Master’s Degree and PhD Programs

Biology (MSc, PhD)

Pursue scientific questions at the boundaries of knowledge through graduate studies in Biology. We offer both Master’s and Doctoral degrees in diverse areas of Biology, including ecology and evolution, cell and molecular biology, microbiology, and organismal physiology.

Our thesis-based graduate programs include both coursework and research, with an emphasis on the research. Our graduate students and faculty conduct research in a wide variety of locations across Canada and around the world with extensive national and international collaborations.

Our facilities and labs provide world-class infrastructure and research in environmental science, ecology, and cellular and molecular biology through state-of-the-art instrumentation for water quality and stable isotopes analysis, microscopy, proteomics and genomics.

We recommend arranging for a supervisor prior to applying for admission. Suggestions for how to contact potential supervisors are in the graduate section of the Biology department website.

Biology Meet Your Faculty


Program: Master of Science (MSc) in Biology (thesis-based) Doctorate Degree (PhD) in Biology
Length: Master’s Degree: 2-3 years Doctorate: 5 years
Offered Through: University of Regina
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Why Study Biology at the University of Regina?

Biology is a highly active research department. Our graduate programs emphasize training in research skills along with communication and networking skills, providing students with broad skillsets that are widely applicable across biological sciences and other areas. Research skills include project planning, hypothesis testing, experimental design, and science outreach and communication. Field and laboratory-based experiences allow students to make hands-on scientific discoveries in diverse biological systems. Students also develop a combination of advanced skills in reasoning, critical thinking, and inquiry.

Biology Frequently Asked Questions

What degree do I need to qualify for the master’s program in biology?

For admission to the Master of Science program, you must have a four-year bachelor's degree in biology with an overall average of at least 70 per cent.

We strongly recommend arranging for a supervisor prior to applying for admission. Suggestions for how to contact potential supervisors are in the graduate section of the Biology department website.

What are some of the courses that biology graduate students take?

BIOL 803 Scientific Research Skills for Biological Sciences

Master of Science students participate in this course, which develops general skills and knowledge in scientific research. Students will be introduced to the philosophy of science with discussions about how to identify important and feasible research topics. Students will also be taught about delivering clear oral presentations and posters, communicating with news media, and will have the opportunity to do extensive writing and oral presentations which will be evaluated and receive feedback from faculty members.

BIOL 810 Modelling Biological Data

A guide to contemporary statistical models for biological data. Emphasizes practical skills in using software for implementing models, testing hypotheses, and making predictions about biological and ecological systems. Prior programming experience is recommended.

The Living Data Project courses expose graduate students to database management and open up opportunities for internships with community partners.

Some graduate courses include the possibility of internships with partner organizations.

Do you offer scholarships?

Yes! Once you have been accepted as a fully-qualified graduate student with no conditions or holds on your admission, then you are eligible to apply for our scholarships, awards, or graduate teaching assistant positions.

NSERC scholarships are available to students enrolled in our program. Additionally, we frequently provide teaching assistantships to eligible students.

Biology Scholarships and Awards

  • Paul Riegert Graduate Award in Biology
  • Biology Undergrad and Grad Society (BUGS) Graduate Scholarship

Faculty of Science Graduate Funding

  • Paul W. Riegert Memorial Scholarship in Graduate Studies
  • Gerhard Herzberg Fellowship
  • Saskatchewan Innovation and Excellence Graduate Scholarship

Apply for these scholarships, and more, by visiting our Graduate Awards Portal (GAP), the U of R online graduate scholarship application system.

All Graduate Funding Opportunities

Visit our Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research website to learn about all graduate funding opportunities including:

  • National Scholarships (including Tri Council funding)
  • Awards to Study Abroad
  • FGSR Funding/Special Awards
  • Funding for Indigenous Students
  • Funding for International Students
  • Other Awards and Scholarships
  • External Scholarship Opportunities
  • External Student and Faculty Awards

In addition, one of our doctoral students was awarded the American Society of Mammologists Fellowship in recognition of outstanding research productivity. It is a very rare achievement for a student at a Canadian university to receive this Fellowship.

The 2023 Governor General’s Academic Gold Medal was awarded to a Biology student upon earning her PhD. The Governor General’s Academic Gold Medal recognizes the outstanding academic performance of a graduate student. The student’s dissertation research focused on how the mobility of bacterial genes contributes to antimicrobial resistance, microbial community dynamics, and virulence traits, as well as addressing fundamental questions in ecology using bacterial species in lab-controlled ecosystems.

Can I study abroad?

Yes! Mitacs Globalink is a student mobility and research funding program in Canada with many options for travel for graduate students for the purpose of conducting research. Some programs are open to all countries and applications are accepted throughout the year, while other programs are limited to partner countries and are call-based.

What Can You Do With a Biology Degree?

After completing their degrees, Biology graduate students have a high success rate for employment in biological and research professions.

Many graduates are hired as government scientists in provincial and federal ministries. As government scientists, graduates work in fields such as fisheries, wildlife management, public health, health care, museums, and more. The Master of Science in Biology degree is also popular with students entering medical professions as they gain extensive training in critical thinking and scientific rigour through the program.

Graduates often advance in academia to become postdoctoral fellows and then professors. The jobs that graduates go on to include:

  • Biologist
  • Professor
  • Limnologist
  • Molecular Biologist
  • Geneticist
  • Microbiologist
  • Aquatic Biologist
  • Research Scientist
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