In support of the University of British Columbia’s mission to be one of the world’s very best universities, the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (G+PS) strives to elevate achievement and enhance the education of graduate students in a global context.

The role of the Faculty is to support graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and the entire UBC graduate community in pursuit of a personal, professional and academic experience second to none. Among other responsibilities, G+PS seeks to ensure a transparent, consistent and equitable administration of graduate programs and awards, evaluation and quality assurance of graduate programs, advocacy for graduate and postdoctoral needs within the larger academic community, assistance with individual student and postdoctoral problems, and the provision of outstanding opportunities for professional development of graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty in their role as supervisors.

At G+PS, we have been defining graduate education as 'the formation of scholars* who make a difference for good in the world'. Here, 'formation' entails learning, but also cultivating habits of heart and mind, and developing a professional identity and sense of purpose. The scholarship pursued refers to the broad activities that bring knowledge, rigour, and creativity to the extension and transformation of knowledge, whether that is inside the academy, outside its walls, or crossing between.

At the Vancouver campus, there are close to 3600 doctoral students and 6200 master's students, the fourth largest graduate student population among Canadian universities.  About 30% of master’s students, and 44% of doctoral students at UBC are international.

G+PS plays a central role in the strategic direction of graduate education at UBC.  It facilitates discussion on campus about the future of graduate education, provides an information hub for all topics related to graduate education, celebrates the achievement of graduate students and alumni, and provides advocacy for graduate students & Postdoctoral Fellow needs.

In its administrative capacity it provides services to units and graduate students across all academic faculties on the Vancouver campus – from recruitment of new students along the entire lifecycle to graduation and beyond. Services include: orientation, health and well-being, professional development, program administration, and thesis/dissertation support among other things.

G+PS is the home of the Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program (ISGP), a unique graduate program that allows scholars to design their own curriculum under supervision of supervisors from any unit.

The university also hosts 850 postdoctoral fellows. UBC-appointed postdoctoral fellows can be found in over 90 departments and at affiliated sites including BC Cancer Agency, BC Centre for Disease Control, BC Children’s and Women’s Hospital, the BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute, St. Paul’s Hospital, and Vancouver General Hospital.

* term taken from Walker et al (2008), The Formation of Scholars. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.


Research Highlights

UBC offers over 300 Graduate Degree Programs in nearly every academic field imaginable, and opportunities to pursue cutting-edge transdisciplinary study that crosses traditional boundaries. There is sure to be a program offered that aligns with your interests.

UBC attracts $580 million per year in research funding from government, non-profit organizations and industry through 8,800 projects and UBC researchers file over 230 patents a year. Many programs have state-of-art new buildings and facilities. At UBC you will work side by side with passionate scholars as you delve into the most meaningful questions of our world.

Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.


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
2021 Utilizing an Indigenous Determinants of Health framework, Dr. Lebrun collaborated with Kanaka Maoli women leaders on Kaua'i on issues of food sovereignty, land tenure, and health. This research is being used to garner grants to establish a Food Sovereignty project on Hawaiian Homelands. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2021 Dr. Janet Currie examined the patient, clinician, socio-cultural and policy factors that have contributed to an increase in the off-label prescribing of domperidone to treat low breastmilk supply in BC. The research identifies approaches that can be used to improve the overall safety, effectiveness and transparency of off-label prescribing. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Singh examined how modern European technology played a central role in colonizing Punjab. He showed that technology played such a central role that coloniality should be understood as techno-coloniality. He demonstrated that non-Western traditions, such as the Sikh spiritual tradition, can play a crucial role in building a decolonial future. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Jafer explored politics of victimhood and agency in the everyday lives of a religious minority community in BC. She demonstrated that subtle acts of resistance, when motivated by religious convictions, create religio-political identities that insist on active citizenship and equal recognition, providing a new interpretation of victimhood. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Byers explored how rat movement in cities influences rat-associated disease risks and how interactions with rats impact the mental health of residents. Her work reveals that rats have negative impacts on physical and psychological health, and that mitigation of these risks requires holistic One Health solutions. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Jiang studied Chinese planning practices on sustainable cities and developed a set of ecological and social metrics for Chinese ecocities. This study contributes to urban community research, presenting a dialogic critique between Western scholars and local Chinese practitioners on how the ecocity concept has been framed locally in China. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Nasiopoulos examined how real and implied presence are similar or different from each other, and explored potential mechanisms that can account for the effects observed. The evidence from this group of studies furthers our knowledge of social presence effects. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Okot Bitek examined the haunting effects of historical events and the subsequent relationship between political and social memory in thinking about resistance, reconciliation and reclamation. This work explores the role of the Bitekian song as a space for social and political commentary, an integral aspect of the decolonizing project in Uganda. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Shamash examined Video in the Villages (VNA) and argues that VNA is one of Latin America's most significant cinematic archives and a critical producer of knowledge. This work helps broaden the field of film studies to include Indigenous and Latin American cinema, not as an addendum to film studies, but as integral to film history and culture. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2020 Dr. Barker examined the impact of the child welfare system on health and substance use outcomes among young people who use drugs in Vancouver. Her research identifies policy opportunities to improve the health and wellbeing of marginalized youth in care, and suggests extending services to facilitate successful transitions among those who age out. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)