Outbound exchange students

Whether you've gone on an exchange or you're considering it, there are things to think about.

UVic students participating in an international exchange will need to be mindful of the courses they complete while abroad. Most, but perhaps not all, of the credit you earn on exchange will transfer back to UVic. However, differences in host institutions, course content or hours of instruction can result in level credit or partial credit being assigned.

Academic advisers can help you with the following:

  • determining the best time in your degree program for you to go on an exchange
  • declaring your program, reviewing your CAPP report, and discussing how exchange credit can fit within your degree program
  • adjusting your CAPP report as required following your exchange

Considering an exchange

UVic's International Centre for Students (ICS) has put together comprehensive information for outgoing exchange students on their exchange program page. Be sure to review it carefully when you are considering exchange.

Before you apply for exchange, you should book an appointment with an academic adviser in the Academic Advising Centre. Advisers can help you find ways to fit your exchange credits into your degree program.

We strongly encourage you to declare your program before you go on exchange to help ensure the courses you plan to take on exchange will work within your degree program. Once you've declared, an adviser can review your CAPP report with you.

What to do before you leave

Step 1: ensure that you've declared your program

If you haven't declared your program yet, now is the time to do so. You can submit your declaration request through DeclareMe, and we will process your request as soon as we can. More information on the declaration process can be found in the declare & complete your program section of our site.

Step 2: meet with an exchange student adviser

Set up a meeting with an exchange student adviser in the International Centre for Students (ICS) by sending an email to . Come prepared to learn all about the course selection process. You'll be given some resources to use in your next steps.

Please note: this first meeting can't be with an academic adviser in the Academic Advising Centre; it's important to meet with the exchange student advisers in the ICS at this stage. You'll meet with academic advisers later in your planning.

Step 3: review the information on UVic's partner universities

Time for a bit of research! Spend some time with the information that the ICS has compiled on UVic's partner universities. You'll be able to review exchange credit histories, which will help you to make a list of potential courses you would like to take while on your exchange.

Step 4: review your program plan with an academic adviser

Booking an appointment with an academic adviser in the Academic Advising Centre is a key step in your preparation for exchange. Bring your CAPP report, a list of courses you are planning to take, and your specific questions to the appointment. You'll leave with information on where you are in your degree progression, giving you the confidence to plan for your time on exchange.

Step 5: get your exchange courses pre-evaluated

You'll be helped with this step by the friendly staff in the International Centre for Students. They will provide you with access to the Outgoing Exchange Course Evaluation Portal (OECEP) and assist you with using it to start your course pre-evaluations.

During your exchange

Be prepared for changes

Institutions occasionally change their course offerings, and it is possible that one of the courses you had planned to take is no longer being offered. Having a backup plan ready to go will reduce your stress if this happens and will mean you are ready to seamlessly continue your studies.

Communicate

It's very important that you keep in close contact with the International Centre for Students (ICS) while you are on exchange, and especially if anything changes with your course plans. You'll need to submit documents to the OECEP (Online Exchange Course Evaluation Portal) if there is a change, so be sure to check in and make sure you know what is required of you.

Keep track of your documents

While you are on exchange, you need to collect and retain a lot of information and provide it to ICS upon your return. Please check with your exchange adviser prior to leaving to make sure you know what is required.

Order your transcripts

When you arrive at your exchange institution, ensure that you understand the process for how to order transcripts. You will need to ensure that your exchange institution sends your official transcript to ICS once your courses are completed. It will be up to you to order this transcript.

Understand your grades

You may receive standard letter grades on your transcript from your host institution while on exchange. Your UVic transcript will not reflect these grades once we have updated your exchange credit. Instead, it will show completed exchange course grades as COM (completed) or F (failed).

However, it is important that you know what your grades are; your exchange course grades may be reviewed if a minimum grade is needed for a specific requirement as part of your UVic degree program. It is also important to note that if you fail courses while on exchange, this could affect your academic standing at UVic.

Returning from exchange

There are several steps you need to follow when returning from an exchange. To ensure nothing is missed, review the International Centre for Students’ page on returning home as soon as you are able. Contact an exchange adviser at for help with organizing your return to UVic.

Contact Undergraduate Records

You may need to submit course material that you collected to a records clerk. You should check in with Undergraduate Records upon your return to see if anything is required. Find out who you should speak to by reviewing our Office of the Registrar contact page, and looking at the Transfer and exchange credit section.

Meet with an academic adviser

We recommend that you book an appointment with an academic adviser once you are back at UVic. In this appointment, you will review your exchange courses, how they apply to your UVic program, and how they appear on your UVic transcript. This is also a good opportunity to plan ahead for your next session and decide which courses you need and/or want to register in.

My exchange courses have been updated on my UVic transcripts, but the grades are not there. Is this a mistake?

When UVic receives your transcript from the exchange institution, we update your official record with the exchange credits that you have earned. The grades for these courses will be reported as COM or F. While UVic keeps your original transcript, we do not report the letter grades that you received on your UVic transcript.

Please note that while we don't report your exchange letter grades, grades of F will impact your academic standing.

I completed the equivalent of an upper-level course while on exchange, but the course title is not showing up on my CAPP report. I'm just seeing X30E (e.g., BIOL30E). What's going on?

This is not a mistake. The name of the course equivalent will be reported on your administrative transcript but will not be visible on your CAPP report.

For example, if the course equivalent for a third-year Biology course was Biology 329: Biology of the Vertebrates of British Columbia, your AT would include the following information:

BIOL 30E: 300 Level Exch Credit: BIOL 329: Biology of the Vertebrates of British Columbia 

Your CAPP report would report the same course as follows:

BIOL 30E: 1.5 units

If a specific course is required for your program, your academic adviser will need to update your CAPP report to ensure that it correctly reads your exchange credit as the course you've completed. Please contact  or stop by for an appointment if you think your CAPP might need to be updated with your exchange credits.