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Degree Planning


UBC Science offers a broad variety of courses, specializations and degrees. Deciding what to take and when you should take it might be one of your biggest challenges!

You can pursue a Combined Major in Science or a major, honours, combined major, combined honours or double major across a wide range of specializations. In addition, you can apply for a minor. And as if that wasn't enough, there are co-op and student exchange program options that help to round out your university experience.

Year-by-Year Overview of Your Degree

First Year

  • Keep your doors open when planning courses—don't limit your program options.
  • Be proactive. Talk to people and get information on programs you might be interested in.
  • Attend Beyond First Year (or, if you can't make it, check out the workshop slides on choosing your major) and the Science Career Expo.
  • Physics and computer science students: apply for Science Co-op if you're interested.
  • End of first year: Choose a specialization. Check if it's declarable online. Apply to most Science specializations via a coordinated admissions process run by the Faculty.

Second Year

  • Register in your intended specialization.
  • Take the prerequisites for third- and fourth-year courses in your program.
  • Attend the workshops offered by Career Services.
  • Apply for Science Co-op (most programs set their deadlines for second year).
  • Term 2: Apply for a minor in Commerce or Kinesiology if interested.
  • End of second year is the best time to ensure that you'll satisfy the requirements for Dental School, Medical School, etc.
  • Send in your program application, if required.

Third Year

  • Term 1: Apply for most minors (Arts, Land and Food Systems).
  • Many departments formally 'accept' students into their programs based on second-year grades.
  • Pharmacology and biochemistry students: Apply for Science Co-op if interested.
  • Make a checklist of all the requirements for your program. Plan out your third and fourth years and be sure that you've got your list covered.
  • See a program advisor to go over your program.
  • Use Career Services to improve your resume writing, job interview and networking skills.
  • Students considering graduate studies should get to know professors and volunteer in labs to gain research experience. You'll need solid academic references by first term of fourth year.

Fourth Year

  • Apply for graduate school or other schools if interested. Although some deadlines extend into the spring, you normally must apply by December (1st term) to be eligible for financial awards or support.
  • Apply for graduation by the end of February. If you don't apply, you won't graduate! Get your grad photos taken, and prepare for graduation.

Please note: Students must meet all of the graduation requirements for the degree within a maximum of 180 credits of coursework attempted. Those who do not will be required to withdraw from the Faculty.

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

UBC Faculty of Science, Office of the Dean
Earth Sciences Building, 2178-2207 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4 | Map to ESB

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