Undergraduate Program

Why Microbiology & Immunology?

The Microbiology & Immunology program provides students with a broad understanding of the diversity of microbiology, while at the same time allowing for specialization in areas of particular interest. Students begin by studying the structure, function, physiology, and genetics of bacteria and viruses, followed by more in-depth studies in areas such as medical microbiology and infectious diseases, molecular biology and genetics, industrial and applied microbiology, virology, and immunology.

Career Opportunities

Research: A variety of technical positions are available in academia, industry, government laboratories and healthcare system. Teaching: Involved in teaching at high schools, universities and technical colleges. Business: Play an important role in the management, sales and marketing in science-based companies, such as pharmaceutical firms. Regulatory/Law: Employed by regulatory bodies such as the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, and the Food and Drug Administration, to develop government policies and patent law. A Stepping Stone...Microbiology & Immunology provides excellent preparation for students considering studies in a wide variety of disciplines, including graduate studies and research (M. Sc. and Ph. D), medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and nutrition, veterinary medicine, education and law.

Program Options

Bachelor of Science - Microbiology & Immunology

  • B.Sc. Four-year
  • B.Sc. Three-year
  • B.Sc. Honours
  • Double Honours

Bachelor of Science - Microbiology & Immunology/Biotechnology

  • B.Sc. Four-year
  • B.Sc. Honours

Program Requirements and/or Admissions


Contact Us

Harold Bull, Undergraduate Affairs Chair

Email: harold.bull@usask.ca
Phone: 306 966 4305

6B57, Health Sciences

Joyce Wilson, Associate Professor
Phone: 306 966 1280

6B67, Health Sciences

Graduate Program

The Department of Microbiology & Immunology offers graduate programs leading to the M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees. The department has expertise necessary for the instruction and training of advanced students in areas that include cellular and molecular biology of eukaryotes, microbial genetics and molecular biology, immunology, medical microbiology, microbial physiology, and virology.

Key reasearch areas include:

Molecular Genetics/Microbial Physiology: molecular regulation and secretion of virulence factors in pathogenic bacteria, genetic regulation of gluconeogenic enzymes, catalytic and regulatory mechanisms of microbial enzymes, chromosomal rearrangements, carcinogenesis, chemical mutagenesis, mutagenic mechanisms, DNA alkylation damage and repair in eukaryotes, and mechanism of replication nitiation.

Immunology/Virology: molecular and cellular mechanisms responsible for self-nonself discrimination and immune class determination, cellular and molecular interactions involved in lymphocyte activation and differentiation, analysis of regulatory function of CD8 T cells.

Pathogenesis/Infectious Diseases: development of effective vaccination and immunotherapeutic strategies against intracellular pathogens causing chronic disease and against cancers, clinical bacteriology.

Tumor Biology/Immunology: tumor metastasis, molecular tumor immunology.

The department selects graduate students from among a wide pool of applicants, including honours students in microbiology at the U. of S., as well as Canadian and foreign students with degrees in microbiology and related disciplines. Typically, new students enter into a M.Sc. program and are transferred in their second year to a Ph.D. program, upon demonstrated performance in graduate coursework, satisfactory laboratory research progress, and the successful completion of a Ph.D. qualifying examination. 

Admission is restricted to students for which there is available funding. Funding is generally through scholarships, grant funds, and departmental teaching assistantships.


MSc Admissions Requirements

Admission Requirements

  • B.Sc. (Honours)

Degree Requirements


PhD Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

  • M.Sc.

Degree Requirements

Students must maintain continuous registration in the 996 course.

  • GSR 960.0
  • GSR 961.0 if research involves human subjects
  • GSR 962.0 if research involves animal subjects
  • a minimum of 3 credit units of graduate courses if the student entered the Ph.D. program directly from another institution plus:
  • MCIM 990.0
  • MCIM 996.0
  • a comprehensive examination to establish candidacy for the awarding of the Ph.D.
  • thesis defence
If you intend to apply to graduate school here, it is absolutely required for you to first find a faculty member in our department who will agree in advance to being your research supervisor.  Please contact those individuals who you have an interest in working for as a graduate student.
  1. Check the Admission Requirements & Deadlines. 

  2. Once you have identified a faculty member who is willing to be your supervisor, you will have to formally apply to the graduate program through the College of Graduate Studies and Research. The graduate studies application fee is $90 and is NOT refundable.  Completion of the College of Graduate Studies and Research online application form requires original academic transcripts and formal proof of English proficiency to be supplied. 

  3. What you will need to complete your online application:

    • Arrange for your official transcripts to be sent to the program by your past post-secondary institution(s). Addresses for all programs can be found here. If your current degree is still in progress, you will need to arrange for your official final transcripts showing the awarding of your degree to be sent to your program.
    • Copies of transcripts are not acceptable as final admission documents, unless they have also been verified and stamped by your issuing institution.
    • Have your official English test results sent to program from the testing site. This is only for students who are not native English speakers.
    • Send any other required documentation to the department.  You will be sent an email notifying you that the College of Graduate Studies and Research has received your application. After you receive this, you may log back into the online application to view a complete list of documentation and tasks that you need to complete to be admitted. Follow these instructions and contact the department if you have any questions.

In addition to completing your online application, you must:  

  • Arrange for your official transcripts to be sent to the program by your past post-secondary institution(s). Addresses for all programs can be found here. If your current degree is still in progress, you will need to arrange for your official final transcripts showing the awarding of your degree to be sent to your program.
  • Copies of transcripts are not acceptable as final admission documents, unless they have also been verified and stamped by your issuing institution.
  • Have your official English test results sent to program from the testing site. This is only for students who are not native English speakers.
  • Send any other required documentation to the department.  You will be sent an email notifying you that the College of Graduate Studies and Research has received your application. After you receive this, you may log back into the online application to view a complete list of documentation and tasks that you need to complete to be admitted. Follow these instructions and contact the department if you have any questions.
  • Your personal information, educational history (including dates and grades from schools attended), and the correct title of the program to which you are applying, and the names, positions and email addresses of your references.  If the three reference letters are not filled out using the GSR 101 form, your application will be deemed incomplete and will not be processed further.
  • Visa or MasterCard for online payment of $90 application fee. This is non-refundable and your application will not be considered complete until the fee is paid. If you are unable to complete your credit card payment during your application, you can submit a Credit Card Payment Form The Credit Card Payment Form can be faxed to 306-966-5756, or scanned as a pdf attachment and e-mailed to CGSR Admissions Officer, or mailed to the address below. If you do not have access to a credit card, the $90 fee may be paid in Canadian dollars by cheque, money order or bank draft, payable to “College of Graduate Studies and Research, University of Saskatchewan". Payment can be mailed to: College of Graduate Studies, 105 Administration Place, Saskatoon SK, Canada S7N 5A2.
  • A valid e-mail address. 
NOTE: Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible in the year and preferably before March 1. The earlier the application, the more likely the applicant is to find a suitable supervisor for their graduate studies beginning in the Fall of the year.

Wei Xiao, Graduate Studies and Research Chair

Email: wei.xiao@usask.caPhone: 306 966 4308

Evelyn Bessel, Graduate Secretary

Email: anat.micro.physiology@usask.caPhone: 306 966 4110

Contact Us

Dr. Peter Howard, Head

Email: peter.howard@usask.caPhone: (306) 966-2548

2D01.10, Health Science Bldg.

Corinne Howells

Email: corinne.howells@usask.ca
Phone: (306) 966-4076
Fax: (306) 966-4298

2D01, Health Sciences
107 Wiggins Rd, Saskatoon SK
Saskatoon SK S7N 5E5

8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Monday - Friday