Graduate Degree Programs

Explore degree and program options

Choose from over ten MSc, MASc, MEng, and PhD programs. You can also check out the UBC Calendar for additional information:

Degrees offered: Ph.D, M.Sc

The Atmospheric Science Program, administered by the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, is an interdisciplinary program, with faculty members coming from not only these two departments, but also from Agricultural Sciences, Chemistry and Applied Science, with research covering boundary layer and urban meteorology, atmospheric chemistry and air pollution, climate and climate variability, weather and climate prediction, cloud physics, atmosphere-ocean interactions, geophysical fluid dynamics, and interactions between the atmosphere and land (especially vegetation and soil).

 UBC Calendar Description

Degrees offered: Ph.D, M.A.Sc., M.Eng.

Geological Engineering is an interdisciplinary program that is housed in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences within the Faculty of Science, but is under the jurisdiction of the Dean of Applied Science.

Our program delivers an interdisciplinary experience, combining principles of geotechnical engineering, hydrogeology and geology, to provide a versatile set of skills needed to solve a wide range of practical problems related to engineering interactions with the earth environment.

Faculty members in the Geological Engineering program have research interests in the following general areas:

  • landslides, debris flows, runout analysis, hazard assessment
  • groundwater hydrology, groundwater contamination & remediation, reactive transport modeling, environmental geochemistry
  • rock mechanics & rock engineering, open pit & underground mine design, tunnelling

Other research areas include geotechnical engineering, environmental geology, economic geology and applied geophysics. Students are encouraged to consult individual faculty members for information about current research areas.

Note for students interested in a Master in Geological Engineering, we offer two separate degrees. We offer a M.A.Sc. in Geological Engineering, which includes a research experience. We also offer a course-based professional development degree through our M.Eng. in Geological Engineering. A program overview and course guide is provided on this PDF. Further details on both our M.A.Sc. and M.Eng. can be found at:

 UBC Calendar Description

Degrees offered: Ph.D., M.Sc.

The Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences (EOAS) at UBC is one of the largest geoscience groups in Canada and is composed of over 40 full-time faculty, 30 staff, and a total of 40 research associates and postdoctoral fellows. UBC and the Province of British Columbia offer exceptional opportunities for combined field and laboratory research. The Canadian Cordillera offers research opportunities in:

  • petrology of intrusive and volcanic rocks of many kinds, and of metamorphic rocks of all grades
  • structural studies of complex metamorphic terrains exposed in three dimensions
  • metalliferous deposits of varied genetic types
  • mineral exploration methods; mineralogy associated with many different environments
  • complexly folded and faulted successions of bedded rocks in the mountain belts and plateaus, and in virtually undisturbed coal- and gas-bearing strata of the north-eastern province
  • numerous problems of engineering, environmental geology-related to water, slope stability, natural geological hazards, and hydrogeology (lakes, fjords, deltas, tidal flats, continental shelf, and oceanic depths provide a wide range of aquatic environments for students interested in sedimentology, geochemistry, biostratigraphy, and geological oceanography)

Numerous research units in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences maintain excellent provisions for research and study in a wide range of geological sciences.

 UBC Calendar Description

Degrees offered: Ph.D., M.Sc., M.A.Sc.

Geophysics is an interdisciplinary physical science concerned with the nature of the Earth and other planets. It applies the knowledge and techniques of physics, mathematics and chemistry to understand the structure, dynamic processes and evolution of terrestrial and extraterrestrial environments.

Faculty members in the Geophysics program have research interests in the following general areas:

  • ice sheets, mountain glaciers, glacier dynamics, sea-level rise
  • climate change, climate reconstruction, volcanic processes
  • surface processes, planetary evolution, planetary interior structure 
  • planetary magnetic fields, planetary missions
  • earthquakes, subduction zones, Earth structure
  • data science, machine learning, interactive computing
  • inverse theory, electromagnetic methods
  • physical modelling, applied mathematics

Much of our research involves field work set in the backdrop of British Columbia, western Canada and beyond. Students are encouraged to consult individual faculty members for information about current research areas.

 UBC Calendar Description

Degrees Offered: Ph.D., M.Sc.


Oceanographers investigate both fundamental and applied problems relating to the physics, mathematics, biology, chemistry, and geology of the sea, often working across traditional academic disciplines. Research carried out both independently and in collaboration with federal government laboratories occurs in many different oceanographic regimes, including coastal BC fjords, the inland sea of the Strait of Georgia, open ocean regions of the Subarctic Pacific, and many other locations, including the Arctic and Antarctic Oceans. The types of problems that can be studied include fundamental questions about the flow of stratified fluids at scales ranging from tens of meters to thousands of kilometers, applied research in estuaries, coastal, and deep-ocean processes, general ocean circulation and climate change issues, marine chemistry, geochemistry, and biogeochemistry, natural product chemistry, marine viruses, fisheries oceanography, plankton ecology and physiology, and primary production of the sea. The Department is well equipped to carry out research in the field (using either its own boat or larger vessels in the oceanographic fleet), at the laboratory bench, and in the numerical heart of a computer. Most problems involve aspects of all three.


Students in Oceanography may select courses, depending on their interest, from the following areas of specialization:

  • biological oceanography
  • marine chemistry and geochemistry
  • physical oceanography and atmospheric sciences

Students are encouraged to broaden their knowledge by taking courses outside their area of specialization. Courses related to Oceanography are also offered in the Departments of Botany, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Geography, Physics and Astronomy, and Zoology.

 UBC Calendar Description