preparation page for more information about thesis components, length, and format and discuss these topics with your supervisor.

How do I submit my thesis?

Thesis submission happens in two steps: the Initial Submission and Final Submission. You should also be familiar with the instructions to submit your final e-thesis on Minerva. Note that meeting the initial submission dates does not carry any guarantee regarding graduation. The final thesis deposition signals inclusion on the graduation list.

What is the difference between intent to submit, initial submission, and final submission?

Please consult the Thesis FAQs and Overview of the initial thesis submission process through myThesis information sheet.

What is a Thesis Examination?

Please visit the Thesis Examination page.

Who can be a Thesis Examiner and what is the process to contact and nominate them?

Please visit the Thesis Examiners page. For more information about who can be an external examiner, please contact the graduate.dentistry [at] (Student Affairs Coordinator).

What are the University’s regulations concerning theses?

Please visit the Thesis Regulations page.

What is the deadline to submit my thesis?

Please visit the Deadlines page.

You can submit a thesis anytime during the year. However, for each of the three annual dates for conferring degrees/convocation, there are deadlines for initial submission and for deposition of the final, corrected version of the thesis.

Submitting your thesis involves a number of people and procedures. This may take several weeks. Please do not wait until the deadline to submit as you may encounter delays.

Who do I contact with questions concerning my thesis that are not related to research?

Please contact the graduate.dentistry [at] (Student Affairs Coordinator).


Can graduate students attend undergraduate classes of interest to them?

Please visit the GPS Registration page for more information.

Which buildings should I be familiar with?

McGill College 2001

Strathcona Anatomy and Dentistry


Service Point

Shriners’ Hospital for Children (1003 Decarie Boulevard, Montreal, H4A 0A9)

What kind of student organizations can I join?

As a graduate student, you are a member of McGill’s Post-Graduate Students’ Society (PGSS). Please visit the PGSS website for information about your health plan and student activities. The PGSS also has a guide to follow should you require support of any kind. As a graduate dental student, you are also part of the McGill Dental Graduate Student Society.

This is my first day in the Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences and I have just met my supervisor(s). What should I do next?

You should attend McGill’s Graduate and Post-Graduate Studies’ Orientation. The gradofficer.dentistry [at] (Graduate Studies Officer) will send information about the Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences’ Orientation. You may also consider reaching out to the MDGSS.

Can I have access to official McGill letterhead?

As a graduate student, you are not allowed to use official McGill letterhead. If you need a letter with the McGill letterhead, please contact the graduate.dentistry [at] (Student Affairs Coordinator).

However, graduate students can order business cards.

What are my potential career paths after obtaining an MSc degree? What do graduates do, or what have they done, after graduation?

Please consult the Career Planning Services website for more information. You may also consider discussing your Individual Development Path with your supervisor.

Is student housing available?

Yes, both on and off-campus. Please visit the Student Housing page for more information.

Can I take a leave of absence?

Please visit the Leave of Absence and Vacation Policy page for more details.

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