Location: Saanich, BC, Canada
Percent Women: 55%
Tuition (per semester): About $3500 and higher depending on number of courses and faculty
Most Popular Faculty: Social Science
Greek Life: Yes and no. Sororities and fraternities are not officially associated with UVic but they exist and function outside of it.
Acceptance Rate: 74%
For more information about financial aid, scholarships, majors, study abroad, and average test scores, visit UVic's website at www.uvic.ca/home/admissions/.
Why Choose UVic?
“I really love the west coast! That was probably the biggest part of my applying to UVic. Not only did the school have a fantastic reputation for academics, but the ocean is just down the street, which is obviously a perk. “
“As someone who lives on the Mainland going to UVic gives me the opportunity to be independent but be comfortable knowing that my family are only a ferry ride away! It's just far away enough that your parents don't drive you crazy but close enough that you can run to mum when you're homesick.”
"I applied to Uvic for the incredibly beautiful campus (we are so lucky!), the amazing Co-Op and volunteer opportunities and because I was looking for an adventure. I had never been to the West Coast before (Toronto native) so I figured attending Uvic was my excuse to get out of my comfort zone and experience new things!"
“I got more financial support from UVic than I would have expected from other institutions.”
"I applied to UVic because of its close proximity to home, but at the same time I have my space. I am originally from Richmond BC, so the independence was an appealing aspect. A large part in choosing a post secondary institution is the reputation, and UVic had a good one! They had the program and I wanted and once I got accepted everything just fell into place."
"Uvic is a great choice for me because it has a lot of positions and options I have been able to fill. I personally believe the competition at some other schools would have been too much for me . All I know is I would not be able to have the opportunities I have had here at Uvic (that I feel will be very helpful later in life) if I went to a really large, competitive school."
"It was the perfect distance to be living on my own but not too far away from home. They had my program and accepted me. Good enough for me!"
"I applied because I loved the campus. Everything was so close and easy to get to, the campus is beautiful and not intimidating. I was looking into a specific program and UVic had one of the best. I loved how easy applying was, how quickly you were emailed back and responded to, and the process was quick and easy."
“Favourite part would probably have to be location. It’s far enough from downtown that you get that suburban feel, plus the beach that is so close by. It’s also not too big, which is really great. When you go to school so far away from home, it’s nice to feel comfortable and safe, which is exactly how I feel at UVic.”
"The people. Everyone is so welcoming and friendly and the professors are very helpful."
“The campus is just large enough! It’s spacious enough so that it is never really crowded but small enough that I don’t feel like I'm lost in a miniature university city.”
"I really love the location of the campus, and I love living in Victoria. Being a Vike is great because there is a total sense of community amongst the UVic students. Being a a Vike is like having a big family around you, all the time."
“ I love that UVic is big on sustainability! There are water refill stations everywhere and a lot of the take away stuff is compostable.”
“We have a movie theatre on campus that plays a pretty good selection of movies.”
"I wasn't wrong - Uvic has a beautiful campus which continues to amaze me everyday. I love the professors and research opportunities (as a psych student, there are always chances for you to participate in studies). I also love that Uvic is all about being local by having no chains on campus."
"My favourite part about the school is the laid back aspect. Its like I’m studying with a bunch of hippies and it makes me relaxed and comfortable. The professors so far have been better than I was expecting! Everyone always has scary stories about them, but they are all nice and helpful. School traditions? I don’t know if we even have any.."
“As universities go, UVic really new. 50 years is nothing compared to some of the schools who have been here for over 100 years. The problem with that is, many of the buildings have yet to be remodelled since they were originally built, making many things outdated. However, the school has started making renovations and improvements, meaning in a few years it will be nothing but state-of-the-art. “
"The library needs longer hours, and longer bus hours to match."
"I never had a hard time getting into the classes I wanted, nor have I used an academic advisor. I like the study lounges in the library as well as in buildings like Clearihue and Cornett when there are empty classrooms."
" UVic Food Services doesn’t allow franchises on campus, which means there isn’t a lot of options in terms of eating. It can get pretty boring eating at the same couple of locations when you live on res. Having a Starbucks or Tim Horton’s on campus would be nice.”
