UBC Sauder Application & Video Interview Questions

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Examples & Interview Questions

If you are looking for guidance on the UBC Sauder BCom application, including Personal Profile examples and video interview questions prep, then you’ve come to the right place. 

This Application Prep guide is fully updated with the 2021-2022 application.

Before you dive in, it’s important to understand that the admissions committee receives thousands of applications every year. To help set you apart from the crowd, you need to demonstrate a clear sense of self, strong life experience, and exemplary communication skills.

Our ‘full student’ coaching process does exactly that. If you’re not working with a coach, be sure to read the Self-Awareness, Goal-Setting, and Narrative Communication Skills Guides.

The Narrative Communication Approach™ is a particularly useful storytelling framework that helps you tell a clear and concise story, while creating an emotional connection with the reader. All UBC Sauder BCom essay examples and templates use this approach.

We use essay templates to show you a suggested essay structure that uses the Narrative Communication Approach™. Using this structure does not mean your essays will be the same as other students. That’s like saying using the Three-Act Structure makes every play, movie, and novel the same. The content of that story makes it unique.

We’ve also created a comprehensive Interview Skills Guide that covers every step of the interview process so you can ace any question that comes your way. Check it out before getting started below!

If you’re serious about getting into UBC Sauder School of Business and reaching your fullest post-secondary potential, connect with a Youth Coach. It’s never too early to receive coaching.

Table of Contents: 
  1. Personal Profile: Breakdown and overview; Templates; Examples; Tips for writing; and More.  
  2. Video Interview: Tips for preparing; Possible questions; Example responses; Question themes; and More.

2021/2022 UBC Sauder Application

UBC Sauder 2022 Fall Application – Overview

The UBC Sauder Application is made up of two parts (see below for how each is evaluated): 

  1. Personal Profile: A series of experience/interest questions as well as a ‘resume’ style list of activities/accomplishments and the contact info for two references. 
  2. Timed Video Responses: 2 randomly generated video interview questions.  

The admissions committee evaluates your entire online application as well as your academic performance, using this breakdown:

  • 30%: Personal Profile
  • 20%: Video Interview
  • 50%: Grades

Based on this evaluation, your Personal Profile and video interview account for 50% of your overall evaluation. That’s A LOT, making these app components the difference maker for your acceptance or rejection from the program. 

Since your grades can only get you so far, you need to spend extra time thinking about and preparing your Personal Profile and video interview responses, and finding unique and memorable ways to showcase your experiences, interests, leadership potential, and suitability to the UBC Sauder BCom program. 

This is exactly why we created this App Guide — to help you write the best essays and prepare you for your video interview so you can stand out from the crowd. 

Keep reading for UBC Sauder Personal Profile examples and templates, as well as a breakdown of possible questions and tips to prepare the for video interview questions. 

If you need help creating a unique and authentic application that will help you increase your chances of admission success, connect with a coach for 1-on-1 support.

REMEMBER: The application for UBC Sauder BCom must be submitted by January 15, 2022 at 11:59pm PST. The entire application must be submitted through a platform called EducationPlannerBC, where you will write your Personal Profile. The video responses are completed through a third-party site called Vidcruiter. Once you have recorded your responses, you will copy and paste the confirmation URL from Vidcruiter into your EducationPlannerBC application. 

Keep reading for UBC Sauder BCom Personal Profile examples and templates, as well as a breakdown of possible questions and tips to prepare the video interview. 

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Overview

Your Personal Profile is made up of short written essays with 6 questions that are focused on your experiences, leadership opportunities, interests, and more.

As mentioned above, your Personal Profile counts for 30% of your overall evaluation. This means that it’s one of the most important parts of your application and can mean the difference between acceptance and rejection.

The Personal Profile is so important because it’s one of the few opportunities you have to tell the admission committee more about who you are and where you’ve come from. 

You want to leave a great first impression on the admissions committee, and one of the ways you can do that is by giving insight into how you’ve made it to where you are today and why you’d be a great fit for the UBC Sauder BCom program. 

Not sure how to do that? Keep reading for explanations for each question, as well as templates and examples to help you write the best Personal Profile possible.

COACH’S TIP: Write your essay responses BEFORE you start your online application, so that you have time to rewrite, edit, and polish your answers. When you sign in, you will have to upload your answers immediately. 

