School of

Graduate Studies

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"I have always been interested in understanding how things work at deepest levels and working with the SNO and SNO+ projects has given me the opportunity to contribute to our understanding of some of the most fundamental known particles. Being at Queen’s has given me the opportunity to work on two world-class particle astrophysics experiments with some of the best researchers in the field. There are few institutions in the world that can match Queen’s strength in this area.”

Alex Wright, Ph.D. 2009

Program Contact

Loanne Meldrum
Graduate Assistant
Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy
99 University Avenue
Queen's University, Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6

Phone: 613.533.2687


Program Overview

The Department of Physics at Queen’s University is one of the leading Canadian research institutes in Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy. Our faculty includes high-profile, world-class physicists who work on cutting edge areas of theoretical, applied and experimental physics.

Our staff and students carry out their research on campus as well as at external facilities such as the SNOLAB, Chalk River Nuclear Laboratories, the High Performance Computing Virtual Lab (HPCVL supercomputer) at astronomical observatories around the world and at the Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario.


Our students have the opportunity to work with medical students and researchers in the Medical Physics Research Group at the nearby Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario. Our students also have opportunities to engage in research at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto.t.

Career paths – employment opportunities

Students in the Astrophysics and Astronomy program have the opportunity to carry out observations at astronomical facilities in New Mexico, Hawaii, India, Australia and the Canary Islands. Students in the experimental particle astrophysics group carry out research at SNOLAB, the underground science laboratory near Sudbury, Ontario.

Degrees Offered/Method of Completion

Degrees Offered

M.Sc. and M.A.Sc.: 2 years

Ph.D.: 4 years

For a select group of students (2-5 per year), we allow accelerated entry to the Ph.D. program after one year in the Master’s program.

Method of Completion

M.Sc. and M.A.Sc: Course work, research project, thesis & defence

Ph.D.: Course work, research project, thesis & defence, seminar series

Fields of study and Supervisors

We encourage you to identify an area of research interest and contact a potential supervisor before applying.

Engineering & Applied Physics

  • Lynann Clapham: Non-destructive strain evaluation, applied magnetics
  • Jun Gao: Organic and polymer light emitting devices
  • Andy Kerr (KRCC): Clinical cancer care, radiation physics
  • Robert Knobel: Mesoscopic device physics at low temperature
  • Geoff Lockwood: Ultrasonic imaging
  • Jordan Morelli (adjunct): Controlled fusion, plasma physics renewable energy.
  • Kevin Robbie: Optics of thin films, chiral and carbon-based matterials, glancing angle deposition
  • John Schriener (KRCC): Clinical cancer care, radiation physics
  • Marsha Singh: Small-angle X-ray scattering

Condensed Matter Physics

  • Marc Dignam: Theoretical and computational research in photonic crystal devices, nonlinear optics
  • James Fraser: Experimental ultrafast and nonlinear optics
  • Robert Gooding: Strongly correlated electron systems and quantum materials
  • Stephen Hughes: Theoretical research on nanophotonics and quantum optics
  • Alastair McLean: Scanning probes, nanostructures and nanophotonics
  • Jean-Michel Nunzi: Optical and electronic properties of organic materials and devices
  • James Stotz: Semiconductor spintronics and quantum dots
  • Eugene Zaremba: Bose-Einstein condensation in trapped atomic gases, physics of cold atoms, quantum coherence

Astrophysics & Astronomy

  • Stephane Courteau: Formation, structure and evolution of galaxies
  • Martin Duncan: Formation and evolution of planetary systems
  • David Hanes: Globular star clusters, observational cosmology
  • Judith Irwin: Interstellar medium in galaxies, disk-halo connection, galaxy outflows
  • Kayll Lake: General relativity, computer algebra
  • Larry Widrow: Dark matter, galaxy models, extragalactic magnetic fields

Experimental Particle Astrophysics

  • Mark Boulay: low-energy neutrinos, neutrinoless double-decay and the search for dark matter
  • Mark Chen: neutrino physics, geoneutrinos, dark matter and cosmic rays
  • Philippe Di Stefano: cryogenic detectors for dark matter and other applications
  • Art McDonald: neutrino physics, solar neutrinos
  • Tony Noble: aspects of astroparticle physics
  • Wolfgang Rau: direct search for dark matter using cryogenic detectors
Funding, Academic Prerequisites & Deadline

Funding Information

Basic Funding Package (teaching assistantship, internal fellowships, bursaries and supervisor support).

Master’s Programs: minimum $24,250 per year

Ph.D.: minimum $25,450 per year

We encourage you to apply for additional funding through external scholarships (NSERC, OGS, etc.). Entering graduate students who win federal government tri-council awards are automatically provided a $5,000 top-up award by Queen’s.

Academic Prerequisites

M.Sc.: an honours bachelor degree in Science, Engineering or Applied Science

M.A. Sc.: a bachelor degree in Engineering or Applied Science

Both must be awarded by a recognized university, with a minimum second-class standing

Ph.D.: Master’s degree in Science or Applied Science

Students registered in our Master’s program who show exceptional promise and have a first-class standing may be admitted to the doctoral program without completing the requirements for the master’s degree.

Test Requirements

For international students, if required, a TOEFL total score of at least 580 (paper-based) or TOEFL iBT minimum scores of: writing (24/30); speaking (22/30); reading (22/30); listening (20/30), for a total of 88/120. Applicants must have he minimum score in each test as well as the minimum overall score.

Key Dates and Deadlines

Application Deadline: February 1. You may apply at any time, however applications received by Feb. 1 will have the greatest opportunities for research positions and fellowships.

Notification of Acceptance: 4 weeks after we receive your full application.