Application Instructions

If you identify as a:

  • First-year B.Sc. student looking to declare a major in a Cognitive Systems B.Sc. stream → The application procedure for Cognitive Systems B.Sc. specializations is coordinated by the Faculty of Science, through a central on-line application process. B.Sc. students who are entering second year will receive an e-mail regarding this process in late May or early June, but are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the application process and specialization prerequisites during their first year. You can find more information about this process here. In short, this is not the correct application form for you.
  • B.Sc. student looking to switch into the B.Sc. Computational Intelligence and Design stream → Please contact the Computer Science Department directly.

If you identify as a:

  1. >=2nd year B.A. student looking to declare a major in a Cognitive Systems B.A. stream
  2. Student who has already declared a different major, but would like to switch into a Cognitive Systems stream in the same Faculty as their current major (this includes B.Sc. students wanting to switch into the B.Sc. PSYC stream of COGS, but excludes B.Sc. students wanting to switch into the B.Sc. CPSC stream of COGS, as noted above)

→ please keep on reading.

Admission Requirements

  1. With the exception of the Computational Intelligence and Design stream (CPSC stream), admission to Cognitive Systems specializations requires students to have successfully completed (i.e. received a passing mark for) at least 27 credits and have reached a minimum of year 2 standing. Application inquiries regarding the CPSC stream should be directed to Computer Science Advising.
  2. Students should not apply until they have second year standing and have completed:
    • (a) COGS 200 and six credits of courses in any of PSYC, LING, PHIL, or CPSC, or
    • (b) Nine credits of courses in any of COGS, PSYC, LING, PHIL, or CPSC.
      In either case (a or b), taking COGS 200 before applying to COGS is strongly recommended.

You cannot satisfy this requirement with courses all of which were taken in the same department. (So, for example, CPSC110, CPSC121, LING100 is permissible; CPSC103, CPSC107, CPSC121 is not). Nor can this requirement be satisfied with courses that were taken on a Credit/D/Fail basis, unless those courses were taken in 2019 Term 2, during the semester which was disrupted by the measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Selection for admission to the program is based on the student’s calculated average in all of the courses for which they have been awarded a percentage grade by UBC* (this includes failed courses, and both UBC-V and UBC-O courses). Courses taken on Cr/D/Fail basis do not count towards this calculation. The program will automatically exclude up to a maximum of 12 credits provided that:

  1. the exclusion increases the student’s average,
  2. the excluded credits do not come from courses taken in COGS, CPSC, LING, PHIL, PSYC, and STAT, and
  3. the grade point average, after these exclusions, is still based on at least 27 credits of UBC course work.

Please note that admission is not automatic to any of the specializations within the Cognitive Systems Program. Due to a limited number of spaces, some applicants who satisfy the minimum prerequisites may not be admitted.

*If you are a transfer student recently admitted into UBC and do not have any UBC credits yet, please reach out to the Program Coordinator to discuss application timelines. If your transfer credits are on record but you do not have 27 percentage-grade credits recorded, your UBC admission average may be applied as the percentage for any remaining credits required for the calculation. 

Unsure whether you meet the admission requirements? Use the self-assessment tool below to find out:

Important Dates

If you are a student who has a different major but would like to switch into a Cognitive Systems stream in the same Faculty as your current major

  • “Internal transfer” students (students who already have a declared major in the Faculty of Arts or the Faculty of Science) have the option for admittance to COGS at two points in the academic year. In addition to the May admissions, we offer a mid-year intake to internal transfer students, in which accepted students will gain entrance to the program for 2023W Term 2 (January 2024).
  • If you are applying to the Cognitive Systems Program for 2023W Term 2 (January 2024) entry as an internal transfer student, you must meet the admission requirements and apply by 11:59PM (Pacific Time) November 30th, 2023.
  • Please note that courses taken in the summer terms prior to the November 30th deadline will count towards your calculated average, but courses taken in winter term 1 will not count towards your calculated average.
  • If you are accepted into the program, you will be notified by email no later than December 14, 2023. You will be asked whether or not you accept the offer of admission into your Cognitive Systems stream, and a deadline to do so will be specified in your email. We will not be able to certify you as a Cognitive Systems major until your reply is received. Please make sure to check and respond to your offer email. Students not admitted to the program will also be notified by email no later than December 22, 2023.

Application Steps

Applications for the Cognitive Systems specializations (with the exception of: the B.Sc. Cognition and Brain stream for year 2, and B.Sc. Computational Intelligence and Design stream for all years) are submitted to the Cognitive Systems Program directly via the Cognitive Systems Application Form, whether you are declaring your specialization for the first time, or have already declared a specialization and wish to switch. In order to submit your application, please follow these instructions:

  1. Check that you meet the admission requirements detailed above.
  2. Fill out the online application form (available during intake periods only).


Please consult the COGS application FAQ if you have other general questions regarding COGS admissions. If the FAQ does not address your question, please reach out to the Program Coordinator.