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Chemistry and Biochemistry

MSc Program
PhD Program
Interdepartmental Programs


     Graduate teaching and research in chemistry and biochemistry at the University of Guelph are operated through the Guelph-Waterloo Centre for Graduate Work in Chemistry and Biochemistry - (GWC)2.

Director of the Centre
John F. Honek
(University of Waterloo, 325 Earth Science & Chemistry, Ext.5817)
(E-mail: jhonek@uwaterloo.ca)

Administrative assistant for the centre
Andrea Wetmore (2603 Davis Centre, University of Waterloo)

Chair of the department at Guelph
Robert J. Balahura
(378 Chemistry & Microbiology, Ext. 52267)
(E-mail: balahura@chembio.uoguelph.ca)

Departmental graduate co-ordinator
P. David Josephy
(129 MacNaughton,Ext. 53833)
(E-mail: josephy@chembio.uoguelph.ca)

Departmental graduate secretary
Krystyna Czernicki
(262 Chemistry & Microbiology, Ext. 53044)
(E-mail: kczernic@uoguelph.ca)

Graduate Faculty
Mark Baker
BSc Sussex, MSc, PhD East Anglia - Professor

Robert J. Balahura
BSc Waterloo, PhD Alberta - Professor

Manfred Brauer
BSc Calgary, MSc, PhD Wisconsin - Associate Professor

Nigel J. Bunce
BA, MA, DPhil Oxford - Professor

Anthony J. Clarke
BSc, PhD Waterloo - Professor

Marc Coppolino
BSc Waterloo, Msc, PhD Toronto - Assistant Professor

John F. Dawson
BSc Wilfrid Laurier, PhD Alberta - Assistant Professor

Michael K. Denk
Dipl. Ludwig-Maximilians, PhD Munich - Associate Professor

John D. Goddard
BSc Western Ontario, MSc, PhD Toronto - Professor

Saul Goldman
BSc, PhD McGill - Professor

Bryan R. Henry
BSc British Columbia, PhD Florida State - Professor

Abdelaziz Houmam
Maitrise Casablanca I, DEA, PhD Paris 7 - Assistant Professor

P. David Josephy
BSc Toronto, PhD British Columbia - Professor

Robert A.B. Keates
BA Cambridge, PhD Glasgow - Associate Professor

Jacek Lipkowski
MSc, PhD, DSc Warsaw - Professor

Devakanand Mangroo
BSc, PhD McMaster - Assistant Professor

Alan Mellors
BSc, PhD Liverpool - Professor

A. Rodney Merrill
BSc Lethbridge, PhD Ottawa - Professor

Glenn H. Penner
BSc, MSc, PhD Manitoba - Associate Professor

Kathryn E. Preuss
BSc Lethbridge, PhD Waterloo - Assistant Professor

Marcel Schlaf
Diplom (Bayerische Julius-Maximilian Universitat), PhD (Toronto) - Assistant Professor

Adrian L. Schwan
BSc Western Ontario, PhD McMaster - Professor

Frances J. Sharom
BSc Guelph, PhD Western Ontario - Professor

W.W.L. Tam
BSc (Hong Kong), PhD (Toronto) - Assistant Professor

Daniel F. Thomas
BSc Alberta, PhD Toronto - Associate Professor

Peter Tremaine
BSc Waterloo, PhD Alberta - Professor and Dean of the College of Physical and Engineering Science

Nicholas P.C. Westwood
BSc, PhD Southampton - Professor

Janet M. Wood
BSc Victoria, PhD Edinburgh - Professor

Rickey Y. Yada
BSc, Msc, PhD British Columbia - Professor

In addition, the following faculty members of the University of Waterloo are members of the centre:
Monica Barra
BSc, PhD National Univ. of Cordoba (Argentina) - Associate Professor

Peter F. Bernath
BSc Waterloo, PhD Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Professor

