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The Faculty of Medicine > Doctor of Medicine > Admission

Selection of a Program of Pre-Medical Studies

Students planning to apply for admission to the Doctor of Medicine program should select courses that conform to the requirements of a bachelor's degree of their choice. No particular degree program is considered ideal as preparation for the study and practice of medicine. A variety of pre-medical academic backgrounds are considered desirable.

Students who have completed programs and who then enroll in unclassified non-degree programs for the sole purpose of improving their academic qualifications for admission are advised that only a small proportion of such candidates ultimately gain admission.

Prerequisites Requirements and Recommended Courses

Candidates for admission must be Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents and must have completed a minimum of 90 graded credits of university-level study (e.g., excluding pass/fail credits). These, including the required university-level prerequisite coursework (or their equivalents) must be completed by April 30 of the year for which admission is sought.

A full year of English (minimum of 6 credits) is the only prerequisite coursework required for entry into the Doctor of Medicine program. However, courses in biology, general/inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry and biochemistry are strongly recommended. Further information on recommended courses can be found at M.D. Undergraduate Admissions (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/).

Medical College Admission Test

All applicants must take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) and request that their results be released to UBC. Information and online registration are available on the MCAT (www.aamc.org/students/applying/mcat/) website.

Please note: UBC is not a part of the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS). You must therefore specify that you would like 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 released to UBC. This is not done automatically.

Applicants are required to meet a minimum score in each component of the test. These scores will be determined each year by Admissions Committees. Applicants should check M.D. Undergraduate Admissions (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/) for the current minimum requirements, dates of valid MCAT sittings, and deadline for receipt of test scores.

If you have written more than one MCAT, the MCAT with the best overall total score will be used. However, if MCAT 2015 has been written, these test results will be used, not scores from the previous version of the MCAT, even if the scores on the MCAT 2015 exam do not meet minimum requirements. If you have written MCAT 2015 more than once, the best overall total score will be used. For further information, applicants should review the Admissions Requirements and Evaluation Criteria sections of the Admissions website. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all results are released to the UBC Faculty of Medicine and received by the Admissions Office.

Required Academic Standards

Applications for admission will be considered from candidates who are Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents and who will have completed all prerequisite courses prior to April 30 of the year for which admission is sought, have achieved the minimum required MCAT scores, and who have attained a minimum overall academic average of 70% based on all university-level courses attempted.

There is an overall threshold academic threshold (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/admission-requirements/ ) below which full file review will not be performed.

All supporting documentation (including transcripts, AP/IB transcripts, foreign transcripts, exchange program or study abroad transcripts, etc.) that arrive in the Admissions Office after the posted application deadline will not be accepted and will result in the application being rendered ineligible.

Persons who have been required to withdraw from another medical school for academic reasons are not eligible to apply.

Selection Process

The entering class is limited to 288 full-time students. The number of qualified applicants significantly exceeds the number of available positions. Therefore, not every qualified applicant will be offered admission. Admission is based on a selection process which strives to enroll the most highly qualified applicants who will be evaluated on the following criteria:

Please refer to M.D. Undergraduate Admissions Evaluation Criteria (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/evaluation-criteria/) for additional information.

The interview is a critical component of the admission process. The interview process follows the Multiple Mini-Interview (MMI) model. Applicants selected for an interview will be contacted by the admissions office and will also be asked to submit their reference letters. The interview dates are usually scheduled in February.

The selection of candidates for admission to the distributed M.D. undergraduate program is governed by guidelines established by the Admissions MD Subcommittee and approved by the Senate of UBC. The selection process reflects the values of the UBC Faculty of Medicine and all university partners in the UBC distributed M.D. undergraduate program. The process is designed to choose well-rounded students from a variety of backgrounds who meet the goals of the expanded, distributed program; who can be expected to perform well in the rigorous curriculum and small group learning format; and who can balance and enrich their academic experience with strong non-academic skills and interests.

The UBC Faculty of Medicine's Executive Associate Dean, Clinical Partnerships and Professionalism, oversees the selection process to ensure that all applicants are given careful consideration without regard to age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, marital, or economic status. The Admissions Selection Committee reviews and discusses all interviewed applicants. At present, admission is limited to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada. Preference is given to residents of British Columbia. Information on residency criteria can be found at BC Residency Requirements (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/admission-requirements/). A maximum of 10% of the total seats may be made available to out-of-province applicants in the medical program each year.

