Program Requirements

Requirements to complete the graduate program include:

  • Graduate course requirements
  • Ethics
  • Mandatory seminar attendance
  • Individual Development Plan (IDP)
  • Annual meeting with the Graduate Coordinator and Supervisory Committee
  • Thesis proposal
  • Candidacy exam (PhD students)
  • Final oral defense of a thesis and submission of a thesis.

Please review the complete Graduate Program Guide for Students and Supervisors. Students and supervisors will need to refer to this guide throughout the program.

Course Requirements

  • Masters Students
    A total of 6 credits and a thesis is required for the MSc degree.* Students are expected to have completed PMCOL 371 and PHYSL 372 (or equivalent). Students who have not completed these undergraduate courses will be expected to enroll in these these upon starting the program. MSc students have the option (with program supervisor approval) to complete a lab rotation course. Students can choose either NEURO 500 (two terms; 6 credits) or NEURO 501 (one term; 3 credits).
    *Clinical trainees such as medical residents who have received approval of the Graduate Coordinator, may be exempted.

  • PhD Students
    A total of 9 credits and a thesis is required for the PhD program. PhD students must complete either NEURO 500 and one lecture-based course, or NEURO 501 and two lecture-based courses from the Neuroscience-approved course list.

All NMHI graduate students (both MSc and PhD) may take a graduate-level reading course for 3 credits to fulfill their course requirements. However the following limitations apply:

  • The course must be taken with a faculty member other than the student's supervisor(s).
  • The course can be from any department but it must be approved by the NMHI Graduate Student Coordinator.
  • Students cannot meet their graduate student quota of 6 (MSc) or 9 (PhD) credits merely based on a combination of lab rotation and reading courses (i.e., some didactic, lecture-based course work is required).

Students are required to maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.3 (B+) throughout their program.

Seminar Attendance

Graduate students are required to attend and support the NMHI Seminar Series. All graduate students are required to 10 of the these seminars. Watch the NMHI Event calendar for upcoming seminars. Students must also attend 10 additional academic talks per year, which may or may not include more NMHI seminars. It is important to note that there may be a number of special seminars in which attendance is mandatory. For these instances, a notice will be emailed to you from the NMHI with the event details.

In order to completed the graduate student requirements, each student must submit a record of their seminar attendance along with their annual report. This document should outline the seminar titles, speaker names, and the dates.

Ethics and Academic Citizenship Requirement

Beginning in Fall 2022, the new Ethics and Academic Citizenship Requirement will replace the current Academic Integrity and Ethics Training Requirement. The Ethics and Academic Citizenship Requirement will consist of two zero-credit, self-paced, online courses:

  1. INT D 710: Ethics and Academic Citizenship (required for both master's and doctoral students)
  2. INT D 720: Advanced Ethics and Academic Citizenship (required for doctoral students)
These courses are designed to better support students by tailoring the content for master’s and doctoral students.

Students must complete these ethics components in order to convocate.

Professional Development

Students are required to fulfill the Professional Development requirement which has two components and must be completed as specified by FGSR.

1) Students must submit a completed IDP plan within 12 months of start of the Master’s program; within 18 months of direct entrance into a PhD program.

2) Students must complete eight hours of professional development activities inspired by the career plan. This “must be completed within the first three years for doctoral students and time to completion for Master’s students”.

Progress and fulfilment of the PD hours (eight) is the students’ responsibility but will be monitored in the Annual Report.

Annual Neuroscience Research Day

Every year the Neuroscience Graduate Student Association (NGSA) hosts Neuroscience Research Day (NRD). This event allows students to showcase their research and facilitate interdisciplinary interactions among students and faculty.

Typically the event includes both oral and poster presentations from students, a panel discussion, and a keynote address from a distinguished professor from outside of the University of Alberta.

Student participation in the event is mandatory, except for first years. All students are required to attend in order to continue enrollment in the neuroscience program.