Master of Science in Oceans and Fisheries (MSc)
The Program is designed to train marine and freshwater scientists to undertake basic and applied research that will help foster healthy marine and freshwater ecosystems and sustainable resource use. Students broaden their interdisciplinary expertise and acquire professional experience in areas including fisheries science, aquatic ecology, environmental physiology, natural resource economics, marine governance, and climate change.
What makes the program unique?
The Program is the only M.Sc. program in BC, indeed in Canada, that offers both 18-credit thesis and 12-credit thesis streams, and is interdisciplinary in providing training in both ocean and fisheries science.
Contact the program
Admission Information & Requirements
Please consult this webpage for full details on how to apply: https://oceans.ubc.ca/graduate-program/prospective-students/how-to-apply/
October 1 - Application portal opens
November 30 - NSERC CGSM Deadline
January 15 - Oceans and Fisheries MSc program deadline for September intake
January 31 - Transcript deadline
January 31 - Referee deadline
1) Check Eligibility
Minimum Academic Requirements
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies establishes the minimum admission requirements common to all applicants, usually a minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC). The graduate program that you are applying to may have additional requirements. Please review the specific requirements for applicants with credentials from institutions in:
Each program may set higher academic minimum requirements. Please review the program website carefully to understand the program requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission as it is a competitive process.
English Language Test
Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.
Minimum requirements for the two most common English language proficiency tests to apply to this program are listed below:
TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language - internet-based
Overall score requirement: 100
IELTS: International English Language Testing System
Overall score requirement: 7.0
Other Test Scores
Some programs require additional test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Test (GMAT). The requirements for this program are:
The GRE is not required.
Prior degree, course and other requirements
Prior Degree Requirements
BA or BSc is required.
- Three Referees. Ideally, the referees should be faculty members who have supervised your studies and/or research directly - Curriculum Vitae - Statement of Intent intent outlining your research experience, proposed research project (or ideas), and explaining your interest in working with the particular faculty member(s) - Scanned copies of up-to-date unofficial transcripts of marks from all post-secondary institutions attended
Meet minimum grade averages set by Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies: B+ range or 76%; at least 12 credits of third or fourth year courses in the A grade range (80% or higher).
2) Meet Deadlines
3) Prepare Application
Letters of Reference
A minimum of three references are required for application to graduate programs at UBC. References should be requested from individuals who are prepared to provide a report on your academic ability and qualifications.
Statement of Interest
Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.
Students in research-based programs usually require a faculty member to function as their supervisor. Please follow the instructions provided by each program whether applicants should contact faculty members.
Instructions regarding supervisor contact for Master of Science in Oceans and Fisheries (MSc)
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
4) Apply Online
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
Tuition & Financial Support
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,698.56||$2,984.09|
|Tuition per year|
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
|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)|
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.
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.
Program Funding Packages
The Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries (IOF) has a funding policy that guarantees a minimum level of support to all Ocean and Fisheries (OCF) students. The minimum level of support is intended to assist with various aspects of student life including the cost of living and tuition, and may change yearly to account for changes in these costs, see below for the exact amount.
Please consult this page for detailed funding information: https://oceans.ubc.ca/graduate-program/funding/
Scholarships & awards (merit-based funding)
All applicants are encouraged to review the awards listing to identify potential opportunities to fund their 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.
Teaching Assistantships (GTA)
Graduate programs may have Teaching Assistantships available for registered full-time graduate students. Full teaching assistantships involve 12 hours work per week in preparation, lecturing, or laboratory instruction although many graduate programs offer partial TA appointments at less than 12 hours per week. Teaching assistantship rates are set by collective bargaining between the University and the Teaching Assistants' Union.
Research Assistantships (GRA)
Many professors are able to provide Research Assistantships (GRA) from their research grants to support full-time graduate students studying under their direction. The duties usually constitute part of the student's graduate degree requirements. A Graduate Research Assistantship is a form of financial support for a period of graduate study and is, therefore, not covered by a collective agreement. Unlike other forms of fellowship support for graduate students, the amount of a GRA is neither fixed nor subject to a university-wide formula. The stipend amounts vary widely, and are dependent on the field of study and the type of research grant from which the assistantship is being funded. Some research projects also require targeted research assistance and thus hire graduate students on an hourly basis.
