Skip to McMaster Navigation Skip to Site Navigation Skip to main content
McMaster logo


Applying Students

  • No. While we strongly encourage you to reach out to potential supervisors during the application process, you do not have to secure a supervisor in order to apply. Please note, however, that the application will ask you to list potential supervisors based on your research interests.
  • Usually no and, as a program, we do not have the ability to waive the application fee.
  • However, if there is a supervisor in the department who is willing and able to accept you into their research group, they have the option to pay your application fee for you out of their research funding if you face exceptional circumstances. This decision is up to the individual discretion of each supervisor and is not guaranteed.
  • For the MSc program, you need 9/12 (B+) in a BSc (or equivalent degree). For the PhD program, you need 9/12 (B+) in an MSc or 11/12 (A) in a BSc.
  • Yes, but in this case you would have to secure the strong support of a prospective supervisor before you submit your application to be considered for admission into the program.
  • TOEFL: minimum score of 92 (internet based), 237 (computer based), or 580 (paper based) and a minimum of 20 per band
  • IELTS (Academic): minimum overall score of 6.5, with at least 5.5 in each section
  • Yes, but in this case you would have to secure the strong support of a prospective supervisor before you submit your application to be considered for admission into the program.
  • Yes, but only if you have completed a university degree at an institution where the language of instruction is English (we may ask for official documentation to show this).
  • Yes. Scans and unofficial copies are totally fine for the online application. If you are offered admission to the program, we may ask you for official copies as a condition of the offer.
  • McMaster’s online application system will send you an email notification telling you to check your application portal as soon as a decision has been reached.
  • The biggest factor in the timing of admission offers is when each individual supervisor makes their decisions about accepting students – there is no department-wide date when offers are extended.  We will have final decisions for all applicants within a month of the application deadline for each of the three admission terms (September, January, May) but you may hear from us sooner, particularly if you have secured the support of a prospective supervisor before applying.

Accepted Students

  • If you are sending them by email, they must be sent directly by your institution (they cannot be sent by you). Please have documents forwarded to
  • If you are having them sent by mail, please forward to:

Graduate Assistant
McMaster University
Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology
1280 Main Street West, ABB 156
Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4M1

  • Please contact the Grad Admin ( to discuss your particular circumstances and we will work together to find a solution.
  • No. All students are automatically considered for an Entrance Scholarship based on the transcripts they submit.
  • Canadian citizens/permanent residents should plan to apply for the NSERC CGS-M (master’s competition) or CGS-D (doctoral competition) in the Fall whether you are already at McMaster or planning to come to McMaster.
  • If you miss these applications, Canadian citizens/permanent residents (including those who have accepted offers but haven’t started at McMaster yet) can apply for the OGS through the department in the Spring term.
  • There is also an international OGS competition in the Spring (for both enrolled students and those who have accepted offers).
  • You can find more information about scholarships on the scholarships page.
  • Students who have been displaced within their countries of origin, are seeking asylum, or have refugee status may be eligible to apply for McMaster’s Students at Risk Bursary once they have been accepted into a program at McMaster. Please consult the website for further details.
  • The Grad Admin will communicate with you about getting a Working at McMaster card (which is not the same as your student card). Once you have the card, you should fill in the Lab Keycard Access Request Form to have it activated.  Note, you will need to complete all require safety training before your card can be activated.
  • No, if your offer letter includes TA work, you will automatically be assigned a TAship by the TA Coordinator.
  • All new students (MSc or PhD) must sign up to take CHEM 700 (offered every September)
  • Beyond this, you should consult with your supervisor about which additional courses to take
  • MSc students should plan to take four additional CHEM courses at the 600- and 700-level (at most one can be 600-level)
  • PhD students should plan to take two additional courses at the 700-level in the first year of their program
  • It is possible to get permission to count courses outside of the CHEM program toward your degree – consult the Grad Admin for information about how to request permission and how these count toward your course requirements
  • For more information about current course offerings go to the Chemistry Graduate Courses page.