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Biological and Chemical Sciences (PhD)

Biological and Chemical Sciences (PhD)

waterloo  waterloo

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Our PhD program in Biological and Chemical Sciences is research-focused, and operates through an apprenticeship model where you will work closely with a faculty supervisor.

Your research will fall within one or more of our three areas of research strength: environment and health, biotic interactions, and structure and reactivity. The research component of the program is complemented by coursework, which is designed to emphasize the importance of interdisciplinary approaches to biological and chemical research.

Our program will turn you into an independent researcher capable of succeeding in careers in research, teaching, industry or government.

Program Structure

This full-time program can be completed in four years. You’ll be required to present and defend a research proposal in conjunction with a qualifying exam, and write and defend a dissertation.


More information can be found on the International Applicants page.

Contact Us:

Lillian DeBruin, Graduate Program Coordinator

T: 519.884.1710 x3599

Michael Wilkie, Graduate Program Coordinator


General Inquiries

T: 519.884.1970 x2905


  • Winners of major external awards (OGS, QEII and Tri-Council) may be eligible for top-up funding which includes the Dean’s Graduate Scholarship (total value exceeds $10,000).
  • Eligible domestic students admitted to study on a full-time basis receive a minimum of $24,500 a year. This support may be comprised of teaching assistantships, internal/external scholarships, and/or faculty-funded studentships or research assistantships.
  • A list of all funding opportunities available to Laurier graduate students, including information about OGS, QEII, Tri-Council, and the Ontario Trillium Scholarship for highly qualified international doctoral applicants, is available on our graduate funding webpage.

Research Focus

Our program has three core research strengths:

  • Environment and health: research directed at issues affecting the environment that may ultimately impact global health on a broader scale.
  • Biotic interactions: research on the biotic interactions that occur at all levels of biological organization and how such interactions influence biochemical and cellular processes, as well as the fitness and survival of individuals, populations and ecosystems.
  • Structure and reactivity: research on structural properties of small molecules, polymers, biomolecules, as well as supramolecular assemblies such as protein complexes, nanoparticles and liquid crystals, and the relation between these structures and their physical, chemical, or biological activities.


  • A master’s degree in biology, chemistry, biochemistry or related disciplines with a minimum A- standing.
  • Applications are reviewed by the graduate program committee, which considers all prior university grades, a statement of research interests and letters of reference.
  • Exceptional students may obtain early entry to the PhD program from our master’s programs in Chemistry and Biochemistry or Integrative Biology.
  • Contact a prospective adviser prior to submitting your application.


Potential future careers for our graduates include:

  • researcher/instructor in academia
  • university faculty member
  • research scientist in industry or government

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