Courses and Training

Basic Semesterly Requirements

ALL students must be registered into UNIV*7510 (Active Full-time Registration) during course selection before the start of every semester. For thesis students (M.Sc./PhD), the course UNIV*7500 (Research/Writing) must also be enrolled at this time - this differentiates for the registrar's office whether you are a coursework or thesis student. You do this using WebAdvisor; if you have additional questions the useful 'Ask Gryph' on the WebAdvisor homepage should help.

Course Requirements for Completing Your Degree Program

You should choose your courses in consultation with your Advisory Committee (the basic requirements are outlined below); and if you are 
part of one of the collaborative programs with other departments (BioinformaticsNeuroscience and Toxicology), you must be sure to meet their requirements too.
All registration for courses is done through WebAdvisor (with the exception of Provisional or Special Status students). If you are a provisional student, you will have to register for courses using the form process as opposed to WebAdvisor; you will be obligated to manually complete an Add/Drop form (Graduate Course Waiver Request) and submit your material in person to Enrollment Services until your Provisional status has changed. This form can be obtained through the Office of Graduate Studies forms website or by visiting Jacob Harwood in the ABSc main office. You will require Jacob's signature on this form!

In addition, upon entering your graduate program, a course titled UNIV*7100 (Academic Integrity) will be automatically added to your CourseLink. This short online course aims to teach or refresh the University's policies on academic misconduct, with added relevance to graduate school. A quiz must be completed and scored above a certain percentage at the end of the course for completion.  This zero credit course must be completed before the 20th day of class.

Course requirements for the M.Sc. by Thesis

Course requirements for the M.Sc. by Coursework

  • The M.Sc. by Thesis require completion of at least 1.5 credits, 0.5 credits of which must be ANSC*6610 (Scientific Communication, Knowledge Dissemination and Professional Development). 
  • It is required that all MSc thesis students must develop a research proposal, which is presented to and approved by their advisory committee. It is the responsibility of the student to meet with their advisory committee to determine the nature of their research and establish timelines and due dates for the research proposal, which typically occurs before the end of the second semester.
  • The M.Sc. by Coursework and Major Research Paper requires completion of at least 4.0 credits.
  • The Major Research Paper's course code is ANSC*6900 (1.0 credit), and you should register in the term you intend to write up your research project (typically the summer). Click here for the course description as well as the grading rubric we recommend. Your Major Paper should be independently co-marked by your advisor and another member of your advisory committee.  If you enroll in the Fall and wish to extend your Major Paper into a second Fall, the department may pay your fees: see the Graduate Coordinator (Prof. Wendy Pearson) or Graduate Program Assistant (Jacob Harwood) for details.
  • The remaining 3.0 credits typically comprise six 0.5 credit courses, one of which must be ANSC*6610 (Scientific Communication, Knowledge Dissemination and Professional Development). You may also register for one 4th year undergraduate course, with approval from your advisory committee

The courses run by our department are listed in the Graduate Calendar, but note that you can take courses offered by other departments too.

Course requirements for the PhD

PhD students are only required to take one course for credit, ANSC*6610 (Thesis Proposal and Professional Development). However, your advisory committee may recommend additional courses to supplement your existing knowledge base.

PhD candidates also have to take a Qualifying Exam

Other Essential Training for your Research

Safety Training (Radioactive, WHMIS, Biohazardous materials, etc.)

You may need to attend and complete sessions and/or workshops and earn certifications before working with radioactive or biohazardous materials in your laboratory. Certain workplaces also require you to complete WHMIS training before conducting any work. These classes are provided by the Department of Environmental Health & Safety here at the University and can be registered via the Online Course Registration page. Keep in mind that spaces are limited for many of these courses.

Animal Care Short Courses

If at any time during your program you will be handling any live animals as part of your study, you must be knowledgeable about aspects of animal welfare and handling. You must take online modules in basic animal ethics, and species-specific workshops, before you can be added to your advisor's Animal Use Protocol (AUP). And if you are not on an AUP, you cannot legally work with animals. 

Direct handling of specific species will thus require you to complete a workshop in addition to Animal User Training core modules. Registration is done via Event Link; you will require your own login account, which can be made here. Students may register and can find more information through Animal Care Services.

Note: species workshops do not take place regularly, therefore it is recommended that you register and plan well in advance to make yourself available on the chosen dates.

Mandatory courses aside, there is much scope for additional training in everything from public speaking to handling mental health crises: for more information please see our Professional Development page.