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./Ph.D.), 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' 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 Wendy in the ABSc main office. You will require Wendy'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.
  • The following two courses must be taken (totaling 0.5 credits): 
  • ANSC*6600 (Scientific Communication) and ANSC*6610 (Proposal and Professional Development)
  • If you want to make a head start on ANSC*6610, you can start writing your thesis proposal, with guidance from your advisor, or a literature review for your thesis; you can also do some or all of the 8 hours of professional development needed for this course the semester beforehand.
  • 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 or Wendy for details.
  • The remaining 3.0 credits typically comprise six 0.5 credit courses (one of which may be a 4th-year undergraduate course, if your committee agrees). 

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 Ph.D.

Ph.D. students do not have to take any courses for credit, although your Advisory Committee may recommend that you do if it will help your research.

However, Ph.D. students do have to take the following two zero credit courses: 

  • ANSC*6620 (Scientific Communication) and ANSC*6630 (Proposal and Professional Development)
  • If you want to make a head start on ANSC*6630, you can start writing your thesis proposal, with guidance from your advisor, or a literature review for your thesis; you can also do some or all of the 8 hours of professional development needed for this course the semester beforehand.

Ph.D. 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.