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Physics (MSc, PhD)

Overview

If you are looking for a challenging career with a positive social impact, this is it. Physics is an exciting, cutting-edge, multidisciplinary field in which MSc and PhD graduate degrees lead to a career in research, biomedical technology or clinical medical physics. Graduate students seeking to enter a medical physics residency program may pursue a CAMPEP accreditation in Medical Physics, which distinguishes our programs.

Degrees awarded: MSc, PhD

Administered by: Faculty of Science

Physics graduate program website

PDF filePhysics graduate program calendar 2021-22

Course Code Degree Requirements: Master of Science Credits

 

Master’s Thesis

(Milestone)

BP8201

Master’s Seminar I

Pass/Fail

BP8202

Master’s Seminar II

Pass/Fail

 

PLUS the requirements of ONE of the following fields

 

BIOMEDICAL PHYSICS

BP8103

Fundamentals of Radiation Physics

1

 

OR

 

BP8115

Medical Imaging

1

 

Three elective credits from the Electives List with a minimum of 2 credits from Table A

3

CAMPEP MEDICAL PHYSICS

BP8115

Medical Imaging

1

BP8103

Fundamentals of Radiation Physics

1

BP8104

Radiation Therapy

1

BP8107

Radiation Protection and Dosimetry

1

BP8112

Radiobiology

1

BP8114

Anatomy and Physiology for Medical Physicists

1

 

AND as required to meet CAMPEP accreditation requirements

 

 

CAMPEP – Clinical Shadowing

Milestone

 

CAMPEP – Radiobiology Bridge

Milestone

COMPLEX SYSTEMS

BP8116

Many-body Theory

1

BP8117

Dynamical Systems

1

BP8118

Complex Networks & Applications

1

 

One elective credit from the Electives List from either Table A or B

1

Electives

Course code Course name Credits

Table A

 

 

BP8103

Fundamentals of Radiation Physics

1

BP8104

Radiation Therapy

1

BP8105

Comp Modeling in Biomed Phys

1

BP8106

Optcl, Acstc and Thrml Phys

1

BP8107

Radiation Protection and Dosimetry

1

BP8110

Biomedical Ultrasound

1

BP8115

Medical Imaging

1

BP8116

Many-body Theory

1

BP8117

Dynamical Systems

1

Table B

 

 

BP8101

Stats for the Health Sciences

1

BP8108

Special Topics I

1

BP8109

Special Topics II

1

BP8112

Radiobiology

1

BP8114

Anatomy and Physiology for Med. Phys.

1

BP8118

Complex Networks & Applications

1

Note: with permission from Supervisor and Program Director, Master’s and PhD students may use one graduate course from a relevant program in place of one elective credit from Table B.

 

Course Code Degree Requirements: Doctor of Philosophy Credits

 

Doctoral Candidacy Examination

(Milestone)

 

Doctoral Dissertation

(Milestone)

BP9101

Science Communication

1

BP9201

Doctoral Seminar I

Pass/Fail

BP9202

Doctoral Seminar II

Pass/Fail

BP9203

Doctoral Seminar III

Pass/Fail

BP9204

Doctoral Seminar IV

Pass/Fail

 

PLUS the requirements of ONE of the following fields

 

BIOMEDICAL PHYSICS

 

Two elective credits from the Electives List from either Table A or B

2

 

If deemed necessary to ensure an adequate background in Biomedical Physics, a student may be required to take either BP8115 or BP8103

1

CAMPEP MEDICAL PHYSICS

 

Any or All of the following courses not previously taken in the MSc program

 

BP8115

Medical Imaging

1

BP8103

Fundamentals of Radiation Physics

1

BP8104

Radiation Therapy

1

BP8107

Radiation Protection and Dosimetry

1

BP8112

Radiobiology

1

BP8114

Anatomy and Physiology for Medical Physicists

1

 

AND as required to meet CAMPEP accreditation requirements

 

 

CAMPEP – Clinical Shadowing

Milestone

 

CAMPEP – Radiobiology Bridge

Milestone

COMPLEX SYSTEMS

 

Two elective credits from the Electives List either Table A or B

2

 

If deemed necessary to ensure an adequate background in Complex Systems, a student may be required to take up to three of the required courses in the MSc – Complex Systems (BP8116, BP8117, BP8118)

 

1-3

Electives

Course code Course name Credits

Table A

 

 

BP8103

Fundamentals of Radiation Physics

1

BP8104

Radiation Therapy

1

BP8105

Comp Modeling in Biomed Phys

1

BP8106

Optcl, Acstc and Thrml Phys

1

BP8107

Radiation Protection and Dosimetry

1

BP8110

Biomedical Ultrasound

1

BP8115

Medical Imaging

1

BP8116

Many-body Theory

1

BP8117

Dynamical Systems

1

Table B

 

 

BP8101

Stats for the Health Sciences

1

BP8108

Special Topics I

1

BP8109

Special Topics II

1

BP8112

Radiobiology

1

BP8114

Anatomy and Physiology for Med. Phys.

