Skip to main content

Biology (PhD)

Apply now Contact us
Doctorate (PhD)
Program type
Primary campus
Sir George Williams (SGW)
4 years
90 credits
Start term
Fall, Winter

Program overview

The PhD in Biology is a research-intensive program that will enhance your expertise while placing an emphasis on creativity and innovation. Our faculty members work in a wide variety of biological sciences, including (1) cell/molecular biology, genomic and synthetic biology; as well as (2) Ecology, evolution and conservation. Working closely with a faculty mentor, you will master modern research methods while enlarging your disciplinary knowledge, analytical skills and critical thinking. You will gain an in-depth understanding of current scientific literature and the training, knowledge and techniques needed to become an effective and engaged scientist. Montreal's status as a major centre for applied research means you'll benefit from an academic ecosystem that includes four major universities and their research centres, federal and provincial agencies and a thriving private sector that frequently seeks partnerships with academic researchers.

Program structure

Degree Requirements

Fully-qualified candidates are required to complete a minimum of 90 credits.

Please see the Biology Courses page for course descriptions.

Biology PhD (90 credits)


credits chosen from the following courses, or from any of the Biology PhD Advanced Topics or Reading Courses. Other courses in the list may be chosen upon recommendation of the supervisory committee and the Graduate Program Director:

BIOL 616 Current Advances in Ecological Research (3.00)
BIOL 670 Scientific Communication (3.00)
BIOL 671 Scanning Electron Microscopy (3.00)



BIOL 801 Pedagogical training (3.00)
BIOL 802 Research seminar (3.00)



BIOL 850 Research proposal and qualifying exam (6.00)
BIOL 890 Research and Thesis (75.00)

Biology PhD Advanced Topics or Reading Courses

BIOL 601 Readings in Ecology and Behaviour I (3.00)
BIOL 602 Readings in Cell and Molecular Biology I (3.00)
BIOL 606 Readings in Organismal Biology I (3.00)
BIOL 607 Readings in Ecology and Behaviour II (3.00)
BIOL 608 Readings in Cell and Molecular Biology II (3.00)
BIOL 609 Readings in Organismal Biology II (3.00)
BIOL 612 Advanced Topics in Evolution (3.00)
BIOL 613 Advanced Topics in Behavioural Ecology (3.00)
BIOL 614 Advanced Topics in Ecology (3.00)
BIOL 615 Advanced Topics in Animal Biology (3.00)
BIOL 630 Advanced Topics in Bioinformatics (3.00)
BIOL 631 Advanced Topics in Biotechnology (3.00)
BIOL 632 Advanced Topics in Cell Biology (3.00)
BIOL 635 Advanced Topics in Molecular Genetics (3.00)
BIOL 640 Advanced Topics in Plant Biology (3.00)
BIOL 680 Advanced Topics in Biology (3.00)
BIOL 685 Advanced Topics in Microbiology (3.00)
CHEM 670 Selected Topics in Biochemistry and Biophysics (3.00)
CHEM 677 Enzyme Kinetics and Mechanism (3.00)
CHEM 678 Protein Engineering and Design (3.00)

Admission requirements

Admission Requirements

  • MSc degree in life sciences.
  • At least a B average overall during the applicant’s undergraduate and graduate studies.
  • A thesis supervisor chosen by mutual agreement among the student, the Graduate Studies Committee and the potential supervisor.
  • Proficiency in English. Applicants whose primary language is not English must demonstrate that their knowledge of English is sufficient to pursue graduate studies in their chosen field. Please refer to the English language proficiency page for further information on requirements and exemptions.

Application process

Application deadlines


February 1


September 1



Priority will be given to complete applications submitted by the deadline. In some cases, programs may continue to accept applications as long as there is space available.

International students: Considering the waiting period involved in meeting the entry requirements to Canada and Quebec, we strongly encourage international applicants to apply early and submit supporting documents prior to the deadline.

Tuition & funding

Tuition and fees

Tuition and fees of the program may depend on your student status, among other key factors. Estimate these costs based on the most common situations.

Awards and funding

Funding packages are generally available for students in thesis-based programs. They come in the form of awards, teaching and research assistantships are offered at the time of admission to most students to allow them to focus on their research and studies. Research and thesis-based students are automatically considered for all entrance graduate awards when they apply to Concordia, provided they meet eligibility criteria. No separate application is required.

The Quebec and Canadian governments offer a number of competitive graduate scholarships. We encourage you to apply for these awards at the same time you are preparing your application.

Other programs of interest

Biotechnology and Genomics (GrDip)

Gain broad-based knowledge in the study of genomics, proteomics, molecular genetics, protein biochemistry and bioinformatics. Prepare to enter the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries or to pursue further graduate studies.



© Concordia University