UBC values diversity and strongly encourages high achieving international students to apply to our graduate programs.

About 30% of master’s students, and 44% of doctoral students at UBC Vancouver are international students. We have close to 3600 doctoral students and 6200 master’s students, the fourth largest graduate student population among Canadian universities, and our 85 academic units offer over 250 research-based programs and 85 course-based master’s programs.

Why come to UBC?

  • Academic Library

    UBC has one of the largest academic libraries in Canada.

  • Mild Climate

    Vancouver has one of the mildest climates in Canada.

  • Sustainable

    UBC is recognized globally as one of the most sustainable campuses in the world and a model for sustainable cities.

  • Degree Program Choice

    At UBC, you can choose from more than 300 graduate degree program options and 2000+ research supervisors. You can even design your own program.

  • Economic Strength

    Canada was ranked 2nd in the 2018 Best Countries Ranking by US News, which measures global performance on a variety of metrics.

  • Innovative

    UBC was named Canada’s “most innovative university” by Reuters in 2016.

  • Welcoming

    Canadians are friendly people with an open and welcoming culture. Canadians rank among the happiest people in the World Happiness Report.

  • International

    Times Higher Education ranked UBC as the most international university in North America in its “World’s Most International Universities 2017” ranking.

  • Academic Excellence

    UBC is a global centre for research and teaching, consistently ranked among the top 20 public universities in the world.

  • Safety

    Canada is a safe country and study destination according to Global Piece Index and Global Law and Order Report.

Program Options

Course-based programs

Course-based pograms, sometimes referred to as professional programs, require a student to complete a set number of courses to obtain a degree. Submission of an individual research thesis is usually not required, but programs may include major projects, capstone courses, internships or other work placements. Course-based programs tend to be shorter in duration and more flexible in program delivery, usually with higher tuition costs. These are often targeted at professionals with some work experience to attain the next career promotion or a change into another field.

View Course-based Programs

Research-based programs

Research-based programs usually include some coursework at the beginning of the degree and then focus on individual independent research under the supervision of a faculty member that culminates in the formulation of a thesis or dissertation. Most master programs require 2 years of study and PhD programs usually require between 5-7 years of study. Research degrees provide the possibility to become an expert in a chosen field of study with the possibility to pursue an academic career as professor as well as exciting careers in non-academic environments. Many UBC programs expect applicants to have obtained a master's level qualification before entering a PhD, although direct entry into PhD progams is possible at UBC.

View research-based Master's programs

View Doctoral programs

Common Questions

Do I require an English language test?

General Requirements

Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.

The value of strong English skills

English is one of the two official languages of Canada, and the primary language of instruction at UBC. Strong English skills mean new students can settle quickly into their academic environment, and get to know their fellow students and faculty members who will be their colleagues during their time at UBC. Students with good English skills are far more likely to succeed; they experience far less stress and get greater enjoyment and fulfillment from their studies.

Applicants are advised to focus on learning how to speak, listen, read, and write in English, independent of studying for the TOEFL (or other tests), as this will best prepare them for communicating in all types of situations. Students with strong English skills are more likely to do well on the TOEFL.

Acceptable Tests

English Language Tests

TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)

The minimum TOEFL score required for all applicants to the Faculty of Graduate Studies is

  • 90 for the internet-based exam (with minimum component scores of 22 [reading, listening] and 21 [writing, speaking]) or
  • 55 each for reading, listening, and writing in the paper-based test, with 4.0 on the Test of Written English (TWE).

However, some programs require a higher score. TOEFL scores must be issued to UBC directly from the Educational Testing Centre. Please ensure that you include the following on your TOEFL sheet:

  • use the University of British Columbia's institution code 0965
  • give the reason for taking TOEFL "to enter a college or university as a graduate student"

Score submission

UBC accepts either:

  • an official paper score report sent directly to the university from the testing centre
  • electronic submission.
IELTS (International English Language Testing Service)

A minimum overall band score of 6.5 is required with a minimum score of 6.0 in each component of the academic (NOT general) IELTS test.*

Individual graduate programs may require higher English language proficiency scores, and may require minimum scores on individual components of the test. Please check individual program websites to verify English language score requirements.

