About the University of British Columbia

The University of British Columbia is one of the top 20 public universities in the world, and whose main campus is located in Vancouver, British Columbia. UBC is globally recognized for its teaching and learning programs, and is tied for first in the world for industry and innovation impact. Particle physics is a dedicated research group at UBC that tackles novel rare-event search experiments and fundamental science.

Program Requirements and Resources

If you are looking to start your career at the University of British Columbia, you will need to consider how to apply, when to apply, and the qualifications expected of incoming students and employees. Deadlines and expectations are different depending on your department and degree level.

Undergraduate Students

Undergraduates need to apply to the University of British Columbia directly and select two choices for a program of study in their application. There are also different admission requirements and deadlines depending on where you attended high school.

Need to know:

  • Applications for the fall semester open in October of the previous year and close on December 1.
  • The minimum admission average is 70%.
  • Tuition and fees are $6718.72 for domestic students, and $43,497.72 for international students. You can find tuition fee information using the Cost Calculator.
  • You can find specific application timelines, how to apply, and admission requirements based on your high school experience here.
  • Undergraduate students are represented by the UBC Alma Mater Society (AMS).


  • The department of Physics is a part of the Faculty of Science, and there are several programs that are associated with physics.
  • If you live in an area where English is not the primary language, you may need to submit acceptable evidence of English Competency.
  • For Physics Programs, you will need to have completed the following courses or equivalent:
    • Grade 12 English
    • Grade 12 Math
    • One of Grade 12 Biology, Chemistry, or Physics
    • Grade 11 Chemistry
    • Grade 11 Physics
    • At least six academic/non-academic Grade 12 courses
  • It is recommended to take additional courses in Language Arts, Mathematics and Computing, and Sciences.
University of British Columbia Logo

Graduate Students

Graduate students need to apply through Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies at the Vancouver Campus, or the College of Graduate Students at the Okanagan Campus. Physics graduate programs are only offered through the Vancouver Campus. You will need to specify a program and possibly a supervisor in your application. We encourage you to reach out to our faculty to build a relationship before you apply. Programs have different requirements and application deadlines.

Need to know:

  • Applications open on October 15 and are due on December 1 for Fall 2022.
  • Minimum net funding for physics graduate students is $19,733 for domestic MSc, $23,739 for domestic PhD, $19,405 for international MSc, and $23,411 for international PhD, after tuition and fees.
  • You can find tuition fee information here as well as estimates through the Cost Calculator.
  • You can find information about how to apply here.
  • You can find the list of programs and specific entrance requirements here.
  • You are encouraged to apply for external funding such as NSERC.
  • Graduate students are represented by the Graduate Student Society (GSS) and CUPE 2278 for teaching and marking appointments.


All physics graduate programs require previously completed degrees to have a minimum overall average of B+ (76%) and a minimum average average of A (80%) in at least 12 credits from the last two years of full-time studies in courses specific to the degree.


  • Annual Base funding: Minimum of  $26,133 (MSc), $30,139 (PhD)
  • Deadlines: Open October 15, due December 1
  • Programs: MSc (2 years), PhD (4 years)
  • Requirements: BSc. Hons (Physics, Geophysics, Engineering, Astronomy, Geology or Mathematics) for MSc., MSc. for Ph.D or BSc. Hons from UBC

Postdoctoral Fellows

Potential postdoctoral fellows applying to the University of British Columnbia apply directly to a research group or supervisor. Current opening with the University of British Columbia (including the department of physics) can be found here.

Need to know:

  • Apply directly to a faculty member, not through a central office unless specified in the posting.
  • Postdoctoral Fellows are considered employees or award recipients, depending on funding.
  • The Postdoctoral Fellows Office provides support and services.
  • Postdoctoral Fellows are represented by the Postdoctoral Association (PDA).


  • Position length is typically 2-3 years, but more than one fellowship may be held consecutively with the same supervisor.
  • External and internal funding opportunities are available.
  • There is not a standardized salary for postdoctoral fellows at UBC, as your base annual salary is set by the supervisor and external funding. The minimum is set by the British Columbia Employee Standards Act (ESA), which states a minimum salary $26,600. The estimated average is $50,662.

Engineers, Technicians, and Staff

The range of employment options at the University of British Columbia covers engineers, technicians, research support staff, administrative staff, and more.

Need to know:

  • Critical policies and tools are available through the Human Resources website.
  • Staff positions will either be non-union, represented by the Association of Administrative and Professional Staff at UBC (AAPS), or represented by CUPE 116.


  • The category of a position dictates the compensation and other contract information.
  • The starting salary range for CUPE 116 Technicians is $35,880 – $72,336, for non-union Technicians and research assistants is $35,527 – $69,396, for Management and Professional Staff is $41,355 – $159,663, and for Executive Administrative Staff is $42,039 – $46,936.
  • The collective agreements for staff positions under any and all UBC associated unions and employee groups can be found here.