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Biochemistry is the study of the molecular events underlying biological processes. Consequently, it makes fundamental contributions to all disciplines concerned with living systems. The graduate program in Biochemistry enables students to conduct research in modern facilities, leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in a wide variety of areas including the relationship between structure and biological function in proteins, nucleic acids, and lipids as well as complex multi-component systems such as membranes and sub-cellular organelles.
Students in the Ph.D. stream must complete the equivalent of 1 & 1/2 credits in graduate course work, attend the weekly student seminar regularly, give three student seminars, and conduct regular committee meetings. During their tenure, the student will have conducted independent and original research that will form their thesis. In addition, they will have demonstrated in-depth knowledge of not only their scientific field, but that of related fields. While there is no strict requirement for their work to be published in peer-reviewed literature, it is expected that the work done is of publishable quality. Typically the Ph.D. thesis contains an introduction, methods, two or three data chapters, and conclusions. Students typically take 5-6 years to complete their Ph.D.
Most students enter the program as an M.Sc. student, although there are exceptions whereby students enter directly into the Ph.D. program. A majority of students by-pass their M.Sc. and transfer into the Ph.D. program at the 18 month point in their tenure.
- BCH2024H – FOCUSED TOPICS
- BCH1426H – REGULATION OF SIGNALLING PATHWAYS
- BCH1440H – PROTEIN BIOSYNTHESIS
- BCH1441H – BIOINFORMATICS
- JBB1425 – STRUCTURAL BIOLOGY: PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICE
- JBB 2025H – PROTEIN CRYSTALLOGRAPHY
- JBB2026H – PROTEIN STRUCTURE, FOLDING AND DESIGN
- JTB 2020H – APPLIED BIOINFORMATICS
- Online application (submitted electronically)
- Letter of Intent (submitted electronically) 1 – 2 pages
- Curriculum Vitae (submitted electronically) 1 – 3 pages
- Three letters of reference (submitted electronically)
- Official transcripts from ALL university programs attended (submitted electronically)
Additionally, applicants from Universities outside Canada must submit:
- TOEFL exam (University of Toronto code: 0982)
- GRE General Test (University of Toronto code: 0982)
Applicants educated outside of Canada require a degree equivalent to that of a Canadian Honours/Specialist degree (i.e. a four-year degree) as described above. In some cases this may be an M.Sc. degree. It should be in biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology, or in a related subject area before being considered for entry into our graduate program.
A GRE General Test score is also required. A minimum score of 80% is required in BOTH Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning. GRE scores are valid for 5 years after the testing year in which you tested (July 1 – June 30).
English Language Proficiency (TOEFL Test)
If the language of instruction at your university is not English*, we require an English language test. Minimum acceptable scores for TOEFL or an equivalent English-language facility test are as follows:
- Minimum paper-based score: Overall score 580 / TWE 5
- Minimum computer-based score: Overall score 237 / Essay rating 5
- Internet-based test and writing and speaking sections: Overall score 93 / Writing score 22 / Speaking score 22
All graduate students are expected to apply for external scholarship support (e.g. OGS, CIHR, NSERC etc.) when eligible. A student who receives $15,000 or more as a major, competitive, external scholarship will receive a $4,000 merit bonus, which is added to his/her stipend for the duration of the award. Awards eligible for the merit bonus must not be restricted to a limited group of students, such as those at a hospital-based research institute.
Students performing projects in one of 32 labs investigating protein biochemistry can apply for funding to the CIHR Training Program in Protein Folding.