Frequently Asked Questions (Ph.D. Program)

The Faculty of Graduate Studies and the Vancouver School of Economics recommend that applicants meet the basic entrance requirements listed here. A record that satisfies basic entrance requirements does not in any way guarantee admission. Successful applicants typically (but do not necessarily) have a Master's degree in economics, and a strong academic record, especially in economic theory, mathematics, statistics, and econometrics. Admission is restricted to the best qualified applicants.

We do accept students without economics degrees. These students usually have a background in mathematics, physics or engineering. For those who do not have such a background, we like to see some training or experience in math and economics.

The Ph.D. program receives approximately 200 applications in a typical year. Each year, about 15 applicants enter the program.

Applications are made online. The following supporting documents are required: official transcripts with certified English translations (if required), three confidential letters of reference, official GRE scores (if required), official test scores of English language proficiency exam (if required), and proof of immigration status (for Canadian Permanent Residents). Please see the application info page for more details.

Admission is only possible for the commencement of studies in September of each academic year. January 15 is the deadline for submission of the online application. January 31 is the deadline for submission of all official supporting documents. No exceptions to the January 15 and 31 deadlines are made. Incomplete applications are not processed. Do not apply and pay the non-refundable application fee if you cannot submit all original and official supporting documents by the January 31 deadline.

All applications are automatically considered for financial support; a separate application is not required. All financial aid decisions are merit based and awarded on a competitive basis. We anticipate that we cannot offer funding to a large number of otherwise qualified applicants. Consequently, we ask you to take this into account before submitting an application. Please see our Tuition & Financial Aid for more information

The financial support process is competitive, and awards are made to a select group of applicants. Currently, a large majority of our first year Ph.D. students receive funding in the form of fellowships. Additionally, all of our current second through fifth year students who have made satisfactory academic progress receive financial support.

All fees are determined by the University (not the Vancouver School of Economics), and subject to change. For the 2018-19 academic year, the tuition fee is expected to be approximately $4,801.80 for citizens and permanent residents of Canada, and $8,435.94 for international students. International students are eligible for an International Partial Tuition Scholarship of up to $3,200. In addition to the tuition fee, graduate students are assessed student fees of approximately $900 for the provision of extended health benefits and access to student-run activities and facilities. Please see our Tuition & Financial Aid for detailed information on tuition, fees and the cost of living.

The UBC Housing Department's application process is entirely separate from the admissions application. Students should not wait until they are admitted to UBC before applying for housing. Information and application forms are available from the UBC Housing and Conferences website.

All inquiries must be made by email to econ.grad@ubc.ca; please do not call or fax. During the very busy application period (January to April), the turn-around time for email is about 5 to 6 business days. Please be patient; all emails will be answered.