1

BP8118

Complex Networks & Applications

1

Note: with permission from Supervisor and Program Director, Master’s and PhD students may use one graduate course from a relevant program in place of one elective credit from Table B.

 

Doctoral Candidacy Examination
The aim of the candidacy exam is to assess the originality and appropriateness of the proposed research, its relevance to the program, and the students’ ability to complete the research and the program. The exam consists of a written and oral component.
This is a “Milestone.” Pass/Fail

Doctoral Dissertation:
Students are required to conduct advanced research in the area of Physics. A specific research topic must be chosen in consultation with the student’s supervisor(s) and with advice from the supervisory committee. The student will conduct the research under the direction of the supervisor(s) with guidance from the supervisory committee. In order to complete the course, the student must, upon approval from the supervisory committee, submit a written dissertation to an examination committee, and make an oral presentation and defence of the dissertation to this committee. Through the dissertation, the student must demonstrate an original contribution of new knowledge to the field of research, competence in research and a deep understanding of knowledge in the area of research.
This is a “Milestone.” Pass/Fail

Master’s Thesis
This a laboratory-based research project. Students are required to conduct research, submit their completed research in a thesis format to an examination committee, and make an oral presentation and defence of the research thesis and results to this committee. Through the thesis, students are expected to demonstrate competence in oral and written communication, experimental design and scientific thought processes, as well as a sound understanding of the specialty area associated with the research. This is a “Milestone.” Pass/Fail

CAMPEP -- Clinical Shadowing
Clinical shadowing is designed to give the Medical Physics Option students exposure to the clinical practice of Medical Physics. It is broken up into several components. Each component is supervised by a clinical medical physicist at a regional cancer centre. Students are responsible for contacting the responsible medical physicist to schedule a clinical shadowing session. The course will have a Pass/Fail grade, where a Pass will be assigned based on attendance and participation in all components. This is a “Milestone.” Pass/Fail

CAMPEP – Radiobiology Bridge
Students who took an anti-requisite of BP8112 will have to complete and pass any components in the CAMPEP accredited version that were missing from the anti-requisite course they took. Other students meet this milestone by virtue to taking BP8112. This is a “Milestone.” Pass/Fail

BP8101 Stats for the Health Sciences
This course is designed as a first course in biostatistics with emphasis on relevance in biomedical physics applications. Topics include nonparametric statistics, linear regression, errors and structural analysis of linear relationships between variables, nonlinear estimation, survival analysis and multivariate analysis of data. A statistics computer package will be used. 1 Credit

BP8103 Fndmntls of Radiation Physics
This course is designed for students with an undergraduate background in radiation physics. Topics include the Bohr atomic model, Rutherford scattering, emission of photons, x-ray spectra, Bremsstrahlung and characteristic radiation, homogeneous and heterogeneous photon beams, thin and thick x-ray targets, absorption and scatter of photon beams, beam attenuation, Thomson scattering, Photoelectric effect, Rayleigh scattering, Compton effect, pair production, interaction of neutrons with matter, radiation quantities and units, radiation decay, exposure, kerma, dose, and dose equivalent. 1 hour lab/week. 1 Credit

BP8104 Radiation Therapy
This course is an introduction to radiation therapy physics, including topics such as radiation teletherapy units; interaction of radiation with tissue; dosimetry of a single beam of x-ray; beam calibration and patient dose calculation; combination of beams and treatment planning, brachytherapy; radiation detection. Prerequisite: BP8103. 1 hour lab/week. 1 Credit

BP8105 Comp Modeling in Biomed Phys
The course will focus on the use of computational modeling techniques for hypothesis driven investigation of problems in biomedical physics. The student will apply and integrate fundamental knowledge of mathematics, physics and life sciences to design and implement appropriate models and to analyse and interpret simulation results. Emphasis will be placed on simulation methods such as Monte Carlo methods, and finite element and finite difference techniques. 1 Credit

BP8106 Optcl, Acstc and Thrml Phys
The course will begin with basic optical, acoustic and thermal propagation in biomaterials. This will be followed by the presentation of the principles of photodynamic therapy, optical sensing, ultrasound biomicroscopy, optoacoustics imaging, thermal therapy and thermography. 1 Credit

BP8107 Rad Protection and Dosimetry
The course will focus on health physics, radiation safety and radiation protection (shielding). Students will learn the essentials of determining radiation doses from internal and external ionizing radiation sources. A survey of sources, applications, risks and control of environmental radiation will be presented. The final part of the course will review microdosimetry. Prerequisite BP8103 1 hour lab/week. 1 Credit.

