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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Biology

Offered by: Biology     Degree: Doctor of Philosophy

Program Requirements

The Doctor of Philosophy in Biology is a research-focused program that encompasses a diverse range of topics in biology, from molecules and cells to organisms and ecosystems, including development, behaviour and evolution. Research themes include: (1) molecular, cellular and developmental biology, (2) conservation, ecology and evolution, and (3) neurobiology and behaviour. This program allows students considerable flexibility in their choice of research and coursework and encourages cross-disciplinary thinking.

Thesis

A thesis for the doctoral degree must constitute original scholarship and must be a distinct contribution to knowledge. It must show familiarity with previous work in the field and must demonstrate ability to plan and carry out research, organize results, and defend the approach and conclusions in a scholarly manner. The research presented must meet current standards of the discipline; as well, the thesis must clearly demonstrate how the research advances knowledge in the field. Finally, the thesis must be written in compliance with norms for academic and scholarly expression and for publication in the public domain.

Required Courses (6 credits)

  • BIOL 700 Doctoral Qualifying Examination

    Offered by: Biology (Faculty of Science)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies

    Overview

    Biology (Sci) : The oral Qualifying Examination is a formal evaluation of the candidate's ability to proceed to the attainment of the Ph.D. Candidates must submit a thesis proposal in advance of the exam.

    Terms: Fall 2021, Winter 2022

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2021-2022 academic year.

  • BIOL 702 Ph.D. Seminar (6 credits)

    Offered by: Biology (Faculty of Science)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies

    Overview

    Biology (Sci) : Doctoral candidates are required to give a public oral presentation of their major results before submitting a thesis.

    Terms: Fall 2021, Winter 2022

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Complementary Courses (9 credits)

3 credits from the following [choose BIOL 601 and either BIOL 602 or BIOL 603]:

  • BIOL 601 Introduction to Graduate Studies in Biology (1.5 credits)

    Offered by: Biology (Faculty of Science)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies

    Overview

    Biology (Sci) : Foundational, cross-disciplinary skills in research and communication, including graduate student orientation, research integrity and ethics, equity, diversity and inclusion, science communication for a general audience, seminar critiques, elevator pitches, science writing for a general audience, finding/reading the literature, and peer review.

    Terms: Fall 2021

    Instructors: Gerhold, Abigail; Soper, Fiona (Fall)

    • Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor

  • BIOL 602 Molecular Biology Research and Professional Skills (1.5 credits)

    Offered by: Biology (Faculty of Science)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies

    Overview

    Biology (Sci) : Core skills in reading, writing, critical thinking and experimental design/interpretation and career opportunities, pertaining to the Molecular Biology research stream. Preparation for the first supervisory committee meeting, including paper/pre-print reviews, research presentations, and research proposals, related to students’ thesis research projects.

    Terms: Winter 2022

    Instructors: Gerhold, Abigail (Winter)

    • Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

    • Restriction: Not open to students who have taken or are taking BIOL 603.

  • BIOL 603 Organismal Biology Research and Professional Skills (1.5 credits)

    Offered by: Biology (Faculty of Science)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies

    Overview

    Biology (Sci) : Core skills in proposal writing, peer review, oral presentation, and practical workflows for reproducibility in science, pertaining to the Organismal Biology research stream, and including stream-specific topics such as field safety and career options. Topics include: paper/pre-print discussion and written review, research presentations,research proposals, rubric-guided peer review, and experimental design in field research disciplines.

    Terms: Winter 2022

    Instructors: Sunday, Jennifer; Pollock, Laura (Winter)

    • Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

    • Restriction: Not open to students who have taken or are taking BIOL 602.

*Or 3 credits at the 500 level or higher with the approval of the Graduate Program Director.

6 credits at the 500, 600, or 700 level in Biology or other departments, and approved by the Supervisory Committee

Faculty of Science—2021-2022 (last updated Apr. 7, 2021) (disclaimer)
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