The University of British Columbia Faculty of Medicine is one of 17 medical schools in Canada. It is also known for its unique approach to learning in which medical school students are sent to four unique locations. Within each location, specific curriculums are taught to address region-specific demands.
In 2021, the UBC medical school acceptance rate was 11.3%. Of the 2,558 undergraduate students that applied, only 288 were admitted into the program. However, the acceptance rate for applicants who applied from outside of British Columbia is significantly smaller at 1.9%. Of the 1,050 applicants who applied, 20 were admitted to the program.
The UBC medical school undergraduate requirements, including admission statistics, are categorized below in the priority of what an applicant must submit to be considered:
- Pre-requisite courses
- Minimum number of years of undergraduate study required
- Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)
- CASPer Test
- Supplementary Application
- Letter of Reference
UBC Medical School Requirements: Prerequisite Courses
All students applying to UBC Medical School must have completed at least 3 years (90 credits) of undergraduate study by the proposed year of entry. If you are applying for admission while registered in your third year of undergraduate studies, it is expected that all 90 credits are completed by April 30 of the year of entry into medical school. UBC does not require students to carry a full course load. In addition to this, your undergraduate studies must include one full year (6 credits) of English. There are no other prerequisite courses for this school.
UBC Med Requirements: GPA Calculation and Requirements
The University of British Columbia has a bias towards in-province (IP) applicants over out-of-province (OOP) applicants. This is because the university wants students who graduate from their program to serve the communities they studied in. As a result admission requirements are less competitive for IP applicants versus OOP applicants.
|Minimum GPA to Apply (IP)||Minimum GPA to Apply (OOP)||Average GPA of accepted applicants||Lowest GPA Admitted|
The UBC Medical School will make two calculations when determining GPA. The grade with the highest GPA will be considered when reviewing your application:
- OGPA: Will be calculated using all courses taken during your undegraduate studies (excluding Term 2 of the 2019-2020 academic year courses and courses taken in the summer of the year of application).
- AGPA: If an applicant has taken 4 years of undergraduate study (120 credits), the year with the lowest academic average (up to 30 credits) will be dropped from your GPA calculation.
Courses for which a “Pass” or “Credit” grade is assigned are counted for credit, but will not be included in the GPA calculation.
UBC Medical School Requirements: MCAT and CASPer
MCAT and CASPer Overview:
|CASPer Required||MCAT Required||MCAT Scores Considered|
MCAT Admission Score Statistics:
|C/P Score||CARS Score||B/B Score||P/S Score|
|Minimum Score Admitted||NR||NR||NR||NR|
|Average Score Accepted||129||127||129||129|
CASPer Test: The Canadian Professional Health Sciences test is not required by this University.
Medical College Admission Test: The deadline for submitting the MCAT is October 15th. Any test that is written within 5 years of the application deadline is valid for the application cycle. If you have taken the MCAT more than once your best overall score will be taken. Sub-scores from individual exams will not be combined. For those looking for MCAT prep courses, we recommend those offered by the Princeton Review. They are a reputable long standing company that offers a variety of different course options to meet individual needs.
Applicants will be required to complete a supplemental application through an application portal. The following academic criteria will also be assessed by the admissions committee:
- Awards: No more than the 5 most significant awards received since grade 11
- Research Publications and Presentations: Include up to 12 presentations that you authored/co-authored and/or presentations given by you.
Additionally, the UBC Medical School will take into account an applicant’s non-academic criteria that show maturity and well-roundedness. This part of the application will have significant weighting in acceptance decisions. It is an opportunity for you to demonstrate how your values and abilities align with the qualities that the faculty of medicine is looking for (i.e. CanMEDS Roles).
There is a 350-character limit for activity descriptions. Describe what you did, provide context and the impact of the activity on others or even yourself. If possible, always quantify and provide specific details to paint a picture for the reader. The non-academic criteria will include:
- Non-Academic Experiences: A list of non-academic activities split into 5 categories
- Leadership: (Max 3 entries) Including activities showing initiative, motivation of others, providing vision and implementation, personal and professional development, and decision making.
- Service ethic: (Max 3 entries) Activities demonstrating participation for the benefit or welfare of others
- Capacity to work with others: (Max 5 entries) Activities demonstrating abilities to work with groups which take them beyond their peers, friends, school and co-workers.
- Diversity experience: (Max 10 entries) Activities may include travel, sports, cultural events, music/theatre/arts, etc
- High Performance: (Max 3 entries) Activities that exceed those of a typical applicant. Typically involve some sort of ranking by an organization.
- Employment History: All employed activities including duties and responsibilities. Included institution, start date, end date, time period, hours per week, description of the job, and contact information of the employer.
- Northern/Rural or Indigenous Essay (Optional): For students genuinely interested in working in the following communities.
You will be required to provide verifiers for all activities included in your supplemental application. They may be contacted to elaborate on or confirm that certain events you described took place.
UBC Medical School Interview:
|Mandatory||By Invitation||Number of Applicants Invited||Entering Class Size|
Shortlisted candidates will be required to partake in an interview with the UBC admissions team. When making interview invite decisions only your GPA and supplementary application will be considered. Pre-interview, as long as applicants have no less than 124 in each section of the MCAT your MCAT score will not be considered.
The interview format will be that of an MMI. Invited applicants will rotate through 11 different interview stations. In each station, applicants will be given the opportunity to discuss a single pre-selected question/scenario for 7 minutes. Each station will contain a single interviewer who is either an academic, clinician, community representative, or UBC 3rd or 4th-year medical student.
If you are looking for interview practice check out our posts on both MMI Practice Questions and Standard Interview Practice Questions.
UBC Medical School Reference Letters:
Once invited for an interview applicants will be required to provide three letters of recommendation. Applicants are not allowed to use family members, friends/colleagues of family members, neighbours, or someone who may be perceived as your peer as a referee.
UBC Med Offers of Admission Decision:
UBC Medical School’s offers for admission will be based upon a mix of academic achievement, supplemental application, and results of the interview process. Your MCAT score will be taken into consideration in this part of the application. UBC does not disclose any information about how each of the admission requirements is combined in the decision-making process.
Requirements for other Medical Schools in Canada:
If you would like an in-depth analysis of the medical school requirements for other universities in Canada click here. Or if you want information on a specific university click on any of the following links:
- University of British Columbia Faculty of Medicine
- University of Calgary Cumming School of Medicine
- University of Alberta Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry
- University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine
- University of Manitoba Rady Faculty of Health Sciences
- Northern Ontario School of Medicine
- Western University Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry
- McMaster University Michael G.DeGroote School of Medicine
- University of Toronto School of Medicine
- Queen’s University School of Medicine
- University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine
- Mcgill University Faculty of Medicine
- Université de Montréal Faculty of Medicine
- Université de Sherbrooke Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
- Université Laval Faculté de Médicine
- Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine
- Memorial University Faculty of Medicine
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