Program Transfer

IMPORTANT NOTE: The ISGP does not consider Master’s to PhD transfers.

Students at UBC often find their research foci shift as they progress through their current programs of study. As a result, the ISGP receives many requests throughout the year from students hoping to transfer into our program. In order to process all transfer requests equitably, here are the guiding principles by which a transfer request is evaluated:

  • Clear evidence of shift in research focus to interdisciplinary
  • Proven academic record at current program
  • Confirmation of first 4 years of UBC funding (for PhD transfer)
  • Transfer no later than the end of 3rd year (PhD) or before 2nd year (Master’s) in current program
  • Successful completion of Comprehensive Exam(s) at current PhD program
  • Confirmed commitment of 2 co-supervisors in different disciplines
  • Review of student file at current program


Transfer requests can be initiated by sending an email to the ISGP Office, requesting a consultation with the ISGP Program Chair. Students eligible to be invited to apply for a transfer into the ISGP must submit the following documents for consideration:

1) Complete “Transfer Between Related Master’s/PhD Graduate Programs” form

2) Cover letter outlining detailed reasons for the transfer request

3) 2 1/2 page Statement of Proposed Research Topic (SPRT) Form (for more information on what to include, please visit our Application Materials page)

4) Signed ISGP Co-Supervisors Assessment & Agreement Forms (emailed to

5) Letters of Recommendation from 2 co-supervisors

6) Letter of Recommendation from current program Graduate Advisor

7) Funding confirmation

8) Non-UBC transcripts


In addition to the submission of the above documents, the student must request his/her file at current program to be shared with the ISGP for evaluation purposes.

Once a transfer request has been submitted to the ISGP Office, the file would be evaluated by the ISGP Faculty Advisory Committee (FAC). If approved at the program level, the file would then be forwarded to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for final approval. The student would be notified of the result in due course.

Official transfer dates must coincide with the beginning of UBC term dates (September, January, May), and are not considered retroactively.

NOTE: If transfer request is successful, the official start date of the student’s program remains unchanged (i.e start date of original program), hence all program milestones must be met by associated deadlines.

For more information on program transfers, please consult the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies web site.