McGill Alert / Alerte de McGill

Updated: Fri, 07/12/2024 - 12:16

McGill Alert. The downtown campus will remain partially closed through the evening of Monday, July 15. See the Campus Safety site for details.

Alerte de McGill. Le campus du centre-ville restera partiellement fermé jusqu’au lundi 15 juillet, en soirée. Complément d’information : Direction de la protection et de la prévention

Finding a Supervisor

PhD and Thesis Masters are research degrees that require an academic supervisor (Professor) to train you provide resources to enable you to conduct your research and produce a thesis that will pass McGill’s requirements. For a PhD it might take 3-5 years and for a thesis Masters, 18 months-2 years. As you see, this is a significant commitment both from you and your supervisor.

A Masters degree may also be obtained by a non-thesis route, this requires only taught courses and may optionally include short research projects. It is possible to switch to a Thesis based degree from the non-Thesis program subject to finding a supervisor and excellent conduct and performance in exams.

Finding the correct supervisor for your future career plans is a vital factor to your success. On one hand the thrill of mastering an area of medical knowledge can be exhilarating, especially if you publish your work and are recognized by experts as doing leading work. 

Research interests, personality, work patterns and expectations need to be compatible for you to fully benefit from the experience.

The next steps will tell you a little more about the types of research available and collect some information to send your details to potential supervisors.

What is a Stipend, why do I need one?

A stipend is a fixed amount of money provided to students pursuing unpaid work to help offset expenses such as housing and food.

McGill University requires that all students enrolled in a thesis-based degree receive an annual stipend of at least $18,000. The intent is that you need to be in the lab or office full time.

This stipend needs to be paid to you through McGill, through bursaries, your supervisor, your hospital, funding organizations etc. But you may NOT be self financed*.

There are then two options:

  1. Your supervisor must pay you from research funds
  2. You successfully win a fellowship. Depending on your nationality, status, education etc your eligibility for different fellowships will vary and it takes considerable preparation and time. Some supervisors may be willing to help you write an application.

Most successful scientists have research funding most of the time, but it is not unlimited, and can be a little unpredictable. It is rare for a supervisor to take on more than two or three students a year.

*(Surgical residents ONLY at McGill have special options such as the Surgical Scientist program and the Clinical Investigator Program)

What Research Topics are Available?

The mission of surgical research is to broadly to minimize the negative impacts of surgical treatment through reducing injury, improving recovery, developing alternatives, developing best practices and care pathways, improving quality and training.
We have cutting edge research in:

Topic Techniques

Work Environment

Outcomes: Epidemiology, data, statistics, computing Office
Education: Simulation, Assessment, Technology, Psychology, Measurement* Office/Clinical/Lab
Global Surgery: Health economics, health care systems, emergency medicine, telehealth International/Office/Clinical
Cancer: Cell biology, immunology, drug discovery, genetics, bioinformatics, genomics, epigenetics Lab
Regenerative Medicine: Cell biology, disease models, transplants, implants, therapies, tissue engineering, biomaterials, stem cells Lab
Digital Health: Diagnostics, decision software, patient support, education Lab/Clinical
Clinical Trials: Statistics, clinical measurements, epidemiology Clinical


Divisions of Surgery

  • Research is performed mainly at the Glen (Super) Hospital in NDG, the Montreal General downtown or at the Lady Davis institute, Jewish General (Outremont). Some of these sites specialize in certain procedures.
  • Surgery is organized into divisions, broadly representing the parts of the anatomy surgeons specialize in, listed in size:
    • General: GI tract, abdominal organs
    • Orthopedics: Skeletal system
    • Urology: genito-urinary system, including fertility
    • Cardiac: heart, cardiovascular and transplants
    • Plastics: skin, reconstruction,
    • Thoracic: lung, chest
    • Vascular: blood vessels, microsurgery



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You are a permanent resident/citizen of which country?
The minimum requirement is a McGill calculated GPA of 3.2.
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If you do not meet minimum eligibility requirements or if there are no positions available, you may not hear from us. We will continue to consider you for the next 12 months and may contact to alert you if a funded student position becomes available.
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