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Master of Urban Design
We accept applications for the Master of Urban Design between October 1 and February 15 each year. Admissions decisions are sent out in mid to late April. We receive many outstanding applications, and admission to our programs is competitive. Unfortunately, we cannot offer admission to all qualified applicants.
You must meet all admissions requirements in order to be considered for entry into the program.
You must hold a professional degree in architecture, landscape architecture, or planning. An accredited professional undergraduate degree meets the minimum standard. We consider applicants with an academic background in a related field on a case-by-case basis.
If you have completed your degree at a Canadian or American university, you must have a B+ average in your third- and fourth-year-level coursework. If you completed your degree at an international university, you must have a B+ average in all coursework.
Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.
The minimum scores are:
TOEFL – 90 iBT or 577 paper based
IELTS - Overall band score of 6.5 with a minimum score of 6.0 in each component of the academic (not general) test.
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While not required, you may submit GRE results as additional evidence of scholastic promise and aptitude.
All application materials should be submitted through the online application.
You must submit an online application form, complete application materials and the non-refundable application fee by the deadline of Feburary 15.
A summary of your experiences in education, work, travel, volunteering, and other relevant areas. The maximum length is two pages, single spaced.
A written statement summarizing your understanding of urban design, why an urban design degree furthers your professional ambitions, and why studying urban design at UBC is the best fit. The maximum length is 2 pages, single spaced.
Your portfolio is submitted digitally in your online application. The PDF can be a maximum of 20 letter-sized (8.5" x 11") pages and must be under 10MB in size.
Tip: Use 150 pixels-per-inch or even 72 ppi images, or try saving the file as a Reduced Size PDF (“Save as Other”) in Adobe Acrobat, to bring down the file size.
Your portfolio should contain six examples of creative works that demonstrate aptitude, experience, and accomplishment. Instead of providing a collection of one type of work, include a variety of works. Creative works may include a wide range of examples, including design work and planning projects. One example should be a written piece.
You should organize your portfolio into a clear, well-crafted document. The portfolio should have concise, descriptive text on each page to adequately explain the work. If working in collaboration with others, please clearly indicate your contribution to the submitted work.
You must upload scans of official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions previously attended, including transcripts from universities attended on exchange. Uploads of unofficial transcripts will not be accepted. If you are currently completing a degree, submit your transcripts to date. In that case, UBC will not grant final confirmation of acceptance until you have submitted the final transcripts after the degree is conferred. If offered admission, you will be asked to send official transcripts in hardcopy.
If the academic records are in a language other than English or French, you must submit scans of the official transcripts in their original language and accompany them with scans of official translations.
You must arrange for three letters of reference, two of which should be academic and speak to your past performance and ability to succeed in a graduate program. Referees submit their letters through the online application system.