Transfer credit

Transfer credit allows students to use previous studies towards a new credential at another institution.

Transfer credit can be granted when:

  • a new student is admitted to a UBC degree program
  • a UBC student completes studies at another institution on a Letter of permission granted by their faculty
  • a UBC student returns from studying abroad on a Go Global exchange

Although transfer credit may be granted in the situations above, make sure to speak with an academic advisor to determine how transferred credits may appropriately apply to your specific program.

Newly admitted students

Applicants to UBC are asked to submit official transcripts, sent directly from all institutions previously attended.  As part of the evaluation for admission to an undergraduate degree program, previous education is assessed for eligible transfer credit by the UBC Admissions Office.  Once a student is admitted, their transfer credit will be listed on the Student Service Centre (SSC) under Grades & Records.

Learn more about UBC programs, admission requirements, and how to apply on youbc.

Transfer credit assignment

Courses successfully completed at institutions in the BC Transfer System are granted transfer credit in accordance with agreed-upon equivalencies published in the BC Transfer Guide.  Courses successfully completed at recognized institutions outside of the BC Transfer System will be assessed for transfer credit on a course-by-course basis.

Transfer credit is granted as closely as possible to specific UBC courses.  When an exact UBC equivalent does not exist, unassigned transfer credit is granted as closely as possible to the originating course, either at the subject level (i.e., ENGL), faculty level (i.e., ARTS), or general elective level (ELEV).

In most cases, transfer credit is granted generally towards study at UBC.  Individual faculties and programs may have specific rules and restrictions around transferred credit.  It is up to a student’s faculty or program to determine how many credits and which credits specifically can be applied to the requirements of their particular program.

  • UBC Vancouver students should contact a faculty advisor for further details about how their specific credits can be used in their degree.
  • UBC Okanagan students should contact the academic advising office for further information.

Review of transfer credit

If you have been granted unassigned transfer credit but feel that there may be a specific course equivalent at UBC that you need for your program, please seek advising.  Some program requirements can be met with unassigned transfer credit and a specific course equivalent may not be necessary.  All questions about the applicability of transfer credits to specific degree requirements should be directed to an academic advisor.  Students may be required to supply detailed course outlines.UBC Vancouver students in the Faculty of Science should contact an advisor in the Science Department where the course is offered.

  • UBC Vancouver students in the Faculty of Science should contact an advisor in the Science Department where the course is offered.
  • UBC Vancouver students in all other Faculties should contact their faculty advising office.
  • UBC Okanagan students should contact the academic advising office.

Transfer credit agreements published on the BC Transfer Guide have already been reviewed through a formal articulation process.

Requesting transfer credit after admission

If you are requesting transfer credit after you have been admitted (for example, Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate courses or courses that you completed at another institution during the summer before you began your studies at UBC), please ensure that a final official transcript has been submitted to the UBC Undergraduate Admissions office.  Provided a transcript has been received, eligible credit will be automatically assessed by the Admissions office and you do not need to send further notification.

Letter of permission

Before taking courses at another institution

If you'd like to take courses at another institution while you are a UBC student, please do the following to confirm that you will be eligible to receive transfer credit:

  1. Meet with your program advisor to discuss the applicability of transfer credit for the course(s) you wish to take at the other institution.
  2. Obtain a Letter of Permission from your faculty advising office and make sure the transfer will be approved.

While attending the other institution, you will need to present your Letter of Permission to register in courses as a visiting student.

After completing courses at another institution

  1. Submit an Added credit for letter of permission form to Enrolment Services.
  2. Arrange for an official transcript from the other institution to be sent to Enrolment Services.
  3. Arrange your Letter of Permission to be sent to Enrolment Services if you have not already done so.

You can also submit your documents in person at Brock Hall, by fax at 604.822.5945, or by email to academicrecord.support@ubc.ca.

Please note: To be recognized as official, transcripts must be received at Enrolment Services in the original sealed envelope bearing the name and address of the university. 

More information

  • For general questions and inquiries, e-mail academicrecord.support@ubc.ca
  • For information about the specific articulation of credits or overall degree planning, contact your faculty's Academic advising office
  • For questions about the placement of transfer credits toward your program? Contact the program advisor for your major.

