Director of R&D
The Botany Department is one of the largest and strongest plant-focused departments in North America with roots extending back to the founding of UBC in 1915. Our departmental community of more than 260 consists of 40 full-time faculty members, several part-time faculty or associates, about 100 graduate students, numerous post-doctoral fellows and research associates, laboratory technicians, and a support staff of secretarial, equipment, herbarium, stores, workshop and greenhouse personnel. Our graduate students are expected to make influential contributions to scientific discovery and discourse, engage in formal and informal teaching and mentoring, and progress to careers in academia, industry, government and non-governmental organizations. The Botany Grad Student Association forms an active group, organizing talks, study sessions, field trips and a variety of social activities. Recent Botany graduates have gone on to prestigious postdoctoral and teaching/research positions in Canada, the USA and abroad (England, China, Taiwan, South Korea, Germany, France, Sweden).
The Botany Department offers unparalleled opportunities for research and teaching/learning with faculty members at the leading-edge of their disciplines. Specializations within Botany range from molecular genetics to climate change impacts on marine and terrestrial ecosystems. Collaborations between Botany faculty and other departments including Zoology, Chemistry, Forestry, Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, and the Michael Smith Laboratories, bring a rich array of potential topic areas for research to Botany graduate students. State-of-the-art facilities for bio-imaging, as well as a world-class herbarium and access to living collections in the Canadian Centre for the Culture of Microorganisms, add to the overall uniqueness of the Botany program.
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.
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:
Overall score requirement: 92
Overall score requirement: 6.5
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.
All applicants have to submit transcripts from all past post-secondary study. Document submission requirements depend on whether your institution of study is within Canada or outside of Canada.
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.
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.
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,732.53||$3,043.77|
|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)||$969.17 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $17,242.00 (check cost calculator)|
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.
All full-time students who begin a UBC-Vancouver PhD program in September 2021 or later will be provided with a funding package of at least $22,000 for each of the first four years of their PhD. The funding package may consist of any combination of internal or external awards, teaching-related work, research assistantships, and graduate academic assistantships. Please note that many graduate programs provide funding packages that are substantially greater than $22,000 per year. Please check with your prospective graduate program for specific details of the funding provided to its PhD students.
Based on the criteria outlined below, 41 students within this program were included in this study because they received funding through UBC in the form of teaching, research/academic assistantships or internal or external awards averaging $28,912.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
65 students graduated between 2005 and 2013: 1 graduate is seeking employment; 1 is in a non-salaried situation; for 5 we have no data (based on research conducted between Feb-May 2016). For the remaining 58 graduates:
These statistics show data for the Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.
This program has a graduation rate of 84.62% based on 26 students admitted between 2007 - 2010. Based on 28 graduations between 2016 - 2019 the minimum time to completion is 3.66 years and the maximum time is 8.66 years with an average of 5.83 years of study. All calculations exclude leave times.
Admissions data refer to all UBC Vancouver applications, offers, new registrants for each year, May to April [data updated: 22 April 2021]. 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: 29 October 2020].
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.
|2021||Dr. Mathur examined the evolutionary history of apicomplexan parasites, which are a large group of important animal parasites that cause malaria and other diseases. Her research used new single-cell techniques and has altered our fundamental understanding of how these parasites evolved.|
|2021||Dr. Yaghmaiean uncovered a novel group of proteins called receptor-like cytoplasmic kinases, which function downstream of other proteins and have redundant functions of transducing immune signals in the model plant Arabidopsis. These results provide new insights on such proteins as common transducers in different plant immune signalling events.|
|2021||Dr. Livingston studied the cell biology of cannabis glandular trichomes, which are tiny structures that produce cannabinoids such as THC and CBD. His work revealed how the trichomes develop, and how the plant cells can produce and store cannabinoids. His work provides a molecular roadmap for cannabis production in a growing Canadian industry.|
|2021||Dr. Montenegro Alonso studied a specific small protein that is secreted by the smut fungus when it infects barley. She revealed its timing of expression, localization in the plant and the role it plays in weakening the plant defenses. These findings can be used to better understand plant-fungal interactions and to develop resistant crop varieties.|
|2021||Dr. Huang explores the genomic mechanisms of adaptation. He identified structural changes in the chromosomes of dune-adapted sunflowers and revealed the importance of these changes to facilitating ecological divergence. These discoveries advance our understanding of species' adaptation to different environments and the formation of biodiversity.|
|2021||Dr. Kapos used a mix of genetic and molecular biology techniques to examine the mechanisms of plant immunity. His work determined roles of several novel proteins in the regulation of immune signalling and added to our understanding of how protein degradation helps to modulate defence responses in plants.|
|2020||Dr. Soto Gomez used genomics to reconstruct the evolutionary history of the three major plant groups Pandanales, Dioscoreales and the Dioscorea yams, shedding light on their relationships, genomes, biogeography and morphology. She also developed methods to uncover wild yam species of utility for improving crop yams, which feed millions globally.|
|2020||Dr. Irwin studied the molecular biology and evolution of the cell nucleus by examining how nuclear processes function in diverse organisms. His work revealed the capacity for viruses to shape cellular evolution, identified novel nuclear mechanisms, and highlighted the utility of new model organisms for future research.|
|2020||Dr. Hersh studied why asexual plants are often more widespread than their sexual relatives using Easter daisies, and found that asexuals are aided by particularly successful clones and seed traits that help promote colonization. This work challenges the assumption that asexuals' only advantage is the ability to reproduce without mates.|
|2020||Dr. Lin studied the evolution of rare cases when the roles are reversed, and plants consume animals or parasitize fungi. He discovered a new carnivorous plant lineage, and addressed species boundaries in it. He also resolved relationships of monocot which parasitize fungi, and uncovered an unusual gene transfer from soil fungi to plants.|
Research in Botany extends from genomics, molecular genetics, biochemistry and physiology of plants and eukaryotic microorganisms (e.g., fungi and protists) through to cytology and development to systematics, ecology, and phytogeography. The broad areas of research possible within the program are cell biology and biochemistry; genomics and genetics, plant molecular biology; plant and algal physiology; terrestrial and marine ecology; biosystematics and evolution; development and ultrastructure; protistology; and mycology.
I decided to study at UBC because of the strength of the PhD program. With faculty members doing research in multiple areas, I feel the program at UBC will expose me to a diversity of subdisciplines within the field of ecology and microbiology. The most intriguing asset that I wish to explore is to...