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Question 1

Explain how you responded to a problem and/or an unfamiliar situation. What did you do, what was the outcome, and what did you learn from the experience?” (Maximum 1,500 characters)

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 1 – Breakdown

As the first question in your Personal Profile, this is where you have the opportunity to make a strong first impression.

This question prompts you to discuss a meaningful experience, where you were required to address a challenge or uncomfortable situation. The important thing here isn’t so much what the situation was, but how you handled adversity and what you learned from it

Maybe you learned a new strategy for being a leader, or you saw the benefits of getting outside of your comfort zone, or you learned something about yourself.

Go beyond the surface and try to think of a problem/unfamiliar situation that will allow you to provide deep insight and self-awareness. Be as unique as possible, drawing out a learning outcome that is unexpected and memorable. 

COACH’S TIP: Paint a vivid and detailed picture as much as possible, showing who you were before this problem and/or unfamiliar situation happened, and then what your initial reaction was, and how you resolved it. Let your personality shine through, while taking the reader on the journey with you. 

Choose only experiences where you have a clear learning outcome that has changed who you are and how you view the world. You want to make sure that your answer has substance. 

The reviewers want to see that you’ve really thought about why this learning outcome is important and how it can be applied to your life today (and in the future). If you can do this, we guarantee that your essay will stand out from other applicants. 

Not sure how to communicate your personal growth and learning in essay questions like these? Our Narrative Communication Guide is a great place to start, and you can also connect with a coach to take your essay response to the next level. 

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 1 – Template

Get started on your template here (click File > Make a copy and save it to your computer).

REMEMBER: There is a 1,500 character limit for this answer. 

Here’s a template that follows our Narrative Communication Approach:

  • Hook (~100 characters) – Optional
    • Quickly capture the reader’s attention and set up the essay so they know what to expect.
  • Context (~200 characters)
    • Set the scene with who you were before this problem/unfamiliar situation happened using the 5Ws (Why, What, When, Where, Why). If you can, focus on explaining who you were before this problem/situation occurred, like what you believed in, valued, etc.  
  • Catalyst (~200 characters)
    • Describe the problem/unfamiliar situation and exactly what happened. Paint the picture vividly with your words and try to give enough detail so the reader feels like they are there with you. Briefly describe your emotions when this problem/situation occurred. 
  • Outcome (~350 characters)
    • Discuss how you responded to this problem and/or unfamiliar situation, and what happened because the situation occurred (this is the ‘after’ scenario that you introduced in the Context section). 
  • Reflection (~650 characters)
    • Provide deep insight into some specific learning outcomes that occurred during this experience. Focus on 1-2 themes, while providing specific examples of the impact this experience had on your life today. Finally, write 1-2 sentences about how this experience will help you as a student in the UBC Sauder BCom program.
UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 1 – Example

Here’s an example of how to answer this question.

REMEMBER: These examples are examples ONLY and are not meant for you to copy.

ubc sauder application

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UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Question 2

“Give us an example of how the pandemic has changed your involvement in the community or group most important to you. What have you learned from this experience? (Maximum 1500 characters)”

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 2 – Breakdown

This question is similar to Question 1 because it again asks you to discuss your ability to adapt and learn during difficult situations. Think of the pandemic here as similar to the problem/unfamiliar situation you talked about in Question 1. 

Then, take it one step further and give insight into who you are by describing the causes, activities, and community initiatives you care most about.

Even though we know that COVID was super stressful for everyone, don’t be overly negative in your answer. Instead, draw out 1-2 positive opportunities and experiences it has provided to you as a leader, like pivoting your perspective or driving personal growth and change, teaching you something you didn’t know about yourself, evolving your skills, etc. 

Similar to Question 1, you should provide deep personal insight and learning outcomes, while using your chosen experience to highlight your passion, dedication, and commitment. Be as unique as possible. Go beyond simply saying “The pandemic was hard because everything closed.” Instead, paint the picture of your involvement in your community/group before COVID (‘before’) and then talk about how you faced this challenge and came out better in the end (‘after’). Take the reader on a journey with you, while describing your emotions and showcasing your personality.

For example, if you volunteer as Vice President Events and Fundraising at your local Salvation Army, you could use this experience as an example to talk about your how your interest in helping the underprivileged population of your community started because your parents immigrated to Canada when you were young and you saw how hard it was for them to make ends meet. This valuable context will help you establish a strong emotional connection with the reader (and it will make your answer more memorable). Then, you could move into the COVID-19 portion of the question, where you discuss how your involvement shifted and what you learned from that. 