Jeff Z. Chen
BSc Fudan, PhD Maryland - Professor

J. Michael Chong
BSc, PhD British Columbia - Professor

Gary I. Dmitrienko
BSc, PhD Toronto - Associate Professor

Jean Duhamel
BEng, MSc, PhD (ENSIC, Nancy, France) - Associate Professor

Eric Fillion
BSc Sherbrooke, MSc Montreal, PhD Toronto - Assistant Professor

Mario Gauthier
BSc, PhD McGill - Professor

Tadeus Gorecki
MSc, PhD (Technical University of Gdansk) - Assistant Professor

Dmitri Goussev
MSC, PhD Moscow Inst. of Fine Chemical Technology - Adjunct Assistant Professor

Bruce M. Greenberg
BSc California (Berkeley), PhD Colorado (Boulder) - Professor

J. Guy Guillemette
BSc, PhD Toronto - Associate Professor

Ian P. Hamilton
BSc, PhD Toronto - Adjunct Associate Professor

John F. Honek
BSc, PhD McGill - Professor

Vassili Karanassios
BSc Thessaloniki, PhD Alberta - Professor

Holger Kleinke
BSc, MSc Westfalische-Universitat Munster, PhD Johannes-Gutenberg Universitat Mainz - Assistant Professor

Robert J. LeRoy
BSc, MSc Toronto, PhD Wisconsin - Professor

K. Tong Leung
BSc, PhD British Columbia - Professor

Wing-Ki Liu
BSc, MSc, PhD Illinois - Professor

Frederick R.W. McCourt
BSc, PhD British Columbia - Professor

Terrance B. McMahon
BSc Alberta, PhD California Institute of Technology - Professor and Department Chair

Elizabeth M. Meiering
BSc Waterloo, PhD Cambridge - Associate Professor

Susan R. Mikkelsen
BSc (British Columbia), PhD (McGill) - Professor

Linda F. Nazar
BSc British Columbia, PhD Toronto - Professor

Richard T. Oakley
BSc, MSc, PhD British Columbia - Professor

Michael Palmer
MD Giessen - Associate Professor

Janusz Pawliszyn
BSc, MSc Gdansk (Poland), PhD Southern Illinois - Professor, NSERC/Supelco/Varian Industrial Research Chair in New Analytical Methods and Technologies

Alexander Penlidis
DiplEng Thessaloniki, PhD McMaster - Professor

William P. Power
BSc, PhD Dalhousie - Associate Professor and Graduate Officer

Russell Rodrigo
BSc Ceylon, PhD Nottingham - Adjunct Professor

James J. Sloan
BSc, PhD Queen's - Professor

Arthur Szabo
BSc Queen's, MA, PhD Toronto - Adjunct Professor

Scott Taylor
BSc McGill, MSC, PhD Toronto - Associate Professor

John E. Thompson
BSA Toronto, PhD Alberta - Professor

Thammaiah Viswanatha
MSc, PhD Mysore - Distinguished Professor Emeritus

     The Guelph-Waterloo Centre for Graduate Work in Chemistry and Biochemistry combines the Department of Chemistry at the University of Waterloo and the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Guelph into a comprehensive and all-inclusive school of graduate chemistry and biochemistry. The members of the centre conduct research in virtually all areas of modern chemistry and biochemistry.
     Professional personnel in the centre comprise those faculty members of the two departments who have been appointed as PhD advisors and have a record of recent research achievement. The centre is administered by the director and its affairs are guided by the co-ordinating committee, which consists of the director, the two departmental chairs, the two departmental graduate co-ordinators, two elected centre members from each campus, and one elected representative of the graduate student body from each campus. The regulations applying to graduate study in the centre meet the requirements of the graduate councils and the Senates of the two universities.
     The fields of research in which theses can be written normally fall within the categories of analytical, inorganic, organic, physical, theoretical (also chemical physics) and polymer chemistry, and biochemistry. The category chosen will normally be referred to as the candidate's major. However, if a suitable topic is chosen, a candidate may pursue research which involves more than one of the categories listed above. Certain course requirements must be fulfilled both for the MSc and for the PhD. These courses are chosen in consultation with the candidate's advisory committee and the graduate officers of the centre.

