Transfer Credits

Once admitted to UBC, you are expected to complete your degree requirements at UBC through on-campus or UBC Distance Learning courses, or on Go Global exchange.

Applying transfer credits to your degree

A minimum of 50% of total degree credits, 50% of upper-level degree credits, and 50% of upper-level credits for each program (honours, major, or minor) must be completed while registered as a student in the Faculty of Arts. Go Global exchange credits earned by students in the Faculty of Arts are eligible to apply towards these minimums.

Second degree students are not awarded transfer credit and must complete all requirements while registered as a student in the Faculty of Arts.

Using transfer credit to meet requirements

Credits that transfer directly to a UBC course may be used identically as if the course had been taken at UBC.

You should not register in a course for which you have already received transfer credit, as you cannot receive credit twice for the same course.

Unassigned credits

Credits that transfer as unassigned (general) credit may not automatically apply towards a specific requirement.

If you feel that the course you completed to earn the unassigned credit is similar to the required UBC course for a particular program (major, minor, or honours), take the syllabus from your completed course to the department to inquire if you can use the credit in place of the UBC course.

If you feel that the unassigned credit should apply towards a specific degree requirement, bring your course syllabus to Arts Academic Advising for review.

Precluded or exempt courses

If you were awarded credit along with a preclusion (PR) or an exemption (EX), and you believe that you need to earn specific credit for the precluded or exempt course, please speak with an Academic Advisor prior to registration.

Letters of Permission to study at other institutions

In certain circumstances, you can be granted permission to study outside of UBC with a Letter of Permission (LOP). Before you register at another institution, your LOP must be approved by Arts Academic Advising in order for transfer credits to count towards your degree.

You do not need a LOP if you:

  • Are taking courses at a partner university through Go Global exchange
  • Are leaving UBC to complete your degree elsewhere
  • Do not intend to apply credit completed towards your Arts degree


You are eligible to submit a LOP if you:

  • Have an average of at least 70% on your most recently completed Winter Session (not necessary for the Explore program)
  • Declared a major or minor (not necessary for the Explore or other immersive language programs)
  • Can demonstrate that the course at the other institution is an exceptional and unique opportunity to enhance your major or minor


  • Submission of a LOP request does not guarantee approval. Your case will be reviewed by Arts Academic Advising and you will be notified with a decision
  • LOP requests are considered for Arts courses only, except when a non-Arts course is required for an Arts major and is specifically recommended by your department as enriched study in or in support of your discipline
  • A course recommendation by your department does not guarantee that an LOP will be approved
  • LOPs do not guarantee that the credit earned will meet specific degree or program requirements
  • LOPs are considered only for transferable, accredited post-secondary institutions
  • LOPs do not guarantee your admission to another institution; you need to meet all entry requirements as a visiting student at the host institution
  • Concurrent registration at both UBC and other post-secondary institutions is not permitted
  • All students studying outside of Canada must register with the UBC Safety Abroad Travel Registry; If you wish to study in a region with a Travel Advisory Risk level of “avoid non-essential travel” or “avoid all travel,” you must submit a safety abroad authorization along with your LOP request

Submitting your Letter of Permission

What to include in your LOP package

If the syllabus is not available, please provide:

  • Institution name
  • Course number and title
  • Instructor name and contact information
  • Brief course description
  • Weekly lecture topics and required readings
  • Detailed course reading list
  • Assignment/grading structure
  • Prerequisites

An academic rationale is a mindful, informed, and responsible perspective on how this course provides an exceptional opportunity that will deepen your engagement with an aspect of your major or minor.

Letters of Permission for pre-assessed programs

Students admitted to the following pre-assessed programs only need to submit a Domestic/Canadian LOP form to Arts Academic Advising.

No academic rationale or syllabus is required for:

A syllabus and either department support or academic rationale is required for:

  • Field Schools endorsed by their department
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