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Degrees Offered: Ph.D., M.Sc.



K. Adams, S. Aparicio, I. Birol, J. Bohlmann, A. Bouchard-Cote, A. Brooks-Wilson, C. Brown, C. Carlsten, A. Cherkasov, C. Collins, A. Condon, D. Coombs, C. Eaves, B. Finlay, S. Frangou, J. Friedman, R. Garbi, J. Gsponer, S. Hallam, R. Hancock, C. Haynes, P. Hieter, S. Hinch, M. Hirst, K. Ho, R. Holt , P. Hoodless, D. Huntsman, S. Jones, A. Karsan, P. Keeling, M. Kobor, J. Kronstad, W. Lam, W. Maddison, S. Mansfield, M. Marra, T. Munzner, M. Murphy, R. Ng, S. Otto, C. Overall, P. Pavlidis, S. Plotkin, L. Rieseberg, E. M. Simpson, C. Steidl, C. Suttle, N. Swindale, F. Takei, H. Tremlett, B. Vallance, Z. J. Wang, W. Wasserman, A. Weng, T. Woodward.

Professors Emeriti

D. Goldowitz, R. Kay, L. Keshet, D. Moerman.

Associate Professors

E. Accili, G. Cohen-Freue, D. Daley, P. Lange, S. Leslie, V. Measday, G. Morin, R. Tam.

Assistant Professors

A. Bashashati, C. de Boer, M. Cembrowski, K. Dao Duc, J. Dennis, J. Ding, E. Greenblatt, T. Huan, K. Korthauer, E. Lim, Y. Park, A. Roth, A. Singh, A. Steif, A. Talhouk, M. Tokuyama, C. Tropini, T. Velenosi.

Program Overview

The Bioinformatics Graduate Program is a trans-disciplinary program, administered through Michael Smith Laboratories, that combines computational and biological disciplines for students pursuing an M.Sc. or Ph.D. This program is intended to accommodate the diverse background of students and the broad nature of bioinformatics research. Students applying for entrance must satisfy the general regulations of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies and must be acceptable to the Bioinformatics Graduate program admissions committee.

Doctor of Philosophy

Admission Requirements

Students admitted to the Ph.D. degree program normally possess an M.Sc. degree in Bioinformatics or a related area, with clear evidence of research ability or potential. Transfer from the M.Sc. to the Ph.D. program is permitted under the regulations set by the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

Program Requirements

The major requirement for the Ph.D. is completion of a research dissertation meeting the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies requirements. There are no specific course requirements for the Ph.D. degree program apart from the dissertation. However, the student's Ph.D. dissertation committee has the prerogative to impose course requirements where course deficiencies are perceived.

All doctoral students are required to successfully complete a comprehensive examination, which consists of an oral and written component within the first 36 months of study. All students are required to present a Bioinformatics graduate program seminar upon completion of their program, and before their dissertation defense.

A student's committee for the doctorate will consist of the dissertation supervisor and three others. The supervisor and at least one other member must be members of the Bioinformatics graduate program.

Master of Science

Admission Requirements

Successful applicants require a B.Sc. or equivalent, majoring in a biological science (such as biology, genetics, microbiology, molecular biology, medicine) or in a quantitative science (such as computer science, mathematics, statistics, physics, engineering). If the applicant has a degree in a biological science, they should also have significant experience in a quantitative science or vice versa. Students must also meet current Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies admission requirements, with the expectation that most successful applicants will significantly exceed these minimum requirements.

Program Requirements

The required courses for the program are:

  • BIOF 520 Problem-based Learning in Bioinformatics (3)
  • BIOF 501A Special Topics in Bioinformatics (3)
  • four elective courses from computer science, statistics, medical genetics, and other related faculties for a total of 12 credits (required program credits equal a total of 18 course credits and a 12-credit thesis)
  • three non-credit four-month research rotations in bioinformatics-affiliated laboratories will be required.

Students entering the program with either a bachelor's or a master's degree will be expected to complete the same required coursework and electives. Course equivalencies will be considered, and the student may replace required program courses with electives, upon the approval of their mentor and supervisory committee. The program must be started in the September term in order to complete the required courses and research rotations as outlined.

All students must complete 18 credits of graduate coursework in their first year, three four-month laboratory research rotations under the supervision of Bioinformatics-affiliated faculty, and meet the formal requirements of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. At the beginning of their second year, upon the recommendation of their thesis supervisor and committee, students continue their M.Sc. in Bioinformatics or transfer to a Ph.D. program in Bioinformatics or a related discipline.

All students are required to present a Bioinformatics graduate program seminar upon completion of their program before their thesis defense.

A student's committee for the M.Sc. will consist of the thesis supervisor and two other members. The supervisor and at least one other member must be members of the Bioinformatics graduate program.

Contact Information

Program Director, S. Jones
Genome Sciences Centre, BCCA
100-570 West 7th Avenue
Vancouver, BC Canada V5Z 4S6
Tel: 604.707.5803 (Sharon Ruschkowski) or
604.707.5473 (Ana-Maria Lovrich Roth, administrator to Dr. Jones)
Sharon Ruschkowski, Program Coordinator

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