Admission Requirements

The UBC Faculty of Medicine considers applicants from a variety of backgrounds and gives no preference to any particular degree program or institution. We are committed to creating a diverse community of people and we want our future students and doctors to be as diverse as the communities they will end up serving.

There are a number of steps in our admissions process along with specific criteria that must be met for your application to be considered. Please note that admissions requirements may change from time to time, which may affect current or future applications. We encourage you to carefully review the requirements and if you have any concerns to reach out to our Admissions Team.

Minimum Academic Standing

Please note that due to limited enrolment, meeting the minimum academic standing does not guarantee admission to the program, or even consideration for an interview. We encourage you to do a realistic review of the admissions statistics for the averages of successful applicants before submitting an application.

BC applicants with an overall academic average of less than 75% and out-of-province applicants with an overall academic average of less than 85% (based on the adjusted academic average, if applicable) will not receive full file reviews and thus will not proceed further through the application process.1 A full file review consists of a full academic evaluation, a non-academic evaluation and where appropriate, a rural/remote suitability evaluation.

It is recommended that self-identified Indigenous applicants achieve a competitive grade point average. Their academic scores will be reviewed at the discretion of the Indigenous Admissions Sub-Committee.

You must report all post-secondary level courses, programs, and grades. If you have withdrawn from another medical school for academic reasons you are not eligible to apply. If you are enrolled or will be enrolling in another medical school during the application cycle, you must inform the program using either the online application form and/or email. Failure to include relevant information may result in disqualification of your application.

For information on GPA calculation, please refer to the Academic Criteria section on the Evaluation Criteria page.

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1 These averages must be attained although the published minimum academic requirement for applying to the MD Undergraduate Program is an overall GPA ("OGPA") of 70% based on all university-level courses attempted (see Minimum Credit Requirement).

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, grades, even if listed on the transcript, from Winter 2020 Term 2 are not included in the calculation of the overall or adjusted GPA. Applicants must achieve the minimum academic standing, without the incorporation of these grades.

Minimum Credit Requirement

Our minimum requirement of 90 credits must be 90 university-transferable credits with grades taken at a post-secondary institution. AP, IB and A Level credits do not count towards the 90 minimum credits. The 90 credits must be completed by April 30 of the year of entry into medical school.

Applicants are not required to take a full-time course load, which is considered to be 10 courses/30 credits taken over the fall and spring semesters. However, applicants should demonstrate an ability to handle the rigorous, full-time curriculum of medical school, and are asked to provide more information about any part-time terms on the application.

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* While individuals must still have 90 credits with grades by April 30 of the year of entry of medical school, Winter  2019-2020 Term 2  (or equivalent term) credits (that are passed) will count towards the minimum credit requirement in the 2020-2021, 2021-2022, and 2022-2023 application cycles even if assigned pass/fail grades. Grades from Winter 2019-2020 Term 2  (or equivalent term) will not be included in the calculation of GPA.

Transcript Requirements

All applicants must submit one set of official transcripts issued by the Registrar(s) of the home institution(s), from ALL post-secondary institutions attended, to the MD Undergraduate Admissions Office by the application deadline. Please see the application timelines for further information.

Applicants must submit transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended, including but not limited to colleges and universities, institutions attended on exchange, study abroad institutions, institutions attended on a letter of permission or as a visiting student, etc. It is not sufficient for our purposes for the courses/grades to appear on your home institution's transcript. Hard-copy transcripts can be sent directly from the institution or sent by the applicant to us, as long as the transcripts arrive in their official, sealed, endorsed envelopes.

Electronic transcripts must be sent directly by the Registrar. If your institution issues official electronic transcripts, we accept e-transcripts sent in the following manner:

  1. Sent directly by your Registrar’s office to admissions.md@ubc.ca
  2. Sent through a transcript ordering service (e.g. Parchment). On Parchment, we are listed as “The University of British Columbia – MD Undergraduate Admissions”; On MyCreds, we are listed as "UBC - Faculty of Medicine | MD Undergraduate admissions."

E-transcripts forwarded by applicants are not accepted.

If your home university does not mail original academic records directly, then stamped, attested true photocopies of academic records in sealed envelopes and endorsed by the Registrar at your home university will be accepted as official.

Note: Please see deadline below for international exchange/study-abroad transcript(s).

