Admission Requirements

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These requirements relate to the Master of Occupational Therapy and the MOT distributed programs (e.g., MOT-North). Please ensure you meet our admission requirements before you start your application.

1. Completion of a recognized bachelor’s degree in any field

  • Your degree must be academically equivalent to a UBC 4-year bachelor’s degree in any field, from any accredited post-secondary institution.
  • Your degree can be in progress at the time of the application deadline, but all courses required for the completion of your degree must end by April 30 of the application year.
  • Students with undergraduate degrees in progress during the Summer term (i.e. May-August) cannot apply for the same year’s September intake.

2. Academic standing of a minimum of B+ (76%) average based on all senior level courses

  • Academic standing of a minimum of B+ (76%) average based on all senior level courses (300 and 400 level).
  • Final grades for these courses must be on your transcript at the time of the application deadline.
  • The most recent 45 senior level credits / 15 senior level courses (whether completed as part of or outside of your undergraduate degree), will be factored into your competitive GPA calculation for the purposes of admission into the program.
  • In order for an appropriate academic assessment to be performed, only a minimum of 6 senior level courses must have been completed at the time of the application deadline.
  • Applicants with less than 45 senior level credits / 15 senior level courses will be evaluated using all eligible senior level courses.
  • Note that in recent years, the competitive GPA for this program is 85%.
  • The competitive average varies each application year and may increase or decrease depending on the number of applications received and the average of those applications.

Important guidance for International Students

  • Points 1 and 2 above also apply to international applicants who have completed or are completing an undergraduate degree through a Canadian or US post-secondary institution.
  • If you are an international applicant who have completed or are completing an undergraduate degree through an international post-secondary institution, please note the following:
    • Applicants with international credentials must meet the minimum standards set forth by the Faculty of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies at UBC. 
    • You are advised to visit their website on Minimum Academic Requirements: International Credentials to verify whether you have the components necessary to apply to the MOT program. 
    • From the drop-down menu at the bottom of the page, you will select the country where you have completed or are completing your undergraduate degree. 
    • You will be directed to a page that displays the years of study required, the overall grade required and the credentials or degrees required from post-secondary institutions in that country. 
    • Please ensure you meet these minimum requirements before applying to the MOT program.

3. Successful completion of the prerequisite courses

  • The prerequisite courses can be in progress at the time of the application deadline, but must be completed by April 30 of the application year.
  • Students with prerequisite courses in progress during the Summer term (i.e. May-August) cannot apply for the same year’s September intake.

Prerequisite 1: An accepted Human Anatomy course

Prerequisite 2: Social Sciences course

  • This should be 1 course of 3 credits or equivalent.
  • Any course, at any level from an accredited post-secondary institution in SociologyAnthropology or Human Geography
  • If you have taken any sociology, anthropology or human geography course, at any level at a post-secondary institution, you do not need to confirm if the course will fulfill the requirement.
  • If you have taken a course outside of this discipline and you feel it may fulfill the requirement, it can be assessed on a case-by-case basis by providing the course syllabus to mot.admissions@ubc.ca.
  • The intent of the social science pre-requisite is to provide students with a broad background at personal/body, group/family and societal levels.

    Examples of course types outside of Social Sciences departments which meet this requirement:
    Sociology of Sport, Sport in Society, Social Psychology, Health Policy & Society, most courses with Socio-/Social/Society in their title.

Prerequisite 3: Behavioural Science course

  • This should be 1 course of 3 credits or equivalent.
  • Any course, at any level from an accredited post-secondary institution in Psychology.
  • If you have taken any psychology course, at any level at a post-secondary institution, you do not need to confirm if the course will fulfill the requirement.
  • If you have taken a course outside of this discipline and you feel it may fulfill the requirement, it can be assessed on a case-by-case basis by providing the course syllabus to mot.admissions@ubc.ca.

    Examples of course types outside of Psychology departments which meet this requirement:
    Social Psychology, Sport Psychology, Mental Health & Illness, Neurobiology, most courses with Psych/Psychology/Behavioural in their title.

4. References

  • As part of the application process, you are required to submit the contact information of three unique referees.
  • Two of these referees must provide an Academic reference, and the third referee must provide a Volunteer / Work Experience reference.
  • Please note that referees are only notified by the system to provide an electronic reference after you have submitted your application.
  • Please visit our How To Apply page for additional instructions on how to submit references.

5. Volunteer & Work Experience

COVID-19 Interruption: For the 2022 application cycle, volunteer or work experience may consist of either virtual or in-person hours as long as all 70(+) hours are from the same organization.

