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Fields of Study: Humanities, Social Sciences, Science, Engineering

At McGill University you can choose from a wide array of academic disciplines (most subjects are available). Enrolling directly in the large university, you can really immerse yourself in the academic culture as you take courses alongside both local and international students...

Unique study opportunities

  • Compare Canadian and US government and politics.
  • Refine or advance your French language skills.
  • Explore the sociology of gender or ethnic relations.


Language of Instruction:

Language Study: Optional

Although all courses are available in English, you can also take advantage of Montreal’s French-speaking heritage and enroll in French courses. To enroll in any French course, including beginners’ French, all you need to do is take a placement test. You can also study other languages through the Languages, Literatures, and Cultures department.

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

  • Take a full-time course of study: a minimum of four courses and a minimum of 24 quarter/16 semester UC units. Most courses at McGill are 3 units which is 6 quarter/4 semester UC units.
  • You can take one of your four courses per term on a pass/no pass basis.

Current Program Courses

While many departments are open to international students, others have limited or no availability of courses. Check the availability of courses in each department before deciding on your academic plan.

Course numbers at McGill are used to identify the UC division of the course: 100s are considered lower division; 200s are considered lower or upper division on a case-by-case basis; 300s and 400s usually considered upper division; 500+ are graduate-level courses are considered upper-division or graduate level on a course-by-course basis.

Course Restrictions

If you want to take science courses, you will need to work with McGill University’s advisor for incoming science exchange students. There are some departments (e.g., biochemistry, anatomy, pharmacology, and physiology) that have restrictions for their courses.

You are allowed to take anatomy courses only if you have the prerequisite courses and an email confirmation from your departmental advisor at UC.

The following are not available to exchange students:

  • Desautels Faculty of Management
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Law
  • Professional programs, such as Medicine and Dentistry
  • Research project courses and thesis courses
  • Centre for Continuing Education

Research, independent study, and internships are typically not available in this program.

Catalogs and resources

See McGill University’s eCalendar (search tips are at the bottom of the linked page):

  • The new course schedule for the fall term is published sometime in March. To get a general sense of which courses you would like to take, last year’s calendar should suffice - generally the same courses are offered in the same term.
  • In order to obtain syllabi, visit the departmental pages to see if the course descriptions and syllabi are available. You might also consider contacting the professor who last taught the course to get a copy of the syllabus. There is no guarantee however, that the same professor will be teaching the course or that the content will remain the same for the next session.

More catalogs and resources:

Academic culture

McGill University has a rigorous academic schedule, and coursework and grading are competitive. Students work independently, with less direction, and receive very few in-term tests and exams. The advantage of such a system is that you can set the agenda of your own education and tailor it to your interests.

Depending on your area of study, a course grade may be entirely dependent on one or two big exams or you may be graded on class participation as well as regular quizzes, presentations, or papers. Some courses may have lab, tutorial, or discussion components which also contribute to a final course grade.


You will earn direct UC credit and grades for all coursework.

Grades for this program are usually available in January for fall semester students and June for spring semester and year students. Requests for early grades cannot be accommodated.