Master's Application and Program Requirements

The Institute of Medical Science offers a thesis-based, research focused Master of Science. To learn more about the program on offer here

We strongly recommend you find a supervisor early. Learn how to find a supervisor here

  Application deadlines can be found here  

Entry into the Institute of Medical Science graduate program is based on a holistic approach of three essential criteria:

  1. Academic Requirements
  2. Research Motivation
  3. References

In order to be considered for admission, you must meet our minimum entry requirements, which are higher than the School of Graduate Studies’ minimum entry requirements.

If you are not sure whether your degree is from a recognized university program, check the International and Exchange Students page on the School of Graduate Studies website.

1. Academic Requirements

Transcripts are an important component in determining your academic preparedness for entry into the IMS.

You are expected to have taken level 3 and 4 courses in your senior undergraduate years. Most of the courses in your final years should be in the general area of your graduate research interests.

Explanation of transcripts (difficulty of the course, low grades, etc.) can be included in a referee's letter, or during a possible interview.

If your schooling ended more than 5 years prior to application, academic preparation can also be reflected in research skills and achievement.

MSc Program Requirements:

  • A 4-year Honours BA, B.Eng, BSc, or an MD from a recognized university
  • At least an A- (80%, 3.7 GPA, First Class Distinction) average in the last 2 years of your undergraduate degree
  • Research experience (undergrad thesis, Summer Research Program, etc.)
  • International Applicants must have secured a potential supervisor

2. Motivation

Academic excellence is necessary, but will not guarantee admission. Motivation to conduct research is important. This can also be demonstrated through:

  • Application for external funding prior to admission. The application itself, even if unsuccessful, speaks to motivation
  • Time spent in laboratories or other research settings pertinent to your graduate program (summer programs, gap year, etc.)
  • Participation in research presentations
  • Authorship on publications
  • Presentation of a proposed research project at the time of interview
  • A letter of intent that contains a relatively specific outline of the proposed thesis work
  • Early attempts to contact potential supervisors
  • Early application for graduate studies

3. References

The IMS requires two references for all applications. The two required references must be from a university faculty member who knows you well enough to comment on your strengths and abilities. The referee must have been a faculty member during the time they are commenting on.

At least one reference must be from a faculty member with whom you have conducted research. The IMS wants to know how you might function in an active research environment.

Ineligible required references include:

  • Sessional Lecturer
  • Adjunct Professor
  • Post-doc Fellow
  • Teaching Assistant
  • Research Assistant/Associate
  • Manager
  • MD without a university faculty appointment

You can submit an optional third reference. This reference can be from a faculty member, but it can also be from a non-faculty member who can speak to your strengths and abilities (work ethic, leadership, research, collaborative, or interpersonal skills, etc.). It is highly recommended that MSc applicants submit an optional third reference.

Examples of an optional third references include:

  • Lab Manager
  • Research Assistant
  • Post-doc Fellow
  • Varsity Coach or Instructor from a university team/extracurricular activity
  • Job Manager

Referees receive requests and instructions for references electronically as part of the online application process.

Admissions Guide

To assist you in your decision, review the Admissions Guide on graduate studies at the University of Toronto here.

Funding Policy

Student Funding Policy 2023-2024

Ready to apply? Log in to the online application:

To further help you in your decision you can check out the SGS Admissions and Application Requirement, IMS Degree Requirements, Application Deadlines, Admissions FAQ pages.

Applications will be considered after payment of the application fee is received by the School of Graduate Studies and a completed application is received by the application deadline. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Applications received passed the application deadline will not be considered.