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In Geography, you can pursue a Master’s (MA or MSc) or PhD tailored to your research interests. You’ll work on important issues affecting society today, like conservation and the changing climate’s effect on human systems. Your degree will be research-focused and supplemented with course work.

Focus your research in the areas of human geography, physical geography, human-environment interactions, or geomatics. UVic’s location on Vancouver Island gives you easy access to marine and alpine ecosystems, freshwater wetlands, rivers, lakes and a temperate rainforest for fieldwork.

Degree programs offered

The MA and MSc programs are designed to develop your independent research abilities. You’ll focus on a specific area of geography under the supervision of a faculty member. Our research strengths include:

  • Coastal systems
  • Geomatics
  • Human geography
  • Physical geography
  • Resources management

Your research will culminate in a thesis, which you’ll defend in an oral exam. You’ll have the opportunity to get out into the field, apply to work as a lab instructor, and attend the department’s colloquium presentations and other departmental events.

The PhD degree program is research-oriented and designed to develop your expertise in a specific area of geography. You’ll complete a candidacy examination, research proposal, coursework, and your final dissertation. 

The PhD program normally takes three years to complete.

Program Expected length Project and/or thesis Course-based
MA, MSc 2 years Yes No
PhD 3 years Yes No

Quick facts

Program options:
Masters, Doctorate
Program delivery:
Dynamic learning:
Co-op optional

Areas of focus

  • Coastal systems
  • Human geography
  • Physical geography
  • Resource management
  • Geographic information sciences

Find a supervisor

All graduate students in this program must have a faculty member who serves as their academic supervisor. When you apply:

  • you must list a potential supervisor on your application
  • this faculty member must agree to be your supervisor and recommend your admission

To find a supervisor, review the faculty contacts. When you've found a faculty member whose research complements your own, contact them by email.

Cameron Owens

Teaching Professor, Undergraduate Advisor, Honours Advisor Historical geographies; environmental assessment and sustainability; experiential learning

Chris Darimont

Raincoast Research Chair in Applied Conservation Science, Professor Conservation science; resource management; wildlife; marine-terrestrial interactions

Chris Bone

Associate Professor Geospatial technologies; spatial simulation modelling; human-environment interactions

Christina Hoicka

Associate Professor Energy geography; sustainability transitions; diffusion of innovations; renewable energy transformations

CindyAnn Rose-Redwood

Associate Teaching Professor Social geography; global migration; Caribbean studies; international student experiences

Crystal Tremblay

Assistant Professor Environmental governance; participatory community-based research; social justice

Dave Duffus

Associate Professor Whale research

David Atkinson

Professor, Department Chair Climate; weather and human and natural systems; data analysis; modelling; the Arctic

Denise Cloutier

Professor, Acting Associate Dean, Research and Graduate Studies Older adults, health services research; quality of life; long-term care; social isolation; homelessness; mixed methods research; Indigenous methodologies

Dennis Jelinski

Professor Landscape and wildlife ecology

Deondre Smiles

Assistant Professor Critical Indigenous geographies; human-environmental interaction; political ecology; tribal cultural resource preservation

Eva Kwoll

Assistant Professor Geomorphology; sediment transport; flow-vegetation interaction; bedrock canyons

Ian O'Connell

Teaching Professor Geomatics

Jennifer Mateer

Assistant Professor, Limited Term Political ecology; environmental justice; socio-cultural geographies; critical geographies

Johannes Feddema

Professor Climatology; water resources; GIS

Jutta Gutberlet

Professor International community-based development

Kristian Dubrawski

Assistant Professor Water; community; nature-based solutions; techno-ecological synergy

Mark Flaherty

Professor Aquaculture

Maycira Costa

Professor, Graduate Advisor Remote sensing; coastal oceanography; wetlands; biogeophysical processes

Randall Scharien

Associate Professor Remote sensing; cryosphere with specialization in Arctic sea ice

Reuben Rose-Redwood

Professor, Associate Dean, Academic Social and cultural geography; critical urban studies

Shannon Fargey

Assistant Teaching Professor Climate; mountain meteorology; hydrology; spatial analysis

Sophia Carodenuto

Assistant Professor Climate policy and practice; forest governance; Africa studies; global value chains

Teresa Dawson

Teaching Professor Geography pedagogy; feminist geographies; learning in community

Funding & aid

Graduate students registered in full-time programs are automatically considered for a fellowship. This is based on a qualifying GPA.

Individual award amounts may vary depending on the program.

UVic Fellowship Awards

  • Up to $17,500 per year (master's)
  • Up to $20,000 per year (PhD)

UVic Graduate Awards

  • Up to $10,000 per year (master's and PhD)


  • The minimum requirement for funding consideration is a A- average on the last two years of course work
  • Full-time registration (3.0 units) for UVic Fellowship holders and at least part-time registration (1.5 units) for UVic Graduate Award holders
  • Full-time registration for students registered with the Centre for Accessible Learning (CAL) is 1.5 units

You can also join the co-op program or work as a research or teaching assistant.

Funding opportunities

Tuition & fees

Visit our tuition calculator to determine the tuition and fees for your program.

When you apply you will be charged an application fee. Your application will not be processed until this payment has been received.

  • Application fee for documents from within Canada: $131.50
  • Application fee if any documents originate outside Canada: $169

Application deadlines

  • Canadian and International students: apply by January 15 for September entry.

We are presently only accepting applications for entry in the September term.

Admission & program requirements

You must meet the minimum graduate school admission requirements.

Review the graduate admission requirements and this program's admission requirements in the Graduate calendar.

If your first language is not English you must provide proof of language proficiency. Learn more about language requirements, including what exemptions and tests are allowed.

Ready to apply?

You can start your online application to UVic by creating a new profile or using an existing one.

Apply now    How to apply

Faculties & departments

Need help?

Contact the graduate secretary or 250-721-7350.

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