Why Study Languages at UBC Extended Learning?

  Open all |   Close all

Comprehensive Quality Programs
Our programs are taught by professional instructors in a variety of formats to meet the diverse needs of adult learners. Language and culture are intertwined to prepare you for meaningful communication in your language of study.
Experienced, Helpful Staff at Every Step
From your first phone call to your last day of class, you will be encouraged by instructors and staff who are specialized in second language teaching and who enjoy helping you with your studies. Our staff can help you determine your appropriate language level and staff members are always on site to help you achieve your language learning goals. A program assistant is available at all class times (even evenings and weekends) to direct you to the appropriate class, help you with program objectives or answer questions related to your studies. For online classes, a program assistant will be available to answer any questions about using Zoom or Canvas, and to help troubleshoot your access to the course.
Flexibility
Customizing Your Program
If you have specific objectives in the course you are taking, your experienced instructor will incorporate your needs into the course curriculum. Additional learning materials may also be provided for you to use between classes. Some courses may use a textbook, while others may not.

Choice of Format
Choose between in-class courses with extra online resources or fully online courses. Please read the answers to frequently asked questions about UBC Extended Learning's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and for more information on how we are temporarily changing how we offer courses and programs.

Learn at Your Own Pace
Tailor your learning at UBC with the guidance of your instructor. You can choose to change levels during a session or repeat a level for more practice.

Learner-Centred Approach
Instructors will adapt course content to accommodate learners' needs and skills. You will be an active participant in your learning and activities will relate to your real-life needs. You will also have access to online resources for extra learning support.

Real-time and Self-paced Online Learning
Our reading and writing courses are entirely self-paced. The instructor releases a new module each week, and you can complete the work at your own pace.
Online conversation classes take place in a virtual classroom using Zoom for two hours at a set time each week. Additional resources can be accessed in the Canvas online learning management system outside of class hours to complement real-time sessions with your instructor.

Recognition of Your Achievement
You can request a letter of attendance stating your language level at the end of a session provided your attendance meets the course requirements. Information is available in your Canvas shell under the Student Information tab on the homepage of your course.
Classroom Locations
Signage is posted at UBC Robson Square and the Buchanan Building on the UBC Vancouver campus to direct you to your classroom. You will find the name of your class and instructor beside the room number. On the first day of classes, program staff can help you find your way.
Our classrooms are designed with modern features for comfort and efficiency, and to enhance your language learning experience. UBC Robson Square is located in the heart of downtown Vancouver near transit. Our UBC Vancouver classrooms are located at the north end of campus, close to parking and transit, as well as cafes, eateries and restaurants.
Certificate Programs
For intensive, longer-term training in French and Spanish, consider taking one of our officially recognized UBC certificate programs (150 hours or more of instruction). These programs are offered in a part-time format to accommodate students who work full-time or have other commitments. Blended formats offer the best of both in-person and distance education, while our 100% online options can be taken from anywhere. Certificate programs are available in French Language and Culture and Practical and Business Spanish.
Award of Achievement Programs
Award of Achievement programs provide training in languages in a shorter format than our certificate programs (70 hours or more of instruction). Award of Achievement programs are available in French, Spanish, American Sign Language and Chinese. You commit to completing four courses and progress two levels in the language of your choice.
Partnerships at UBC
For more than 30 years, UBC Extended Learning has offered outstanding language learning. With the help of our international, local and UBC partners, we have continued to expand our motto "Learn the Language, Live the Culture" by providing interdisciplinary offerings that allow students to explore the cultures of the languages they are pursuing.
We collaborate with the following faculties and academic units:

  • UBC Faculty of Arts
  • UBC Faculty of Education
  • UBC Centre for Intercultural Language Studies
Discounts for Participants 65 and Over and UBC Students
Those 65 or older will receive a $25 discount on registration. Proof of age may be requested at time of registration. UBC Students and alumni also qualify for a $25 discount. A valid student card or proof of alumni status must be provided upon registration. These discounts are not available through online registration and cannot be combined with any other discount. Please call 604 822 1444 to register.