Master of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (MSc)

Overview

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology is home to more than thirty well-funded research groups, offering opportunities for research that is fundamental in advancing basic science and at the same time provides knowledge that is being translated to help tackle human diseases. The graduate programs in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology therefore provide advanced research-based education with the goal of preparing students for a career in academic, industrial or professional positions in British Columbia and beyond.

The Department offers MSc and PhD degree programs, with the option to transfer into the PhD track during the second year. Enrollment in the two programs combined has been steadlily increasing over the last 5 years from about 65 to 90 grads. The requirements for formal course credits are usually completed within the first two academic terms. Course topics include laboratory techniques, nucleic acids, membrane structure and function, cellular regulation, protein chemistry and molecular biology. Additional options include bioinformatics, genome analysis, cell growth and differentiation, bacterial pathogenesis and immuno-genetics. The balance of the program is research intensive and assessed by examination of a dissertation.

What makes the program unique?

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology has a rich history and on-going record of exceptional academic and research excellence. The Department was home to Nobel Laureate, Michael Smith and his legacy is sustained through involvement of a number of our professors with the Michael Smith Laboratories and the closely-associated Centre for High Throughput Biology. The majority of our research laboratories are located in the Life Sciences Institute, the largest multidisciplinary research hub at UBC. Key features of our research and graduate programs are that they are set up to enable top-notch work, with the very best facilities and with opportunities for collaboration with researchers from a range of disciplines. Research groups in the Life Sciences Institute include those with a focus on diabetes, cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, bacterial and viral diseases, chemical biology, blood research, molecular epigenetics and others.  We encourage you to visit the Department website to check out the specific research interests and achievements of the professors in the Department. A number of our professors have developed and maintain major and cutting-edge equipment that underpins research using macromolecular crystallography, mass spectrometry, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, high-throughput imaging and a range of spectroscopic techniques for macromolecular analysis.

The Department provides tuition benefits to more than half of all students and scholarships to assist with travel to meetings. The Department makes every effort to enable students to gain teaching experience through teaching assistantships, mostly to support teaching in undergraduate laboratory and lecture courses and for which further stipend support is achieved. Overall, the average support package for graduate students exceeds $27,000 per annum.

Quick Facts

Degree
Master of Science
Subject
Life Sciences
Mode of delivery
On campus
Specialization
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Program Components
Coursework + Thesis required
Faculty
Faculty of Medicine

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Program Enquiries

If you have reviewed the information on this program page and understand the requirements for this program, you may send an enquiry

Requirements

TOEFL (ibT) Overall Score Requirement

106
27
29
27
24

IELTS Overall Score Requirement

7.5
7.0
7.0
7.0
7.0

GRE required?

Required by some applicants (check program website)

Deadline Details

Application Deadline

Deadline to submit online application. No changes can be made to the application after submission.

Transcript Deadline

Deadline to upload scans of official transcripts through the applicant portal in support of a submitted application. Information for accessing the applicant portal will be provided after submitting an online application for admission.

Referee Deadline

Deadline for the referees identified in the application for admission to submit references. See Letters of Reference for more information.

September 2020 Intake

Application Open Date
23 September 2019
Canadian Applicants
Application Deadline: 15 January 2020
Transcript Deadline: 22 January 2020
Referee Deadline: 22 January 2020
International Applicants
Application Deadline: 15 January 2020
Transcript Deadline: 22 January 2020
Referee Deadline: 22 January 2020

January 2021 Intake

Application Open Date
01 March 2020
Canadian Applicants
Application Deadline: 15 May 2020
Transcript Deadline: 31 May 2020
Referee Deadline: 31 May 2020
International Applicants
Application Deadline: 15 May 2020
Transcript Deadline: 31 May 2020
Referee Deadline: 31 May 2020

Funding Sources

Applicants who are interested in nanomaterials synthesis, characterization and application, and nanoscience instrumentation may consider the NanoMat program that provides additional funding and professional development opportunities.

Applicants to UBC have access to a variety of funding options, including merit-based (i.e. based on your academic performance) and need-based (i.e. based on your financial situation) opportunities.