International Transcripts

Applicants who attended post-secondary institutions (including on exchange or study abroad) outside of North America must have their foreign transcripts assessed by either ICES, the International Credential Evaluation Service or WES, World Education Services. All foreign transcripts must be evaluated by WES or ICES unless the foreign institution was attended for only one term, or 6 credits or fewer were taken in an academic year. Applicants must arrange to have official transcripts from their foreign institution and the WES or ICES reports received by our office by October 14, 2022.

Deadlines for the 2022/2023 Application Cycle

  • All non-North American transcripts must be submitted by the foreign institution and received by UBC MD Admissions by October 14, 2022.
  • A WES or ICES evaluation, if required, must be received by our office by October 14, 2022.

ICES Requirements

From ICES, we require the Comprehensive report. The Supplemental report is recommended only for applicants who are hoping to use their foreign coursework to satisfy the English requirement and/or to demonstrate proficiency in biology, chemistry and biochemistry (if the Supplemental report is not submitted in this case, detailed course outlines must be provided instead).

WES Requirements

From WES, we require the Course-by-Course report. Basic and ICAP formats are both accepted.

Please note that the verified transcript submitted as part of the WES ICAP package is not sufficient for our purposes and an original, official transcript from the foreign institution must be submitted as well. 

The WES or ICES report is required to augment academic evaluation of an applicant's file. However, the Admissions Office reserves the right to apply its own evaluation. In some cases, the Admissions Office may request applicants with international credentials to submit both a Comprehensive and Supplemental report from ICES to assist in the academic evaluation of their application.

As mentioned above, if an applicant attended an international institution on exchange for only one term, or 6 credits or fewer were taken in an academic year, for the 2022/2023 application cycle, UBC MD Admissions must receive the original transcript from the international institution by October 14, 2022.

Prerequisites

English Requirement

All applicants must complete 6 credits of English coursework by April 30 of the year of entry into medical school (April 30, 2023 for the 2022/2023 application cycle). English courses should be offered through an English department and should consist of 6 credits (the equivalent of two semesters) of literature or 3 credits of literature plus 3 credits of composition.

“Literature” in this context means fiction, poetry, drama, and/or some literary non-fiction genres, whereas “composition” means a course dedicated to instruction in academic essay writing.

Courses Not Accepted

The following courses are not accepted toward the English requirement, even if offered through an English department:

  • Social science
  • Humanities
  • Science
  • Public health
  • Science writing and other discipline-specific writing courses
  • Creative writing
  • Cultural studies
  • Linguistics
  • Professional writing
  • Professional communication
  • Foreign language
  • Technical writing
  • English as a Second Language
  • Media studies
  • Film studies
  • Comics/graphic novels
  • Music
  • Theses in any subject area

Courses with titles like Reading Popular Culture are accepted on a case-by-case basis only if there is a clearly identifiable and significant literary component. Traditional literature courses focusing on a particular time period, location, or group of writers are generally accepted, as are genre courses such as Children’s Literature and Science Fiction.

To confirm that your courses fulfill the requirement, please see the English Courses Chart, which lists acceptable English courses from most Canadian universities and BC colleges. If the course is not listed, but you believe it satisfies our criteria for acceptable English courses, please email the course syllabus to the Admissions team for review.

English courses should have a workload equivalent to similar courses at UBC, including at least one research paper of five or more pages, an additional essay assignment, and a final exam.

Final authority regarding course equivalency rests with Academic Evaluators in the MD Admissions Office of the Faculty of Medicine and is only available after your application has been submitted and fully evaluated.

Recommended Courses

Courses in biology, chemistry and biochemistry are strongly recommended, but are not required for application. All applicants are expected to demonstrate proficiency in these areas through coursework and/or MCAT scores. Courses in physics, statistics, humanities, and the social sciences are also recommended as general preparation for the MCAT and for medical school.

Required (6 credits) Strongly Recommended (6 credits each) Optional
English General Biology Physics
General Chemistry Statistics
Organic Chemistry Social Sciences
Biochemistry Humanities

For applicants wishing to take our recommended science courses, the Science Courses Chart provides a list of courses previously accepted as science prerequisites. To assess course equivalency, refer to UBC course descriptions to ensure that the topics covered in the courses and the credit weightings are similar. Please follow the department links in the Science Courses Chart or consult the UBC calendar.

Note: As applicants are required to demonstrate their academic ability to determine their suitability for the rigorous MD curriculum, taking the Credit/D/Fail option for required and strongly recommended courses may not be a helpful indicator in the selection process and could potentially jeopardize your application to the program.