Score submission

UBC requires an official score to be sent to us electronically from the test centre.

On the IELTS application form you will be asked to specify institutions where you would like the results being sent to. To ensure UBC receives your results correctly, you have to use the following details on the application:

  • Name and address of college / institution / university: The University of British Columbia - Graduate School Admissions
  • Address: 170-6371 Crescent Road, Vancouver BC V6T 1Z2, Canada
CAEL (Canadian Academic English Language Assessment)

A minimum overall score of 70 is required.

Individual graduate programs may require higher English language proficiency scores. Please check individual program websites to verify English language score requirements.

Score submission

UBC requires an official paper record of this test score.

 

PTE (Pearson Test of English)

A minimum overall score of 59 on the academic (NOT general) test is required.

Individual graduate programs may require higher English language proficiency scores. Please check individual program websites to verify English language score requirements.

Score submission

UBC requires an official paper record.

 

Alternative Tests

Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB)

A minimum overall MELAB score of 81 is required by the Faculty of Graduate Studies.*

Alternative English Language Proficiency Test

The GCE A-Level English examination with a standing of at least "B" is acceptable in lieu of the TOEFL.*

*Individual graduate programs may require higher English language proficiency scores, and may require minimum scores on individual components of the test. Please check individual program websites to verify English language score requirements.

Submission of Test Results

TOEFL and IELTS test takers can request electronic submission of scores to universities. We accept electronic delivery directly from the test centre to UBC only. For all other tests an official paper test score report ordered from the testing agency is required. Photocopies of test scores are not acceptable.

Conditional Admission Program

The Faculty of Graduate Studies may extend a conditional offer of admission to a highly-qualified graduate applicant who does not quite meet the minimum English language proficiency requirement set by the graduate program to which the student has applied.

For more information, see Conditional Admission Program.

What are the academic minimum requirements by country?

Applicants should have academic backgrounds within the general requirements listed by country below.

Given that the number of applicants exceeds the number of positions available, a record that satisfies basic entrance requirements does not guarantee admission to graduate studies.

Important note to students with three-year bachelor's degrees from European institutions (except UK): Most three-year, Bologna-compliant degrees from research-intensive universities are acceptable as a basis for admission to master's programs at UBC. Contact the UBC program of interest and see individual country listings below for further information.

Other Resources

Other sites that might come in handy as you prepare to apply:

How do I submit transcripts and degree parchments?

Applications must include digital copies (.pdfs) of official, up-to-date transcripts for all current and previous post-secondary study the applicant has undertaken. Scans of the official transcripts (front and back) will be uploaded to the application system as part of the application process. These uploaded documents will be used for the initial evaluation of the application.

Note: Grade sheets are not transcripts and will not be accepted in lieu of copies of official transcripts.

Conditional admission offers may be made based on documents uploaded to the application system. However, admission offers will not be finalized and applicants will not be allowed to register in a graduate program until one set of all required official academic records is received by UBC in official university envelopes, sealed and endorsed by the issuing institution, or sent via secure electronic delivery by the issuing institution.

Please note: Some programs require an official set of transcripts at the time of application. Please refer to the website of the program(s) to which you are applying and the instructions in the online application for specific information about sending your official documents.


Uploading scanned copies of official required documents in the application system

Applicants with transcripts from non-Canadian post-secondary institutions must obtain an official paper transcript for every post-secondary institution they have attended.

  • Each transcript must be scanned as an individual .pdf file and then uploaded to the application system as indicated.
  • Please attend to any directions the specific graduate program may provide about naming your scanned document files. Otherwise, they should be named: "Applicant Full Name-Document Description.extension"

Examples:
Peng Zhang-Peking University Transcript.pdf
Peng Zhang-Peking University Transcript English Translation.pdf
Peng Zhang-CV.pdf
Peng Zhang-Journal of Neurosciences Paper.pdf

  • Transcripts must be scanned front and back.
  • All pages of one transcript, front and back, should be uploaded as a single file (rather than a separate file for each page).
  • If you have transcripts that are issued in a language other than English, then in addition to uploading digital copies of the documents in their original language, you must also upload a certified literal English translation of your transcripts from your home university's translation service or certified English translator.
  • Please consult the document scanning and uploading instructions provided within the online application for detailed instructions.

