Starting graduate studies is a very important
decision in your career. BEFORE starting, you should ask yourself why
you want to do a MSc or a PhD degree? Pursuing a graduate degree because
you did not find any other job or because you are not sure what else
to do are not good reasons. However, if you are interested by a graduate
degree because you want to acquire high-level training and knowledge in
conservation, management or evolution then this is the right decision.
Graduate studies will require you to put a lot of time and energy into
you project. One of the main causes of failure at the graduate level is
the lack of motivation… So, before starting, you should think about
As a researcher, it is essential that you learn how to communicate the
results of your science. Thus, I expect all my students to publish their
research results in peer-review journals. I will assist you as much as
I can with the publication process but I am expecting that you will lead
the work. I will also strongly encourage you to present your work in provincial,
national or international conferences in your field. A lot of career advice
and interesting articles for post-docs, graduates and students can be
found on the career pages of the Nature
If you are considering pursuing graduate studies
in my lab,
you might find the
following paragraphs useful.
The cost of living in Sherbrooke is less
than in most other Canadian cities. You should expect to pay at least
300$ per month to rent a room not including the bills. Your tuition fees
however will include free access to the city bus services as long as you
will have a student ID card. Graduate studies last for few years (typically
2 years for a Master degree and 4 or 5 years for a PhD). It is therefore
crucial that you have funding for your salary and your research during
that period. Graduate studies are a FULL-TIME commitment and I do not
recommend that you work while you are writing your thesis. The two main
sources of funding for graduate studies in Québec come from the
The biology department also offers a few institutional
fellowships each year. In Sherbrooke, they are also possibilities
of funding for collaborative projects between Québec and France.
here for more information.
The Université de Sherbrooke is a francophone institution and the
Sherbrooke region is over 90% francophone. Although, everybody in my group
is bilingual, all the University paper work and courses are usually in
French. You will therefore need to learn (or at least show willingness
to learn) a bit of French during your stay in Sherbrooke. However, the
good news is that all written work, seminar and thesis defence can be
done in English. The thesis can be written in English.
A lot of the projects that you will find in my lab are field based (although
not all of them). If you want to work on one of these projects, you might
have to be on the field for a few months per year. Field work often requires
long hours of observations and the weather is not always cooperating with
science! I expect my students to be able to organize their work, have
personal initiative and common sense. In most study areas, you will also
be expected to drive a 4x4 truck or a quad. As a student in my lab, you
will probably be working on data that have been collected for the last
20 to 30 years. It is therefore expected that you also contribute to the
data collection of the long-term study.
Are you still interested?
Please contact me by email to discuss possibilities. In your message,
you should describe your main research interests, what you have done before,
your experience in the field and why you would like to pursue graduate
studies. You should also read some of my publications and tell me which
project you are interested in. My research interests are various, including
population ecology, behavioural ecology and evolution, so please be specific.
Please enclose with your email a recent copy of your CV along with contact
information for two people that could provide you with references.
More information about graduate studies at Sherbrooke can be found on
the university web page.I suggest that you give a look at the following
study web page
department at Sherbrooke
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