English and/or Recommended Courses Taken at International Institutions

Please see "International Transcripts" under the Transcript Requirements section for more information on foreign transcript requirements. English courses must be taken in a country that satisfies UBC's English Language Admissions Standard to be considered for the prerequisite requirement.

AP, IB, and Other Exam Results

Some exam results can be used to satisfy the English requirement. These exam results do not count toward the 90-credit minimum requirement and are not included in GPA calculations.

The following minimum grades must be achieved to satisfy the English requirement:

Subject AP  IB A Level Cambridge Pre-U English CAPE
English 4 5, Higher Level only A or B grade M3 or higher I or II on Unit II Literatures in English

 

All applicants, with the exception of UBC students, seeking credit for the English requirement must send one set of official AP, IB, A Level and Cambridge Pre-U, or CAPE transcripts directly to the Admissions Office by the application deadline.

We cannot access AP, IB, A Level and Cambridge Pre-U transcripts sent to UBC’s Enrolment Services. Our office does not accept electronic copies of AP, A Level, Cambridge Pre-U, or CAPE transcripts. Our office can accept electronic copies of IB transcripts for exams taken after May 2004, but we require a paper IB transcript for exams taken in May 2004 or earlier. Transcripts for IB exams taken prior to May 2004 are not accessible electronically.

Note: If 6 credits (the equivalent of two semesters) of approved English have been completed at a university (during any years), it is unnecessary to submit AP, IB, or other exam results. If only 3 credits were taken, AP, IB, or other exam results must be submitted.

How to Request an AP Transcript

Please consult the AP Score Reporting Services page for instructions. Our AP code is #3939. We encourage applicants to request AP transcripts early, as the College Board often has significant delays of weeks to months in processing and sending AP transcripts.

How to Request an IB Transcript

Information about requesting an IB transcript can be found on the IB website. Our institution name is "University of British Columbia - Medicine." Please note that we do not receive notifications for electronic IB transcripts for up to 72 hours after the applicant receives confirmation from IB.

Transcripts for Other Exams

A Levels: Please visit GOV.UK for instructions on requesting a certified statement of results.

Cambridge Pre-U: Please consult the Cambridge Assessment website for certifying statement of results request procedures.

CAPE: Please see the Caribbean Examinations Council website for information on ordering transcripts.

Timelines

Please note that administering organizations may have processing times of several weeks or more, and the document may take a long time to arrive. Request your results as early as you can.

MCAT

All applicants must take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) and request that their results be sent electronically to UBC via the MCAT Score Reporting System after the online application opens.

Only the new version of the MCAT (MCAT 2015) is accepted. The sections on this exam version are BBFL, CPBS, PSBB and CARS.

MCAT Results Validity

Test results from April 17, 2015 onward are valid for five years.

Due to the impact of COVID-19, for the 2020/2021 cycle, 2021/2022 cycle and 2022/2023 application cycle, we will accept all MCAT test results from April 2015 to present provided the results are received by the UBC MD Admissions office by October 14, 2022. In accordance with AAMC regulations, applicants must release all scores. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all results are sent to UBC and received by the Admissions Office.

Applicants must achieve a minimum score of 124 in each of the four sections on a single exam. Applications that do not have at least one exam with 124 or above in each section will be deemed ineligible.

Acceptable Exam Dates and Scores

Year Written Test Type Valid Until Application Cycle (Inclusive) Minimum Score in Each Section
April 2015 - December 2015 MCAT 2015* 2022/2023 124
2016 MCAT 2015 2022/2023 124
2017 MCAT 2015 2022/2023 124
2018 MCAT 2015 2022/2023 124
2019 MCAT 2015 2023/2024 124
2020 MCAT 2015 2024/2025 124
2021 MCAT 2015 2025/2026 124
2022 MCAT 2015 2026/2027 124

*The VR, PS, BS (no WS) exam offered in early 2015 is no longer accepted.

Please review the Faculty of Medicine MD Undergraduate Admissions Statistics summary for an indication of competitive scores. It is recommended that self-identified Indigenous applicants achieve competitive MCAT scores. These scores will be reviewed at the discretion of the Indigenous Admissions Sub-Committee.

More Information About the MCAT

Information on the MCAT and online registration can be found on the AAMC website.

For the 2022/2023 application cycle, MCAT scores must be received by October 14, 2022 at 12:00 p.m. (noon) Pacific Time.

The latest accepted MCAT test date for the 2022/2023 application cycle is the latest test date that allows us to receive your MCAT scores by the October 14 deadline (September 10, 2022 in Canada).