UBC study abroad (Go Global)

UBC offers students the opportunity to study abroad in over 140 Senate-approved partner universities. All courses except for activity courses (such as sports performance courses or internships) successfully completed at one of these institutions will be transferred to the student's UBC academic record according to the policies and procedures in Transfer credit on the Go Global website. 

Transfer Credit - FAQs

Will transfer credits be shown on my official UBC transcript ?

Transfer credit will not be printed on your official UBC transcript. When applying to future studies, you will need to provide transcripts from other institutions that you have attended.

The BC Transfer Guide says that two courses must be completed at another institution in order to receive transfer credits at UBC. What happens if I only took one of the courses?

Unless the transfer agreement specifically notes that there will be “no credit if taken alone”, unassigned credit in the same subject area will be granted if one of the pair of courses is successfully completed.

What happens if I have more than 60 transfer credits? Which credits will be used in my degree?

The majority of programs at UBC will only accept a maximum of 60 transfer credits, or half of the total credits required, to be applied towards a degree program. Students will be granted transfer credit for all eligible courses, even if this amounts to more than 60 credits. A Faculty or Program Advisor will need to determine which credits are the most appropriate to count towards the maximum of 60 that a student can apply towards their program.

Transfer Credit Definitions

Added Credit

The process at UBC for having transfer credit added to your record for coursework completed on a Letter of Permission (LOP).  Please visit Letter of Permission for further details.

Articulation

The formal process of determining if course work offered at another institution is eligible for transfer credit at UBC.  

BC Transfer Guide

The BC Transfer Guide is an online resource of transfer credit agreements between institutions in BC and is published by the BC Council on Admissions and Transfer (BCCAT).  UBC grants transfer credit in accordance with agreed-upon equivalencies as published in the Guide.

Elective

Elective or ELEV transfer credit indicates a very general form of transfer credit that results when there is no equivalent subject or faculty at UBC within which unassigned transfer credit can be granted. 

Exemption

An exemption refers to the waiving of a prerequisite or required course. Although direct transfer credit for the course cannot be assigned, an exemption granted with unassigned transfer credit will allow students to take courses for which the exempted course is a prerequisite.  Because credit for the exempted course is not earned directly, students may be required to replace the exempted course with an alternate in order to meet program requirements.

Example:  PHYS 1st (3). Exempt PHYS 101.

Letter of Permision (LOP)

A Letter of Permission (LOP) is a guarantee from your faculty that courses you are planning on taking at another institution will transfer back to your UBC degree. Current UBC students who wish to register in courses at another institution must obtain permission from their faculty, in the form of an LOP, before taking classes elsewhere. There is no guarantee that transfer credit will be granted for courses taken without a Letter of Permission.

Not for Credit in Science

Some transfer credit agreements on the BC Transfer Guide indicate that another institution’s course is eligible for transfer credit but not in the Faculty of Science.  This means that although the course may be considered for credit in a Science subject, such as BIOL 1st (3), the original course is not sufficiently Science-based in order for it to be used to satisfy Faculty of Science degree requirements.  Othe faculties may apply such transfer credit differently.   

Residency Requirement

No more than 60 credits, or half of a degree program, can be transferred to any UBC program.  In some programs the maximum may be less.   

Unassigned Credit

When an exact UBC equivalent does not exist, unassigned transfer credit is granted as closely as possible to the originating course.  Unassigned credit will indicate the equivalent subject code, year level and credit value. 

Example:  HIST 1st (3).  

Where an equivalent department does not exist at UBC, unassigned credit will be granted at the faculty level. 

Example:  ARTS 1st (3).

If there is no equivalent program or faculty at UBC but the course should still be eligible for academic credit, a more general elective credit will be granted.

Example:  ELEV 1st (3).

Unassigned credit might be acceptable to satisfy some degree requirements.  Students should seek advising to determine how unassigned credit can be applied to their program.

Not completing a degree at UBC?

Non-Degree Students (Visiting, Unclassified or Access Studies) are not assessed transfer credit. Inquiries about prerequisite courses or program requirements should be directed to individual instructors and departments. If you have any questions, please contact Enrolment Services. Please be sure to include your full name and UBC student number in all correspondence.

Already have a degree?

Students admitted to a degree program at UBC who have completed a prior degree at another institution are not assessed transfer credit.  Please contact your Faculty or Academic Advising office prior to registering for courses in order to determine your program requirements.