The Microbiology and Immunology programme involves immune cells, bacteria, fungi, viruses and parasites. Students can investigate the ecology, evolution and environments of micro-organisms, the diseases they cause, the microbiome and its influence on the immune system and our health, immunity and disease. We are seeking solutions to the problem of antibiotic resistance; designing new, combination drug therapies; using microbial engineering in industrial processing and environmental remediation; determining how our immune system can best protect us against infection and cancer; using this information to design new immunotherapies and treatments for inflammation and auto-immune diseases. Our projects span population and systems biology and ecology, organism behavior and function, cell interactions and molecular mechanisms, and our students graduate with extensive training in analytical thinking, creative innovation and effective communication. Degrees in our programme accelerate students in a great variety of careers in industry, academia, non-for-profit organisations and the business world.
Microbiology has been an integral part of UBC since the university's inception in 1915. Our program is a strong and collaborative community of microbiologists, immunologists, biochemists and cell biologists, based at UBC and affiliated hospitals. We promote fundamental and translational research and we enjoy strong connections to clinical colleagues across Canada. Many of our students are located in the Life Sciences Institute, a world-class collection of scientists with facilities including advanced flow cytometry, microscopy and imaging, together with the Facility for Infectious Disease and Epidemic Research, the Advanced Structural Biology for Re-emerging Infectious Diseases group, and the Genome Sciences Centre. We work closely with the Centres for Drug Research and Development and for High-Throughput Biology, emphasising commercialisation and entrepreneurship.
The UBC Microbiology and Immunology program was just the right fit for me: I was able to join a lab doing innovative and exciting research and the department emphasizes excellence in teaching and learning. Opportunities to engage with the teaching and learning community across campus are also abundant. Living in the vibrant city of Vancouver and daily views of the mountains have certainly been a bonus of choosing UBC.
UBC’s Faculty of Science is home to an array of outstanding scientists and students who 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. In this session hosted by Professor Mark MacLachlan, Associate Dean of Research & Graduate Studies, we’ll hear from faculty members and graduate students on some of the exciting research happening within the Faculty of Science. We’ll also take a look at the wide range of graduate programs available, what it's like to be a grad student in Science, and also provide some application advice. Be sure to join us and get an insight into how UBC Science is discovering new scientific knowledge and preparing Canada’s and the world’s next generation of scientists.
In this session, we’ll break down the graduate school application at UBC. Explaining the process, key application elements and we provide some tips on strengthening your application.
This session will cover:
Who is this webinar for?
This webinar is for anyone who is planning on applying to graduate school.
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: 100
Overall score requirement: 7.0
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)||$1,052.34 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $17,126.20 (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 PhD students in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology will be provided with a funding package of $24,480 stipend plus a life supplement equivalent to tuition and fees for up to five 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.
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.
75 students graduated between 2005 and 2013: 1 graduate is seeking employment; 1 is in a non-salaried situation; for 7 we have no data (based on research conducted between Feb-May 2016). For the remaining 66 graduates:
These statistics show data for the Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology (PhD). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.
|2010||Dr. Tse studied the cellular mechanisms that regulate the function and development of B cells, which produce antibodies to fight infections. She showed that certain proteins are key regulators of trafficking and cell signaling. Her work contributes to our understanding of B cell cancers and inflammatory diseases.|
|2010||Dr. Jaschke discovered a new way that bacteria can make chlorophyll. This pathway produces an unusual form of chlorophyll that binds to zinc instead of magnesium. The knowledge gained during this work has enabled deeper understanding of several fundamental aspects of photosynthesis.|
|2010||Dr. Condotta studied the functional characteristics of a protein from the West Nile virus. West Nile virus causes a potentially fatal infection and is of great public health concern globally. Dr Condotta's work defined a novel molecular mechanism for regulation of this protein that will provide new targets for the development of antivirals.|
|2010||Dr. Kindrachuk investigated antibiotic resistance in the Cystic Fibrosis pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. She identified over 100 genes capable of affecting aminoglycoside resistance in this organism. Her work highlights the complexity of drug-bacterial interactions, a concept that is becoming increasingly important in pharmaceutical development.|
|2010||Dr. Maeshima characterized the interaction of the protein CD44 with its carbohydrate ligand hyaluronan during an immune response. CD44 is expressed on the surface of immune cells and hyaluronan is found in the tissues surrounding cells. This work showed that this interaction occurs on proliferating T cells and regulates immune cell migration.|
|2010||Dr. Leung found interactions between two systems that regulate gene transfer in bacteria. She also identified growth conditions that affect the expression of these regulatory systems and gene transfer. These studies contribute to our understanding of how bacteria respond to changes in environmental conditions with appropriate modifications to gene expression.|
|2010||Dr. Richer studied how certain viral infections can cause autoimmune diseases, including type 1 diabetes. His work identified a subset of cells that is important for both the immune response to viral infection and the development of autoimmunity. He further demonstrated that these cells can be manipulated into actively inducing protective mechanisms that prevent onset of type 1 diabetes.|
|2010||Dr. Silverman investigated the deadly protozon parasite Leishmania donovani, identifying novel secreted molecules, discovering a secretion system, and presenting the first description of leishmania exosomes and their immune-suppressing properties. Her work has significantly advanced the current knowledge of leishmania biology, with implications for other protozoan pathogens, and development of new therapeutics and vaccines.|
|2009||Dr. Tian described a new iron transport pathway that promotes the growth of skin cancer cells. These studies aid in the understanding of the development of cancers and in identifying therapies for overcoming this disease.|
|2009||Dr. Lin studied the role of the Rap GTPases in the function of B cells, the cells that produce antibodies. He showed that these proteins control multiple processes involved in B cell trafficking and activation, and also in the spread of B cell lymphomas, which are common cancers.|
Microbiology and Immunology offers opportunities for original research in the areas of molecular and applied microbiology, biotechnology, cell and developmental biology, epigenetics, geomicrobiology, molecular biology, molecular genetics, molecular immunology, microbial ecology, microbial pathogenesis, and virology.