Experience requirement:

  • Successful completion of a minimum of 70 hours of interactive volunteer or work experience with individuals with disabilities at the time of the application deadline.
  • This experience can be paid or unpaid and must include direct in-person contact and interaction with individuals with cognitive, emotional or physical disabilities. Your experience must be completed at no more than two facilities/organizations. You must have a direct supervisor, in an official role, who can act as your reference, and comment on your abilities and verify the number of hours you completed.
  • For applicants using two facilities/organizations to complete their 70 hour experience requirement, please see How To Apply for additional instructions on how to submit references.
  • In order for your experience to be counted, you must have been hired directly by an organization as an employee or volunteer. You must provide a reference from an individual employed by the organization who acted as your direct supervisor. The individual(s) submitting the volunteer/work experience reference to verify and validate your experience, cannot be a family member you worked with under any circumstances.
  • You can find a list of organizations where students have previously been offered experience under ‘Volunteering & Work Experience’ on our Masters of Occupational Therapy program page. This requirement must be completed by the application deadline.
  • Re-applicants no longer have the option to re-use reference letters from previous year. If you wish to reapply you must submit a new and complete application for the next intake. Re-applicants are free to use referees from past years, but must provide updated reference letters each year.

6. Altus Suite / Casper Test

All applicants are required to complete the online Casper test as part of the Altus Suite, which is an admissions assessment of non-cognitive skills. Applicants are not required to complete the optional Casper Snapshot as part of admission requirements.

Find out more about what you need and how to complete the test

7. Written response

  • The department requires a written response to a prompt (maximum 250-words) as part of the application process.
  • The document will become available on the How to Apply section once applications open (Oct 15) and the completed document must be uploaded to the online portal no later than the application deadline (Jan 15).
  • Please note that MOT-North applicants are also required to complete the Northern and Rural Lived Experiences Form and the MOT-North Application Form, in addition to the written response described above. See the Application Guidance for the MOT-North program.

8. English Language competency (if applicable)

  • If English was not the primary language of instruction of your undergraduate degree, you must complete one of the following English competency tests and achieve the minimum score, as noted below, within 24 months of the application deadline.
  • Results of your test must be sent directly from the testing institution, to the University of British Columbia, so as to be submitted by the application deadline.
    • TOEFL
      • Minimum overall: 600 for paper-based test, 100 for internet-based test
    • MELAB
      • Minimum overall: 85
    • IELTS
      • Minimum overall: 7.5
      • Minimum score for each component: 7.0

9. BC Residency (if applicable)

  • Preference of admission is given to residents of British Columbia.
  • Applicants are considered BC residents if they hold a currently valid BC Services Card at the time of the application deadline.
  • Proof of BC residency is required by submitting a PDF photocopy of your BC Services Card to the online application by the application deadline.

10. Criminal Record review consideration

  • The University of British Columbia is subject to the requirements of the Criminal Records Review Act (CRRA); meaning all students, who are enrolled in programs that include a practicum component involving work with children or vulnerable adults, will have to undergo a criminal record check before they will be permitted to register in the practicum.
  • If you are found to present a risk of physical or sexual abuse to children, or physical, sexual, or financial abuse to vulnerable adults, as a result of the CRRA check, you will not be permitted to register in the practicum. If the practicum is required for your program, this means that you may not be able to complete the program and you may not graduate.
  • Please consider this requirement carefully before applying to, or continuing in, this program.

Interview Guidance

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  • Applicants who meet the above minimum requirements are eligible for interview consideration.
  • The purpose of the interview is to determine an applicant’s verbal communication skills, maturity level and personal suitability to the program and profession. 
  • Fulfillment of the minimum requirements does not guarantee an interview. 
  • Applicants can expect to receive an email on the status of their application, and whether an interview will be offered, by late February. Interviews are typically held in March.
  • The Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy will offer a maximum of 3 interviews to any one applicant over a lifetime. If after 3 interviews, an offer of admissions is not made, applicants will no longer be offered an interview with the department, regardless of the competitiveness of the admission GPA achieved.
  • Email inquiries are usually responded to within 7 business days of receipt. Inquiries will be responded to in the order received as quickly as possible; however, it is not always possible to respond within 7 business days due to the high volume of inquiries received. Do not re-send your email if you do not receive a response within 7 days.
  • For any questions or concerns related to admissions please email mot.admissions@ubc.ca.

Please note that all communication and interactions with the department are considered part of the admission process and are taken into account when considering applicants for admission. Admission may be denied to applicants who communicate in an unprofessional manner or who act in an inappropriate manner during the admissions process, regardless of academic or interview standing.


Program Information

Find program locations, tuition fees, volunteering advice and the curriculum framework.

How to Apply

Check deadlines and use our step-by-step guide to gather the relevant documents for your application.

Start your Application

Apply for the MOT program through the UBC Graduate Studies Online Application portal.