Graduate Study in Geology

Student participating in research in the field.
Examining the Osler volcanics on the
shores of Lake Superior

The M.Sc. program in geology is normally taken as a full-time study program over two academic years but many students have successfully completed their studies in less time. In addition part-time studies may be spread over a longer time period and we actively encourage applications from practicing geologists wishing to update their qualifications.

Students normally possess an Honours degree in Geology or its equivalent, but candidates with related scientific backgrounds have been admitted in the past and proved successful. Examples of alternative suitable undergraduate training might be chemistry, physics, environmental science, physical geography, archeological science and geotechnical engineering.

The department has specializations in the broad areas of petrochemistry and tectonophysics which have included projects in: petrology, mineralogy, geochemistry, structural geology, strain analysis, mapping, tectonics, sedimentation, economic geology, paleomagnetism and experimental rock deformation and strength testing. At least 30% of our MSc students proceed to PhD studies and most have published their research in peer-reviewed scientific journals. Fieldwork has taken place in all parts of Canada, including the high Arctic as well as overseas, e.g., in Cyprus.

Formally, the program is divided into 5 full-course units. At least, two full-courses must be taken as reading or lecture courses at the graduate level and at least, one full credit must be in geology. Fourth-year courses up to one full credit may fulfill this requirement. A wide selection of graduate half-courses are available, as required, so that coursework may be tailored to the student's needs. The research thesis weighs as 3 course units combined, and is spread over two years for the full-time student. Students have the opportunity to participate in research seminars where undergraduates, graduate students and faculty provide a constructive, supportive audience that helps the student develop confidence and test ideas.

Interested? Check out potential MSc projects, however those interested in undertaking a Masters in the Geology Department are encouraged to contact faculty members directly to discuss other potential projects.