MSc Programs

Admission Requirements
     Non-Canadian applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit evidence of proficiency in the English language or pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). A minimum score of 580 is required.

MSc Program
     An applicant is eligible for admission to the MSc program if he/she has an honours bachelor of science degree, or the equivalent, with first- or upper second-class standing from an accredited university.

MSc Co-operative Option
     An applicant is eligible for admission to the MSc co-operative option if he/she is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and has honours bachelor of science degree, or the equivalent, with first- or upper second-class standing from an accredited university. The co-op MSc option is not available to students who have completed a co-op program as undergraduates. These students are, however, eligible for admission to the co-op PhD program.

Degree Requirements
MSc Program
     Students must successfully complete at least four semester-long graduate courses, one of which is MSc Seminar, CHEM*7940, and submit and defend an acceptable thesis.

MSc Co-operative Option
     The academic requirements are the same as in the regular MSc program, but at least two of the required four semester-long courses (including CHEM*7940) must be completed during the first two semesters of study. The student will spend the following two semesters (eight months) working in an industrial or government laboratory, upon completion of which he/she must present an acceptable work report. After returning to campus, the student will complete his/her course work and research and prepare the MSc thesis.

Part-Time Course-Based MSc Program
     Students who elect this option must successfully complete eight semester-long courses, including MSc Seminar, CHEM*7940, and MSc Research Project, CHEM*7970. This option is designed for students whose employment or family responsibilities allow free time for study only in the evenings.

PhD Programs

Admission Requirements
     Non-Canadian applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit evidence of proficiency in the English language or pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). A minimum score of 580 is required.

PhD Program
     An applicant is eligible for admission to the PhD program at the discretion of the director. In general, an applicant must possess the qualifications listed for the MSc program, together with a master of science degree comparable to those awarded by North American universities and suitable references from the institution at which the MSc degree was awarded.
     A student who is registered in (GWC)2 as a master's candidate may be permitted under certain circumstances to transfer to a PhD degree without writing an MSc thesis. The following guidelines are used in deciding whether a student will be recommended to the appropriate university authorities to transfer directly to the PhD program.

  • The request must be initiated by the student no later than the end of the third semester in the MSc program. Transfers will be made no later than the fourth semester.

  • The applicant should have a superior academic record at both the undergraduate and graduate level, with a first class standing and above average performance in a minimum of two graduate courses and MSc Seminar, CHEM*7940.

  • The applicant must have demonstrated an oral and written communication ability appropriate for a PhD-level student, and there must be clear evidence of research productivity and promise.

  • The request for direct transfer should be accompanied by supporting documentation from the advisor, the advisory committee, and another faculty member familiar with the student's research record.

PhD Co-operative Option
     A student will be eligible for admission to the PhD co-operative option if he/she is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident and has an honours bachelor of science degree, or the equivalent, with first- or upper second-class standing from an accredited university.

Degree Requirements
PhD Program
     Students in the PhD program must successfully complete three semester-long courses beyond those required for the master of science degree. One of these courses will be PhD Seminar, CHEM*7950. Students must also pass an oral qualifying examination, CHEM*7960, in their major field, and submit and defend an acceptable thesis.

PhD Co-operative Option
     Students registered in the PhD program may proceed to that degree under the co-operative option. Under this option four of the six required semester-long courses (including CHEM*7950) must be completed within the first two academic semesters of study in the centre. After successful completion of these two semesters of course work, the candidate will spend three semesters (one year) working in an industrial or government laboratory. Registration in the co-operative option commits students to the acceptance of employment either through a regular interview procedure organized by Career Services, Counselling and Student Resource Centre at the University of Guelph or by the department of co-operative education and career services at the University of Waterloo; or, where their interests are best served, on an assignment specified by the centre. On completion of the work year, a student will be required to submit a work report which will be evaluated by the centre and the career services unit at the student's home campus. Following successful completion of the work year, the student will return to the centre to continue work on a PhD research project and complete the regular PhD requirements.

