What is the advantage of the M.BEMA program over other Master's program?
If you are a recent B.Sc graduate, or an early career professional, the M.BEMA degree can allow you to get a Master's degree in just one year (2 years if part-time) that can help you gain more senior positions in government and other organizations. The practical skills and knowledge gained through coursework for the environmental monitoring and assessment field are valuable for many environmental sector employers, while the professional placement allows you to get valuable experience and your foot in the door. Most of our M.BEMA graduates continue working for their employers after their placements, whether through short-term contract extensions or longer term employment offers.
Are placements paid or unpaid?
The professional placements can be paid or unpaid, but the majority of placements are paid.
Is the BEMA program fully online or can I take any in-person classes on the Trent Peterborough campus?
The G.Dip is fully online for 8 months (Sept to end of April). The M.BEMA is mostly online (Sept to end of April), followed by an in-person placement from May through August (unless there is a remote placement sought by employer and/or student), and the in-person Capstone course on the Peterborough campus in mid-August. There are no in-person course options on campus from September to May.
Are the BEMA program online courses actually better than the online courses we had to take during COVID ('remote learning')?
Yes! We know that the quality of online courses that were converted from in-person classes was not always great. Our courses were designed & developed with best practices for online learning in mind before COVID started - our first cohort actually started in September 2018. The BEMA program online courses were designed for ongoing engagement through discussion boards with peers & instructors, as well as weekly to bi-weekly release of modules that are organized into min-lectures and assignments that allow you to go at your own pace. Here are some sample lectures from some of our electives if you want to see for yourself - Geomatics I, Topics in EMA.
When do MSc, M.BEMA & G.Dip programs start and what are the application deadlines?
The M.BEMA (course-based) & G.Dip programs have September intakes only (with application deadlines of February 1st, or until programs are full). The MSc (research-based) program has September, January & May intakes but students should reach out to potential MSc supervisors prior to applying (see question below). The application deadline for September intake is February 1st, and ongoing for January & May intakes, dependent on supervisor capacity to fund & supervise. International students need to apply well in advance of MSc intake periods, to allow for ongoing delays in issuing of study permits.
What are the admission requirements?
To be considered for admission, applicants will normally have completed a BSc Honours degree (a four year undergraduate bachelor's degree) from a recognized university AND have a minimum B+ (77%), or equivalent, in the work of the last four semesters, or the last two undergraduate years, (last ten full credits). The program will consider other Bachelor degrees, eg. Bachelor of Environmental Studies or BA (Geography or Environmental Studies), IF the applicant has taken upper year science and/or environmental courses AND at least one statistics course. Full requirements and application information here.
How much does the M.BEMA program cost?
Fees for the M.BEMA program are updated yearly by Graduate Studies (click here), but since the fees are on a per course basis, the full program costs for all 10 courses in 2023/24 are:
- domestic students (full-time) - $1,170 per course (Ontario students) or $1,303.32 per course (other Canadian students), plus ancillary fees ($222), TGSA levies ($108) and TGSA Health & Dental Plan ($490, opt-out available), with ancillary fees, levies & health/dental plan fees charged each Fall term. Thus, the total for Ontario students is $12,030 (without H&D Plan) or $12,520 (with H&D Plan). For other Canadian students, the total is $13,364 (without H&D Plan) or $13,853 (with H&D Plan).
- international students (full-time), the cost is $1,170 per course, and an additional $1,655 per course (international student differential fee), along with student fees. Thus, the total is approximately $29,000.
For part-time studies, the cost per course remains the same but half the ancillary fees are charged each Fall, i.e. each new school year. For 2023/24, the ancillary fees are $65 and TGSA levies are $54. If you are doing the M.BEMA part-time over 2 years (2 courses per term), the approximate cost for Ontario students (without the TGSA H&D Plan) is $2,459 each Fall, $2,340 each Winter, and $2,340 in the Spring/Summer term of the 2nd Year (Placement & Capstone courses). Note that there is no cost in the Spring/Summer term in the 1st Year, as you will not be taking any courses in that term. For other Canadian students, part-time program costs will be $2,726 each Fall, $2,607 each Winter, and $2,607 in the Spring/Summer term of the 2nd Year (Placement & Capstone courses).
How much does the G.Dip cost?
Fees for the G.Dip program are updated by Graduate Studies (click here), but since the fees are charged on a per course basis, the full program costs for all 6 courses in 2023/24 are:
- domestic students (full-time) - $1,275 per course (Ontario students) or $1,420.28 per course (other Canadian students), plus ancillary fees ($151) & TGSA levies ($72). Thus, the total is $7,873 for Ontario students & $8,745 for other Canadian students.