Please note:

UBC is not a part of the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS). You must therefore specify that you want your test results released to UBC. This can only be done after your results have been sent to you. Please use the MCAT Score Reporting System to send your scores to UBC; refer to the Help Questions within the Score Reporting System for specific instructions. Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the "Scores Sent to Institutions" option to confirm that results have been successfully sent to UBC.

To avoid submitting an application that may become ineligible as soon as the MCAT score is received, applicants are encouraged to write the MCAT early so that they may confirm their scores meet our minimum requirements before applying. Applicants are also encouraged to write the MCAT early in order to have time to reschedule their exam should confirmed testing difficulties arise during the exam. Unfortunately, the Admissions Office cannot accommodate rescheduled exams with score release dates that fall after our deadline. Applicants who experience technical difficulties during their MCAT should receive official confirmation from AAMC and email the documentation to the Admissions Office.

How we use MCAT results

For more information, please see the MCAT section under Evaluation Criteria.

Citizenship and BC Residency

The Faculty of Medicine welcomes applications from qualified individuals who:

  1. Are permanent residents of Canada at the time of application, either as Canadian citizens or permanent residents, and
  2. Meet the eligibility criteria, and
  3. Believe they would be competitive on the selection criteria.

International Applicants

We regret that we are unable to admit international students.

Applicants with Refugee Status

The Faculty of Medicine welcomes applications from persons with refugee status in Canada. Admission will be contingent on attaining permanent residency in Canada and providing proof of this status to the MD Admissions Office two weeks prior to the start of classes. A one-year deferral can be requested if a refugee status applicant is unable to provide proof of permanent residency within the above stated time frame. All deferrals are made at the discretion of the MD Admissions Office.

On interview day, all applicants are required to submit official proof (original government-issued documentation) of one of the following: citizenship, permanent residency, or refugee status.

BC Residency Requirements

Preference for admission to the MD Undergraduate program is given to residents of British Columbia; however, a small number of out-of-province applicants are accepted each year.

For MD Undergraduate Admissions purposes, applicants are considered BC residents if they hold a currently valid BC Services Card by the application deadline.* Possession of a BC Services Card is intended to signify residency in British Columbia.

It is expected that applicants claiming BC residency are residents of BC and meet all MSP eligibility guidelines. BC residents who study outside of BC or are temporarily outside of BC for another reason must be eligible to maintain their coverage according to MSP guidelines for temporary absences outside of BC.

By the application deadline, applicants must upload a high quality copy of both the front and back of their BC Services Card to their application. This card must be valid throughout the entire application cycle. Should your BC Services Card expire during the current application cycle, it is your responsibility to renew this card in a timely fashion and upload copies of your renewed card. BC Services Cards will be checked at the time of interview and when offers are made to confirm their continued validity.

Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut residents are treated as BC residents and will be required to provide equivalent documentation to the BC residency requirement.

As part of our mandate to address the need for clinician scientists, applicants with a PhD completed by the application deadline** will have their BC residency requirement waived, as will supported Indigenous applicants, supported Black applicants, and supported MD/PhD applicants.

The Admissions Office reserves the right to ask for additional information or documentation about an applicant’s BC residency at any time during the application cycle.

Note: Any attempt to claim BC residency status without meeting all residency requirements may negatively affect your application to the MD Undergraduate Program.

More Information

Information on the BC Services Card can be found at BC Ministry of Health.


*Please note that BC CareCards, Confirmation of Continued Coverage Letters, Interim Services Cards and Mobile Service Cards are not accepted as proof of BC residency.

**If the PhD is not conferred on the transcript submitted to the Admissions Office, by the application deadline applicants must submit an official letter from the Faculty of Graduate Studies confirming program completion. The letter must be sent directly from the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

Applicants with Disabilities

The UBC Faculty of Medicine is an inclusive, diverse community and we welcome students with disabilities to apply to the MD Undergraduate degree program. We encourage students considering our program to review our Essential Skills and Abilities (Technical Standards) before applying and ensure they meet the program's requirements for their own safety and the safety of the patients they encounter during their medical training.

Special Consideration

If there are unique considerations for admissions requirements or for the application process, you may be eligible for special consideration in the calculation of your grades, though you must still meet the competitive average.