Official Documents

To be considered official, academic records must either be received in official university envelopes, sealed and endorsed by the issuing institution, or be sent via secure electronic delivery by the issuing institution. *Secure Electronic Delivery: the issuing institution sends a link to a secure site to Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (G+PS) at graduate.sas@ubc.ca. G+PS downloads the transcript from the secure site. Important: an e-transcript is downloaded via a link to a secure site. It is NOT an email attachment of any kind, even if sent from an authority at the issuing institution.

After being offered admission: If you have been offered admission conditional upon receipt of official documentation, you must provide UBC with one set of official transcripts for every postsecondary institution you have attended for the equivalent of one year or more of full-time study. UBC reserves the right to also require any individual applicant to provide official transcripts for study of less than one year duration. Do not send official transcripts before receiving an offer of admission unless you have received special instructions from the graduate program to which you have applied.

If an official transcript does not indicate the degree name and the degree conferral date, then an official copy of the degree certificate must also be submitted  

If your university issues only one original copy of transcripts/degree certificates:

Make photocopies of your original academic records and send them to your home university. Ask your home university to:

  • verify that the photocopies are consistent with their records.
  • attest that the copies are true photocopies and stamp them with an official university stamp.
  • put the attested, stamped photocopies in sealed envelopes endorsed by the Registrar.
  • mail the sealed, endorsed envelopes directly to Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies.

If your transcripts are issued in a language other than English:

  • arrange to have a set of all official transcripts issued in their original language.
  • obtain a certified literal English translation of your transcripts from your home university's translation service.
  • send both the original transcripts and the literal English translation to UBC Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies.

If your home university does not provide English translations of transcripts:

  • make a photocopy of your copy of your transcripts. Do not open a sealed, endorsed envelope containing transcripts intended for submission to your program.
  • take the copy to a certified English translator and ask them to provide a complete, word-by-word, literal English translation.
  • tell the translator to put both the original language photocopy and the English translation into a sealed envelope, and endorse the envelope by signing across the seal.
  • send the sealed, endorsed envelopes from the translator to UBC Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies.
  • send your original transcripts in the original language to UBC Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies.

Note: Academic records must be translated in their entirety, including any information that appears on the reverse side of any document.

UBC does not accept the following:

  • photocopies that have not been stamped, attested and endorsed by the Registrar at your home university
  • documents in envelopes that have been opened
  • documents that do not arrive in sealed envelopes endorsed by the issuing institution or certified translator
  • documents that arrive without the official seal of the university
  • photocopies notarized by a notary public
  • photocopies endorsed by a lawyer, professor, judge etc.
  • unofficial translations
  • non-literal translations

Do not send academic records that are not in sealed and endorsed envelopes. It will only delay the processing of your application.

Documents being provided to meet conditions of admission, if not already provided to the graduate program initially, should be sent directly to:

Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies
The University of British Columbia
170 - 6371 Crescent Rd
Vancouver, BC CANADA  V6T 1Z2

Current and former UBC students

You do not need to submit UBC transcripts as part of your graduate application, as this data is already available through the student database system. However, be aware that you are still responsible for submitting transcripts from all other post-secondary institutions that you have attended (e.g., exchange year, transfer year, etc.).

Document Ownership

Documents submitted in support of applications become the property of the University and may not be returned to the applicant or student. Students who submit irreplaceable material may request the return of that material. Such requests must be submitted with the original material. The office to which the material is submitted will return the material as soon as possible, and not later than six months after the student's graduation or last registration. 

Applicants are discouraged from sending irreplaceable documents and are advised to follow the instructions for verified copies (see Official Documents above).

