Sample Refusal Letters

A standard notification of refusal of admission is available to graduate programs through eVision. The following samples are provided for graduate programs wishing to send decline letters through other means.


[Date]
[Title] [Firstname] [Lastname]
[Street Address]
[Region] [Postal Code]

Dear [Title] [Lastname],

Thank you for your interest in Graduate Studies at the University of British Columbia. We received many interesting and excellent applications, only some of which we were able to accept this year. We reviewed your application very carefully and note several strong features. There is rigorous competition for entry into our graduate programs and your application was not among those that we were able to accept.

We encourage you to apply to other graduate schools and we wish you every success with your studies and beyond.

Yours truly,
[Firstname] [Lastname], PhD
Graduate Advisor


[Date]
[Title] [Firstname] [Lastname]
[Street Address]
[Region] [Postal Code]

Dear [Title] [Lastname],

We regret that we are not able to offer you admission to the [graduate program name] program. As you probably know, we look at each application a whole. Admissions decisions are based on a composite of information including your previous academic performance, comments from referees, relevant professional activities, proposed research statements, and GRE scores.

Your application file was considered in detail by me and by the faculty members in your area of interest. The number of applications we received far exceeded the number of students we are able to accept, and so we had to make very difficult admissions decisions. Each application is considered in relation to other applications in the same area and only the very top applicants are admitted. Your application, considered as a whole, was not as strong as some of the others we received.

Although I must regretfully send you an unfavorable response to your application, I appreciate your interest in our program and I certainly wish you the best for your future work.

Yours truly,
[Firstname] [Lastname], PhD
Graduate Advisor


[Date]
[Title] [Firstname] [Lastname]
[Street Address]
[Region] [Postal Code]

Dear [Title] [Lastname],

This is in regard to your application to the [degree] program in [graduate program name]. We regret that we cannot offer you admission to this program.

Every year, we receive a large number of applications from extremely well qualified candidates. We are able to accept only a few because of the significant amount of time our faculty members spend with each graduate student. We make our admissions decisions only after reviewing each application very carefully. The primary reason(s) for which your application was unsuccessful are noted below:

[cut and paste the following as applicable]

  • Each application is considered in relation to other applications in the same area and only the very top applicants are admitted. Your application, considered as a whole, was not as strong as some of the others we received.
  • Your application was very interesting and had several strengths. However, we have no faculty members with similar enough research interests and so were unable to secure a supervisor for you.
  • The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies sets a high academic minimum requirement for admission. Your previous academic record did not meet these requirements.

We are proud that we are able to attract excellent applicants such as yourself. We hope you will continue your search for a graduate school and we wish you the very best in your academic pursuits.

Yours truly,
[Firstname] [Lastname], PhD
Graduate Advisor


[Date]
[Title] [Firstname] [Lastname]
[Street Address]
[Region] [Postal Code]

Dear [Title] [Lastname],

This is in regard to your application to the [degree] program in [graduate program name]. Because your application was incomplete as of the deadline date, we could not consider you for admission this year [or other reasons].

We were impressed by the portion of your application that you did submit and we hope that you will apply again next year. Competition for the few available spaces is very keen, so we recommend that if you decide to apply to the program again next year, you apply as early as possible. We wish you all the best in your future studies and look forward to hearing from you again next year.

Yours truly,
[Firstname] [Lastname], PhD
Graduate Advisor


[Date]
[Title] [Firstname] [Lastname]
[Street Address]
[Region] [Postal Code]

Dear [Title] [Lastname],

We regret to inform you that your application for graduate study in our department was not successful. With the high calibre of the applicants to our program, the task of choosing graduate students is always a difficult one. We are able to accept only a small number of students each year and only those with interests that closely match those of our faculty members can be selected.

We thank you for your interest and we wish you success in your future studies.

Yours truly,
[Firstname] [Lastname], PhD
Graduate Advisor