Information for Students

The past few months have presented unprecedented challenges for all of us. This fall will look different than previous years, but our commitment to you remains the same.

Although we may not be physically together right now, our graduate community is as important as ever. I invite you to reach out to our office, your professors, and your peers, and to support one another.

As we continue to navigate the situation regarding COVID-19, we recognize that you may have questions and concerns. The information below was created to help address your questions. If you have additional questions or concerns please contact us at gradask.ok@ubc.ca

Incoming Students

OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS

Wherever possible, incoming students are asked to arrange for the submission of official transcripts and other documents via mail or email to the College of Graduate Studies. Our deadline for submission of official documents for the September 2020 admission is August 31, 2020.  If you are not able to meet this deadline, please email gradask.ok@ubc.ca and provide details of your specific situation.

If an institution is not able to forward official paper copies of academic records or via secure document delivery due to pandemic closures, our office is accepting electronic copies of academic records (transcripts, degree certificates and English translations) delivered via email provided that they are sent directly from the Registrar’s office of the home institution and the documents meet all other submission requirements. It is advised that these documents must not be expired, be password-protected, and with the password sent in a separate email. These documents may be submitted to gradadmissions.ok@ubc.ca. Academic records forwarded via email from incoming students are not acceptable.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY TESTS

For instructions on how to submit English language proficiency tests, please seehttps://gradstudies.ok.ubc.ca/programs-applying/admission-requirements/

Please note that testing through applications such as DuoLingo, are not considered acceptable.

TEXTBOOKS FOR FALL 2020

Starting mid-August, students have three options to purchase textbooks:

  1. Order books online and have them delivered
  2. Order books online and pick them up at the dedicated pick up location on campus
  3. Shop in store
    Note:there will be a limit of 40 customers in the store at one time. Customers will be required to follow health guidelines including one-way traffic, using hand sanitation stations and leaving any food and beverage at the front of the store.

Students are strongly encouraged to order digital materials this semester, as the bookstore is predicting a large number of online orders that may result in shipping delays.

The bookstore has sourced digital options wherever possible to assist with your online learning. Students can receive their books immediately by choosing digital options.

As always, students can check their course syllabus, provided by their instructors, for their course list. You can also enter your student number on the bookstore course materials page to view course requirements.

More information will be available on the UBC bookstore website in mid-August.

FALL 2020

During fall 2020, UBC will primarily offer larger classes online with selected smaller classes conducted in-person, adhering to physical distancing and other public health requirements. Read the UBC Broadcast to learn more.

For more information about the course delivery method for your program, please contact your program directly.

ADMISSION DEFERRALS

If you would like to request a deferral to your program start date, please complete the admission deferral request form. Please submit the request as soon as possible, and no later than September 21, 2020 (for students admitted to the September 2020 intake).

Quick Reference Guide:

We know you have questions about the upcoming semester and have created the Q&A below in hopes of answering those questions. The information below is the most up-to-date information we have at this time.

If you have additional questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us at gradask.ok@ubc.ca.

OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS

If you are experiencing issues with providing official electronic or paper transcripts from your prior institutions, please contact us as soon as possible to discuss your specific situation.

ADMISSION DEFERRALS

If you would like to request a deferral to your program start date, please complete the admission deferral request form.  Please submit the request as soon as possible, and no later than September 21, 2020 (for students admitted to the September 2020 intake).

AWARD, RA, AND TA PAYMENTS

Information regarding the payment of awards, teaching assistantships, and research assistantships for students not residing in Canada will be posted on our website as soon as it is available.

NEW STUDY PERMIT PROCESS

A new two-stage study permit approval process was announced and your courses can now count towards the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) after you apply for your study permit, so long as your application is approved in the future. This allows your studies to count towards the PGWP sooner, even if you can’t provide all documents at this time.
Learn about online studies and the PGWP

TRAVELLING TO CANADA*

Currently, to travel to Canada despite travel restrictions, you must have two things: a valid document and proof that you are travelling for an ‘essential’ purpose. If all of your courses have moved online, your travel might not be considered essential at this time. If you can travel, UBC has accommodation options available for the 14-day self-isolation period.