The applicant will have the opportunity to indicate their regional medical program site preferences (Northern, Southern, Island, or Vancouver Fraser) after receiving an interview offer. Members of the Admissions Selection Subcommittee are not aware of an applicant's medical program site preference during the selection discussions. Following an admissions decision, successful applicants are allocated to sites based on their preferences. The first site choice is given priority, unless the available positions at that site have been filled, in which case he/she would be wait-listed for their preferred site if applicable.

UBC Faculty of Medicine Undergraduate Distributed Program

The UBC Faculty of Medicine offers a distributed program involving 288 students at geographically separated campuses. 32 students will be in the Northern Medical Program located at the University of Northern British Columbia, 32 will be in the Island Medical Program located at the University of Victoria, and another 32 students will be in the Southern Medical Program at UBC Okanagan. The remaining 192 students will be in the Vancouver Fraser Medical Program located at UBC Vancouver.

Application Procedure

Applicants are required to apply using the Faculty of Medicine's Online Application System (OAS). Applications will be available from early June until the application deadline. Information can be found at M.D. Undergraduate Admissions (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/). All inquiries should be addressed to M.D. Undergraduate Admissions, Faculty of Medicine, Dean's Office. Supporting documentation must be received by the Admissions office by the application deadline. Final post-secondary transcripts for students currently enrolled in a program of studies must be received by June 30 of the year for which admission is sought.

All applicants are required to pay an application fee (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/application-fees/). An additional evaluation fee is required if transcripts are from an institution outside of BC. Applications with incomplete documentation or without the correct fee will not be eligible. Fees are non-refundable and are not applicable to tuition. All application fees are under review.

The Faculty of Medicine will interview a sub-set of approximately 640 applicants, based on results of file reviews of academic and non-academic evaluations. On receipt of an invitation, the applicant will be requested to provide their referees with reference forms, which will be available electronically. The completed reference letters must be received by the Admissions office by the date posted on the website. Each qualified applicant will participate in one interview, in Vancouver, which is typically scheduled in February. The interview process follows the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) model. The interviewers consist of a combination of academic, clinical, community representatives and UBC's third- or fourth- year medical students, representing diverse geographic areas of BC. Please refer to M.D. Undergraduate Admissions (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/) for more information.

Notification will be issued to all applicants starting in mid-May. Successful applicants are offered a position at a specific regional medical program site in the Faculty of Medicine. An offer is binding to a specific area, as outlined in the offer letter.

Indigenous Stream Applicants

The Faculty of Medicine welcomes applications from qualified Indigenous Canadian applicants (Status Indian, Non-Status Indian, Métis, and Inuit). The Indigenous admission process of the Faculty has a target of 5% of the annual complement of seats in the first year M.D. Undergraduate Program. Indigenous applicants can apply either to the regular stream of admission or to the Indigenous admission stream. Applicants who self-identify as Indigenous will be considered under the Indigenous admission process as well as under the regular admission process.

If you wish to apply as an Indigenous applicant, you will be required to submit proof of ancestry and write an essay which will be reviewed by the Indigenous Admissions Subcommittee. Based on your completed application, you may be offered an interview with the Indigenous Interviewing Panel. Please contact the Indigenous Student Initiatives Manager in the Faculty of Medicine at 604.822.8291, or email (james.andrew@ubc.ca) for further information.

Post-Acceptance Requirements

Upon receipt of an official letter of offer, each successful applicant must provide a deposit payable to the University of British Columbia by the date, and in the amount, specified in the letter. The deposit is non-refundable but will be applied to tuition fees if the student attends the Doctor of Medicine program in the academic session specified. Please see the Offers section of the Post-Acceptance Conditions (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/post-acceptance-conditions/) for more information.

Upon acceptance, each applicant must submit evidence of immunizations (Tetanus/Diphtheria-Toxoid, Polio, MMR) and a negative TB skin test (if the skin test is positive, a chest x-ray is required) to the Student Health Service.

Undergraduate medical students without immunity to Hepatitis B are at risk for infection. Students who are Hepatitis B antigen positive may pose a risk of passing infection to others. All students are registrants of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia and must abide by the Professional Standards and Guidelines for Blood-borne Pathogens in Registrants. Applicants are strongly encouraged to know their serological status for Hepatitis B prior to applying to the undergraduate program of the Faculty of Medicine. Students are advised that undergraduate medical students who have tested positive for Hepatitis B antigen will be monitored by the College, may face certain restrictions in the course of their medical training and may be constrained in their ability to practice.