To apply for Disability-Related Considerations, please review and submit the following documents to the Centre for Accessibility by September 15, 2022:

  • Documentation of disability (find guidelines for documentation on the Centre for Accessibility website)
  • A concise letter outlining the rationale for requesting disability-related consideration. Please address precisely what considerations are being requested, including relevant dates.
  • A transcript highlighting the difference in grades when your disability-related access needs were being addressed (if applying for GPA considerations).

You must also submit:

  • The form linked to in the Other Information section of the online application.

If you receive a request for an interview and need accommodations during the interview process, please submit your request to the Centre for Accessibility by January 4th, 2023, including:

  • A request for a 30-minute appointment to discuss medical program admissions interview accommodations, and
  • Documentation of disability (find guidelines for documentation on the Centre for Accessibility website).

Accommodations are always unique to individuals' needs and will vary from person to person. We encourage you to advocate for accommodations and work with the Centre for Accessibility to provide the necessary documentation to ensure the supports you need are in place. The Centre for Accessibility will then adjudicate requests and provide recommendations to our MD Admissions Office.

Admitted students with disabilities will be accommodated in accordance with UBC's policy on Academic Accommodation for Students with Disabilities. As stated in the policy, the provision of academic accommodations does not eliminate the need for evaluation or the need to meet essential learning outcomes.

More Information

Graduate Student Applicants

Graduate students wishing to enter the UBC Faculty of Medicine Undergraduate Program must complete the program in which they are registered and provide official proof of completion by July 31, prior to admission. If an applicant enrolls in or starts a graduate program after submitting an application, they must immediately notify the Admissions Office and provide proof of completion by the July 31 deadline. Failure of notification or withdrawing from a graduate program any time after application submission will result in ineligibility. There are no exceptions to this policy.

All degree requirements, including successful defense and submission of approved thesis in final form and acceptance by the Faculty of Graduate Studies, must be completed by this deadline. Graduate students in non-thesis based programs must complete all required courses, projects, exams, practica, etc. and have all grades submitted on an official transcript by July 31.

As part of the supplemental application, graduate students who are invited for an interview will be required to complete an electronic form stating that they are on track to fulfill the above requirements. The thesis supervisor, or program/department head, will receive an electronic copy of the completed form. If the applicant is unable to confirm that they will finish by this date or if a response is not received by the stated deadline on the Graduate Student Report form, the interview offer will be rescinded. Please be advised that the thesis supervisor can contact the Admissions Office at any time after receiving a copy of the electronic form, if they believe the applicant has provided incorrect information.

Proof of Completion by the Deadline (July 31)

The Admissions Office will accept ONE of the following proofs of graduate program completion (required by July 31 at 12:00 p.m. (noon) PDT):

  • Official transcripts showing date of degree conferral
  • Official letter from the Faculty of Graduate Studies confirming program completion* (this letter can be sent directly by mail or e-mailed by the Faculty of Graduate Studies; faxed copies are not acceptable)

The transcripts and/or official letter must reflect a graduate completion date of July 31 of the commencing year or earlier. Be aware that submission of the thesis in final form around or after June 30 may result in an official completion date of later than July 31, depending on the Graduate Studies requirement and timeline. In this case, the graduate student’s application will be made ineligible by the Admissions Office.

Exception (MD/PhD applicants)

One exception to this rule is for UBC students enrolled in an MSc program or in their 1st year of PhD studies who are concurrently applying to the combined MD/PhD Program. If such applicants are successful in securing admission to both the MD and the combined MD/PhD Programs, continuing their graduate studies under the auspices of MD/PhD, they can enter the MD Undergraduate Program prior to completing all graduate degree requirements.

Applicants should be aware that if they secure admission to the MD Undergraduate Program but not to the combined MD/PhD Program, their offer to enter the MD program would be withdrawn and the student would have to reapply for entry in a year when all graduate requirements would be completed by July 31.

Important Notes

We will not accept letters from thesis supervisors or professors to confirm degree completion.

*All applicants are required to submit final transcripts showing degree conferral as soon as they are available.

Please contact the Admissions Office if the above options are not available to you.

An applicant’s failure to disclose their status as a current graduate student during the admission cycle in which they are applying will result in disqualification. This also applies to applicants who begin their graduate programs at any point during the application cycle of the year in which they are applying, as they will not be able to meet the July 31 completion deadline.


COVID-19 Updates

Wondering how COVID-19 changes might affect your application?

See the latest updates on the Admissions blog

International Students

We regret that we are unable to admit international students. Our mission is training the next generations of medical doctors who will serve the population of British Columbia.