How to Apply to the PhD Program

The online application system for admission to begin the program in September 2021 will be open on August 15, 2020.

Application Deadline: Last day to submit the completed online application, including document uploads – December 1, 2020.

1. Ensure Minimum Requirements for Admission Met

International students: be sure to check UBC’s specific requirements based on the country in which you completed your prior degree.

Note that meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to UBC.

International students can find more useful information here.

2. Secure Interest of a Prospective Supervisor

This is a vital step in the application process, and should be confirmed before you submit the online application.

Carefully review faculty members’ profiles and identify those whom you consider to be the best match with your research interests; then contact them to see if they would be interested in your application.

Remember that faculty members receive many inquiries, so generic emails may not receive a response. Tell potential supervisors about your background and interests and how this relates to their research area.

Your online application should only be submitted after a prospective supervisor has confirmed to you that he or she is interested in reviewing your application.

It is important to note that the “interest of a prospective supervisor” is in no way a commitment to accept a particular student.

3. Complete the Online Application

In addition to the online application form, a complete application will require the following materials to be uploaded:

Scanned PDF copies of all post-secondary OFFICIAL transcripts in English, including marking keys for the transcripts, as well as degree certificates for all colleges/universities attended or currently attending, with the exception of UBC Vancouver transcripts.

For current and former UBC students: you do not need to upload transcripts for your UBC program as part of your online application. However, you should include information about your UBC program in your online Application. Please 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.).

All documents such as transcripts, proof of degree conferral, etc. must be scanned and uploaded to your application.  Photographs or screenshots taken using a cellular device or camera will not be accepted.

All applicants should note that if their application is recommended for admission, hard copies of transcripts will be required.

Uploading official copies of transcripts in the application system:

Provide the names of three referees:

During the online application process, you will identify three referees and provide their email address. Please note that the online application system does not recognize public email providers such as Gmail, Yahoo, or other free e-mail accounts for referees.

The referees can be either academic or professional.

Referees will receive an email, upload link and the submission deadline ONLY AFTER your application is submitted. For this reason, it is advisable to apply well before the deadline so the referee has sufficient time to write the letter.

For all forms, please ensure you download the form completely, open it with the appropriate application, fill it in and resave it.

  • Supplemental Application Form
  • CV or resume
  • A copy of a publication, report, or other sample of professional writing done by the applicant.
  • Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
  • If applicant’s language of prior study is not English TOEFL results (of at least 93) or IELTS score (minimum overall band score of 6.5 with no other component less than 6.0).