- international students (full-time) - the cost is an additional $1,932 per course (international student differential fee). Thus, the total is approximately $18,835.
How much does the M.Sc. in BEMA cost?
For full-time domestic students, the tuition and ancillary fees for the 2022/23 academic year is $9,103 (Ontario students) or $9,596 (Other Canadian students). For international students, the tuition and ancillary fees for the 2022/23 academic year is $23,396. Please refer to the Graduate Studies Research and Thesis Based Program Fees for a comprehensive list of tuition and ancillary fees, as opt-in/opt-out options for the TGSA Health & Dental Plan and transit pass will affect tuition costs.
Do I have to pay a deposit upon acceptance of my offer?
Yes, a $500 deposit is required from domestic students to hold your place in the program for full- and part-time studies, and is due June 1st (unless otherwise stated in your offer letter). International students must pay a $2,500 deposit. The deposit must be paid in order to become a registered student for the August 1st course registration period.
When is tuition due?
Tuition is due by September 28 (Fall term), January 28 (Winter term), and May 28 (Spring/Summer term) and will be placed on your student account.
How are the online courses structured, i.e. pre-recorded (asynchronous) or real-time (synchronous)?
The online courses allow for asynchronous learning, with pre-recorded mini-lectures organized into modules that are released for each course bi-weekly (every 2 weeks). This allows you to go at your own pace, as long as you contribute to discussion boards and complete assignments, as required for each course. There are opportunities to meet with instructors via Zoom for class 'check-ins' or problem-solving sessions.
How do I find a supervisor for the M.Sc. BEMA program?
You should apply to the M.Sc. program with a supervisor that is interested in taking you on, as this will expedite your application process. Please visit the Faculty page to view potential supervisors and then follow the links to their lab websites for more information on available M.Sc. positions. If there are no current positions listed, you should contact the professor most aligned with your research interests to see if they have openings available.
Is there financial support for the M.Sc. BEMA degree?
Financial support is provided to all full-time M.Sc. students admitted to the program. Financial support comes from diverse sources, such as internal scholarships, external scholarships, Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTAs) or faculty research funds. Support levels are reviewed annually. Candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for external scholarships (NSERC, OGS) on their own behalf during their last year of undergraduate or M.Sc. programs. Application deadlines for these and other external scholarships are typically in October or November. More information about financial support and scholarships is available from the Graduate Studies Office and through Trent University's Financial Aid office.
Can I complete the M.BEMA or G.Dip while working full-time?
We do not recommend working full-time while trying to complete the program full-time, as you can expect a full course load with 4 graduate level courses per term. Online courses are as demanding as face-to-face courses in terms of expected reading, online discussion participation and assignments (expect approx 10 hrs of work per course per week). If you plan to work, we would recommend applying for part-time studies, as 2 courses per term can be quite manageable for most students.
Are there exams for any of the courses?
There are no in-person exams, but there may be 'take-home' exams for some courses that are submitted online.
When do I need to be at the Trent University campus in Peterborough for the M.BEMA degree?
You will need to be on campus for one week for the face-to-face Capstone course in the 4th week of August.
Will there be accommodations & meals available on campus for the Capstone week?
There are accommodations in one of the residences on campus that is affordable at approx. $50/night (Aug 2023). Students staying in residence are responsible for finding dinner options off-campus, since cafeterias are closed at Trent in July/August, where the BEMA Program can provide some breakfast grocery items in the communal kitchen area. The BEMA Program provides light lunch fare (sandwiches & cookies) through Trent Catering Services as much as possible since cafeterias are not open during the Capstone week.
How much should I budget for the Capstone week?
You should budget for approx $500 for the week, aside from travel costs .
What kind of visa will I need for the M.BEMA degree as an international student?
You will need both a Study Permit and a Co-op Work Permit for the 4-month placement portion of the degree if it is completed in Canada. International students will have to present their Letter of Acceptance to the Immigration Officer at the border upon traveling to Canada, you should receive both a Study Permit as well as a Co-op Work Permit. The Immigration Officer should check your Letter of Acceptance; specifically, section 24 and section 28 where it details that an “internship / work practicum” is a part of your graduate program.
Will I be eligible for a Post-graduation Work Permit (PGWP) after finishing my M.BEMA degree as an international student?
International students are not eligible for a 'post-graduation work permit' (PGWP) if they take this program, as it is mostly online. You can find more information here under 'Ineligible applicants', where it states that students are not eligible for a PGWP if they have 'completed the majority of the credits toward the completion of their program of study by distance learning'. Studying full-time, the M.BEMA program is a 12-month program, where students complete online courses (distance learning) for 8 months, or 2/3 of the program. In-person classes are not offered for the M.BEMA program.