"I don’t have many complaints about the school. Everyone has been friendly and kind; I just wish we had California weather 365 days a year.""I think UVic needs to improve the amount of classes offered for certain faculties like Writing. I think they need to really emphasize in first year which courses are required and prerequisites for people's chosen majors so that they aren't stuck taking first year courses in second or third year. I also think that the food in the cafeteria should be improved, living on campus with the same foods being offered the whole year on rotation became very difficult.""I think Uvic has started in a great direction as a sustainable university but still has a long way to go. I would love to see more compost accessibility. Another thing would be to try and incorporate more seating area for BiblioCafe and Mystic Market - these are both great locations for food and studying but it fills up fast!"
New Collegiette on Campus
“It was so easy to meet people in my year because of Uvic’s first year guarantee for residence. Almost everyone is in first year so you’re bound to be neighbours with somebody you have class with.”
"First year was a great way to get to know people quickly. Orientation was informative and the room was a higher standard dorm room. The people were nice."
“Orientation really gives you a chance to connect with the people in your residence and your faculty. There is lots of music, food, free stuff and prizes. You meet so many people- you feel excited and nervous at the same time."
"I lived in a very nice building but it really depended on which building you lived. Some buildings are newly renovated and some aren't at all. Orientation allowed you to meet a lot of different people and first year was a lot of fun. It was a good step between living with your parents and really being out on your own in your own place in second year."
"First-year is pretty great at UVic. The residences are close together, so it's easy to meet new people on weekends and such. Living in residence really helps to make friends and get comfortable around campus."
"Everyone at UVic blends very cohesively so being a first year was a pleasant experience. First year students are guaranteed a spot in on campus residence. They are nice facilities and efficient. It was a nice experience to have. Orientations were usually thorough and the leaders were knowledgeable. Sometimes a little unenthusiastic, but nonetheless pleasant. The blend between different years of students is quite seamless. [People] [p]arty in our first year residences but not many [upperclassmen] usually know first years."
"It's great! Great relationships with residence."
All About Academics
“I know that the faculty of humanities is really popular at UVic, especially the English program. I think ocean sciences are also popular, considering the campus is so close to the water.""I think the school has been known for a great engineering program, and great English programs which is an amazing mix of strengths. In the first year, the most I have done is written a 2500 word essay, but that was only once. There aren’t large projects other than papers. The academic advisors are a little hard to get a hold of first year. It seems like they are always busy. You just have to be early and organized and everything runs smoothly. So far I’ve had little difficulty with the registration process. I have gotten most of the classes I’ve wanted. Hopefully I don’t jinx myself! The general requirements to get into the university are not difficult. The first year general courses are probably the worst because they are so broad. Later years, when you get to get into the nitty gritty, that’s when it gets good. For studying I personally prefer being at home, alone, where I can concentrate. When exam time comes, our library is FILLED, as if students are pouring out the edges."
"I've been lucky and haven't had a heavy course load yet. I've also only been taking a few english courses and mostly electives, so I usually know what the work load is like before I take the class."
"The UVic course load is manageable, it was much easier than I expected it to be and profs encourage visiting their office hours."
"5 courses is a good amount. I work part time and I volunteer frequently and I feel like i am managing 5 courses nicely."
