Canadian Immigration Updates

Applicants to Master’s and Doctoral degrees are not affected by the recently announced cap on study permits. Review more details

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 41 per cent of the Faculty's graduate enrollments, and the percentage of international students has increased to 50 per cent over the past decade.

To nurture an exceptional scientific learning and research environment for the people of British Columbia, Canada, and the world.

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



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

Receiving more than $120 million in annual research funding, 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

or browse the list of faculty members in various academic units. You may click each unit to view faculty members appointed in that unit. View the full faculty member directory for more search and filter options.
Name Academic Unit(s) Research Interests
Silberman, Lior Department of Mathematics Mathematics and statistics; Mathematics; Analysis on manifolds; Automorphic forms; Group Theory; Homogenous dynamics; Metric geometry; Number theory; Representation Theory; Topology
Slade, Gordon Department of Mathematics Renormalisation, Lace explansion, self-avoiding walk, scaling limits
Smit, Matthijs Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences 1) timing and duration of
Snutch, Terrance Preston Michael Smith Laboratories, Department of Psychiatry Medical, health and life sciences; Brain Disorders; Animal models; genomics; Drug discovery & development
Solymosi, Jozsef Department of Mathematics Additive Combinatorics, Discrete and Computational Geometry, Graph theory, and Combinatorial Number Theory
Song, Dongjoon ,
Song, Liang Department of Botany Plant genomics; Environmental stresses; Seed development; Gene Expression
Sossi, Vesna Department of Physics & Astronomy Medical Imaging, Brain imaging
Srivastava, Diane Department of Zoology biodiversity, tropics, Costa Rica, insects, mites, food webs, habitat loss, Community ecology, conservation, how species loss from food webs can affect the way ecosystems function
Stairs, Ingrid Department of Physics & Astronomy pulsars, gravity, general relativity, radio astronomy, radio pulsars, pulsar searches and long-term timing, Radio astronomy
Stamp, Philip C Department of Physics & Astronomy Theoretical physics, strongly-correlated condensed matter systems, quantum magnetism, decoherence, quantum information, gravity
Straus, Suzana Department of Chemistry Chemical sciences; Proteins; Antimicrobial peptides; Protein-protein interactions; Structure-function; Viral membrane proteins
Stull, Roland Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Meteorology and weather; weather; Meteorology; atmospheric science; numerical weather prediction; clean energy meteorology; storms; transportation weather; forest fire weather; weather disasters; atmospheric boundary layers; aviation meteorology
Sugioka, Kenji Department of Zoology Basic medicine and life sciences; Cell division; Animal morphogenesis; Cytoskeletal dynamics
Sumaila, Ussif Rashid Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, School of Public Policy and Global Affairs Bioeconomics, marine ecosystem valuation and the analysis of global issues such as fisheries subsidies, IUU (illegal, unreported and unregulated) fishing and the economics of high and deep seas fisheries
Summers, Alexander Department of Computer Science Programming languages and software engineering; programming languages; software engineering
Sun, Chin Natural sciences; I am a field ecologist by training,having studied behaviour and ecology of mammals and birds
Sun, Jim Department of Microbiology & Immunology host immunity to Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb)
Sutherland, Danica Department of Computer Science
Suttle, Curtis Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences, Department of Botany, Department of Microbiology & Immunology Bioinformatics; Fisheries sciences; Immunology; Microbiology; Oceanography; Plant biology; Biological Oceanography; Environmental Virology; Marine Environment; Marine Microbiology; Microbial Diversity; Phage; Viral Discovery; Viruses
Tanner, Martin Department of Chemistry Enzymes responsible for the biosynthesis of the sialic acids in mammals
Taylor, Eric Department of Zoology possible threats to native fish; native BC fish biodiversity; fish biology and conservation; evolution, Evolution and conservation of fishes
Tetzlaff, Wolfram Department of Zoology Neural development and regeneration
Thachuk, Mark Department of Chemistry Reaction dynamics, mathematical techniques, Chemical physics
Tocheva, Elitza Department of Microbiology & Immunology Microbiology; Biological and Biochemical Mechanisms; Functional and Structural Proteomics; Microbial Ultrastructure; Cryo-electron tomography and Structural Biology; bacterial physiology; Microbial Diversity; Secretion systems and Mechanisms of pathogenesis; Novel bacterial phyla


Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Faculty of Science.


Recent Thesis Submissions

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2023 Dr. Parada Torres developed two new methods to estimate distances to nearby galaxies by using evolved stars as calibrators. Besides measuring distances, her research helped identify systematic biases and uncertainties in current calibrations. These new methods will help improve the determination of the rate of expansion of the universe. Doctor of Philosophy in Astronomy (PhD)
2023 Dr. Morova's research presents a novel computational framework to study the impact of non-coding mutations on the development of prostate cancer. By using advanced functional genomics techniques, he worked to identify key mutations that affect the growth of the disease, which provided useful insight into the study of prostate cancer genetics. Doctor of Philosophy in Bioinformatics (PhD)
2023 Dr. Saito developed statistical and machine learning tools for understanding the roles of nuclear physics in the production of the heaviest elements in the Universe, the so-called r-process. These developments connect the uncertainties of our understanding of the r-process and the properties of exotic nuclei. Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD)
2023 Dr. Forbes tested how ecological communities are affected by rising temperatures and fragmented habitats. Her experiments help us understand how species respond to global change. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)
2023 Dr. Yu developed a series of analytical and bioinformatic methods for quantitative metabolomics using mass spectrometry. These novel tools assist us in understanding a wide range of biological questions. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2023 Dr. Wiesmann identified novel conserved mechanisms of bacterial association with plant and animal hosts, providing insights into how bacteria can protect against, or cause disease. This work ultimately aims to help in the development of novel therapeutics to prevent bacterial pathogenesis. Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology (PhD)
2023 Dr. Huang studied the initiation and regulation of plant innate immunity with the model organism Arabidopsis. He identified an indispensable transcription factor that plays dual roles in plant defense signalling. His studies provide new insights into how plants activate the biosynthesis of defense hormones to prevent pathogen attack. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2023 Hawaiian volcanoes are direct windows into the chemical composition of Earth's deep interior. Dr. Williamson's research on Hawaiian lavas revealed a change in mantle chemistry along the Hawaiian Islands about 5 million years ago. Her work provides new insight for tracking the distribution of chemical reservoirs in the Earth's mantle through time. Doctor of Philosophy in Geological Sciences (PhD)
2023 Dr. Loos investigated sustainable materials for oil spill remediation using gels. This research was conducted in collaboration with a local company, and is now being considered for commercialization. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2023 Dr. Santos studied how pathogenic E. coli manipulates normal human intestinal cell functions. He found that E. coli modifies important human signalling proteins, allowing it to influence how cells behave throughout an infection. This research provides insight into the mechanisms E. coli uses to survive and thrive during infection. Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology (PhD)