The program information below is valid for the winter 2020 term (January 1, 2020 - April 30, 2020).

The Graduate Studies Academic Calendar is updated 3 times per year, at the start of each academic term (January 1, May 1, September 1). Graduate Studies Academic Calendars from previous terms can be found in the archives.

  • Admit term(s) 
    • Fall
    • Winter
  • Delivery mode 
    • On-campus
  • Length of program 
    • Normally, the formal requirements of the program are to be completed in two years.
  • Program type 
    • Collaborative
    • Master's
    • Research
  • Registration option(s) 
    • Full-time
    • Part-time
  • Registration option(s) information 
    • This program will not normally be offered on a part-time basis. In exceptional circumstances, students may assume part-time status after their formal course work has been completed.
  • Study option(s) 
  • Minimum requirements 
    • Students must normally hold an Honours Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree. Students with an Honours Bachelor of Environmental Science (BES) or Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Physical Geography, Environmental or Earth Science, Geomatics, or the equivalent, will also be considered. Students must demonstrate that they have the necessary science background to pursue graduate work in their field of specialization. Students will have completed the undergraduate degree with an overall average of at least 75%.
  • Application materials 
    • Résumé
    • Supplementary information form
    • Transcript(s)
  • References 
    • Number of references:  3
    • Type of references: 

      at least 2 academic

  • English language proficiency (ELP) (if applicable)

    Thesis option:

    The program requires the successful completion of 9 units of credit, (1 unit = 0.50 credit weight), as follows:

  • Graduate Academic Integrity Module (Graduate AIM)
  • Courses 
    • GEOG 691 Graduate Student and Faculty Seminar in Geography (1 unit).
    • 1 Research Seminar selected from 1 of the following (1 unit):
      • GEOG 600 Seminar in Spatial Data Handling
      • GEOG 640 Seminar in Physical Geography
    • 1 elective (1 unit): from either Environmental Science or Geomatics courses depending on whether GEOG 600 or GEOG 640 is taken.
    • 2 electives (2 units): 2 courses selected from among Environmental Science, Geomatics, or other science courses relevant to their program of study.
    • Note: a maximum of 1 GEOG 675 Selected Topics in Geography course can be taken for credit.
    • Water core courses:
      • WATER 601 Integrated Water Management
      • WATER 602 Integrated Water Management Project
    • This degree is offered through the Collaborative Water Program. This program, jointly offered by a range of departments across several academic faculties, promotes the development of interdisciplinary perspectives on water. Collaborative Water Program students complete their specialist training in their respective home departments, while working with colleagues from a variety of other departments in core interdisciplinary courses (WATER 601 and WATER 602).
    • The Water core courses (WATER 601 and WATER 602) can be used as electives to meet the degree requirements.
    • Failure to obtain a grade of 70% in each course they take means an automatic review of the student’s status in the program.
    • The coursework part of the program is designed to develop advanced understanding of issues relating to environmental science and geomatics, and also to prepare students for thesis research and its defence. Students are required to complete the 4 one‐term courses during their first year, in addition to the program‐wide seminar course (GEOG 691).
  • Link(s) to courses
  • Collaborative Research Seminar I
    • Students are required to present a seminar on their thesis or major paper research proposal and, if appropriate, early stage results to current and past Water students and Water Institute faculty members. Seminars will normally occur following the completion of WATER 601 and WATER 602. Seminars will provide the opportunity for students to discuss how learnings from Water courses were applied in, or influenced, research proposals or research work in the student’s home department. Seminars will normally be poster presentations at Water Institute organized events. The seminar is not an oral examination of the thesis or paper; rather, its purpose is to develop the student's ability to communicate their research in an organized and informative manner.
  • Master’s Thesis
    • During the first year, students develop a thesis proposal that will normally be presented to a supervisor at the end of the first year. Upon approval of the proposal, students will then proceed to the research and writing of the thesis (4 units). Normally, students should complete and defend the thesis within two years of starting the program.
  • Other requirements 
    • Fieldwork: many students will engage in fieldwork as part of their research. Several courses provide experience and training, to complement what most students will have obtained in their undergraduate degrees. Individual faculty also provide specialized training before and during fieldwork activity. Fieldwork is subject to environmental and other impact assessment through NSERC funding reviews, as well as research permit applications in many jurisdictions where students work, e.g., in the Yukon, Northwest Territories, or Nunavut.