The most important thing here is to write an authentic and memorable story that articulates who you are as well as your growth, learning, and change over time. To make this process easier for you, we’ve developed the Narrative Communication Approach™ so you can create memorable essays using storytelling. Read more about it here or connect with a coach to learn how to use it in your Personal Profile responses.

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 2 – Template

Get started on your template here (click File > Make a copy and save it to your computer).

Your essay should have these five components: 

  • Hook (~100 characters) – Optional
    • Quickly capture the reader’s attention and set up the essay so they know what to expect.
  • Context (~250 characters)
    • Discuss how you were involved in the community and/or a group that was particularly important to you before the pandemic. Paint a ‘before’ picture here, so that the real impact can be felt later on in the paragraph.  
  • Catalyst (~300 characters)
    • Describe in detail how COVID-19 changed everything about this community activity/group for you. Answer the questions: When COVID hit, what happened? Did it impact your involvement in the community/the group that was most important to you? What was the most difficult part and how did you respond? Describe your emotions as much as possible here.
  • Outcome (~350 characters)
    • Discuss how you responded to these challenges. Give 1-2 examples of the shift/changes you had to make and any effects this had on your community involvement/group. Finally, state what happened after all your efforts, listing quantifiable outcomes (i.e. money raised, hours worked, members added, etc.) as much as possible. 
  • Reflection (~500 characters)
    • Describe how this experience allowed you to learn and grow as a leader and student. Provide deep insight and a unique learning outcome. Focus on 1-2 themes, while providing specific examples of the impact this experience had on your life today. Finally, briefly state how you will use this learning at UBC Sauder.
UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 2 – Example

Here’s an example of how to answer this question:

ubc sauder application

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Question 3

List up to five activities or accomplishments in one or more of the following areas:

  • Athletics
  • Clubs
  • Creative and performing arts
  • Family and community
  • Service to others
  • Volunteering 
  • Work or employment
  • Other 
UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 3 – Breakdown

UBC Sauder wants to see a broad range of activities in your Personal Profile, both inside and outside of school. 

Choose extracurricular activities, like volunteer work or being a President of your school’s debate club, hobbies, like learning a new language, interests, like competitive swimming at your local community center, and/or even general activities you enjoy doing with your family, friends, or members of your community, like playing tennis. 

The point is here to choose activities and experiences that have created learning outcomes that have profoundly shaped who you are as a person. This will be especially important for Question 4 (which we’ll discuss more below). 

Choose up to 5 activities that will show the depth and breadth of your experiences. We call this the T Model (learn more about it here).

Here, you have 1-2 big activities that you’ve put a lot of time and effort into (this is the depth, or the vertical part of the ‘T’). For example, this could be a non-profit you started in your community, a fundraising event you organized to help address homelessness in your community, or giving a TEDx talk on an issue you are passionate about. These are BIG accomplishments that you’re super proud of. These should be the first ones in your Personal Profile, so you can wow the committee from the beginning. 🙂 

Next, you’ll have 2-3 activities that take less time and effort, but are still super important for helping shape who you are (this is the breadth, or the horizontal part of the ‘T’). For example, these could be an online course you took that ignited your interest in finance management or a summer internship you did that helped you develop your communication and leadership skills. 

Structuring your activities in this way will show the evaluators that you have well-rounded experience in many areas.  

COACH’S TIP: UBC Sauder receives thousands of applications per year, so creating a unique Personal Profile can be tough. We recommend choosing activities that demonstrate your initiative, teamwork, commitment, and achievement. If you are having trouble, connect with a coach and they will help you out. 

We know that identifying (and participating in) activities like this can be difficult, especially if you don’t know where to start. But don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Our unique approach will help you and your coach identify and execute audacious and authentic goals (we call these AYA goals) that are perfectly aligned with your interests and passions, so you can accomplish what you want (and have amazing experiences to talk about on your application). Connect with a coach to get started and check out our Goal-Setting Guide now.

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 3 – Template

Get started on your template here (click File > Make a copy and save it to your computer).

REMEMBER: There is a maximum of 300 characters per activity.

