At UBC Science, outstanding scientists and students strive to unravel the principles that underlie our universe - from the subatomic to the macroscopic, from pure mathematics to biotechnology, from ecosystems to galactic systems. Through the breadth and depth of our academic endeavours and the calibre of the people who make up our community, we take pride in discovering new scientific knowledge and preparing Canada’s and the world’s next generation of scientists.

A diverse range of highly ranked programs

With access to master’s and doctoral degrees through nine departments and 350 research groups, our graduate students work with world-class faculty to explore the basic sciences, and to pursue interdisciplinary and applied research across departments and units. UBC’s research excellence in environmental science, math, physics, plant and animal science, computer science, geology and biology is consistently rated best in Canada by international and national ranking agencies.

Committed to outstanding graduate training

UBC Science houses a wide range of prestigious NSERC Collaborative Research and Training Experience and related industry programs: from atmospheric aerosols to high-throughput biology, from biodiversity research and ecosystems services to plant cell wall biosynthesis, from quantum science and new materials to applied geochemistry. The options for enriched graduate training in industry related fields are almost endless.

World-class research infrastructure

Our affiliated institutes and centres include UBC's Michael Smith Laboratories, Stewart Blusson Quantum Matter Institute, Biodiversity Research Centre, Life Sciences Institute, Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, Mineral Deposit Research Unit, and TRIUMF, Canada’s national laboratory for particle and nuclear physics.

Top research talent

UBC Science boasts more than 50 Canada Research Chairs, 12 fellows of the Royal Society of London, and has been home to two Nobel Laureates. Our graduate students have won 15 prestigious Vanier Scholarships.

A diverse, supportive community of scholars

UBC Science is committed to excellence, collaboration and inclusion. Women account for 40 per cent of the Faculty's graduate enrollments, and the percentage of international students has increased to 48 per cent over the past decade.

Mission
To nurture an exceptional scientific learning and research environment for the people of British Columbia, Canada, and the world.
 
552
Master's Students
939
Doctoral Students
347
Graduate Degrees Awarded

Research Centres

Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology

Computational Sciences and Mathematics

Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences

Genomics and Biological Sciences

Human-Computer Interaction

Life Sciences

Chemistry and Materials Science

Physics

Sustainability

Research Facilities

Designed to inspire collaboration and creativity across disciplines, the new Earth Sciences Building (ESB) lies at the heart of the science precinct on UBC’s Vancouver Campus. The $75 million facility is home to Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, Statistics, the Pacific Institute of the Mathematical Sciences, and the dean’s office of the Faculty of Science. ESB’s updated teaching facilities will help Canada meet the challenges of a transforming and growing resource sector. Just as importantly, the researchers and students working and learning in the new facility will offer a valuable flow of well-trained talent, new ideas, and fresh professional perspectives to industry.

Research Highlights

UBC Science faculty members conduct top-tier research in the life, physical, earth and computational sciences. Their discoveries help build our understanding of natural laws—driving insights into sustainability, biodiversity, human health, nanoscience and new materials, probability, artificial intelligence, exoplanets and a wide range of other areas.

UBC Science boasts 50 Canada Research Chairs and 10 fellows of the Royal Society of London, and has been home to two Nobel Laureates. 

