Kwantlen Polytechnic University

Kwantlen Polytechnic University | Surrey, B.C. | Founded 1981

Kwantlen Polytechnic Campus

Surrey Campus of KPU (Courtesy of Kwantlen Polytechnic University)

Kwantlen offers a range of degree, diploma and certificate programs and is profiled in both the Maclean’s Universities Guidebook and the Maclean’s Colleges Guide. To learn more about the school’s diploma programs, see the Colleges Guide profile.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University offers more than 170 programs—a wide range of degree programs as well as trades, vocational education and qualifying studies—designed with flexibility in mind. Students may build on applied and technical programs by bridging certificate and diploma credentials into bachelor’s degrees. The university recently added a number of graduate and post-baccalaureate diplomas.

Class sizes are kept small; the maximum is 35 students. Co-op education and international learning opportunities are available in many programs. The university also offers the Zero Textbook Cost initiative; students can choose from nearly 850 courses that don’t require the purchase of expensive textbooks, thanks to open educational resources and library materials. KPU’s “intensive learning environment blends theory with practice and is recognized for its extensive engagement with its communities,” says president Alan Davis, who adds that the university “serves one of the fastest-growing regions in the country.”

The school is well established in the Lower Mainland, deepening its local roots through a program of dual-credit pathways—offering some post-secondary courses to high school students from nearby school districts. KPU has five campuses, each with a feel and culture all its own. The largest campus, Surrey, is a hub of activity with a student art gallery, Indigenous Gathering Place, gym and conference centre. Richmond and the new Civic Plaza campus, also located in Surrey, have a metropolitan vibe, while Langley and Cloverdale are closer to more rural areas.

READ: An insider’s guide to the best hangover breakfast, place to study and more on campus

Standout Programs
Product Design: Students get hands-on experience with the entire design process. They develop technical skills and explore ethical, sustainable ways to turn ideas into marketable products.
Human Resources Management: This program focuses on critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Students learn to create and run HR initiatives, evaluate arguments and navigate corporate citizenship.
Policy Studies: Students apply sustainability knowledge to real-world, community-based projects through applied seminars, a practicum and CityLab courses in partnership with Surrey city staff.

Cool Courses
Technical Apparel Design Capstone Project: In the program’s final course, students design a high quality prototype that addresses a functional apparel problem.
3D Futures: Explore the ways technology, including digital tools such as augmented reality and 3D scanning, will affect the fashion industry. Create and present a proposal for a fashion product.

Tuition (includes compulsory ancillary fees)
$5,677
Minimum Entering Grades
Arts, Science, Commerce: high school diploma; min. grade of C+ in English 12 or equivalent · Engineering: 87.3%
Student Body
Undergraduates: Full-time: 9,705 · Part-time: 3,300
Graduates: Full-time: 90 · Part-time: 2
International Students: First-year: 24% ·
Graduate: 98%
Male-Female Ratio: 45 to 55
Housing Facts
Residence: Not offered

More Schools: Thompson Rivers UniversityKwantlen Polytechnic UniversityVancouver Island University, Capilano University, Douglas College