Aboriginal Access Studies

Your path to university


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Have a question about Access Studies? Email us at aboriginalaccess.studies@ubc.ca

Program Overview

Aboriginal Access Studies prepares is an entrance program that prepares and transitions Aboriginal learners into degree programs at UBC. The program combines both academic and non-academic activities to form a rich, full-time schedule in a supportive university setting.

University Courses and Tutorials/ Workshops

Students take up to three university level courses per term applicable to their intended degree program. These courses may be combined with non-credit, academic upgrading courses - such as Writing or Math - if required.

Students also attend mandatory tutorials and workshops to enhance their academic skills and knowledge. These activities prepare students for their transition into degree programs and are critical for success.

Aboriginal Student Advisors provide individualized academic planning and help Access students choose courses based on their academic backgrounds and degree goals.

Degree Transition

Students can apply to a post-secondary degree program after successfully completing a minimum of six courses (18 credits). Those who achieve a minimum of 60% in each of their courses and who meet program requirements are considered eligible to transfer into their desired UBC degree program. Courses taken in Aboriginal Access Studies will apply towards degree programs as either required or elective credits.

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Application Deadlines

Applications for Aboriginal Access Studies are open year-round. Students may start the program in either September or January.

Who Can Apply

The program welcomes a diverse range of Aboriginal applicants who may not be prepared for direct admission to a degree program. Applicants may include:

  • Recent high school graduates
  • Mature students
  • Applicants whose grades do not reflect their academic potential
  • Applicants who would like additional supports as they transition into university

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Course Fees

Students and applicants pay regular UBC tuition and student fees for each course they take.


Aboriginal Access Studies is a university entrance program that is intended to meet the full-time eligibility requirements for most government-funded sponsorship programs, including the Post-Secondary Student Support Program (PSSSP) and the University College Entrance Preparation Program (UCEPP). Aboriginal Access Studies is also intended to fulfill student loan requirements. However, students must consult with funding providers to determine eligibility. 

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The Aboriginal Centre on UBC's Okanagan campus is a home away from home that includes a study and social space, computer lab, kitchen and meeting room.

The Aboriginal Centre's programming encompasses the academic, social, and cultural aspects of student life, and includes:

  • Aboriginal Student Orientation
  • Academic planning specific to personal goals
  • Mandatory weekly workshops on academic, health/ well-being and career topics
  • Individual support, referrals, and advocacy
  • Social, cultural, and physical events throughout the year
  • Social and cultural events throughout the year
  • A supportive team of Aboriginal Peer Mentors and Tutors

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On-campus housing is available, and living in residence provides an opportunity to meet new people, live in a study-oriented atmosphere, and get help for academic and personal challenges.

UBC's Okanagan campus prioritizes housing for all self-identified Aboriginal students who plan to start studies in September; housing applications need to be submitted before the housing deadline for students to receive priority.  

Learn more about priority for on-campus housing. 

Indigenous Integrated Learning Community

There is also an Indigenous Integrated Learning Community, a unique opportunity to live in a close-knit community with peers - both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students - who share interests in Indigenous history, identity and culture.

View complete housing details.

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How to Apply

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Please contact an Aboriginal Student Advisor at the time of application. Advisors will help determine your goals and ensure your academic plan supports transition into your intended degree program.

Applicants will need to provide transcripts from high school, upgrading and/or other post-secondary programs. Transcripts are required for the academic planning process.

Have a question about Access Studies? Email us at aboriginalaccess.studies@ubc.ca

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Last reviewed shim10/5/2017 11:35:02 AM