All undergraduate medical students admitted to the Faculty of Medicine at UBC will have their vaccination records reviewed to determine their risk for communicable diseases. In compliance with College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia Professional Standard, students must be tested for Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV upon entry into medical school and every three years during medical school. They must report these findings, if positive, to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia for licensure. Undergraduate medical students who have not been vaccinated against Hepatitis B will be required to complete a vaccination series, unless they are able to demonstrate their Hepatitis B status. Sero-conversion will be tested in all medical students, either upon entry if they have received prior vaccination, or upon completion of a vaccination series.

The Student Health Service will test undergraduate medical students who continue to fail to sero-convert for the presence of Hepatitis B antigen. Students who demonstrate Hepatitis B infectivity or are positive for Hepatitis C or HIV will be monitored by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia and may be required to complete a modified course of training and may pursue their studies only as long as their continued involvement does not pose a health or safety hazard to themselves or others and as long as they are able to meet the core requirements for a medical degree at UBC.

The Faculty of Medicine will make every reasonable effort to ensure that a modified course of training will meet professional licensing requirements. Licensing requirements and decisions are within the sole jurisdiction of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC. The Faculty of Medicine cannot guarantee that a modified course of training which will lead to the granting of an M.D. degree will be accepted or recognized by this or any other licensing body. All applicants who accept an offer are required to consent to a Criminal Record Check.

Counselling resources are available to any undergraduate medical student identified as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV positive.

Applicants with Disabilities

Applicants to the Faculty with disabilities will be considered in accordance with UBC's policy on Academic Accommodation for Students with Disabilities. This policy does not eliminate the need for evaluation or the need to meet essential learning outcomes. Students seeking academic accommodation due to disability must:

Students with disabilities are encouraged to pursue their studies as long as their continued involvement does not pose a health or safety hazard to themselves or others, and as long as they are able to meet the core requirements for a medical degree. The Faculty of Medicine will make every reasonable effort to ensure that any modified course of training will meet professional licensing requirements. However, licensing requirements and decisions are within the sole jurisdiction of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia. Similarly, access to the full-range of post-graduate training may be limited for students with certain disabilities.

For more information please contact Access and Diversity (students.ubc.ca/success/student-supports/academic-accommodations), 604.822.5844.


Unsuccessful applicants may reapply in subsequent years without prejudice, although candidates who are repeatedly unsuccessful are encouraged to explore other career options.

Admission of Students by Transfer

Transfer students may be accepted to the third year of the Doctor of Medicine program only if vacancies exist in that class. Transfers are generally not possible in any other year.

In order to be eligible, students requesting transfer must be in good standing in a Canadian or US medical school accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools and/or the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.

Students who meet the above criteria and wish to be considered for transfer should contact the Associate Dean, Admissions (bruce.fleming@ubc.ca).

The application deadline for transfer students is January 31. Applicants must submit an outline of their University curriculum, application fees (see above), a letter indicating their reasons for wishing to transfer, and a letter from the dean (or designate) of the medical school which they currently attend. Interviews may be required.

Requests for partial year transfers will not be considered.

Applications from Current Graduate Students

Admission of graduate students into the Faculty of Medicine will be made through the existing selection procedures as outlined above. Such students must complete all portions of the program in which they are registered, including the successful defense and submission of an approved thesis in final form to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies and provide official proof of completion by July 30 prior to admission to the Faculty of Medicine. Graduate students in non-thesis based programs must complete all required courses, projects, exams, practica, etc., and have all grades submitted by this deadline.

Deferrals will NOT be granted to allow an applicant to complete their graduate program.

Graduate students who are invited for an interview will be required to submit an electronic report confirming that the applicant is on track to complete the above requirements by the July 30 deadline. If the applicant is unable to confirm that these requirements will be met or if a response is not received by the stated deadline the interview offer will be rescinded.

For further information on the admission of graduate students, please visit M.D. Undergraduate Admissions (mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/).

Deferred Entry

Requests for deferred entry will be considered only from students who have completed a first degree, and then only in exceptional circumstances.

Note: Deferral requests must be made only after an offer of admission has been made.


Students in each year of the medical program will be notified of registration procedures.

No student will be allowed to register after the first day of Year 1 instruction in the year of enrolment, nor will they be admitted to any class after its first session, except by permission of the Dean.

Page last updated: July 13, 2018

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This document was generated on 16 Jan 2019 at 11:29 PM.