frances plane

Associate Dean (New Program Development and Program Changes; International Agreements; University Governance)

Dr. Frances Plane is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacology.  She completed her PhD in Pharmacology at the Royal Free Hospital Medical School (University of London) and then carried out postdoctoral research at the Universities of Southampton and Bristol before joining the Smooth Muscle Research Group at the University of Calgary as a visiting scientist in 1998. She joined the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Alberta in 2007.

Dr. Plane has been the Associate Chair of Graduate Studies in her department for 2 years and among other accomplishments, has worked closely with the Research Ethics Office both as Chair of the two Health Sciences Animal Care and Use Committees overseeing the use of animals in research and teaching across the campus, and through a partial secondment to lead the updating Part 1 Online Ethics Training taken by anyone involved in animal-related research. Her research lab is focused on understanding how blood vessels function and developing strategies to overcome vascular dysregulation associated with disease states such as diabetes and portal hypertension.

Dr. Plane enjoys hiking, skiing and biking and recently followed a long held passion and became a certified yoga teacher.

Responsibilities as Associate Dean

  • I am responsible for policies and procedures related to new program creation, program changes, and International Agreements for graduate students.
  • I provide advice, guidance, and support to graduate students, supervisors, and graduate student program administrators.
  • I represent the FGSR on various committees, working groups, search, selection and review committees across campus

My advice to our graduate students:

  • Communication: Keep talking to your supervisor, supervisory committee, and peers and when issues arise, discuss them with the relevant people; the sooner they are addressed, the sooner they will be resolved.
  • Balance: Make the time to do the things you love outside of your research, be it skiing, beekeeping  or watching movies; this is critical for your mental wellbeing  and to give you a different perspective on your work.

Home Department

Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacology, FOMD


  • E-mail:
  • Phone: (780) 492-5920
  • Click here to go to Associate Dean Plane's faculty page in the Department of Pharmacology.