Graduate Programs

The Department of Chemistry has one of the largest and most vibrant graduate programs in Canada, with more than 60 students pursuing Master of Science (M.Sc.) or Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees. All our graduate programs are research-based, where students perform original research to earn their degrees.

Masters in Chemistry

What is an M.Sc?

A Master's in science (M.Sc.) is the most common postgraduate degree. Students typically enter this program after completing an Honours degree in chemistry. An M.Sc. provides students with a more advanced knowledge of chemistry and experience pursuing a research project in a laboratory.

Why do an M.Sc.?

A Master's degree, or M.Sc., is a means to enhance your knowledge of chemistry and achieve a higher qualification after an undergraduate degree in chemistry. Many careers in chemical research or post-secondary teaching now require an M.Sc. degree. Some students will complete an M.Sc. before continuing on to a Ph.D. program, or transitioning to a professional program, such as law or medicine. Students will have the opportunity to work as laboratory teaching assistants and gain teaching experience. An M.Sc. is typically the minimal qualification for teaching at the college or university level and is common for new teachers at the high school level.

M.Sc. Program Requirements

An M.Sc. degree is typically completed in 2 years, although many students choose to transfer to a Ph.D. program after their first year without completing their M.Sc. The standard requirements for an M.Sc. in chemistry are:

  • Performing research under the supervision of your advisor and writing a thesis to present the results
  • Preparing and presenting a seminar on your research
  • Two graduate level courses

Ph.D. in Chemistry

What is a Ph.D.?

A doctorate, or Ph.D., is the highest academic degree and students who complete this degree are considered experts in their field, capable of practising science independently. Students enter this program after completing an M.Sc. or transfer from an M.Sc. program, although exceptional candidates will be considered for direct entry to the Ph.D. program from a B.Sc. Graduate students in our Ph.D. program gain experience in teaching through teaching assistantships and engagement activities.

Why do a Ph.D.?

Leaders of industrial or academic research programs typically have a Ph.D. A Ph.D. level education is also typical for senior managers in technical divisions of government or business. A Ph.D. is the preferred qualification for teachers at the college or university level, but some exceptional high school teachers also have Ph.D.'s.

Ph.D. Requirements

Students typically complete a Ph.D. in 4 years and complete a diverse set of requirements:

  • Performing research under the supervision of your advisor and writing a thesis to present the results
  • Four graduate level courses (only two if you already hold an M.Sc.)
  • Completion of a comprehensive examination where your knowledge of their specialization and general knowledge of chemistry is evaluated
  • Preparing and presenting a seminar on your research

Admission Requirements

Apply to Graduate Studies in Chemistry at MemorialStudents holding a B.Sc. degree in chemistry can apply for admission to either the M.Sc. or Ph.D. program, while students holding an M.Sc. degree are normally admitted directly into the Ph.D. program. Students who do not hold a chemistry degree are generally admitted initially to the M.Sc. program. Students registered in the M.Sc. program may be recommended for transfer to the Ph.D. program during, or subsequent to, the third semester of study. Admission to all chemistry graduate programs is limited and made on a competitive basis.

Students with non-chemistry backgrounds who are interested in studying the Department of Chemistry may also consider the Environmental Science and Scientific Computing graduate programs.