MScSM | Curriculum

MScSM Fall 2024 semester courses are in-person. We welcome all our students back to campus for the 2024-2025 academic year! The timetable is available here in PDF:

In MScSM, sustainability includes environmental, economic, and social sustainability. We believe one of these is not possible without the other two.


Illustration of books

Based on this perspective, the curriculum integrates business management, natural science, and social science into its courses, all through the lens of sustainability. Each core course provides the knowledge, skills, and strategic perspectives that many forward-thinking leaders have communicated to us as essential to their organizations' goals.

MScSM is a course-based, professional masters' (not a thesis Research masters' degree), 20-month, full-time program that consists of 11 required core courses, 5 elective courses, and an internship placement of 10 to 16 weeks in the summer between the two academic years. The program is full-time and 20 months in length (five semesters - four academic and one work term). 

Core Courses

The required core courses are:

SSM1010Y Principles of Sustainability Management
SSM1020H Decision Making for Sustainability Management
SSM1030H Environmental Science
SSM1040H Managerial Economics for Sustainability Management
SSM1050H Ecosystem Science
SSM1060H Managing Sustainable Organizations
SSM1070H Sustainability Law and Policy
SSM1080H Strategies for Sustainability Management

SSM1120H Social Dimensions of Sustainability
SSM1090H Capstone Course - The Sustainable Enterprise
SSM1100Y Research Paper I (Science focused research)
SSM1101Y Research Paper II (Management/social focused research)
SSM1110H Sustainability Management Internship

Every course in the program will require students to think critically, engage in creative activities and communicate their ideas effectively. The curriculum provides a strong foundation in management principles, sustainable business strategies, managerial economics and accounting, organizational behaviour, environmental and ecosystem science, and environmental and business law and policy. The program provides the knowledge, skills, and strategic perspectives required for leaders and senior managers responsible for managing the sustainability process.

The uniqueness of the program is its very high emphasis on developing skills in the integration of knowledge from management science, social science, and natural science and engineering. This is done through interactive learning, case study analysis, research seminars and workshops, internships, and research and management projects.

Students will be required to demonstrate the application of their knowledge of different aspects of sustainability and integration of knowledge from different disciplines to address sustainability issues during three required components of the program - internship, capstone course, and research paper. Students are given the option to take their electives from a wide array of courses, across many disciplines, at all three campuses of the University of Toronto.


Students can select electives that allow them to focus on their individual areas of interest (science or management concentration) but related to sustainability. These selections (of five electives) need to be approved in advance by the MScSM Program Director and the Chair/Director of the host department. Below are examples of electives that MScSM students have taken over the past few years. Please note that availability of electives offered in MScSM and other host graduate departments is subject to change each year, and  dependent upon semester. Like all graduate programs at UofT, each department enrols their own program students in their electives first and, if there is space available, accepts other program students from other graduate programs, in their elective courses.

The MScSM electives are:

SSM2010H Marketing in Sustainability 
SSM2020H Sustainability Ethics (Offered every other year)
SSM2030H Advanced Sustainability Management
SSM2040H Applied Sustainability Management

CLICK HERE to download a current list of popular electives that students have taken and their management or science categorization. Please note that elective course availability changes each year and we cannot guarantee enrolment in other department elective courses.

Summer Work Term/Internship

In the summer between the two academic years is the work semester; internship placement of 2 to 4 months (minimally 10 weeks) is required to complete the program. MScSM has a Placement Officer who assists students in finding internships through weekly Professional Development workshops and seminars, networking opportunities, one-on-one meetings, and industry leader guest lecturers. However, it is ultimately the students' responsibility to seek and accept an internship placement.