Relevant Thesis-Based Degree Programs
Affiliations to Research Centres, Institutes & Clusters
Complete these steps before you reach out to a faculty member!
- Familiarize yourself with program requirements. You want to learn as much as possible from the information available to you before you reach out to a faculty member. Be sure to visit the graduate degree program listing and program-specific websites.
- Check whether the program requires you to seek commitment from a supervisor prior to submitting an application. For some programs this is an essential step while others match successful applicants with faculty members within the first year of study. This is either indicated in the program profile under "Admission Information & Requirements" - "Prepare Application" - "Supervision" or on the program website.
- Identify specific faculty members who are conducting research in your specific area of interest.
- Establish that your research interests align with the faculty member’s research interests.
- Read up on the faculty members in the program and the research being conducted in the department.
- Familiarize yourself with their work, read their recent publications and past theses/dissertations that they supervised. Be certain that their research is indeed what you are hoping to study.
- Compose an error-free and grammatically correct email addressed to your specifically targeted faculty member, and remember to use their correct titles.
- Do not send non-specific, mass emails to everyone in the department hoping for a match.
- Address the faculty members by name. Your contact should be genuine rather than generic.
- Include a brief outline of your academic background, why you are interested in working with the faculty member, and what experience you could bring to the department. The supervision enquiry form guides you with targeted questions. Ensure to craft compelling answers to these questions.
- Highlight your achievements and why you are a top student. Faculty members receive dozens of requests from prospective students and you may have less than 30 seconds to pique someone’s interest.
- Demonstrate that you are familiar with their research:
- Convey the specific ways you are a good fit for the program.
- Convey the specific ways the program/lab/faculty member is a good fit for the research you are interested in/already conducting.
- Be enthusiastic, but don’t overdo it.
G+PS regularly provides virtual sessions that focus on admission requirements and procedures and tips how to improve your application.
ADVICE AND INSIGHTS FROM UBC FACULTY ON REACHING OUT TO SUPERVISORS
These videos contain some general advice from faculty across UBC on finding and reaching out to a potential thesis supervisor.
Graduate Student Supervision
Master's Student Supervision
Theses completed in 2010 or later are listed below. Please note that there is a 6-12 month delay to add the latest theses.
In this thesis, we study three problems, each of which concerns inferring certain pieces of information from some observed data. We apply tools arising from algebraic geometry, statistics, and combinatorics to approach these problems.In Chapter 2, we consider data that can be recorded in the form of a tensor admitting a special type of decomposition called an orthogonal tensor-train decomposition. Finding equations defining varieties of low-rank tensors is generally a hard problem, however, the set of orthogonally-decomposable tensors is defined by appealing quadratic equations. The tensors we consider are an extension of orthogonally-decomposable tensors. We show that they are defined by similar quadratic equations, as well as linear equations and a higher-degree equation.In Chapter 3, we study the problem of maximum likelihood estimation of log-concave densities that lie in the graphical model of a given undirected graph G, and factorize according to this graph with log-concave factors. We show that the maximum likelihood estimate (MLE) is the product of the exponentials of several tent functions, one for each maximal clique of G. While the family of densities in question is infinite-dimensional, our results imply the MLE can be found by solving a finite-dimensional convex optimization problem. We provide an implementation. Furthermore, when G is chordal, we prove that the MLE exists and is unique with probability 1 as long as the number of sample points is larger than the size of the largest clique of G. Finally, we discuss the conditions under which a log-concave density in the graphical model of G has a log-concave factorization according to G.In Chapter 4, we study the problem of inferring causality from an observed i.i.d. sample arising from a distribution faithful to a directed graph G which can possibly have directed cycles. In particular, our goal is to recover the Markov equivalence class of G. We propose an algorithm, and conjecture that it is consistent, i.e., if the set of conditional independence relations satisfied by the distribution is precisely inferred from the observed data, then the output of the algorithm is Markov equivalent to G.