UBC Glossary

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ACADEMIC YEAR   A list of important dates and deadlines for the academic period beginning in September and ending at the end of the following August.

ADVISING   Personal assistance to students in dealing with academic issues. Each faculty has an advising office. For Faculty of Arts there is an Arts Academic Advising office in BUCH D111. They’re a terrific bunch of folks and their website is loaded with useful info.

ALUMNI   People who have graduated from a university, school, or college.  We <3 our Arts One Alum.

AMS (Alma Mater Society)   is the student society of UBC. The AMS represents the more than 36,000 students at UBC, and operates some great student services, student owned businesses, resource groups and clubs. In addition to offering services to students, the AMS is an advocate of student issues and ensures the needs of students are presented to the University Administration and the Provincial and Federal governments.

AUDIT/AUDITORS   Taking courses for no academic credit. Auditors may attend lectures without writing examinations

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BACCALAUREATE   See Bachelor’s degree

BACHELOR’S DEGREE   A bachelor’s degree is awarded upon successful completion of a program of study. Traditionally a Bachelor’s degree must be completed before one can embark on a Master’s or Doctoral degree program. Bachelor’s degree programs are also known as “undergraduate programs” and people studying in them are referred to as undergraduates. (30 credits per year x 4 years equals 120 credits. That’s your BA).

BURSARY   Non-repayable award assigned on the basis of assessed financial need. Due to limited bursary funding, UBC students are expected to exhaust other sources of assistance, including government student loans and grants, before seeking help through most UBC bursary programs.

BUS LOOP   is a main starting/stopping point for a group of buses. There are several bus loops throughout Vancouver. The one at UBC is located next to the Aquatic Centre, behind the SUB.

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CLOCKS   Most of the clocks you’re going to be looking up at either don’t work or are in their own mysterious time zones. Because it’s easier than realizing that you’re three hours late for your lunch date… or half an hour early for your lecture. And that the battery on your phone is empty!

CONTINUING STUDIES   UBC Offers non-credit courses and non-credit certificate programs. Administers preparatory writing and math courses. The English Language Institute is also part of Continuing Studies.

COUNSELLING   Generally refers to one on one assistance with personal issues. For a list of available counseling services (Live Well to Learn Well) visit the Student Services website.

COURSE   A course is one of the building blocks of your program. You can find descriptions for all courses currently approved by UBC’s Senate on the Student Services website. Not all courses listed are offered each year. The published information on courses includes: subject code, subject area, description, credit value, prerequisites, and hours assigned.

COURSE SCHEDULE   A listing of credit and non-credit courses and the days, times and locations they are offered.

CREDIT   In the course descriptions the credit value of a course, where given, is shown in parentheses following the course number. Most courses at UBC have a 3-credit value and have a duration of one term, or a 6-credit value for a duration of the full school year (September to April).

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DEAN   The head of a Faculty. The current Dean of Arts is Gage Averill.

DEGREE   The academic credential conferred upon a student who has completed a given course of study. Three types of degrees are Bachelor’s degrees, Master’s degrees, and Doctoral degrees.

DEGREE AUDIT   A process of matching program requirements against courses taken, i.e. ensuring that you’re taking the right courses to get a degree.

DIPLOMA   1. An academic qualification received after completing a diploma program (distinct from a degree). 2. The actual document certifying that a student has completed their degree or diploma. Also known as a parchment.

DIPLOMA PROGRAM   Diploma programs are one to two years long, and lead to a diploma rather than a degree. They are usually geared toward employment in a particular field, or in some cases to develop professional competence in areas supplemental to one’s field. Certain Faculties at UBC offer diploma programs; most require a Bachelor’s degree for admission.

DISCUSSION GROUP   Some lectures have affiliated discussion groups for which you are required to register separately.

DOCTORAL DEGREE   The highest university degree in any Faculty. Generally a student must complete a Bachelor’s degree and usually a Master’s degree before embarking on doctoral studies. People completing their doctoral degree are referred to as doctoral students or graduate students. Most commonly designated as Ph.D.

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EARLY ADMISSION   A process whereby high-school students may apply and be accepted to university earlier than usual. Admission is contingent upon satisfactory completion of their high-school diploma.

ELECTIVE   A course that is not specifically required for your program; optional.

