Incoming Exchange Students

For a list of the basic medical science courses offered  that are available at Western University to incoming exchange students, click here. Please note that not all basic medical science courses are available to incoming exchange students.

Western BMSc Students - interested in an international exchange?

Students pursuing a BMSc degree should follows these steps, if interested in an International Exchange:

Find out general information about the International Exchange Program

Check the International Exchange Program website for:

  • Information Sessions about international learning in general, as well as international exchanges
    • go to a session!
  • Destinations and Programs
  • Key Dates (for exchange applications, etc.)
  • How to apply
  • What to do if you are approved for an exchange, etc.

See the BMSUE Coordinator before you apply for an exchange

See the BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon) during her drop-in hours before you apply for an international exchange to find out:

  • the impact an exchange will have on the completion of the module you wish to pursue in the BMSc Program
    • how is admission to Honors Specialization modules impacted by completing all/part of Year 3 on exchange?
  • the legwork you should put into researching potential exchange institutions
  • the process for having courses evaluated for transfer between an exchange institution and Western

Explore the potential exchange institutions

Before deciding (i) whether to apply for a full-year or a one-term exchange, and (ii) to which institution(s) you would like to apply :

  • check which courses you must complete by the end of Year 3 to be eligible to apply to the Honors Specialization module (or Double Major modules) you want in Year 4
  • check the website of each potential exchange institution to see if it looks like the courses you need are offered
  • check with your top choice of potential exchange institutions (if possible) to find out in which terms these courses are offered

Have courses evaluated to see which schools might be a good fit for you

Consult with departmental counsellors of the departments offering the courses that you want to take to find out if the courses offered at the exchange institution can be used in place of the courses you need at Western before Year 4.

See what kind of information a departmental counsellor will want to see when looking at courses for evaluation and equivalency.

Submit your request for an academic reference and your exchange application

Submit your application for an international exchange by the deadline (instructions and application deadlines are posted in Atlas when you click on a particular institution's exchange).

When submitting your request for an Academic Reference, choose Kathy Boon (BMSUE Coordinator) and email her to set up a meeting to go over the academic impact of an exchange on the completion of your desired module.

Submit your Course Approvals Form (after you have been approved for an exchange)

The Course Approvals Form (available at Western International after you've been selected to participate in the exchange program), needs to be completed:

  • If you had your courses pre-evaluated by departmental representatives, then bring/send via email confirmation of their evaluations to the BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon)
  • If you did not have your courses pre-evaluated (or you don't have anything in writing or an email from the departmental representatives), then contact or take your form to the departmental representatives from Science and/or Basic Medical Science departments, and other departments at Western offering the courses you wish to take, and then bring/email the evaluations to the BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon)

The BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon) will review the evaluations from the departmental representatives, discuss how the total number of courses taken at the exchange institution will transfer back to Western, and sign off as the decanal represenatative.

Other things to do

The steps above highlight what needs to be done in terms of course evaluation, etc., in conjuction with the BMSUE Coordinator and departmental representatives.

There are other things that Western International will need you to do - check the International Exchange Program and review the FAQs on the website for the International Exchange Program.

Make sure you are knowledgeable about the funding opportunities for exchanges.

Upon arrival at the exchange institution, students occasionally find it necessary to revise their course selection. Students should contact the BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon) if they find themselves in this situation and new courses will be evaluated/approved.

Courses taken on an exchange appear on Western academic records and official transcripts as PASS (or FAIL), only. Students applying to professional schools, graduate programs, etc. will usually be required to submit transcripts from both Western and the exchange institution during the application process.

Things to keep in mind:

If students are admitted to a particular Honors Specialization module for Year 3 BMSc ...

  • and wish to participate in a full-year international exchange in Year 3, they must complete ALL of the courses listed in the Weighted Average Chart while on their exchange to be assured their spot in the same Honors Specialization module for Year 4.
  • and wish to participate in a one-term exchange in Year 3, they must complete ALL of the courses listed in the Weighted Average Chart during the two terms (one on exchange and one at Western) but they may or may not be assured a spot in Year 4 of the Honors Specialization module to which they were admitted in Year 3. It will depend on the number of modular courses completed during the term at Western and whether or not a partial Weighted Average will be used for admission to the Honors Specialization module in Year 4. Check with the BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon) during drop-in hours for clarification

If students are NOT admitted to a particular Honors Specialization module for Year 3 BMSc ...

  • they may still apply for admission to the desired Honors Specialization module for Year 4 but might not be considered for admission even if they complete ALL of the courses listed in the Weighted Average Chart while on exchange. See the BMSUE Coordinator (Kathy Boon) for details.

Students who are interested in participating in an exchange in Year 4 BMSc ...

  • must complete at least half of their 4000-level courses at Western
  • may not complete their Year 4 capstone course (research project or MedSci 4900F/G and 4930F/G) at an exchange institution


Students in the Honors Specialization in IMS should see below for the Year 4 exchange opportunity with VUMc in Amsterdam.

Completing an exchange within the 4 years of the BMSc Program is a very rewarding experience

Course selection can sometimes be challenging, however, and students are strongly advised to consult with the BMSUE Coordinator early in the process.  In considering exchange institutions, students should carefully review the courses offered/available at the exchange institution and have the courses evaluated prior to applying to a particular exchange opportunity.

Go here to find information about the new exchange with VUMc (Amsterdam) for Year 4 Honors Specialization in IMS.