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 If you have withdrawn from another medical school for academic reasons you are not eligible to apply.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.

_______________

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.

_______________

* While individuals must still have 90 credits with grades by April 30 of the year of entry of medical school, term 2 of the 2019-2020 academic year (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 Term 2 of the 2019-2020 academic year (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”.

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 15, 2021.

Deadlines for the 2021/2022 Application Cycle

  • All non-North American transcripts must be submitted by the foreign institution and received by UBC MD Admissions by October 15, 2021.
  • A WES or ICES evaluation, if required, must be received by our office by October 15, 2021.

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 2021/2022 application cycle, UBC MD Admissions must receive the original transcript from the international institution by October 15, 2021.

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, 2022 for the 2021/2022 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 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

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.

AP, IB and A Levels

AP, IB and A Levels do not count toward the 90-credit minimum requirement and are not included in GPA calculations. However, AP, IB and A Level exam results may be used to satisfy the English requirement.

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

Subject AP IB A Level
English 4 5, Higher Level only A or B grade

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

We cannot access AP, IB or A Level transcripts sent to UBC’s Enrolment Services. Our office does not accept electronic copies of AP or A Level 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.

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.

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 A Level transcripts. If only 3 credits were taken, AP, IB or A Level transcripts must be submitted.

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 and the 2021/2022 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 15, 2021. 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* 2021/2022 124
2016 MCAT 2015 2021/2022 124
2017 MCAT 2015 2021/2022 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

*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 2021/2022 application cycle, MCAT scores must be received by October 15, 2021 at 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time.

The latest accepted MCAT test date for the 2021/2022 application cycle is the latest test date that allows us to receive your MCAT scores by the October 15 deadline.

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

We will accept 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 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 and will be checked at the time of interview and when offers are made.

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

Applicants with a PhD completed by the application deadline**, supported Indigenous applicants, and supported MD/PhD applicants will have their BC residency requirement waived.

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.


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.