Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Physics - Quantum Information

The program information below is valid for the winter 2019 term (January 1, 2019 - April 30, 2019).

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
    • Spring
  • Delivery mode 
    • On-campus
  • Program type 
    • Collaborative
    • Doctoral
    • Research
  • Registration option(s) 
    • Full-time
    • Part-time
  • Study option(s) 
  • Minimum requirements 
    • Normally a Master's degree in Physics, with at least a 75% standing.
    • Students with an undergraduate degree in Physics may apply for admission directly to the PhD program. Successful applicants will have an outstanding academic record, breadth of knowledge in physics, and strong letters of recommendation.
  • Application materials 
    • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Physics subject test scores for all students who have completed their post-secondary education outside of Canada.
    • Supplementary information form
    • Transcript(s)
  • References 
    • Number of references:  3
    • Type of references: 

      academic

  • English language proficiency (ELP) (if applicable)

    Thesis option:

  • Graduate Academic Integrity Module (Graduate AIM)
  • Courses 
    • Students must complete 2 one-term courses (0.50 unit weight) not including any already taken for Master of Science (MSc) credit (6 courses are required if proceeding directly from a Bachelor of Science).
    • Courses taken during the MSc program, in excess of those required may be allowed for PhD credit. The extra courses must be identified prior to admission.
    • Core courses for Quantum Information specialization:
      • PHYS 701 Quantum Mechanics 1
      • PHYS 704 Statistical Physics 1
      • PHYS 706 Electromagnetic Theory
      • QIC 710 Quantum Information Processing (cross-listed with PHYS 767)
      • QIC 750 Implementation of Quantum Information Processing
    • 3 of the core courses, including QIC 710 and QIC 750, must be taken by the completion of the first year of the PhD program. These courses may have been taken during the MSc program.
    • The selection of courses taken by the end of the PhD must include 2 non-core Quantum Information courses.
    • 1 of the required courses may be an upper level undergraduate course outside the student's main field of study. The supervisor must submit a memo justifying why the undergraduate course is acceptable for graduate credit, and approval must be received from the Physics and Astronomy Graduate Officer and the Associate Dean of Science for Graduate Studies prior to enrolment in the course.
    • No undergraduate course in Physics may be taken for credit.
    • An average of at least 70% must be obtained in the required courses. A minimum grade of 65% is required for a pass in each course. No more than 2 courses, of the first 3 taken, can have averages of less than 70%. If a student does not meet these minimum grade requirements, or receives a failing grade in any course, the student may be required to withdraw from the program.
    • In exceptional circumstances course requirements may be waived with the approval of the Director of the program, Physics and Astronomy Graduate Officer, and Associate Dean of Science for Graduate Studies.
    • Note: The student's committee may still require more courses dependent on the student's background.
  • Link(s) to courses
  • Academic Integrity Workshop
    • This is a milestone requirement for all full-time students. Part-time students are not required to complete this workshop. This is a mandatory workshop on academic integrity and intellectual property which will be offered to all new incoming graduate students within the Faculty of Science during the first term of each Fall and Winter.
    • Note: students will be required to complete both the Academic Integrity Module as a required course along with the Academic Integrity Workshop milestone. The Module will appear on the student's transcript as a course. The Workshop will appear on the student's transcript as a milestone.
  • PhD Quantum Information Seminar
    • Students must successfully complete a Quantum Information seminar milestone consisting of one Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) seminar, and one seminar on a Quantum Information topic aimed at members of the Department of Physics and Astronomy.
  • PhD Comprehensive Examination
    • The student will be required to take a Qualifying Examination (QE). The QE should be held as early as possible but no later than the end of term six of the doctoral program (term seven for transfer students). The examination will assess the student's knowledge of the fundamentals and applications of the physics closely related to the thesis topic. An assessment of the student's ability in research will be a factor in determining the examination result. If a student has not passed the QE by the end of the sixth term in which they are enrolled, they may be required to withdraw from the program.
  • PhD Thesis
    • An acceptable thesis on an advanced research topic in quantum information must be submitted. A current listing of Quantum Information thesis supervisors and their home unit is available on the IQC website. The topic of the thesis and the quality of the research will be such as to merit publication in reputable scholarly media. Detailed specifications of the format of the thesis are available from the appropriate Graduate Office.
    • Acceptance of the thesis requires satisfactory completion of a Final Oral Examination.
  • Other requirements 
    • Supervisory Committee meetings: it is required that the student meet formally with their Supervisory Committee within the first six months of registration. Subsequently, the supervisory committee is expected to meet with the student at least twice per year. While one meeting in a year must be a formal one, the other meeting may be held informally. In the former case, the student is expected to provide a written report to the Committee and defend it orally. In the latter case, the meeting may simply take the form of a brief discussion of the student's academic progress but, apart from the student and supervisor, it must involve at least one other member of the Committee.