Undergraduates’ life experiences now count in addition to academic achievements.
UBC is expanding its undergraduate admissions policies to ensure that the best—as well as the brightest—students have every opportunity for a university education.
A broad-based admissions process will be in place for 2013/14 at UBC’s Okanagan campus.
Applicants will be considered on the basis of such things as their life experiences, out-of-the-classroom learning and personal goals in addition to academic performance.
Faculty members believe broad-based admissions will showcase a student’s characteristics and strengths, enhance classroom discussion and help differentiate talents aside from academic standings in order to make an informed decision about applicants.
“We feel a great deal of excitement about doing a better job selecting the best possible students for UBC by valuing things that all educators prize,” said Gordon Binsted, dean of the faculty of health and social development.
The faculty comprises the schools of health and exercise sciences, nursing, and social work.
“For our programs, the reflection of a student’s success goes beyond the grading process and lets us differentiate values. We can have a better look at competencies, leadership and other attributes of students who have a chance for success. For us, that’s a big differentiator.”
Essentially, students will be able to tell their own story.
Applicants will answer four to six personal profile questions, in addition to providing secondary-school marks.
The questions give applicants an opportunity to talk about their learning, life experiences and goals.
Jan Cioe, head of the psychology unit of the Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences, said the current level of academic success among high school graduates makes it difficult to distinguish students based solely on grades.
Responses to personal profile questions will also be used as eligibility criteria for major entrance scholarships, international major entrance scholarships and the outstanding international student award.
Typically, UBC receives more than 30,000 applications annually to undergraduate programs.
Last year, UBC welcomed 2,049 new first-year students to its Okanagan campus and 5,913 to its campus in Vancouver.