Physics Program Requirements

All Physics graduate M.Sc. students and Ph.D. students in the first two-years of study are required to take the Physics Graduate Seminar Course, a Milestone, offered during each Fall and Winter terms of the program. Each student needs to give one talk a year on the progress of his/her research project.

The Physics core graduate courses (half courses) are:

    • Classical Electrodynamics [Physics 9302]
    • Quantum Mechanics [Physics 9203]
    • Statistical Physics [Physics 9404]
Students are encouraged to take as many of these core courses as fit in their course package discussed and approved by the AC. Foundations of Physics (Physics 9610, half course) is the course on which the Comprehensive Exam Component 1 is based. 

Graduate students engaged in interdisciplinary research groups that need training in two and sometimes three different disciplines need flexibility in their course work. They should take Physics 9610 to prepare for the Comprehensive, but can still enroll in fitting core courses to deepen their knowledge in the particular course. The course package can be assembled out of all graduate courses offered by the departments of the Faculties of Science, Engineering and the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry. In special cases, the AC might recommend courses from other Faculties.

  • MSc Candidates

The funded length of each program is 2 years, although many students complete it more quickly, culminating in either a research thesis or a research project.  

Report Based:

The Physics M.Sc. Report Based degree requires the completion of 3 graduate half course equivalents (HCE) and a research project. At least 2 HCE must come from the Physics & Astronomy offerings. Attendance in the Graduate Seminar is required. The Research Report is not defended by the student, but approved and assigned a grade by the AC.

Thesis Based:

The Physics M.Sc. Thesis Based degree requires the completion of 3 graduate half course equivalents (HCE) and a research project. At least 2 HCE must come from the Physics & Astronomy offerings. Attendance in the Graduate Seminar is required. The Research Thesis is defended by the student.

PhD Candidates

The funded length of each program is 4 years, and requires completion of a comprehensive examination and a research thesis. PhD candidates are expected to obtain marks of at least 85% in all their courses. 

The Physics’ Ph.D. program requires the course work for the Physics’ M.Sc. degree plus 3 additional graduate half course equivalents (HCE). At least 2 HCE must come from the Physics & Astronomy offerings. The graduate course package is individually designed for each student on the student’s needs by the AC. The AC may recommend additional courses to be taken if they feel that the student lacks the required background for the student's research area. The Graduate Chair approval is necessary for all graduate course packages.

All Physics’ Ph.D. Students must pass the 2 component Physics Comprehensive ExamAttendance in the Graduate Seminar is required in 1st and 2nd year of study. 


Published on  and maintained in Cascade CMS.