UBC is actively working with the federal government to expand exemptions to the travel restrictions so that more students can travel to Canada for studies in September. We will notify you when there are changes. Learn about current travel restrictions.

ENTERING CANADA & SELF-ISOLATION

Like all travellers to Canada, international students exempt from travel restrictions must travel with a non-medical mask or face covering if arriving by air and must isolate for 14 days upon arrival in Canada. Furthermore, the British Columbia (BC) government legally requires all travellers to submit a detailed self-isolation plan.
You are responsible for arranging your own self-isolation plan. See UBC Housing’s self-isolation accommodations options. Bring documents relating to your self-isolation to present on arrival.

For further questions please visit the IPS FAQs Page or email one of our IPS advisors at ips.ubco@ubc.ca
*All IRCC information is subject to change at this time. Please make sure to check before you make plans or travel.

The College of Graduate Studies recognizes the significant challenges that you are facing as international students due to COVID-19. We are doing what we can to make it possible for you to successfully pursue your studies. We are not able to predict the future course of the pandemic, and so we do not have complete information to convey to you. We will provide you with more information as it becomes available.

You may wish to contact your supervisor to discuss whether you will be able to perform research toward your degree, despite not being on campus. You may need to work together with your supervisor to create a contingency plan that would allow you to complete your degree, even if you are never able to come to Canada.

There may be a risk in some cases (depending on the nature of your research) of being unable to complete your degree if it does not become possible for you to come to Canada. You may be able to defer your admission to a future term if you feel that is your best option. Contact your program to find out whether this is an option for you. The deadline for deferral decisions is September 21, 2020.

UBCO may not be able to provide the funding package that you anticipated if you are not able to obtain a study permit and/or come to Canada.

  • If you are not in Canada, UBCO cannot employ you as a Teaching Assistant.
  • If you have been offered a Research Assistantship, UBCO may be able to provide those funds in the form of a Graduate Research Stipend, which will be paid into your student account and applied against your tuition and other fees. Contact your program or supervisor to confirm whether a Graduate Research Stipend is available to you.
  • UBCO is creating a process to wire transfer funds to you outside Canada. If that is not possible, funds may be held for you until you arrive in Canada. In the meantime, fellowships, scholarships and award funding can be paid into your UBCO student account and can be applied against your tuition and other fees.
  • Tuition is due on September 9; however, we will ensure that you are not penalized for delays in payment caused by delays in our processing of Research Awards.
  • If at a later date it becomes possible for you to obtain your study permit and to come to campus, UBCO may, if possible, provide funding for future terms of study at a level comparable to what was originally offered to you.

If you have additional questions please email graddean.ok@ubc.ca

CURRENT STUDENTS

RESUMPTION OF IN-PERSON RESEARCH

Based on the findings of a specially convened task force,  UBC Vancouver and Okanagan Behavioural Research Ethics Boards have updated their review processes to allow for the limited resumption of on- and off-campus in-person behavioural research.

Please note that the following guidance does not apply when health authority sites are being used for research or when researchers are accessing health authority patients or records. Please contact your Health Authority or Health Institution for guidance in these instances.

The intention of the new process is to permit studies at this time that are beneficial to the participants and/or are urgent due to circumstances related to the research outcomes or researcher constraints.  To assist in this, departments will determine which studies meet these criteria prior to submission to BREB.

BREB has created a Guide for Assessing Benefit and Urgency to assist departments in deciding which projects should move forward at this time.

Researchers will also be required to complete new BREB forms for all face-to-face/in-person research:

For further details, see UBC Behavioural Guidance during the COVID-19 research restrictions: https://ethics.research.ubc.ca/behavioural-research-ethics/ubc-behaviour….

If you have any questions concerning this process, please contact Lisa Shearer, Associate Manager, BREB at lisa.shearer@ubc.ca.