Financial aid (need-based funding)
Canadian and US applicants may qualify for governmental loans to finance their studies. Please review eligibility and types of loans.
All students may be able to access private sector or bank loans.
Foreign government scholarships
Many foreign governments provide support to their citizens in pursuing education abroad. International applicants should check the various governmental resources in their home country, such as the Department of Education, for available scholarships.
Working while studying
The possibility to pursue work to supplement income may depend on the demands the program has on students. It should be carefully weighed if work leads to prolonged program durations or whether work placements can be meaningfully embedded into a program.
Tax credits and RRSP withdrawals
Canadian residents with RRSP accounts may be able to use the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) which allows students to withdraw amounts from their registered retirement savings plan (RRSPs) to finance full-time training or education for themselves or their partner.
Please review Filing taxes in Canada on the student services website for more information.
Applicants have access to the cost calculator to develop a financial plan that takes into account various income sources and expenses.
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.
Auger-Methe, Marie (Statistical Ecology, Polar ecology, Animal movement)
Cheung, Wai Lung (Impacts of fishing and climate change on marine ecosystems and their goods and services)
Christensen, Villy (Ecosystem (Aquatic and Terrestrial), Ecological Trends, Fishery Resources, Marine Environment)
Donner, Simon (Climate Changes and Impacts, Prediction and Climatic Modeling, Marine Environment, Climate change science, Climate policy, Science communication, Coastal Ecosystems)
Harley, Christopher (Ecology and Quality of the Environment, community ecology, climate change, marine invertebrates, marine algae)
Hunt, Brian (plankton dynamics, British Columbia coastal ecosystems, structure and function of pelagic marine ecosystems, response of lower trophic levels to bottom-up forcing by climatic and oceanographic conditions, early life history of juvenile salmon and herring)
McAllister, Murdoch (Statistical methods for fisheries risk assessment, estimation, decision analysis and management strategy evaluation)
Pakhomov, Yevhenii (Feeding ecophysiology of aquatic invertebrates and fishes, Antarctic ecology, Antarctic krill biology, Tunicate biology, Fishery ecology, Stable isotope ecology)
Pauly, Daniel (World fisheries, Marine life, Global catch, Management of fisheries, Fish growth and ecophysiology)
Pitcher, Tony (Evaluation of the impacts of fishing on marine ecosystems with special emphasis on restoration ecology, development of a predictive understanding of how fish shoaling behavior impacts fisheries)
Rosen, David (Physiology, behaviour, and ecology of marine mammals;, Bioenergetics, Nutrition, Conservation physiology)
Sumaila, Ussif Rashid (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)
Suttle, Curtis (Marine Environment, Microbial Diversity, Marine Microbiology, Environmental Virology, Biological Oceanography, Viral Discovery, Viruses, Phage)
Trites, Andrew (marine mammals, seals, sea lions, whales, dolphins, fisheries competition, population biology, ecology, Marine mamals research centre, biology of marine mammals, population dynamics, bioenergetics, fisheries)
Vincent, Amanda (Marine Environment, Fishery Resources, Sustainable Development, Protected Areas, Biodiversity and Biocomplexity, Ecology and Quality of the Environment, ocean conservation, threatened marine species, especially seahorses and their relatives, marine protected areas, Small-scale fisheries, nonselective fisheries, especially trawling, wildlife trade, community-based conservation, citizen science, multilateral environmental agreements)
Further Program Information
Within Oceans and Fisheries marine and freshwater scientists train to undertake basic and applied research that will help foster healthy marine and freshwater ecosystems and sustainable resource use. Students will deepen and broaden their interdisciplinary expertise by acquiring in-depth training in fisheries science, aquatic ecology, environmental physiology, natural resource economics, marine governance, and climate change.