Vancouver Island and Victoria Post-Secondary Options for English Language Learners

One of the main reasons many international students come to British Columbia is to take advantage of the world-class education system. Vancouver Island alone is home to many top post-secondary institutions such as the University of Victoria, Camosun College, Royal Roads University, Vancouver Island University, and more. However many potential international students are easily turned off from applying to these schools due to strict entrance requirements. For example, most post-secondary programs in BC require a minimum of 6.5 score on IELTS testing. Often this is unattainable for many international students coming to BC for study. To help these students come to BC, and attain their educational goals, these institutions have created pathway programs for students who do not meet the minimum 6.5 IELTS band. This blog will highlight some of Vancouver Island’s best post-secondary pathway programs for international students wishing to come study at these world class institutions.

What is a Pathway Program?

Simply put, a pathway program is a content-curriculum-based program, with a specific focus on improving English language skills. In most cases, these programs lead directly to regular, post-graduate programs in both undergraduate studies and graduate studies. This is a huge advantage for many students because successful completion of the pathway program will lead to a guaranteed acceptance to the regular program. Although a pathway program will cost you more time and money, often it is the only assured way to gain entrance to these schools; additionally, these programs are very well-thought-out, and will give you the English skills and confidence you are seeking.

Royal Roads University Pathway Programs

Royal Roads University has done a fabulous job on providing a wide range of services for their international student community. They offer undergraduate pathway programs as well as graduate studies pathway programs. These carefully crafted programs offer a custom-built curriculum, specifically designed for international students. They offer “university-style” teaching methods, with small class sizes.

Royal Roads University Undergraduate Degree Pathway Programs

At the moment, there are 3 undergraduate pathway programs to choose from: English for Academic Purposes, which is an entry-level program, and requires a minimum of IELTS 4.5, International Year One program, which acts as a foundation year of study for students completing a bachelor’s degree; entrance to this program is IELTS 5.5, and lastly, The Transfer Preparation Program, which is a one-year program that lets you transfer directly into “year 3” of an undergraduate degree program. The minimum entrance into the Transfer Preparation Program is IELTS 5.5. More information about all of these programs can be found here.

Royal Roads University Graduate Degree Pathway Programs

Royal Roads is one of the first Universities in its class to offer a graduate degree pathway program for international students. This program is a one-year venture that will lead to entry into one of the following graduate study programs: Masters of Global Management (MGM), Masters of Arts in Intercultural and International Communication (MAIIC), Masters of Arts in Tourism Management (MATM). In addition to meeting the minimum academic entry requirements, applicants for this program must also have IELTS 5.5. If you possess an IELTS score 6.0, you are able to skip into the second semester of the program, which will save you time and money.

University of Victoria Pathway Program

The University of Victoria offers two undergraduate pathway programs for international students studying in BC. Each program will lead to either a degree in Social Sciences, or Science and Engineering. These programs are 12 months in duration and will count as a year towards your degree, except in the case of engineering, which requires a full 4 years after the 1 year pathway program. Of course the advantage of these programs is that they offer a guaranteed acceptance into the chosen program upon successful completion. In addition to meeting the minimum academic requirements, applicants must also score a minimum of 5.5 on IELTS. More information about this program can be found here.

Vancouver Island University Pathway Programs

Vancouver Island University, aka: VIU, is a relatively new University and has established itself as a dynamic leader in international student programming. There are a variety of programs to choose from if you are an international student. Two pathway programs in particular are the known as Academic Preparation (AP), and Accelerated Academic Preparation (APP). One of the advantages of this school is that it offers entry to these program 3 times per year, with ongoing support and continual delivery throughout the summer semester. Students who pass the AP level 5 semester, are automatically accepted into a degree program so long as they meet the regular academic requirements for that degree.

An exciting opportunity for anyone interested in an immediate option, VIU has an ever-growing population of international students looking to get away from the large, established schools. One other thing I will mention is that VIU has multiple campuses, but their main campus happens to be in Nanaimo, British Columbia, which in my option, is a wonderful “up and coming” city. Tudor House Immigration Services Inc. also has an office in Nanaimo for the convenience of serving those international students attending VIU. For more information about VIUs international pathway programs, click here.

Camosun College ELL Pathway Program

Camosun College is one of Victoria’s oldest institutions and most well-known. It has multiple campuses and offers a variety of diploma programs, and avenues to degree programs. International students who may not meet the academic requirements of a University, may choose to apply to Camosun College instead. Those students entering the college will be pleased to know that even if you don’t meet the language requirement of IELTS 6.5, you can still attend one of the many English language preparation programs which lead to acceptance and credit in the college. Information about the several options available at Camosun can be found here.

Immigrating to Canada as a Student

Vancouver island is becoming a popular destination for immigration from around the world. Students attending BC’s well-known learning institutions can look for ways of applying for work permits and permanent residence through the Post Graduate Work Permit. Now it is possible for students who don’t meet the language requirements to also aim for this goal.

If you would like to learn more about going to school on Vancouver Island, or Canada, we invite you to reach out to us for a consultation or assessment. Immigration experts for Vancouver Island, Victoria, and British Columbia look forward to hearing more about your case. Immigration consultants at Tudor House Consulting are certified by the Regulatory body of Canada and bound to operate within the RCIC Code of Ethics.