Learn from the Best"Right now my favourite professor is Dr. Heather Tapley. She's my Women's Studies prof and totally great. Really funny and totally down-to-earth. All the profs I've had so far have been super approachable and friendly.""Favourite professor so far, probably my English 135 professor, Dr. Brock Macleod. He’s sarcastic and a little abrasive but going to his office hours made a big difference. Getting to know him and talk to him is probably the reason he’s my favourite. Personally, I go to office hours frequently for most of my professors. I believe its important to build a relationship with them. And if you need help who is going to know the subject better than the person with the PhD.""Favourite prof would have to be Gautam Srivastava. He is a computer science professor and absolutely fantastic. The perfect mixture of relaxed and helpful. Fav class so far would be CSC105. Amazingly informative class. If you need a computer science elective definitely that. Its not heavy on the programming and teaches a bunch of useful skills.""Overall I have had a very positive experience with faculty and classes. My favourite right now has got to be Healthy Sexuality with Dr. Charlotte Reading. Dr. Reading is an enthusiastic and witty lecturer who introduces us to relevant and interesting topics about sexual health, sexual stereotypes and redefining sexuality in today's society.""To be honest, during my first semester at UVic I definitely got to interact with and get to know some of my profs in class but I never went to office hours or to speak with them after class, In my second semester I did just that and it was so worth it. You get to know your teachers as more than just people who grade you but as human beings. I love running into old teachers and TAs and just being able to chat with them. A lot of professors are fair from what I have experienced and heard and many seem to sincerely care about helping you do your very best. Though there are complaints of dry/boring lectures, I feel like it's expected given that not everyone is teaching the most fascinating topic or was born with Morgan Freeman's smooth voice.""My favourite prof is Bruce Ravelli, he teaches the intro courses to Sociology and changed my entire outlook on university, my education, and where I wanted to go with my future. He is an amazing professor. UVic has a lot of incredibly talented profs and Ratemyprof.com is very useful."
Interests & Involvement
“UVic has a crazy amount of clubs, sports and extracurricular activities for basically everyone to join. From soccer and rugby, to student council and residence leadership committees, there is literally something for every kind of student."
"Uvic has over 200 clubs and course unions! At the beginning of each semester there is a clubs day to learn about whats going on in the school. Plus there are posters and flyers everywhere to advertise."
"Clubs tied to Vikes Nation get the most hype. There is a Clubs Day each semester to introduce us to all the clubs. Each club is also on the UVSS website and most have their own Facebook page."
“Clubs day is a two day event where you get to see A LOT of the clubs that are available at UVic. It makes it easier to find out what the club is about and to join.""There is a lot going on on campus. The best way to find out about clubs is word of mouth. What other people say, previous or current members etc. We have clubs day and everything but its just a very general idea. Most extracurriculars I've been a part of have been pleasant and organized. Starting your own club is easy enough if your dedicated!""UVic has a wide variety of clubs, and if you are interested in something you can create a club as well. You find out about clubs at Club Days where clubs set up booths on campus and you can meet with members, learn about what they do, and sign up!"
“We have some big days here. Days of Thunder gets a whole lot of people out. Everyone is painted in our school colours and everything is loud”
"Soccer, rowing, and basketball seem to be the most popular. Vikes Nation hosts many events around these games so many students are involved."
“There’s no football team here but rugby and basketball are pretty popular here.”
"There's a lot of team spirit for the basketball team and the soccer team. A lot of people usually go to the games."
“ I think there is okay team spirit for the major sports like basketball but for other sports there isn’t as much publicity or hype as there could be.”
“There so many intramurals to join. The most popular is hockey; every semester guys get up and are at the gym at 5 am just to line up to register!”
“Unfortunately, I do think that our athletics is sepearate from the rest of the student body. Just from talking to my friends none of us really know who’s even on the team. I think the player to “observee” relationship is super important”
"During basketball playoffs and most soccer games, team spirit is through the roof. Students get in school colours, paint their faces, and have a great time. We are a little limited because we don't have a football team."
"Since we don’t have a football team, I find we rally behind our basketball teams quite a bit. Vikes nation is our sports signature. We offer lots of different intramurals and there is lots of participation. I’m not a huge part of our athletic scene but from what I have done, it's been a great experience."
"I am not quite sure what the most popular sports teams are, lots of people participated in the soccer tournaments in the dorms, but I don't think our school has a lot of team spirit."
“ I will never understand why every girl seems to own Hunters, an oversized scarf and an army green jackets. There so many girls who dress like clones.”
"Uvic girls are incredibly well dressed. There are a lot more girls at UVic it seems, than boys."
“Girls at UVic definitely have their own style! Though there are some glaring trends, every girl is unique. I’ve seen girls in things I would NEVER dare to wear but they rock it.”
"60:40 girls to guys I believe. Girls seem to be into the green army jackets, ankle boots, infinity scarfs and long hair. People are pretty trendy and seem to follow casual, hippie, and indie fashions."