EMAIL   All students and alumni are eligible to sign up for a UBC email account.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE ADMISSION STANDARD   The minimum standard for spoken and written English language skills that a student must achieve for admission to UBC.   http://students.ubc.ca/welcome/apply/english.cfm

EXAM SCHEDULE   A listing of days, times and locations of final examinations scheduled by Classroom Services.

EXCHANGE PROGRAMS   (Student Exchange Programs)   Opportunities for students to pursue some of their studies at another institution, often in another country, while remaining registered at UBC.    International Experiences.

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FACULTY   1. A division of the university teaching a specific area of study. Faculties are often subdivided into Departments and Schools. At UBC we have 12 faculties: Agricultural Sciences, Applied Science, Arts, Commerce and Business Administration, Dentistry, Education, Forestry, Graduate Studies, Law, Medicine, Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Science.   2. The deans, professors, lecturers, and researchers comprising the Faculty.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE   Assistance granted to students on the basis of assessed financial need. Forms of financial assistance include: government student loans and grants, bursaries, work study and UBC loans. Canadian federal and provincial grants, loans and work study programs are generally available only to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada.

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GRADUATE STUDENT   A student who is completing a master’s or doctoral degree.

GREAT TREK   In 1922, UBC students marched from the old Fairview campus (at 12th Avenue and Oak Street) to the unfinished Point Grey campus to demand that the government provide the money needed to construct the university. The government agreed, and the event became known as the Great Trek.

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IMAGINE UBC   The University’s first-year orientation and transition program. Your first day at UBC starts here! On your first day at UBC in September, all 100-level undergraduate courses are replaced by Imagine UBC and first-year students participate in a day-long welcome coordinated by UBC Orientations and the Alma Mater Society. You’ll meet fellow students, as well as your profs.  Bring a knapsack and wear comfortable shoes.

INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES   Combining studies and research from different subject areas.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENT   Any student who does not hold Canadian citizenship or Landed Immigrant status in Canada. This includes students from the United States.

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LPI, LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY INDEX   A method of rating the standard of English language usage that must be met by all incoming undergraduate students before they are allowed to register for some first-year English courses. The LPI, with some exceptions, is determined through a written examination. www.lpi.ubc.ca

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MALL   The malls at UBC are streets, not shopping places.  Our Arts One/CAP address is 1961 East Mall.

MASTER’S DEGREE   The degree after a Bachelor’s degree and usually preceding a Doctoral degree. Students studying for a Master’s degree are referred to as “graduate students.” Designated as M.A., M.Sc., etc., depending on the field of study.

MATURE APPLICANT   A student who is at least 23 years of age, a resident of British Columbia, whose activities have led to intellectual development, but who lacks formal university entrance requirements.

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NEED-BASED FINANCIAL AID   Assistance based on a means test, usually the standard assessment of need used in adjudicating eligibility for federal and provincial loans and grants. Need-based aid includes: government student loans and grants, bursaries, Work Study, and UBC loans.

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ORIENTATIONS  UBC Orientations are designed to introduce new students to UBC or university life.

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Ph.D.   Abbreviation for “Doctor of Philosophy.” This is the designation for doctoral degrees in most fields of study.

PREREQUISITE   A prerequisite is a course you must successfully complete prior to registering in another course. Course descriptions show pre-requisites where applicable.

PROFESSIONAL PROGRAMS   Also known as post-baccalaureate programs. A program entered after full or partial completion of a Bachelor’s degree to train for a specialized professional field. Examples at UBC are Medicine, Dentistry, Architecture, Social Work, Nursing, Law, Pharmacy, etc.

PROGRAM   The series of courses that leads to a particular degree.

PROSPECTIVE STUDENT   A student who is thinking about applying to UBC.

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READING WEEK   A week in which there are no classes, usually in mid-February. For some it is a break to read and for others a break from reading.

REGISTRATION   The process of registering in a program of courses. This is separate from the process of admission.

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SCHOLARSHIP   Non-repayable monetary award adjudicated mainly on the basis of scholastic achievement. In addition to high academic standing, the terms of some prestigious scholarships also require candidates to have excelled in other areas such as service to their school and community, athletics, and performance in other areas (entrepreneurship, music, employment,etc). By Senate regulation, scholarship recipients at UBC must rank in the top 10% of their class or have achieved an academic average of 75% or higher.

