UBC is proud to welcome international students from all over the world. We offer a range of support services for international students, and UBC advisors can help you with everything from study permits and temporary resident visas to health insurance and more.
The UBC International Student Guide
UBC’s International Student Guide is a great starting point to get guidance on documentation requirements, health insurance, taxes and the potential to stay in Canada after you graduate. This guide also includes information on academic support, finances, health, safety and resources available for your family, if they are accompanying you.
Documentation to enter Canada
As an international student, you will need:
A valid passport
While you may use an expired passport when you first apply, if you are admitted into the MEL or MHLP, please ensure your passport is valid for the entire length of your studies in Canada. If your passport expires while you’re in Canada, all of your immigration documents, your health-care coverage and your Social Insurance Number will expire at the same time.
A study permit
All international students require a study permit for the duration of their program. This tutorial offered on the International Student Guide will take you through the application process step-by-step. Ensure you understand what documents are required, including proof of funds, a letter of acceptance, and passport information. Some applicants may require a medical exam. Once you have been accepted to study at UBC, you can contact the UBC International Student Advisors if you have questions about your Study Permit application.
A temporary resident visa (TRV)
Depending on your country of origin, you may need a TRV. For example, you will require a TRV if you are a citizen of China or India. Please visit Citizenship and Immigration Canada to see if you require a TRV.
Documents for your Family
It may be possible for your family members to join you in Canada while you study. You might be able to bring spouses, common-law partners and dependent children, who will be able to enter as visitors, students or workers, based on their situation. They will also need their own Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to enter Canada. The International Student Guide includes more detailed information on documentation requirements for your family.
Working While Studying
For our full 12-month programs, we do not recommend working while studying. These are demanding programs that require you to attend classes and events as well as work on group projects, study and complete assignments outside of class time. This article on working while doing the 12-month MEL or MHLP provides additional context if you are considering trying to work while studying.
If you decide to work on-campus, the number of hours you can work is not restricted, but you must be considered a full-time student by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. However, if you decide to work off-campus, your study permit determines the number of hours you are allowed to work each week. Check your study permit for more information.
To be eligible to work, as well as for tax purposes, you will also need a Social Insurance Number (SIN), which will be valid as long as your study permit is valid.