Graduate Degree Programs

Research Supervisors in Faculty

Name Academic Unit(s) Research Interests
Abraham, Ninan Department of Zoology Mammals, pathogens, genetic analysis, proper cell funtion, development, maintenance and proper functioning of T- and B-cells
Adams, Keith Department of Botany Molecular evolution, genome evolution, and gene expression
Adamson, Martin Department of Zoology Evolution, parasites
Adem, Alejandro Department of Mathematics Cohomology of finite groups, orbifolds, stringy topology, algebra, sporadic simple group, group actions, arithmetic groups, K-theory, homotopy theory, spaces of homomorphisms
Affleck, Ian Keith Department of Physics & Astronomy Condensed matter theory, quantum magnetism, quantum impurities, high-Tc superconductivity, low dimensional magnetism, quantum wires and dots, high energy theory, impurities in metals
Aiello, William Department of Computer Science
Algar, Russ Department of Chemistry Luminescent Materials; Bio/Chemical Sensing; Materials synthesis and biofunctionalization; Understanding the nanoparticle interface; New energy transfer configurations for sensing and imaging; Point-of-care diagnostic devices; Intracellular sensing
Allen, Susan Elizabeth Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences physical oceanography, coastal oceanography, forecast models, coupled bio-physics and chem-physics and all three models
Altshuler, Douglas Department of Zoology flight control, visual guidance, visual neuroscience, neuroethology, avian biomechanics, aerodynamics, wing morphing, motor control
Andersen, Raymond Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences, Department of Chemistry Chemicals produced by marine organisms
Angel, Omer Department of Mathematics Probability theory, percolation, random graphs, random walks, particle processes, scaling limits
Angert, Amy Department of Botany, Department of Zoology evolutionary ecology, population biology, biological responses to climate change, conservation biology
Anstee, Richard Department of Mathematics Discrete Mathematics, Extremal Set Theory, Graph Theory, Matching Theory
Aronson, Meigan Department of Physics & Astronomy
Auger-Methe, Marie Department of Statistics
Auld, Vanessa Department of Zoology development, nervous system, permeability barriers, glia , cell biology , genetics, in vivo imaging, epithelia
Austin, Philip Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences global climate; climate change; greenhouse effect; global warming; clouds; lightning; storms, Cloud physics, radiative properties of layer clouds, status cirrus formation, global climate, cloug aerosol feedbacks and climate
Aviles, Leticia Department of Zoology Evolution of sociality, evolution of sex ratios
Bachmann, Sven Department of Mathematics Mathematical physics, Quantum statistical physics, Topological states of matter
Bagger, Jonathan Department of Physics & Astronomy
Balmforth, Neil Department of Mathematics Fluid mechanics, nonlinear dynamics and applied partial differential equations
Beatty, John Department of Microbiology & Immunology Gene transfer mediated by virus-like particles, Light-driven reactions in photosynthesis proteins, Applications of photosynthesis proteins to solar energy
Beckie, Roger Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Ground hydrology, geotechnical engineering
Behrend, Kai Department of Mathematics Moduli spaces, Gromov-Witten invariants, string theory, Donaldson-Thomas invariants, Euler characteristics, categorification
Bennett, Michael Department of Mathematics Number Theory, Diophantine Approximation and Classical Analysis

Pages

Graduate Student Profiles

Andrew Robertson

Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD)
Production and applications of actinium-225 for targeted alpha therapy

Susanna Klassen

Doctor of Philosophy in Resources, Environment and Sustainability (PhD)
Assessing the contributions of organic agriculture to food system sustainability

Evan Bowness

Doctor of Philosophy in Resources, Environment and Sustainability (PhD)
Transformative Food Activism: Food Sovereignty and Urban Agriculture

Jake Lever

Doctor of Philosophy in Bioinformatics (PhD)
Personalised Treatment of Glioblastoma

Balsher Singh Sidhu

Doctor of Philosophy in Resources, Environment and Sustainability (PhD)
Reorienting rainfed agriculture: Increasing resilience to climate variability through optimized irrigation strategies

Neha Choudhary

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
Inorganic Medicinal Chemistry

Eric Bowes

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
Rational Catalyst Design: Towards Methane Functionalization

Poushali Maji

Doctor of Philosophy in Resources, Environment and Sustainability (PhD)
Air quality, climate and developmental implications of energy policies in India

Alumni on Success

Michael Hoff

Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD) [2012]
Job Title
Assistant Professor
Employer
University of Washington

Sherry Zhao

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD) [2014]
Job Title
Director, Business Development
Employer
Mitacs

Glen Hearns

Doctor of Philosophy in Resources, Environment and Sustainability (PhD) [2010]
Job Title
Self Employed
Employer
Self Employed

Costanza Casiraghi

Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology (PhD) [2012]
Job Title
Pre-clinical Scientist
Employer
Chiesi Group

Jean Michel Lauzon

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD) [2013]
Job Title
Product Manager
Employer
SAP

Bruce MacKay

Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD) [2004]
Job Title
Principal Chemist and Client Support Manager
Employer
Schlumberger Technology Corporation

Clement Cheung

Master of Science in Chemistry (MSc) [2014]
Job Title
Chemical Operation Technologist
Employer
Phyton Biotech LLC

Recent Thesis Submissions