Time Limits for Completion

13. Time Limits for Completion  

13.1 Normal Time Limits Graduate programs in Biology should be designed so that they can be completed within 6 terms (2 years) for the MSc and 12 terms (4 years) for the PhD. To accomplish this an early supervisory committee meeting and a clear timeline should be established, and realistic timelines included with each supervisory committee meeting report. See here for regulations from the School of Graduate Studies.

13.2 Time Limit Extensions As soon as it is clear that the above time limits cannot be met, a supervisory committee meeting should be held no later than term 6 of the MSc or term 12 of the PhD to discuss and present a clear plan and timeline for completion. If a thesis defense can be scheduled no more than 2 months into term 7 (MSc) or 13 (PhD), no further action is needed.

If a defense is planned before the end of term 7 (MSc) or 13 (PhD), but more than 2 months into those terms, then a timeline and plan should be submitted to the Biology Graduate Studies Coordinator for approval.

Toward end of terms 7 (MSc) and 13 (PhD) another supervisory committee meeting should be held to assess progress. If a further extension is required, this must be requested before two weeks from the end of these terms, by submission of a request, a plan and a timeline to the Biology Coordinator of Graduate Studies, who will inform the School of Graduate Studies.

Extensions beyond the end of term 9 (MSc) and 15 (PhD must be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies on their Time Limit Extension Request Form, before the ends of those terms, along with approval from the Biology Coordinator of Graduate Studies. See here for details from SGS.

13.3 Extenuating Circumstances The Biology Graduate Studies Committee (and SGS) recognizes that there are sometimes extenuating circumstances that cause delays in thesis completion beyond the expected times to completion listed above. Such delays, however, should be carefully documented and included in regular committee meeting reports. It is too late to be thinking about extensions in the final term of your degree program.

<< Previous Page | Next Page >>

I've spent more time than many will believe [making microscopic observations], but I've done them with joy, and I've taken no notice those who have said why take so much trouble and what good is it?

Antonie van Leeuwenhoek

It's a parts list... If I gave you the parts list for the Boeing 777 and it had 100,000 parts, I don't think you could screw it together and you certainly wouldn't understand why it flew

Eric Lander

What is true for E. coli is also true for the elephant

Jacques Monod

The world becomes full of organisms that have what it takes to become ancestors. That, in a sentence, is Darwinism

Richard Dawkins

Shall we conjecture that one and the same kind of living filaments is and has been the cause of all organic life?

Erasmus Darwin

Nature proceeds little by little from things lifeless to animal life in such a way that it's impossible to determine the line of demarcation


Cells let us walk, talk, think, make love, and realize the bath water is cold

Lorraine Lee Cudmore

In the distant future I see open fields for far more important researches. Psychology will be based on a new foundation, that of the necessary acquirement of each mental power and capacity by gradation. Light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history

Charles Darwin

It is my belief that the basic knowledge that we're providing to the world will have a profound impact on the human condition and the treatments for disease and our view of our place on the biological continuum

J. Craig Venter

Imagine a house coming together spontaneously from all the information contained in the bricks: that is how animal bodies are made

Neil Shubin

A grain in the balance will determine which individual shall live and which shall die - which variety or species shall increase in number, and which shall decrease, or finally become extinct

Charles Darwin

The stuff of life turned out to be not a quivering, glowing, wondrous gel but a contraption of tiny jigs, springs, hinges, rods, sheets, magnets, zippers, and trapdoors, assembled by a data tape whose information is copied, downloaded and scanned

Steven Pinker

We wish to discuss a structure for the salt of deoxyribose nucleic acid. (D.N.A.). This structure has novel features which are of considerable biologic interest

Rosalind Franklin

We are biology. We are reminded of this at the beginning and the end, at birth and at death. In between we do what we can to forget

Mary Roach

The systems approach to biology will be the dominant theme in medicine

Leroy Hood

I've always been interested in animal behavior, and I keep reading about it because it's so surprising all the time - so many things are happening around us that we neglect to look at. Part of the passion I have for biology is based on this wonderment"

Isabella Rossellini

Because all of biology is connected, one can often make a breakthrough with an organism that exaggerates a particular phenomenon, and later explore the generality

Thomas Cech

Nothing in Biology makes sense except in the light of evolution

Theodosius Dobzhansky

Biology is now bigger than physics, as measured by the size of budgets, by the size of the workforce, or by the output of major discoveries; and biology is likely to remain the biggest part of science through the twenty-first century

- Freeman Dyson

Nothing can be more incorrect than the assumption one sometimes meets with, that physics has one method, chemistry another, and biology a third

- Thomas Huxley