Research at UBC on exchange

Students from institutions that have a Student Mobility Agreement with UBC may conduct research through the research exchange pathway. To ensure that a student is eligible for this program and that the application is processed properly and quickly, it is important for any prospective students to read the guidelines below carefully.
To perform research at both the undergraduate and graduate levels at UBC, it is the individual student’s responsibility to obtain approval from a UBC faculty member to serve as the research supervisor for the duration of the research time spent at UBC. Students wishing to conduct research at UBC under the research exchange pathway need to be nominated by their student's home university. If their home university does not provide a research nomination or administrative support, students may be interested in conducting research through the Visiting International Research Student (VIRS) pathway. 

Application instructions

  1. Email nomination from student's home university exchange office to The nomination email should include the following:
    • Student’s first and last name
    • Student’s email address
    • Research period (planned start and end dates)
    • Contact information of the UBC faculty member who has agreed to act as the research supervisor (full name, email address, title, and department)
    • Proof of approval from the UBC faculty member as an attached document (such as an invitation letter or an email confirmation).
  2. Online Exchange Application and Admission​
    • The Go Global office will email nominated students application instructions after receiving their nomination. The application instructions will include a link to the online application site.
    • Upon completion of the online application, students will get an automatic confirmation message with a UBC student number.
    • Students should email with the assigned student number for the office to proceed with admission.
    • Letter of Acceptance will be sent to students via email within two weeks after the Go Global office receives the student number.
  3. Apply for a Campus-Wide Login (CWL) account
    • The Campus-Wide Login (CWL) is designed to give you access to the Student Information System, the Library, online housing application portal and more! You will need this login later to check your registration and pay your fees.
      1. ​​​​​​​Visit the CWL Sign-Up page
      2. Proceed and agree to the Terms of Use.
      3. Select Student and Alumni from the list of choices.
      4. Follow the instructions to complete the application. Your default Student Service Centre password is set to your 6 digit date of birth in the order of yymmdd (e.g. 920111 if you were born November 1, 1992).

Note: If you experience difficulty setting up an account, please see the tutorial for creating a CWL account or contact the IT help desk for technical support.

4. Apply for the appropriate immigration document(s)

Appropriate immigration document(s) may include Study Permit and/or Temporary Resident Visa (TRV), or Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). Apply for the immigration document(s) using the admission letter and exchange letter you receive. Check out “Required immigration documents to study at UBC", and see processing times for various immigration document applications on the Government of Canada website. Students engaged in research lasting less than six months are advised to apply for a study permit, but may complete their research under visitor status.

Housing + Insurance


Student residence is not available for Term 1 research students due to high demand. Term 2 (January – April) or summer semester (May to August) students can apply for housing and may be granted an offer if there is availability. For more information about housing, please refer to the UBC housing website.


All visiting international students are automatically enrolled in the iMED insurance program at the time of registration. iMED is a temporary basic health insurance plan required for new international students, and will provide you with health insurance coverage during the three month waiting period for BC's Medical Services Plan (MSP) or the duration of your study period if you are not eligible for MSP.

iMED coverage dates coincide with a standard academic term at UBC as follows:

  • August 1 for Winter Session Term 1 (September – December)
  • April 1 for Summer Session Term 1 (May – June)
  • June 1 for Summer Session Term 2 (July – August)

If your arrival to Canada does not line-up with the iMED coverage periods listed above, you need to have your coverage dates shifted so that you are covered for your study period, or the first three months you're in Canada waiting for your MSP coverage (if eligible) to kick in. Complete and submit the iMED Date Change Form after arriving to Canada.

Having coverage under a different private health insurance plan or a government health plan from your home country does not make you eligible to opt out of iMED. More information on opt-out eligibility can be found here. iMED insurance fees can be paid by logging in to your account on the Student Service Centre (SSC).

Cancelling or postponing research

In case of cancellation or postponement of research, it is important for research-exchange students to notify the Go Global office by email at least two weeks before the original planned start date. Failure to inform Go Global office in advance could result in charges to your account. It is each individual student’s responsibility to inform UBC supervisor, host department, and exchange office of home university regarding the changes to planned research at UBC on exchange. 


Go Global Inbound Exchange Team

Email enquiries + drop-in advising

When emailing us, please include:
  • Your student number in the subject line
  • Your full name and if you are an incoming or outgoing exchange student in the body of the email

Go Global Inbound Exchange Team

Telephone: 604 822 0942

UBC Life Building
1100 - 6138 Student Union Boulevard
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1
6138 Student Union Blvd
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1