Do I have to take the GRE?

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

The Graduate Record Examination has two components: a General Test measuring verbal, quantitative, and analytical reasoning skills, and a Subject Test measuring achievement in particular  fields of study. The table GRE Requirements by Program lists which graduate program at UBC requires a GRE test.

The UBC institution code is 0965.

Graduate Management Test (GMAT)

Applicants to the MBA and MScB programs in the Faculty of Commerce and Business Administration are required to submit GMAT results (applicants to the MScB in Transportation may submit the GRE or the GMAT). Applicants to the PhD program in the Faculty of Commerce and Business Administration must submit either GMAT or GRE results.

GRE Requirements by Program

Specializationsort descending Program Name GRE required?
Accounting Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Accounting (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Architecture Master of Architecture (MARCH) Optional
Architecture Master of Advanced Studies in Architecture (MASA) Optional
Atmospheric Science Doctor of Philosophy in Atmospheric Science (PhD) Optional
Atmospheric Science Master of Science in Atmospheric Science (MSc) Optional
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Master of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (MSc) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Chemistry Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Chemistry Master of Science in Chemistry (MSc) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Civil Engineering Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering (PhD) Required by all applicants
Counselling Psychology Doctor of Philosophy in Counselling Psychology (PhD) Required by all applicants
Counselling Psychology Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology (MA) Required by all applicants
Craniofacial Science Master of Science in Craniofacial Science (MSc) Required by all applicants
Craniofacial Science Doctor of Philosophy in Craniofacial Science (PhD) Required by all applicants
Economics Doctor of Philosophy in Economics (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Economics Master of Arts in Economics (MA) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Endodontics Doctor of Philosophy in Craniofacial Science and Diploma in Endodontics (PhD/Dip. Endodontics) Optional
Finance Master of Science in Business Administration in Finance (MSCB) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Finance Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Finance (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Health Administration Master of Health Administration (MHA) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Library, Archival and Information Studies Doctor of Philosophy in Library, Archival and Information Studies (PhD) Required by all applicants
Linguistics Doctor of Philosophy in Linguistics (PhD) Optional
Linguistics Master of Arts in Linguistics (MA) Optional
Management Information Systems Master of Science in Business Administration in Management Information Systems (MSCB) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Management Information Systems Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Management Information Systems (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Management Science Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Management Science (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Marketing Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Marketing (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Measurement, Evaluation and Research Methodology Doctor of Philosophy in Measurement, Evaluation and Research Methodology (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Mechanical Engineering Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering (PhD) Optional
Mechanical Engineering Master of Applied Science in Mechanical Engineering (MASc) Optional
Microbiology and Immunology Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Microbiology and Immunology Master of Science in Microbiology and Immunology (MSc) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Neuroscience Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Neuroscience Master of Science in Neuroscience (MSc) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Nursing Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Nursing Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Occupational and Environmental Hygiene Master of Science in Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (MSc) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Occupational Therapy Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Organizational Behavior Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Organizational Behaviour (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Doctor of Philosophy in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Master of Science in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine (MSc) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Planning Master of Science in Planning (MSCP) Optional
Planning Doctor of Philosophy in Planning (PhD) Optional
Planning Master of Arts in Planning (MAP) Optional
Political Science Master of Arts in Political Science (MA) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Political Science Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Population and Public Health Master of Public Health (MPH) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Population and Public Health Master of Science in Population and Public Health (MSc) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Population and Public Health Doctor of Philosophy in Population and Public Health (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Psychology Master of Arts in Psychology (MA) Required by all applicants
Psychology Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology (PhD) Required by all applicants
Rehabilitation Sciences Master of Science in Rehabilitation Sciences (MSc) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Rehabilitation Sciences Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Sciences (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
School Psychology Master of Arts in School Psychology (MA) Required by all applicants
School Psychology Master of Education in School Psychology (MEd) Required by all applicants
School Psychology Doctor of Philosophy in School Psychology (PhD) Required by all applicants
Sociology Master of Arts in Sociology (MA) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Sociology Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Special Education Doctor of Philosophy in Special Education (PhD) Required by some applicants (check program website)
Strategy & Business Economics Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Strategy and Business Economics (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Transportation & Logistics Master of Science in Business Administration in Transportation and Logistics (MSCB) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Transportation & Logistics Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Transportation and Logistics (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)
Urban Land Economics Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration in Urban Land Economics (PhD) GRE or comparable test (check program website)

Where is UBC and what is the campus like?