“There was a day to raise awareness about Violence Against Women with booths, food and performances. It was nice and that was where I learned that UVc has a women’s center [in the SUB] - anyone is free to just chill out there."
"We have more girls here than guys. I think the ratio is 3:2. Victoria girls are all kind of uniform, they have similar style. There is a little bit of limited racial diversity. I find the girls here like to party... maybe a little too much."
"UVic women have a very particular style. This school has a majority of girls, which isn’t necessarily a good or bad thing. Boys are intimidating, but at the same time, girls love boys. There are lots of women resource centers, empowerment organizations. We also have things for women safety like safe walks, a women help clinic. We have a prominent women studies program here as well."
"You can literally wear whatever you want here. People are super expressive with clothes and it's interesting to see so many different kinds of styles around campus. A lot of girls are into being outdoors too -- hiking, running, that sort of thing."
Food and Drink
“Perogies are the best food days hands down. The line is always so long but SOO worth it. It gets better because the side is usually tater tots."
"The food needs work. Cafeteria food was good in the beginning but didn't change the entire year. It got frustrating."
“I am so sick of food on res. It’s extremely hard to eat healthy on campus especially if you’re picky and don’t want the daily specials."
“VGs is nice and all but having only one place consistently selling vegetarian food on res makes it hard to have variety.”
"It's not my mothers cooking but it's pretty good. The food services here make an effort to incorporate, vegan, gluten free ad vegetarian options which is awesome."
"The food is frequently organic and they are health conscious in their choice of variety of foods. With our vast assortment of dining areas, unfortunately there aren’t any chain restaurants on campus; the closest ones are usually about 20 minute walks away. If anything it’s a good thing so I lessen my fast food intake. My favourite things I look forward to are perogies and peanut butter banana smoothies on Fridays. It's kind of a big deal."
"Eating on campus is great. Lots of variety and it is all quite nice. Nothing really near campus. Can't get any chain food without taking a bus."
"Food on campus is pretty good. Not always super healthy, but convenient when you live in Residence."
“The first week is always the loudest! But it’s hard to have parties on campus becuase Security is pretty good at shutting things down. Luckily there’s usually an off campus house party going on somewhere.”
"People party a ton, but as the year went on the amount of partying slowed down and moved to off campus parties or cluster. I didn't find pressure in drinking, as I don't drink, I actually found people a lot more understanding and not judgemental than people in high school when I told them I didn't drink. I was lucky because the people I made friends with on my floor loved to just hang out all together, play pool downtown, watch movies in the lounge, and just be together. "
“The best part about going to school in Canada is that the legal drinking age is 19. There are plenty of pubs to visit and Felicitas [ our campus bar] is always there.”
"People definitely party here! I think in first year there is definitely a stigma around getting intoxicated to have fun which really needs to be denounced. "
“ I choose UVic because I love nature. There are quite a few places to hike and campus is absolutely gorgeoeus surrounded by thick trees. It’s easy to find some people to go enjoy the outdoors with- there’s even a club for it I think.”
"There is quite a bit of partying on campus and off campus. I'm not really into partying, but when I do go out with my friends, there's never a real pressure to drink. As long as you're having a good time, people will want to have a good time with you too."
“Living a couple of hours from a really big city , Vancouver, is awesome because so many [musical] artists visit. Planning to see your favourite band perform is kind of fun because it’s literally planning a mini vacation."
"On weekends we have the normal parties, and bar hopping, and club hopping. I’m not much of a party person myself so I don’t know much. We have one fraternity and one sorority, that are not too prominent on campus but they are a great building block and place to get to know people and make life long friends. After the first year on campus parties, they move on to house parties and clubbing I assume haha I don’t know much like I said. Drugs and alcohol seems to be of normal prominence, the same they would be at any university. My personal alternatives to a night out drinking are pretty boring: studying, reading, watching movies with friends, or trying out new recipes at home. Partying is a way to get to know new people, and network a little bit. At night, you can always find something going on. It's such an inclusive place and everyone seems to get along really well."
