Masters in Geography in Canada: Complete Guide for International Students
The Masters Program in Geography is a 2-3 years graduate program offered as an MA or MSc degree in Canada. Masters in Geography in Canada can cost you around 10,000 to 50,000 CAD where students can choose to complete a thesis or a major research paper.
Masters in Geography in Canada is either offered as mainstream or as a specialization of the related fields such as Geographical Information Systems(GIS), Planning, Geosciences, Environmental Studies, Meteorology Climate Change, and Earth & Atmospheric Sciences.
- The Intake sessions of the master's program are university dependent.
- Potential employers for geography graduates are consultants in environment/social/economic development, research centers, colleges, municipalities, etc.
Why Study Masters in Geography in Canada?
- UBC, UToronto, and McGill University are ranked in the top 50 global universities offering geography programs.
- 8 Canadian Universities rank within the top 100 global universities offering the program.
- The demand for geography professors in Canada will lead to 30,200 job openings within 2017-2026.
- Geographic information System (GIS) mapping is in high demand. There will be around 21,600 job openings for technicians.
Masters in Geography in Canada: Top Universities
The table details the list of top universities in Canadaoffering a Masters program in Geography according to QS World University Rankings 2019 by Subject: Geography
|QS World University Geography Rankings||University||Program||Duration||Program cost|
|5||University of British Columbia*||MSc|
|11||University of Toronto||MSc(Thesis /Research)|
MA (Thesis /Research)
|51-100||Queen's University at Kingston||MA|
|51-100||Simon Fraser University||MA|
|51-100||University of Waterloo||MA|
|101-150||University of Calgary||MA|
Master of GIS
|151-200||University of Ottawa||MA||2 years||54,485|
|–||University of Saskatechwan||MA|
Masters in Geography in Canada: Course Curriculum
Masters in Geography is structured to study the processes creating our social and physical environments with the expertise to tackle the interdisciplinary research across a wide range of social and natural sciences. The fields of specialization in Research include the following:
- Physical Geography and Natural systems
- Environmental Geography and Resource management
- Urban/Economic Geography
- Historical/ social/ cultural Geography
- Spatial Information Systems
|Program Type||Social science program||Natural sciences program|
|Specialization||Human geography||Physical geography involving Environmental Science and Earth Science, spatial information systems and some areas of environmental studies|
|Focus||Issues relating to human communities and cultures||The Earth’s physical materials and processes.|
|Areas of study||Population Geography, Public Health, Urban Planning, Urban Environments, Geopolitics, Social Research, and International Development.||River Environments, Waste Management, Occupational Health, Environmental Management, Pollution Management, Environmental Health, and Ecology|
|Duration||University dependent||Nearly 2 years|
Masters in Geography in Canada: Admission Process
As an international applicant plans to study in Canada, they are required to ensure that they fulfill the following minimum criteria for making applications with the universities offering the choice of program.
How To Apply: International students should complete the online application on the official website or complete the application portal of the corresponding universities before the application deadlines.
Steps To Be Followed:
- Submit your application online including application fee
- Upload scanned transcripts and supporting documents online
- Keep checking the portal/ID for updates about the decisions.
Masters in Geography in Canada: Eligibility Criteria
Prospective international students fulfilling the listed criteria can apply directly to the university for admission to the program:
- Education: 16 years of education with a mandatory breakup of 10+2+4
- Minimum 4 years of bachelors study or completion of both a Bachelor's (three-year) and a Master's degree
- Submit scores of various entrance tests required for studying in Canada like TOEFL/IELTS/GRE, etc.
- Work experience in a related field (if required)
University Specific Eligibility Criteria
Given below is the details of the specific admission requirements for admissions at top Canadian Universities:
|University||Minimum UG Grade Equivalents||English Language requirements|
|University of British Columbia||Overall average: B+|
First Class/Division 1 (65%)
|University of Toronto||B+ in final two years of bachelors (or) Minimum GPA 8.5/10||TOEFL iBt:93|
|McGill University||Minimum second division, upper with minimum CGPA: 3.3||TOEFL iBt:86|
|Queen's University at Kingston||Minimum second class standing/B+||TOEFL iBt:88|
|Simon Fraser University||Minimum CGPA in Geography:3.25||TOEFL iBt:93|
|University of Waterloo||Honors undergraduate/ minimum 75% average||TOEFL iBt:100|
|University of Calgary||First Class Division, or 8/10||TOEFL iBt:86|
|Western University||80% in UG||TOEFL: 20 listening, 22 listening & reading, 24 writing|
|University of Ottawa||B+ grade in UG||TOEFL: 92|
|University of Saskatechwan||70% in UG honors degree||TOEFL: 86|
Note: TOEFL and IELTS tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time the application is submitted
International students must submit all necessary supporting documents to the university to be considered for the admission process in the appropriate admission sessions of the desired program of study.
- Official academic transcripts of all post-secondary institutions attended
- Officially certified English translations of the transcripts
- 2-3 Reference letters
- Applicant statement form including research and personal history statements
- Updated CV/resume highlighting academic achievements and professional experience
- English Language Facility test scores reported electronically by the testing agency to the university
- GRE scores (if required). If you have taken the test, it is suggested that you submit the score.