Interdepartmental Programs

Biophysics MSc/PhD Program
    The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry participates in the MSc/PhD programs in biophysics. Professors Brauer, Keates, Merrill and Sharom are members of the Biophysics Inter-departmental Group (BIG). These faculty members' research and teaching expertise includes aspects of biophysics; they may serve as advisors for MSc and PhD students in biophysics. Please consult the Biophysics listing for a detailed description of the graduate programs offered by the Biophysics Interdepartmental Group.

Toxicology MSc/PhD Collaborative Program
    The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry participates in the MSc/PhD program in toxicology. Professors Brauer, Bunce and Josephy are members of the Toxicology Interdepartmental Group. These faculty members' research and teaching expertise includes aspects of toxicology; they may serve as advisors for MSc and PhD students. Please consult the Toxicology listing for a detailed description of the MSc/PhD collaborative program. Students choosing this option must meet the requirements of the toxicology collaborative program, as well as those of (GWC)2 for their particular degree program. Three toxicology courses must be completed including Advanced Topics in Toxicology, TOX*6200, and a research project must be conducted with a participating faculty member at the University of Guelph.


     Except where specified, courses in the following list may be offered in any semester subject to student demand and the availability of an instructor.
     All courses are given an eight character code with the fifth having the following significance: 1 (inorganic), 2 (analytical), 3 (biochemistry), 4 (theoretical), 5 (physical), 6 (organic), and 7 (polymer).