LEAVES OF ABSENCE

Leaves of absence are feasible and may be necessary for some. Leaves come with certain restrictions, and thus we encourage careful consideration of other options (eg., bursaries, changes in living situations, etc.) alongside consideration of this approach.

EXTENDING DEADLINES

Due to the current pandemic, we will be extending deadlines for milestones (e.g. candidacy) and program completion. Process details are under development.

WORKING FROM HOME

Writing and studying from home can be challenging. The Centre for Scholarly Communications has put together a helpful article with tips for working from home.

DEFENCES AND ORAL EXAMINATIONS

Master’s thesis defences and PhD oral examinations are currently being held remotely.

Resources to support remote defences are listed below.

TEXTBOOKS FOR FALL 2020

Starting mid-August, students have three options to purchase textbooks:

  1. Order books online and have them delivered
  2. Order books online and pick them up at the dedicated pick up location on campus
  3. Shop in store
    Note:there will be a limit of 40 customers in the store at one time. Customers will be required to follow health guidelines including one-way traffic, using hand sanitation stations and leaving any food and beverage at the front of the store.

Students are strongly encouraged to order digital materials this semester, as the bookstore is predicting a large number of online orders that may result in shipping delays.

The bookstore has sourced digital options wherever possible to assist with your online learning. Students can receive their books immediately by choosing digital options.

As always, students can check their course syllabus, provided by their instructors, for their course list. You can also enter your student number on the bookstore course materials page to view course requirements.

More information will be available on the UBC bookstore website in mid-August.

FALL 2020

During fall 2020, UBC will primarily offer larger classes online with selected smaller classes conducted in-person, adhering to physical distancing and other public health requirements. Read the UBC Broadcast to learn more.

For more information about the course delivery method for your program, please contact your program directly.

BURSARIES

Emergency COVID funding is available through UBC for graduate students (domestic and international).

If you have urgent financial needs, you can apply for emergency funding by emailing Enrolment Services at sis.ubco@ubc.ca with your full name and UBC student number.

CANADIAN EMERGENCY BENEFIT

On April 22, 2020, the federal government announced support of nearly $9 billion for post-secondary students and recent graduates.

CANADA EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT (CERB)

If you are experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 situation, please explore Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).

online learning coaches

Online learning coaches (OLCs) are senior UBC students here to connect you with the tools and strategies you need to succeed, whether you’re looking for help getting the most out of your online courses, developing study skills, or assistance finding a particular resource or support.

OLCs are here to provide personalized online learning support to both Undergraduate and Graduate students. Connect with an OLC by booking an appointment or dropping in at a time that works with your schedule.

Learn More

ABORIGINAL PROGRAMS AND SERVICES

Indigenous students looking for services and support can find initial direction through web resources to connect remotely with members of Aboriginal Program and Services https://students.ok.ubc.ca/aboriginal-students/

CAREER SERVICES

UBC Okanagan’s Career Advising has both online career advising and group sessions with an advisor available.

CENTRE FOR SCHOLARLY COMMUNICATION

The Centre for Scholarly Communication (CSC) has moved to online consultations. Appointments can be made by emailing csc.ok@ubc.ca.

The CSC is also offering a number of online writing workshops and writing peer groups throughout the summer.

INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMS AND SERVICES

FAQs for international students have been developed and are available at https://students.ok.ubc.ca/international-students/covid19/. These will be updated as new information becomes available.

IPS has also moved to online appointments using Skype and Zoom. You can book an appointment with IPS by emailing ips.ubco@ubc.ca.

THE PSYCHOLOGY CLINIC

Referrals to The Psychology Clinic can be made by contacting the clinic by e-mail – ipc.ok@ubc.ca or phone – 250-807-8241 (press 1 for reception). The phone and e-mail will be checked throughout the day by the receptionist who will connect with you to answer any questions and/or to arrange an appointment.

THE STUDENT HEALTH CLINIC

The Student Health Clinic is offering remote teleservice. If you need a physician or nurse call 250-807-9270.