For this question, you will be asked for the following information: 

  • Activity Type: State what this activity is, using the list above. If your activity isn’t mentioned in that list, write a 1-2 word description.
  • Start Date: State when you began this activity (month/day/year) 
  • End Date (optional): State when you completed this activity (month/day/year). If you are still doing it, leave this blank.
  • Ongoing (optional): If this is an ongoing activity, check this box.
  • Frequency: Select from the dropdown menu how often you participate in this activity (for example ‘Regular Weekly Activity (5-10 hours per week).
  • Short Description (max 300 characters): Briefly describe your role in this activity and what it was for (e.g. President of your school’s economics club). Then, describe what you did, as well as what quantifiable outcomes (i.e. money earned, hours dedicated, etc.) and what you learned as a result of taking part in this activity (if you have space).

COACH’S TIP: On the EducationPlannerBC site, you will have to add each activity individually to your profile. Our template will ensure that you have all the correct information beforehand so you can have everything prepared and proofread.

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 3 – Example

Here’s an example of a list of activities for this question:

ubc sauder application

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Question 4

Tell us more about ONE or TWO activities listed above that are most important to you. Please explain the role you played and what you learned in the process. You will be asked for a reference who can speak to your response. (Maximum 2100 characters)

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 4 – Breakdown

This question gives you the chance to discuss further insight into the impact your experiences have had on you and how they’ve shaped who you are

We recommend choosing 1 activity to write your essay on so that you can provide enough detail and create a memorable and unique story. 

However, if you have two activities that both helped you discover a similar learning outcome, then you can write about 2.

For example, if you volunteered to help organize a fundraising event for Alzeheimer’s research and awareness, you could talk about why you took on this role, and then the leadership skills, time management, team work, and problem solving skills you developed along the way. Talking about this one activity using the template below is perfectly fine. However, let’s say you with the help of your Youth Coach you took your goals to the next level and started your own non-profit to continue the journey to fund research for this disease. This would be a great opportunity to discuss two activities because it shows your dedication and your evolving leadership and interest in entrepreneurship and business.

It’s also important to choose an activity that you genuinely care about, so that you can convey your passion to the admissions committee. Your experiences make up what you value and what you care about. If you completed your Student Identity Blueprint™, it will be really easy to choose activities that align to your Nurtured Values and communicate these values in your Personal Profile. If you haven’t filled out your Blueprint, connect with a coach to get started.

COACH’S TIP: Make sure you give your reference a heads up that UBC Sauder might contact them. Discuss the activity you were involved in, as well as your role, responsibilities, and what you learned as a result of that experience. You can even email some talking points for them to use when Sauder gets in touch with them. You don’t want your essay to give one learning outcome and then your reference to give another, so take the time to make sure the messaging is aligned.

Finally, when discussing what you learned in the process, make sure you really focus on the qualities that Sauder looks for in its students, like leadership, community involvement, team work, and a passion for business. 

If you need help deciding which activity from Question 3 to choose, connect with a coach for support. They can help you write an authentic and memorable response that will help you stand out from other applicants and increase your chances of admission success.

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 4 – Template

Get started on your template here (click File > Make a copy and save it to your computer).

Your essay should have these five components: 

  • Hook (~200 characters) – Optional
    • Quickly capture the reader’s attention and set up the essay so the reader knows what to expect.
  • Context (~400 characters)
    • State the activity that you are discussing from the list you gave in Question 3. Describe what you did in that activity (i.e. your role, responsibilities, etc.). Try to answer the 5Ws (who, what, when, where, and why). 
  • Catalyst (~500 characters)
    • Describe who you were before you started this activity and how your interests, values, etc. evolved while you were doing it. This can be a specific event that occurred while you took part in this activity or change over time.
  • Outcome & Reflection (~1,000 characters)
    • Describe how this experience allowed you to learn and grow as a leader and student (this is the ‘after’ picture that you started in the Catalyst section). Provide deep insight and a unique learning outcome. Focus on 1-2 themes, while providing specific examples of the impact this activity had on your life today. Finally, briefly state how you will use this learning at Sauder.
UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 4 – Example

Here’s an example from the list of activities in Question 3, from a student who was the President of their school’s economics club.

REMEMBER: This is an EXAMPLE ONLY and is NOT meant for you to copy.

ubc sauder application

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UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Question 5

“Additional Information (Optional): You may wish to use the space below to provide UBC with more information on your academic history to date and/or your future academic plans. For example: How did you choose your courses in secondary school? Are there life circumstances that have affected your academic decisions to date? What have you done to prepare yourself specifically for your intended area of study at UBC? (maximum 600 characters)

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 5 – Breakdown

So far in your Personal Profile, you’ve given the admissions committee some insight into your experiences and achievements inside and outside of the classroom with volunteer opportunities, extracurriculars, and various other activities.

