STS MA Admissions FAQ

Applicants must submit an online application along with ALL supporting documents by the application deadline on January 15th.

I can’t make the January 15th deadline. Can I submit a late application?
Please email the STS Graduate Secretary.

What are the minimum requirements for the STS MA program?
Master’s Programs:
Applicants with Canadian or U.S. credentials for a Master’s degree program must hold the academic equivalent of a four-year bachelor’s degree from UBC including one of the following:

  • A minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC) in third- and fourth-year courses.
  • Academic standing with at least 12 credits of third- or fourth-year courses in the A grade range (80% or higher at UBC) in the field of study.

Applicants with international credentials will need to check whether they meet the minimum academic requirements to be admissible to UBC.

I don’t meet the minimum requirements, can I still be admitted?
Applicants who do not meet the requirements stated for the STS graduate program but who have had other significant formal training, relevant professional experience, and/or otherwise possess demonstrable knowledge or expertise that would prepare them adequately for successful study in a specific graduate program, may be granted admission on the recommendation of the appropriate graduate program and approval of the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

Note: Additional coursework outside the bachelor’s degree to improve a low GPA or to meet the 12 credit requirement, for example as unclassified student at UBC, can be taken into consideration based on a rationale from a specific program, but does not guarantee eligibility for admission.

Do I need to send transcripts from all my previous colleges and universities attended?
Yes. Submit scanned transcripts from ALL post-secondary institutions. In addition to the photocopies of all transcripts you uploaded within the application, you must mail two (2) official sets of ALL transcripts in sealed endorsed envelopes issued by the Registrar from all colleges and universities you attended. All transcripts (and degree certificates) must arrive at UBC in sealed and endorsed envelopes issued by the home institution to be considered official. NOTE: UBC graduates are not required to provide UBC transcripts. Detailed information on International Transcripts, Degree Certificates and Translations is available for international students.

Can you provide guidelines about the writing sample?
Mail a hard copy of a recent paper (15-20 pages) preferably in the area in which you wish to specialize.

Can I email my writing sample?
No. You must mail a printed hard copy of your writing sample to the STS Grad Program, attention STS Graduate Secretary. No exceptions.

If I send my transcript/CV/writing sample, could you tell me in advance whether I will be admitted to your programme?
No. There is no pre-selection process. Admissions are competitive, and decided by the Graduate Admissions Committee following independent review of files by members of the graduate faculty: admissions decisions cannot be pre-judged.

How do I submit reference letters to UBC?

    There are three possible formats for references:

  1. Electronic references (recommended): In the online application system, applicants are asked to provide an email address for each referee. A unique link will be emailed to each referee, allowing them to log in to a secure site and submit an online reference or upload a reference document as an attachment.
  2. Paper letters of reference (recommended): Your referee may wish to send a paper letter. Paper letters of reference should be on referee’s official letterhead and must be mailed directly to the Graduate Secretary.
  3. Paper reference form: UBC provides a general reference form. Your referee may fill out this form and be mailed directly to the Graduate Secretary of the STS program.

Can I arrange to send my reference letters through Interfolio?
No. The UBC online application system does not currently support references sent from Interfolio. Your referees must use the online e-reference system.

Can my referee send an e-mail reference?
For security reasons, references cannot be submitted by e-mail. Electronic references are the preferred option, but your referees must use our e-reference tool which is part of the online application.

What are the application fees?
Domestic applicants: $96.50, international students: $156.00.

Can you waive the application fee for me?
As per the Faculty of Graduate Studies, the application fee can only be waived for international countries, as applicants whose citizenship and correspondence address are located in the world’s 50 least developed declared by the United Nations. Click here for a complete list of eligible countries.

Can you refund my application fee?
No. The application fee pays for the evaluation of your application, and is not refundable. The Faculty of Graduate Studies can only refund the application fee when a program applied for has been cancelled.

Do I apply separately for funding?
All applicants are automatically considered for funding, and international applicants are considered on an equal basis with Canadian applicants. Canadian applicants can apply for SSHRC funding through their undergraduate institution.

What are the tuition fees for graduate school at UBC?
See Master of Arts in Science and Technology Studies (MA)

Do I need to meet all the admission requirements?
Yes. You must meet the admission requirements by September of the year you start the program.

Do I need to send GRE scores?
No. We do not require GRE test scores.

Should I submit a separate statement of research interests?
Your research interests can be incorporated into the on-line application (max 500 words). We realize that applicants typically have multiple research interests and may change their interests upon starting the program. A statement of research interests is still a very useful part of the application and is carefully read during the evaluations of applications.

What are your English proficiency requirements?
Applicants whose native language is not English must have a minimum TOEFL score of at least 80 for internet based tests or 550 for paper based tests taken within the past 2 years. Official TOEFL scores must be issued to UBC directly from the Educational Testing Centre. Applicants must ensure to include UBC’s institution code (0965) and give the reason for taking TOEFL “to enter a college or university as a graduate student”. All official TOEFL Scores must be received by Jan 15th.

I won’t be able to take my English test (TOEFL or IELTS) until well after the January 15th deadline. Will my application still be considered without my English test score?
No. Please make sure you arrange to take your English test score well in advance of the application deadline as it can take 6-8 weeks before UBC receives the official English test scores. The Graduate Admissions Committee will not review applications without the English proficiency requirement.

I am an international student but I have a degree from an English-instruction university. Do I still need to provide you with an English proficiency score?
No. If you have at least one degree from an institution where the language of instruction is English, we do not require an English proficiency score.

When should I expect to hear about whether my application has been successful?
You should receive notification by the end of March.

Where do I send my official transcripts, letters of reference and writing sample?
Graduate Secretary
Science & Technology Studies Graduate Program
University of British Columbia
BUCH E370 – 1866 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC, Canada, V6T 1Z1