We encourage all applicants to review the awards listing to identify potential opportunities to fund your graduate education. The database lists merit-based scholarships and awards and allows for filtering by various criteria, such as domestic vs. international or degree level.

In addition to scholarships and awards, applicants may be eligible to apply for financial aid or other benefits in the form of loans, bursaries, tax credits, or similar.

Career Options

During the past year we undertook a detailed survey of all graduates who completed their graduate programs in the period from 2003-2014. Of the total of 138 graduates, we have tracked the career progress of more than 120 so far. Of this total, 35 have completed further training in graduate and postdoctoral positions, 20 have entered a professional program (mostly in Law or Medicine), 11 have progressed to a tenure-stream faculty position and 32 have full-time research positions in academia (8), industry (21) or government departments (3). Others have established careers in technical writing or management and the most recent cohort (13) are still at a very early stage of career development. Although we need to continue to track and refine our understanding of career outcomes, it is very clear that our programs enable our graduates to achieve career success in a number of academic, professional and commercial areas.

Tuition / Program Costs

FeesCanadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / DiplomatInternational
Application Fee$106.00$168.25
Tuition *
Installments per year33
Tuition per installment$1,698.56$2,984.09
Tuition per year
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
$5,095.68$8,952.27
Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible) $3,200.00 (-)
Other Fees and Costs
Student Fees (yearly)$944.51 (approx.)
Costs of living (yearly)starting at $16,954.00 (check cost calculator)
* Regular, full-time tuition. For on-leave, extension, continuing or part time (if applicable) fees see UBC Calendar.
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. Tuition fees are reviewed annually by the UBC Board of Governors. In recent years, tuition increases have been 2% for continuing domestic students and between 2% and 5% for continuing international students. New students may see higher increases in tuition. Admitted students who defer their admission are subject to the potentially higher tuition fees for incoming students effective at the later program start date. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Statistical Data

Enrolment Data

 20182017201620152014
Applications4944353335
Offers1615131110
New registrations1215121110
Total enrolment4033252626

Completion Rates & Times

This program has a graduation rate of 75% based on 20 students admitted between 2009 - 2012. Based on 11 graduations between 2015 - 2018 the minimum time to completion is 1.66 years and the maximum time is 5.00 years with an average of 3.01 years of study. All calculations exclude leave times.
Disclaimer
Admissions data refer to all UBC Vancouver applications, offers, new registrants for each year, May to April [data updated: 22 March 2019]. Enrolment data are based on March 1 snapshots. Program completion data are only provided for datasets comprised of more than 4 individuals. Rates and times of completion depend on a number of variables (e.g. curriculum requirements, student funding), some of which may have changed in recent years for some programs [data updated: 27 October 2019].

Research Supervisors

This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.

  • Overall, Christopher Mark (Blood research, antiviral immunity)
  • Roberge, Michel (Cancer therapy, mitosis, regulation, protein kinases and phosphatases, genomic instability, mitotic progression)
  • Sadowski, Ivan (Gene regulation contributing to cancer and HIV, and yeast, regulation of HIV-I latency and replication in T cells)
  • Strynadka, Natalie (Blood Research, structure-based design of inhibitors, antibiotic-resistance mechanisms, macromolecular assemblies, bacterial viability pathogenesis)
  • Tokuriki, Nobuhiko (Experimental evolution of proteins and molecular networks.)
  • Van Petegem, Filip (Ion channels, electrical signaling, Cardiac arrhythmia, Epilepsy, Calcium signaling, Structural Biology, electrophysiology)
  • Withers, Stephen (Drug development, enzyme inhibition, carbohydrates, glycobiology, metagenomics, directed evolution)
  • Yip, Calvin (Regulation of autophagy degradation , Chromatin modification / epigenetic regulation, Molecular etiologies of rare diseases)

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If you don't have a UBC Campus-Wide Login (CWL) please create an account first.
 

September 2020 Intake

Application Open Date
23 September 2019
Canadian Applicant Deadline
15 January 2020
International Applicant Deadline
15 January 2020

January 2021 Intake

Application Open Date
01 March 2020
Canadian Applicant Deadline
15 May 2020
International Applicant Deadline
15 May 2020
 

Supervisor Search

 

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