"Uvic for a few years, was known as the party school, when it came ot universities in BC. Partying is pretty big here and people do like to have a good time. If you are underaged there is not much to do here with the limited night bus services etc. During the weekends I am most likely studying."
“I didn’t end up in the building I wanted and I also didn’t want a roommate but I ended up with one anyway . I really like where I was living in the end in but in the beginning I was definitely not a happy camper.”
"This is my second year in res and love it. The buildings aren't anything special but you have friends close by and it makes the trip to class much easier."
“Getting into residence after first year is really hard, in part because of the first year guarantee so lots of people move out after first year. There are lots of places near campus and I missed having a kitchen and own space.”
"The residence life on campus is pretty good. Depending on the building you're in, it's either super tight-knit, or like living in an apartment building. I liked living on Res, but I'm glad I only had to do it once."
"This is my second year in res and love it. The buildings aren't anything special but you have friends close by and it makes the trip to class much easier."
“Cluster [the apartment style residences] are run on a lottery. It’s best to have an off campus back up plan just in case. Getting a unit is just not very likely”
"I lived on res and it was a good experience. I would for sure recommend it for first years. It prepares you for living on campus second year because you get the independence, responsibility, and freedom of living on your own without having to worry about rent payments and food while you're studying. Then second year you just add a few more responsibilities but you get to live with people you choose and avoid the party scene."
“There are lots of activities in my dorm! Maybe it was because we were themed but we had Halloween and other holiday centered events, movies nights, dinners and trips to explore Victoria. “"Freshman life is not as intimidating as it seems. The housing options are endless, from our theme buildings, you can have roommates, or singles, we even have entire houses for a group of friends to live together. Victoria is one of the safest places I know, other than our frequent deer visits at night, and you’re pretty safe here. Our entire campus is based upon a circle. The inside contains most of the academic buildings and on a portion of the outside circle, is where the dorms are located. So seconds away from your classes or anything you need. First years have the option to live on campus, they are guaranteed. There are a handful of upperclassmen that live on campus that win a spot during the lottery. Because of the cohesion that naturally appears between everyone from freshman to seniors, there is no need for many bonding activities and such. We are exposed to upperclassmen that we get to know particularly well who are our Community Leaders."
"I lived in res and I found my one year there to be more than enough. I enjoyed meeting people but now I live on my own and it's wonderful. I am fairly introverted and being by myself is extremely comforting."
“Victoria really is one of the coolest cities in Canada. It’s the perfect size, in that the downtown core offers a variety of things to do, but it’s also easy to get out of the city atmosphere and enjoy hiking, boating and the beaches. The campus is located 10 minutes away from the beach, coffee shops, restaurants, etc. Anything you could want is usually really close by. It’s super easy to get downtown from campus, which is often something students might worry about, especially if they’re not from the city. The location is great and so is the city.”
“West Coast Waffles will legit put almost anything on your waffle and they are open until 2am. I’ve been there for random waffle runs with my friends.”
“ I love the transit system. There is always a bus headed to UVic from everywhere.”
“Coming from a small town, I found Victoria really exciting. There is a lot more shopping options available and Hillside and Mayfair are definitely the best malls”
"Victoria is a very safe place. Though the UVic campus is a little far from downtown, its not that big of an issue. The entire area is not that big and you can probably explore most of it within a day or two. Nightlife is also located downtown, luckily I live there so I’m right in the center of the action. My favourite thing to do in Victoria is to walk along the water. There is so many great boardwalks along the water. They are pretty and romantic, it's cute. The nightlife, especially if you are underage, is limited. Finding a decent late night dinner, that isn’t Mcdonalds, is harder than I thought it would be."
"I do not like the uniformity of Victoria. I feel like everyone here fits into a few categories and that's it. I like the school. UVic is great in the means of education, which is what I'm here for."
"Victoria is beautiful and a nice place to live between places when you're attending university. I really like Downtown Victoria. I don't like, however, how judgmental people can be in Victoria, how they will butt into your conversations in random places, share their unwanted opinion, and how cliquey the place is. I also don't like how early places close every day and on weekends; it makes necessities difficult to get to."
HC's Complete College Guide: University of Victoria
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