SCHOOL   We have ten schools at UBC: Audiology and Speech Sciences; Community and Regional Planning; Human Kinetics;Journalism; Library, Archival and Information Studies; Music; Nursing; Occupational and Environmental Hygiene; Rehabilitation Sciences; and Social Work and Family Studies.

SECTION   Courses at UBC are offered in sections and each section has an individual location and time. When you register for a course, you can choose the time and term that works best with your schedule. While a section is most commonly a lecture, it may also be a laboratory or a discussion group (tutorial). Many classes have required labs or tutorials in addition to the lecture, so you’ll need to register in sections of those activities as well.

SESSION   At UBC we have two sessions: Winter Session runs September to April; Summer Session runs May to August. Each session includes 2 terms (Sept-Dec. Jan-April).

STANDARD PROGRAM   The term used by the UBC Calendar to describe when a student builds a timetable by picking-and-choosing a variety of courses from the UBC Calendar.

STANDARD TIMETABLE   (STT) The term used by UBC Registration to describe programs that use a pre-planned timetable that incorporates most of the courses required for that program of study. The courses are linked and must be taken as a whole.

STORM THE WALL   Be part of the Biggest Intramural Event in North America. Join the other 2,500 UBC students as they swim, sprint, bike, run, and climb over a twelve-foot wall. Go ahead. Storm The Wall.

STUDENT AUTHORIZATION (student visa)   A document that must be obtained from Citizenship and Immigration Canada by all international students in order to study in Canada.

STUDENT LOAN   A major source of need-based financial assistance provided by the federal and provincial governments. The governments pay interest on student loans while the borrower is engaged in full-time study but the borrower must begin repaying loan principal and interest 6 months after he/she ceases to be registered in at least 60% of a full course load. Students who have exhausted aid available through government loans may qualify for short and long-term loans directly from UBC. Usually, a credit-worthy co-signer is required in order to qualify for a UBC loan.

STUDENT SERVICE CENTRE   The online service that allows students to apply to UBC, register, view grades, order transcripts, view financial accounts and change personal information.

STUDENT VISA   See student authorization (student visa)

SUB   stands for Student Union Building. The SUB, opened in 2015, is called The Nest.  Here you will find numerous AMS (Alma Mater Society) amenities including The Delly, Upper Case and Lower Case (was Blue Chip Cookies and Bernoulli’s Bagels), PieRSquared Pizza, The Pit, Flip Side Burgers, The Perch Restaurant, along with various clubs’ offices, SpeakEasy.

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TA   stands for “Teaching Assistant”. This is an MA or PhD student who assists your professor in various teaching functions.

TERM   Each session has two terms: Winter Session terms are September to December and January to April. Summer Session terms overlap: Term 1 (mainly evening courses) is May to August and Term 2 (mainly daytime courses) is July to August.

TIMETABLE   A schedule listing the days and times that courses (or examinations) are held.

TRANSCRIPT   A document listing grades for all courses in all semesters at a particular school or university.

TRANSFER STUDENT   A student who has already completed some post-secondary studies at another university or college, and has transferred to UBC to complete a degree or diploma.

TUTORIAL   A small discussion group (sometimes called a seminar). A break-out from a large section (lecture) of a course.

Tuum Est   The UBC motto. Latin for “It’s Up to You.”

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UNCLASSIFIED STUDENT   A student who holds a degree and who wishes to enroll for studies not intended to lead to a particular degree or diploma.

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT   Any student in a Bachelor’s degree program.

UPASS   A Universal Transport Pass that provides unlimited access to public transit services in Great Vancouver including bus, SeaBus and SkyTrain, as well as discounts on the West Coat Express train. Now in conjunction with the Compass Card.

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VILLAGE.   is the popular name for the plaza of shops and restaurants located just on the outskirts of campus on University Boulevard. Among other necessities you will find McDonalds, Hong Kong Chinese Food, Staples, CIBC and BMO banks, CopieSmart CopyCentre, Starbucks, Second Cup. The village is located adjacent to the UBC Marketplace (Shoppers Drug Mart, Mahoney & Son’s Pub, Boulevard Coffee).

VISITORS (VISITING STUDENTS)   A student enrolled at another university who is taking courses at UBC for credit at their home university.

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WORK STUDY   A need-based form of financial aid which supplements government student loans and grants by allowing qualified individuals to work at a fair wage for up to 10 hours per week on campus, often in positions which relate to their area of study. Before applying for Work Study, candidates must first have qualified for government assistance for the current academic period.

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