Person looks at plants indoors as part of an experiment.

Plant Science Co-op Information for Employers

Adding Value to Your Team

Students in the Plant Science major learn about the many wonders of plants, exploring the intricacies of plants through the study of their diversity, growth and development, plant-environment interactions, advances in molecular biology, and the various economic uses. Students in the program study alongside one of the largest concentrations of plant scientists in Canada, and gain hands-on knowledge of plant ecology, systematics, physiology, botany, genetics, agriculture, ethnobotany, and biotechnology.

University of Guelph Advantage

The University of Guelph is an internationally top-ranked universaity with both Biological Science and Agricultural colleges. The Plant Science program crosses college boundaries to bring the full range of plant science programming to students. Guelph offers access to some of the world’s most respected scientists, teachers, and researchers as well as outstanding research and teaching facilities.

Students do not begin their first work term until they have completed 2 years of study and have mastered the core competencies needed to be successful in their work terms. Students are available for up to four work terms (4, 8, or 12 months) and employers can post, interview, and hire throughout the semester.

Student Strengths

 Collaborative Problem-Solving

Strong problem-solving and collaboration skills while working alongside one of the largest concentrations of plant sciences in Canada.

 Deep Understanding

In-depth knowledge in the role of ecological interactions of plants and their impact on global, cultural and societal issues in a professional working environment.

 Practical Experience

Hands-on experience with advanced technology to explore plant ecology, systematics, physiology, botany, genetics, agriculture, ethnobotany and biotechnology.

Plant Science Co-op Work Term Schedule








Plant Science Course Sequencing

Based on the 2023/24 undergraduate calendar. Please see the current undergraduate calendar for more information.


  • Discovering Biodiversity
  • General Chemistry I
  • Effective Writing
  • Elements of Calculus I
  • Physics for Life Sciences


  • Introduction to Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • General Chemistry II
  • Physics for Life Sciences II
  • 1 Liberal Education elective
  • One of:
    • Introduction to Computing
    • Introduction to Programming
    • Elements of Calculus II


  • Introduction to Plant Agriculture
  • Introduction to Biochemistry
  • Life Strategies of Plants
  • Introduction to Co-operative Education
  • Foundations in Molecular Biology and Genetics
  • 1 Liberal Education elective


  • Molecular Biology of the Cell
  • Statistics I
  • 3 electives/restricted electives


Work Term One


  • Plant Anatomy
  • Plant Functional Ecology
  • 3 electives/restricted electives


  • Plant Growth and Development
  • 4 electives/restricted electives


Work Term Two


Work Term Three


Work Term Four


  • 3–4 electives/restricted electives
  • One of:
    • Research Project I
    • Research in Integrative Biology I
    • Research Project in Molecular and Cellular Biology I
    • Topics in Molecular and Cellular Biology


  • Metabolism in the Whole Life of Plants
  • 4 electives/restricted electives
Restricted Electives

Restricted electives include: a minimum of 1.00 credits of Liberal Education and a minimum of 2.00 credits of Core electives from the following disciplines:

  • Applied Plant Science
  • Plant Biotechnology and Plant Genetics
  • Plant Ecology and Evolution