Course/(Credit Value) Term Course Description
Selected Topics in Inorganic Chemistry (0.5)
   Discussion of specialized topics related to the research interests of members of the centre. Special topics could include, for example: bioinorganic chemistry; inorganic reaction mechanisms; synthetic methods in inorganic and organometallic chemistry; homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis; chemistry of polynuclear compounds.
X-ray Crystallography (0.5)
   Introduction: crystals, basic concepts; space groups: the reciprocal lattice; x-ray diffraction; the phase problem; structure factors; electron density; small molecule structure solution, structure refinement, structure results, journals and databases, paper writing.
Chemistry of Inorganic Solid State Materials (0.5)
   Introduction to solid state chemistry, common crystal structures, principles of solid state synthesis, theory and experimental methods for characterizing solids, including thermal analysis techniques, powder x-ray and neutron diffraction methods; special topics to include one or more of the optical, electronic, magnetic, or conductive properties of inorganic materials. Prerequisites: one semester-long undergraduate course (at least third-year level) in inorganic chemistry, preferably with content in structural and/or solid state.
Structure and Bonding in Inorganic Chemistry (0.5)
   Free electron, Hueckel and extended Hueckel methods for molecules and clusters. Perturbation theory. Applications of group theory in inorganic chemistry; Jahn-Teller effects in molecules and solids. Energy bands in one, two and three dimensions. Prerequisites: three semester-long undergraduate courses in inorganic chemistry and one semester-long undergraduate course in quantum mechanics or group theory.
Advanced Transition Metal Chemistry (0.5)
   Magnetochemistry of transition metal compounds. Electronic spectra of complex ions including applications of molecular orbital and ligand field theories. Stabilization of unusual oxidation states and co-ordination numbers. Bonding, structure and reactivity of certain important classes of metal complexes, e.g., metal hybrides, metal-metal bonded species, biologically significant model systems such as macrocycles.
Advanced Organometallic Chemistry (0.5)
   Reactions, structure and bonding of organometallic compounds of transition and non-transition metals.
CHEM*7200 - CHEM*7230
Selected Topics in Analytical Chemistry (0.5)
   Special topics could include, for example: trace analysis using modern instrumental and spectroscopic methods; advanced mass spectrometry (instrumentation and interpretation of spectra); analytical aspects of gas and liquid chromatography.
Chemical Instrumentation (0.5)
   Instrumental components and optimum application; rudiments of design; electrical, spectral, migrational and other methods.
Topics in Analytical Spectroscopy (0.5)
   Atomic emission and absorption spectroscopy; methods of excitation and detection; quantitative applications. Molecular electronic spectroscopy, UV, visible and Raman; instrumental characteristics; applications to quantitative determinations, speciation, measurements of equilibrium, etc. Sources and control of errors and interferences. Determination and description of colour.
Separations (0.5)
   Material to be covered is drawn from the following topics: diffusion; isolation of organic material from the matrix; chromatographic techniques - principles of chromatographic separation, gas (GLC, GSC), liquid (LLC, LSC, GPC, IEC), supercritical fluid (SFC) chromatographies; GC-MS, CG-FTIR; electrophoresis, flow field fractionation. Prerequisites: undergraduate level course in instrumental analysis.
Electroanalytical Chemistry (0.5)
   A study of electroanalytical techniques and their role in modern analytical chemistry. The underlying principles are developed. Techniques include chronamperometry, chronocoulometry, polarography, voltammetry, chronopotentiometry, coulometric titrations, flow techniques, electrochemical sensors and chemically modified electrodes.
Surface Analysis (0.5)
   Modern surface analysis: description and importance of surfaces. Surface area determinations. High surface area solids, supports. Scanning electron microscopy: principles and applications. Auger electron spectroscopy. Applications in metallurgy and materials science. Depth profiling. ESCA: elemental compositions and studies of catalyst surfaces. SIMS. Infrared spectroscopy. Studies of supported metal and metal oxides. Acid surface sites and their role in catalysis. Scanning tunnelling microscopy; theory and applications. Single crystal surfaces. LEED. Studies of chemisorption.
CHEM*7310 - CHEM*7330
Selected Topics in Biochemistry (0.5)
   Discussion of specialized topics related to the research interests of members of the centre: for example, recent offerings have included peptide and protein chemistry, biochemical toxicology, medical aspects of biochemistry, glycolipids and glycoproteins, redox enzymes, biological applications of magnetic resonance, etc.
Proteins and Nucleic Acids (0.5)
   Determination of protein sequence and 3-dimensional structure, protein anatomy; prediction of protein structure; intermolecular interactions and protein-protein association; effects of mutation. Nucleic acid structure and anatomy; DNA and chromatin structure; RNA structure; snRNPs and ribozymes; protein-nucleic acid interactions.
Regulation in Biological Systems (0.5)
   Mechanisms of regulation of metabolism - enzyme clusters; phosphorylation and protein kinases/phosphatases, repression and induction, protein turnover. Regulation of transcription, translation and mRNA processing. Cell cycle and control of cell division.
Enzymes (0.5)
   Mechanisms of rate enhancement. Enzyme kinetics - steady state; inhibitors; bisubstrate enzymes; fast reaction kinetics. Enzyme reaction mechanisms. Structural and genetic modification of enzymes. Catalytic antibodies. Binding processes. Multiple sites and co-operativity. Allosteric enzymes and metabolic control. Catalysis by RNA.
Cell Membranes and Cell Surfaces (0.5)
