Physics Program Requirement

All MSc students and PhD students in their first two years of study must enroll in and successfully complete the fall and winter terms of the Physics and Astronomy Graduate Seminar. Each student needs to give one talk a year on the progress of their research project.

MSc Candidates

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

Students are required to complete 3.0 HCE (half-course equivalents); at least 2.0 HCE must come from courses offered by the Physics and Astronomy Department.

The Research Thesis is defended by the student, with a public lecture and questions from a thesis committee and chair. The Research Report is not defended by the student but approved and assigned a grade by the Advisory Committee.

Ph.D. Candidates

The funded length of each program is 4 years and requires completion of a comprehensive examination and a research thesis. Ph.D. 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 3.0 HCE; at least 2.0 HCE must come from courses offered by the Physics and Astronomy Department. This course package must include Physics 9610. The graduate course package is individually designed for each student on the student’s needs by the Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee 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 Exam. 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 area. 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 Advisory Committee might recommend courses from other Faculties.