International applicants

International applicants who are applying from outside Canada should complete an application at least six months in advance of the intended start date to be sure to have all permits processed before their programs are scheduled to begin. Note the program-specific application deadlines.

English language proficiency

English is both the working language and the primary language of instruction and examination at UNB, so students must be able to communicate and comprehend English both orally and in written form. All international applicants whose mother tongue is not English, including applicants who are landed immigrants or reside in Canada will need to submit a language test.

The School of Graduate Studies will not issue waivers based on language tests. Applications will not go for review until the language requirement has been met and uploaded to the application.


An international applicant is not required to submit proof of English Language proficiency if:

  1. The applicant has studied in an English-speaking institution for more than two years within the last five years.
  2. Applicants applying from one of the following countries:
  • American Samoa, Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Botswana, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Falkland Island, Fiji, Gambia, Ghana, Gibraltar, Grenada, Guam, Guyana, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Lesotho, Malta, Mauritius, Montserrat, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pacific Island Trust Territory, Ryukyu Island, Seychelles, Republic of Singapore, Republic of South Africa, St. Helena, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks & Caicos Islands, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, Virgin Islands, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Minimum language proficiency test scores

Some programs require a higher standard on these tests than the ones indicated as the minimum for the School of Graduate Studies. Consult the program listings to confirm that you meet the language requirements for that program.

A photocopy of the test scores for preliminary consideration may be submitted with your application until the official scores are received directly from the testing agency.

Applications will be regarded as incomplete without test scores.

If the School of Graduate Studies determines after admission that an individual's actual proficiency in English is not adequate, the student may be required to take a standardized English proficiency test at UNB or successfully complete a UNB English language course (AESL 6021 and/or AESL 6022) in order to maintain registration in their graduate program.

Language proficiency test scores

TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)

  • Computer Based TOEFL (minimum score 213) including the Test of Written English — TWE (minimum score of 4.0)
  • Internet Based TOEFL (Minimum score of 94) including the Test of Written English - TWE (minimum score of 25)
  • Paper Based (minimum score of 550), including the Test of Written English — TWE (minimum score 4.0)
  • TOEFL ITP is not accepted

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Academic Module

  • Online version not accepted.
  • Minimum score of band 7

MELAB (The Michigan English Language Assessment Battery)

  • Minimum score of 85%

CanTest (The Canadian Test of English for Scholars and Trainees)

  • Minimum score of band 4.5

Pearson Test of English (Academic)

  • Minimum score of 65

Duolingo and TOEFL Home Edition are no longer accepted.

Graduate record examinations (GRE)

Some programs require Graduate Record Examinations (GRE). Please review your program to see if GRE is an application requirement.

Research supervision

Some programs require a supervisor for research-based degrees as a part of the application process. To increase your chances of securing a supervisor, you are free to reach out by email to any faculty member. However, approaching a potential supervisor should be taken seriously.

Learn about the supervisors that most closely align with your potential research interests. Read some of their research papers that are of interest, tell them about your review of their work & provide a specific set of directions regarding that which you are interested in working on, and whether you might be flexible to work on other related topics.

Faculty members are listed under each program, or contact the program directly for a list of faculty members.

Be advised that supervisors receive a high volume of requests for supervision and that individual professors deal with these requests in different ways. They may take a long time to get back to you or inform you they are at capacity and cannot take new students, as capacity is limited in research-based programs.

Duration of graduate programs

Graduate students proceeding to the master’s degree by thesis must complete their work within four years of the date of their first registration, with most programs taking between one to three years to complete. Those proceeding to a doctoral degree must complete their work within seven years, with most programs taking between three to five years to complete.

All research- or thesis-based graduate programs offered by UNB involve the writing of a dissertation, thesis, or report, which must be defended at an oral examination. Students studying for one of these degrees at UNB, including international students, are reminded of this requirement and of the consequent need to remain at the University until the oral examination has been completed successfully.

Financial support

Applicants to the School of Graduate Studies at UNB who are neither Canadian citizens nor permanent residents of Canada should be aware that studying in Canada is expensive and that often the financial offers made to students may not be sufficient to cover all of your expenses.

Students from abroad are encouraged to apply for awards, such as:

  • The Commonwealth Scholarships;
  • The Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE), as well as;
  • Programs in their home countries that may provide support.

Browse the Awards Register for more information.

Health insurance

UNB Policy states that all international students who have student visas must purchase international health insurance. See Financial Services for details on these policies.

Upon arrival at UNB, you should immediately visit Financial Services to register and pay your tuition and associated fees. The registration for international health insurance (offered by Guard.Me.) will be triggered at this time and is included in your fees. You will receive a card with your policy number by email and you should print this and carry it with you. This insurance will provide you with emergency health coverage up to 14 days prior to the beginning of the program start date.

Prior to your arrival, UNB’s international insurance is not in place. If you wish to have coverage prior to activation of UNB’s international insurance, you should arrange personal insurance coverage.

Most international students will be eligible to apply for New Brunswick Medicare coverage. Once you have proof of residency, your social insurance number and confirmation of enrolment, you should apply for Medicare with the Province of New Brunswick.

International student support

If you are an international student, our advisors on the Fredericton campus and the Saint John campus will work with you to ensure that you have a meaningful academic, professional and cultural experience from the first day of classes until graduation.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada: Study permit applications are processed by Visa offices outside Canada and processing times can vary by location.