- Financial Affidavits to provide proof of funding
- Official Id including Passport
Prospective students should submit the completed online application along with the receipt of the application fee and all supporting documents of the application package. They are reviewed by the graduate faculty members of the Department of Geography and the admissions committee within 4-6 weeks from the time of submission of all the documents and the status of the application is updated accordingly.
Admission is based on the strong undergraduate record in geography or a related discipline. Other criteria for selection include grades, awards, publications, work experience, research statement and letter of references.
Masters in Geography in Canada: Cost of Study
Prospective international students should take in to account the pre-admission and post-admission costs apart from the tuition and other academic-related fees of the corresponding universities
Planning to study abroad? There are certain expenses that you have to make before landing in your desired country for pursuing higher studies.
|Application Fee||95 – 156|
|TOEFL Fee||210 – 330|
|Air travel||350 – 1200|
|Health Insurance||600 – 800|
Masters in Geography in Canada: Tuition Fees
The cost of pursuing geography from popular Canadian universities have been depicted in the graph given below:
Cost of Living in Canada
The immigration requirements mandate funding of 10,000 CAD outside of Quebec and 11,000 CAD within Quebec for international students pursuing their master's program in Canada on top of tuition fees. However, the cost of living in Canada is largely dependent on the university opted, type of accommodation, city, and lifestyle of the students.
|Expense Type||Monthly Cost (CAD)|
|Accommodation (single, non-shared)||900 - 1,200|
|Utilities||240 - 450|
|Internet & Mobile Phone||150|
|TOTAL||1,640 - 2,160|
Masters in Geography in Canada: Scholarships
Deserving international students are funded by universities in Canada and other external funding agencies in the form of scholarships, loans, grants and bursaries during their course of study in Canada. The enlisted table details the scholarships offered by Canadian universities.
|University of British Columbia||International Tuition Award|
Department of Geography Award
|Up to 3,200/year|
Up to 23,000/year for 2 years
|University of Toronto||Base funding Package+ Tuition fees|
Ontario Graduate Scholarship
|Total funding=43,546 CAD|
|McGill University||Theo Hills Memorial Fund|
Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship
|Support graduate students' field-work research in developing areas|
50,000 CAD/year for 3 years
|Queen's University at Kingston||Departmental support|
International Tuition Award
|20,000 CAD/year for 2 years|
International students with 1st class standing pay domestic fees
|Simon Fraser University||Mackenzie King Open Scholarship|
Robin P. Armstrong Memorial Prize for Excellence in Indigenous Studies
|University of Waterloo||International Masters Award of Excellence|
Bruce Mitchell Graduate Scholarship
Emily Ruston Mann Memorial Graduate Scholarship
|University of Calgary||Mackenzie King Open Scholarship||8500 CAD (variable)|
Looking for scholarships to study abroad? Click here to find scholarships for studying masters in Canada.
Masters in Geography in Canada: Scope
Graduates on completion of a Master's program in Geography are hired as professionals in government, consulting agencies, non-governmental organizations, business and as instructors at colleges and universities. Some students also choose to continue their doctoral studies after graduation.
- The ability to view problems from several angles, effective verbal communication, prepare professional standard documents and producing a report in foreign conditions.
- The ability to work in a group meeting deadlines gained from projects and fieldwork.
- The independence gained from working abroad and an aptitude for management and an analytical approach to people and their environment.
The graduates with a Masters in Geography discover emerging careers in the following potential sectors:
- Energy and Utilities
- Construction, Civil Engineering, and surveying
- Charity and not-for-profit
- Engineering, design, and manufacture
- Business, HR, and Finance
- Public sector
|Designation||Roles and Responsibilities||Average annual salary (CAD)|
|Cartographer||Developing, producing and restoration different types of maps, related diagrams, charts, spreadsheets and travel guides||85,263|
|Environmental Consultant||Ensure if commercial/government clients comply with regulations, and address a variety of environmental issues||64,249|
|Town Planner||Management and development of towns, cities, villages and rural areas||80,677|
|GIS officer||Gathering and examination of geographical data generated by Geographical Information Systems(GIS)||52,410|
|Conservation Officer||Work to protect a natural environment and raise awareness among the local community||42,334|
|Recycling Officer||Plan and develop environmental, waste reduction policies & schemes to reduce waste by promoting recycling.||44,812|
|Landscape architect||Create, design and manage the open spaces around ensuring safety, sustainability and aesthetic appearance.||87,011|
|Geography University Professor||Pass on the geography skills and knowledge to the next generation||78,427|
Environmental science is one of the most popular areas of Geography for study to promote a greener and more sustainable world. The master's program in Geography with a specialization in Environmental studies had 30.5% of students with job offers before they graduated. The outlook of the energy efficiency sector is positive with a projection of 8.3% employment growth resulting in 36,000 new jobs for geography related majors. Many disciplines of Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Geology, Computing, Ecology, Anthropology, Palaeontology, Economics, and Politics overlap with areas of Geography, hence it is a versatile field with potential openings in diverse sectors.