BP8108 Special Topics I
This course examines selected topics in areas related to the program that are not covered by existing courses. The topic(s) will vary depending on the needs and interests of the students and the instructor. The course description will be announced prior to scheduling the course. 1 Credit

BP8109 Special Topics II
This course examines selected topics in areas related to the program that are not covered by existing courses. The topic(s) will vary depending on the needs and interests of the students and the instructor. The course description will be announced prior to scheduling the course. 1 Credit

BP8110 Biomedical Ultrasound
This course covers the essential elements in the physics of ultrasound and its current applications in medicine and biology. Topics include: physics of ultrasound, linear and non-linear ultrasound field calculations, scattering of ultrasound, ultrasound transducers, ultrasound imaging systems, Doppler ultrasound, and therapeutic ultrasound. 1 Credit

BP8112 Radiobiology
Fundamentals of physics and chemistry of radiation interactions, free radicals, oxidation and reduction. Subcellular and cellular effects: killing, repair, sensitization and protection. Measurement methods. Survival curves and their significance. Modification of the radiation response. Tissue effects, genetic and carcinogenic effects, mutations, hazards. Antirequisite: PCS354. 1 Credit

BP8114 Anatomy and Physiology for Med. Phys
An overview of the structure of the main regions of the human body including the thorax, abdomen, bones, brain and central nervous system. Function of respiratory, circulatory, nervous, digestive, urinary and reproductive systems. Anatomical nomenclature and a radiographic appearance of different body regions will be discussed. 1 Credit

BP8115 Medical Imaging
This course will cover the fundamentals of diagnostic medical imaging, including x-ray radiography, x-ray computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasound imaging, and nuclear medicine imaging. The mathematical models and image reconstruction methods for each modality will also be introduced. Five labs. Antirequisite: BP8113, BP8102 1 Credit

BP8116 Many-body Theory
This course covers core topics in the study of systems with many degrees of freedom, including network models and out-of-equilibrium phenomena. Topics include a review of thermal equilibrium and partition functions, mean-field theory, Markov processes, the master equation, the Fokker–Planck equation, the Langevin approach, diffusion, random networks, percolation and epidemics, metastability and glassiness, disorder and replicas. 1 Credit.

BP8117 Dynamical Systems
This course is an introduction to the analytical and numerical study of systems whose state changes in time, with an emphasis on qualitative behaviour. Topics to be covered include phase space, invariant sets, linear stability, bifurcations, fractal geometry, and chaos. Concepts will be illustrated first with canonical nonlinear systems in low dimensions including the Henon map, Lorenz equations, Duffing oscillator, etc., to be augmented by numerical studies of high-dimensional nonlinear systems. 1 Credit

BP8118 Complex Networks & Applications
An interdisciplinary introduction to the emerging science of networks and their applications to diverse fields. Topics to be covered include graph theory and topological measures, random network models, the scale-free and small-world properties, community detection, degree correlations, and applications to biology, sociology, technology, and other fields. Students will learn about ongoing research in the field, and ultimately demonstrate what they have learned in a final project in which they conduct a novel analysis of a network data-set of their choosing. 1 Credit.

BP8201 Master’s Seminar I
This course consists of weekly seminars with an emphasis on current research in the specialization fields and emerging areas of physics. This is a two-term course (Fall and Winter) in the first year of the program and is generally one hour per week. Presentations will be given by graduate students, faculty members, visiting scholars and guest speakers. Pass/Fail.

BP8202 Master’s Seminar II
This course consists of weekly seminars with an emphasis on current research in the specialization fields and emerging areas of physics. This is a two-term course (Fall and Winter) in the second year of the program and is generally one hour per week. Presentations will be given by graduate students, faculty members, visiting scholars and guest speakers. Pass/Fail.

BP9101 Science Communication
The course is designed for students who are interested in pursuing an academic career as well as those intending to work outside the academic environment after graduating. Specific course goals are to provide graduate students with insight into, and practice in effective means of science communication as well as an awareness of ethical issues in research and professional environments. This will be done through various activities that include writing and reviewing research grant proposals, teaching physics mini-lessons, literature and presentation critiques, manuscript and thesis/dissertation preparation, and oral presentation for a range of audiences (scientist, media, lay audience, school children) and subjects (including research-related and more general topics). This course is suitable for students in other scientific or engineering disciplines. 1 Credit.

BP9201 Doctoral Seminar I
This course consists of weekly seminars with an emphasis on current research in the specialization fields and emerging areas of physics. This is a two-term course (Fall and Winter) in the first year of the Doctoral Program and is generally one hour per week. Presentations will be given by graduate students, faculty members, visiting scholars and guest speakers. Pass/Fail.

BP9202 Doctoral Seminar II
This course consists of weekly seminars with an emphasis on current research in the specialization fields and emerging areas of physics. This is a two-term course (Fall and Winter) in the second year of the Doctoral Program and is generally one hour per week. Presentations will be given by graduate students, faculty members, visiting scholars and guest speakers. Pass/Fail.

BP9203 Doctoral Seminar III
This course consists of weekly seminars with an emphasis on current research in the specialization fields and emerging areas of physics. This is a two-term course (Fall and Winter) in the third year of the Doctoral Program and is generally one hour per week. Presentations will be given by graduate students, faculty members, visiting scholars and guest speakers. Pass/Fail.

BP9204 Doctoral Seminar IV
This course consists of weekly seminars with an emphasis on current research in the specialization fields and emerging areas of physics. This is a two-term course (Fall and Winter) in the fourth year of the Doctoral Program and is generally one hour per week. Presentations will be given by graduate students, faculty members, visiting scholars and guest speakers. Pass/Fail.