   Membrane proteins and lipids - structure and function; dynamics; techniques for their study; model membrane systems. Membrane transport. The cytoskeleton. Membrane protein biogenesis, sorting and targeting. Signal transduction across membranes. The cell surface in immune responses.
CHEM*7400 - CHEM*7430
Selected Topics in Theoretical Chemistry (0.5)
   Discussion of specialized topics related to the research interests of the members of the centre. Special topics could include for example: theory of intermolecular forces; density matrices; configuration interaction; correlation energies of open and closed shell systems; kinetic theory and gas transport properties; theory of the chemical bond.
CHEM*7500 - CHEM*7530
Selected Topics in Physical Chemistry (0.5)
   Discussion of specialized topics related to the research interests of the members of the centre. Special topics could include for example: principles of magnetic resonance in biological systems; collisions, spectroscopy and intermolecular forces, surface chemistry; catalysis; electrolyte theory; non-electrolyte solution theory, thermodynamics of biological systems; thermodynamics.
Statistical Mechanics (0.5)
   Review of classical and quantum mechanics; principles of statistical mechanics; applications to systems of interacting molecules; imperfect gases, liquids, solids, surfaces and solutions.
Quantum Chemistry (0.5)
   Approximate solutions of the Schrodinger equation and calculations of atomic and molecular properties.
Kinetics - Dynamics (0.5)
   Empirical analysis. Kinetic theory of gases. Potential energy surfaces. Unimolecular rates. Relaxation and steady state methods. Diffusion rates. Rates between polar molecules. Energy transfer.
Spectroscopy (0.5)
   Aspects of electronic vibrational and rotational spectroscopy of atoms, molecules, and the solid state. Relevant aspects of quantum mechanics, Dirac notation, and angular momentum will be discussed. Group Theory will be presented and its implications for spectroscopy introduced. Prerequisites: one semester-long undergraduate course in quantum mechanics or the approval of the instructor.
CHEM*7600 - CHEM*7630
Selected Topics in Organic Chemistry (0.5)
   Two or three topics from a range including: bio-organic chemistry; environmental organic chemistry; free radicals; heterocyclic molecules; molecular rearrangements; organometallic chemistry; photochemistry; natural products.
Synthetic Organic Reactions (0.5)
   Named organic reactions and other synthetically useful reactions are discussed. The mechanism, stereochemical implications and use in organic synthesis of these reactions will be presented. Examples from the organic literature will be used to illustrate these aspects.
Strategies in Organic Synthesis (0.5)
   The synthesis of organic compounds is discussed and emphasis is placed on the design of synthetic routes. Examples drawn from the literature are used to illustrate this synthetic planning. Prerequisite: CHEM*7640.
Organic Spectroscopy (0.5)
   Ultraviolet, infrared, resonance spectroscopy and mass spectrometry, with emphasis on applications to studies of organic molecules.
Physical Organic Chemistry (0.5)
   Linear free energy relationships; substituent effects and reactive intermediates.
Principles of Polymer Science (0.5)
   Introduction to the physical chemistry of high polymers, principles of polymer synthesis, mechanisms and kinetics of polymerization reactions, copolymerization theory, polymerization in homogeneous and heterogeneous systems, chemical reactions of polymers. Theory and experimental methods for the molecular characterization of polymers.
Physical Properties of Polymers (0.5)
   The physical properties of polymers are considered in depth from a molecular viewpoint. Rubber elasticity, mechanical properties, rheology and solution behaviour are quantitatively treated. Prerequisite: CHEM*7700 or equivalent.
Polymerization and Polymer Reactions (0.5)
   The reactions leading to the production of polymers are considered with emphasis on emulsion and suspension polymerization and polymerization reaction engineering. Polymer degradation, stabilization and modification reactions are also considered in depth. Prerequisite: CHEM*7700 or equivalent.
CHEM*7730 - CHEM*7820
Selected Topics in Polymer Chemistry (0.5)
   Discussion of specialized topics of polymer chemistry related to the research interests of the faculty or prominent scientific visitors. Special topics could include, for example: polymer stabilization and degradation; mechanical properties; polymer principles in surface coatings; organic chemistry of synthetic high polymers; estimation of polymer properties; reactions of polymers; polymerization kinetics.
MSc Seminar (0.5)
   A written literature review and research proposal on the research topic will be presented and defended in a 30-minute public seminar. This requirement is to be completed by all thesis-option MSc students within two semesters of entering the program.
PhD Seminar (0.0)
   Public seminar given by all PhD regular students within four semesters of entering program. For co-op PhD students, this seminar is to be presented within four semesters of their return from the work year.
Comprehensive Examination (0.0)
   PhD students are required to take an oral examination in their major field. The specific content and format are specified by a centre examining committee. The examination must be first attempted no later than eight months after entering the regular PhD program. For co-op PhD students, the examination must be first attempted no later than four months after their return from the work year.
Research Project (MSc) (0.5)
   An experimental project normally based on the CHEM*7940 research proposal, supervised by the advisor, taking three to four months to complete. This project may be completed at any time during the student's program, but it must follow CHEM*7940. A written report is required, and a seminar based on the content of the report will be presented. The report must be completed as per the project/thesis guidelines of the University campus on which the student is registered. This course normally will follow the course CHEM*7940 MSc Seminar.
MSc Thesis (0.0)
PhD Thesis (0.0)


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