Why do your MSc in Physics and Atmospheric Science at Dal?

Dalhousie is one of Canada's leading research-intensive universities, with an international reputation and world-class research facilities. Our graduate programs in Physics and Atmospheric Science provide students opportunities for research on campus with professors who are leaders in their particular fields of expertise.

Housed in a historic building located at the main Halifax campus, the Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science features newly renovated research laboratories containing a wide range of highly specialized, state-of-the-art instrumentation.

Our master's students conduct outstanding research in every area of physics, with guidance from faculty members, post-doctoral workers, undergraduate students and technical support staff.

Our faculty members hold an impressive number of prestigious research chairs. As well, the large number of research grants garnered by our faculty reflect the excellence of our department and our graduate studies programs.

You'll find our atmosphere is highly collegial with many collaborations and interactions between research groups. Coming to Dalhousie for Physics and Atmospheric Science ensures you're on the right track to an engaging career.

Program details

Master of Science in Physics and Atmospheric Science

Choose a research supervisor

Before you begin your studies at Dalhousie, we encourage you to visit the department or start an email correspondence with faculty members whose research interests you. The best way to find a research supervisor whose interests best match yours is to:

  • Discuss ideas and projects with several prospective supervisors
  • Ask faculty members for descriptions of possible research projects
  • Write to the Graduate Secretary for general information

Program structure

First year:

  • Begin conducting research
  • Pass graduate courses
  • Work as a teaching assistant (TA) or research assistant (RA)
  • Meet with your supervisory committee before the year’s end

Year two:

  • Continue and complete research
  • Deliver a departmental seminar on a topic unrelated to your research
  • Work as a teaching assistant (TA) or research assistant (RA)
  • Write your master's thesis
  • Undergo a final oral defence of your thesis

Further information:

Degree requirements

Students are normally required to complete four half-credit courses at the 5000 level or higher. Courses are expected to have some relevance to the students’ research. The courses do not have to be offered by the Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science.

Upon failure of any course (grade less than B-), a student will be withdrawn from the graduate program and must apply to the department for reinstatement. Reinstatement is at the discretion of the Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science and the Faculty of Graduate Studies, following input from the supervisory committee. If a student fails two courses, re-admission is at the discretion of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and is highly unlikely.

In addition to the course work, students in the master's program are also expected to complete a thesis project and defend it orally before a panel of peers.