The University of British Columbia's Vancouver campus is located at the western tip of the Point Grey Peninsula, close to the city of Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada.

The University Endowment Lands community (also known as University Hill) is situated adjacent to the campus to the east, while 763 hectares of forested parkland known as Pacific Spirit Regional Park serves as a "green belt" between Vancouver and the campus.

The main campus is bounded by Chancellor Boulevard to the northwest, Marine Drive to the southwest, Wesbrook Mall to the northeast, and West 16th Avenue to the southeast. This represents the administrative and educational core of UBC.

The South Campus is bounded by Southwest Marine Drive to the south, West 16th Avenue to the northwest, and Pacific Spirit Park to the northeast. The South Campus houses many research facilities.

The East Campus is bounded by West 16th Avenue on the south, Wesbrook Mall on the west, Acadia Road on the east, and on the north its border zigzags from Toronto Road to Agronomy Road to Fairview Avenue. A large part of the East Campus is made up of student, faculty and staff housing, along with child care buildings and the local police and fire department. UBC's first market housing development, known as Hampton Place, is also located here.

Although many buildings on campus are quite new, the University's history actually dates back to 1877.

Campus locations

The Faculty of Graduate Studies is responsible for the majority of graduate students at the Vancouver campus, including those who study at many of the affiliated facilities in the city of Vancouver and BC. The majority of graduate programs are offered at the Point Grey campus or the affiliated facilities, one program (Digital Media) is offered at the Great Northern Way Campus (Vancouver) and few programs such as the Master of Health Administration and business programs are offered at UBC Robson Square (Downtown Vancouver). If you are interested in the Okanagan campus (Kelowna, BC), please visit the website of the College of Graduate Studies.

Campus Videos

 

Campus Map

 

Campus Tours

Due to the diversity of our many research facilities, we do not offer campus tours specifically for graduate students. However, individual departments or research groups may offer open houses or other outreach events that may allow you to visit their facilities. Please check on the websites of individual departments or programs for such opportunities.

You can enjoy one of our many self-guided campus walking tours, such as from the Sustainability Initiative or the Art Outdoor Tour. Or you may decide to walk in Pacific Spirit Regional Park.

Or try out one of these five 30 minute walking maps:

Attractions on Campus

 

Campus Gallery

Martha Piper Place

Buchanan Courtyard (Faculty of Arts)

Main Mall Aerial

Clock Tower & Ike Barber Learning Centre

Sport Facilities

Looking northwest from Wesbrook Place

Marine Drive Residences

Main Mall Aerial

Sauder School of Business

University Boulevard

Martha Piper Place looking north-east

Student Union Building

Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre

Centre for Brain Health at UBC Hospital

Reconciliation Pole

 

You may view more images on Flickr.

How much will it cost?

UBC provides outstanding education as recognized by the various rankings and at the same time is able to offer graduate degrees at very competitive tuition rates. Our stunning location in one of the most livable cities might lead to higher living costs than what you are used to. If you compare UBC with other universities, adding up all costs and income sources, we think you’ll find that UBC’s competitive tuition and several funding initiatives allow you to get extraordinary value for your investment.


Are you a domestic or international student?
Domestic student (incl. Permanent Resident/Landed Immigrant, Refugee, Diplomat)
International student

Please select the program you plan to attend:

Are you single or will you be accompanied by a partner?
I will live in Vancouver on my own
I will bring a partner

Do you have children?
Yes
No

What type of accommodation are you hoping to rent?

Do you plan to live on- or off-campus?
On-campus
Off-campus

Do you plan to own a car?
Yes
No