All of these questions show how you undertake responsibilities, deal with setbacks when they arise, and have grown as a person along the way. Think of this as the development of your interests and passions through the activities you are involved in.

Question 5, on the other hand, focuses less on extracurriculars and other activities, and looks inside the classroom. Here, the reviewers want to know how your academic journey has developed your interest in business and led to you applying to UBC Sauder. 

This question is very open-ended so that you can focus on any area that has impacted your academic choices and performance. This is a great place for you to provide more context about any irregularities in your transcripts, like a course you didn’t do the best in or explaining a gap year you took.

If you aren’t sure what to write here (if anything at all), have a look at your Student Identity Blueprint™ to help you identify why your interest in business began, your achievements thus far, and the skills/values that helped shape this interest (and who you are more generally). If you haven’t already completed your Blueprint, connect with a coach to get started on one.

The most important thing to focus on for this question is how your courses in high school helped you develop your interest in business, which you are then continuing to explore at UBC Sauder. 

You can discuss a gradual development over time or a specific event that changed academic choices/plans.  

Focus on business courses as much as you can here, like Business Studies, Accounting, or Entrepreneurship. Think about such questions as:

  • What made you want to take this course?
  • What challenges did you face when you did?
  • How did this evolve your interest in business more generally?
  • What skills, like leadership, communication, team work, and problem solving, did you develop along the way, and how? 
  • How will these skills and experiences you developed help you at Sauder, and how?

COACH’S TIP: Use specific details and talk about the emotions you experienced as much as you can. This will help create an emotional connection with the reader and transport them into exactly what you felt during the situation/experience you are talking about. 

If you are unsure how to approach this question, connect with a coach to find an authentic angle that will connect with the reviewers while communicating your unique journey. 

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 5 – Template

Get started on your template here (click File > Make a copy and save it to your computer).

If you choose to answer this question, your response should have these 3 components that are in line with our Narrative Communication Approach™:

  • Context (~100 characters)
    • Provide a brief description of your academic experience, including courses you’ve taken, skills you’ve built, and your experiences in high school. Briefly mention how these contribute to your interests and plans for the future (e.g. future studies, career, etc.). 
  • Catalyst (~200 characters)
    • Describe any experiences, challenges, or setbacks (academic or personal) and discuss how these affected your academic decisions in high school and while applying to university. Emphasize the uniqueness of your experiences and the emotions you felt so that you can be as authentic as possible. 
  • Outcome & Reflection (~300 characters)
    • Talk about what you learned as a result of this experience. How did it help you evolve as a person and student? Provide specific examples that show how what you’ve learned will help you excel at UBC Sauder. 
UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 5 – Example

Here’s an example of an answer to this question:

ubc sauder interview questions

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile – Question 6

Please submit the names of two referees who know you well and can comment on your preparedness for study at UBC. Examples of referees include an employer, a community member, a coach, a teacher/instructor, or anyone who knows you well. One of the referees you select MUST be able to speak to one of the activities / experiences described in one of your long-answer responses above. For applicants who are currently attending a high school, one of your referees MUST be a school official (e.g. grade 12 or senior year counsellor, teacher, or IB Coordinator). Neither referee should be a friend, family member, or paid agent.

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 6 – Breakdown

The purpose of this question is so that UBC Sauder can verify the activities, experiences, and learning outcomes you discussed in the previous questions. 

Before listing the names and contact information for your references, make sure that you ask your references for permission first, so that if they get a call or email from UBC Sauder then they’re not surprised. 

UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 6 – Template

Get started on your template here (click File > Make a copy and save it to your computer).

You will need the following information:

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Relationship
  • Email Address
  • Phone Number
UBC Sauder Application: Personal Profile Question 6 – Example

Here an example of the information for this section:

ubc sauder application

UBC Sauder Video Interview Questions – Overview

The video interview is the second major part of your UBC Sauder BCom application. 

Here’s a quick snapshot of what to expect:

  • You will have a set amount of time to complete your answers.
  • You will get 1 mock question to practice, with two attempts to answer it.
  • You will be given 2 formal video questions, and you will not know the question until the time you record your answer.
  • For each formal video question, you will get 30 seconds to think about your answer, followed by 1.5 minutes to answer the question.

As mentioned above, the video interview is worth 20% of your overall admission evaluation. That’s a lot, so you want to make sure you’re hitting this component out of the park. 🙂

UBC Sauder is looking for students who are articulate, passionate, and dedicated. They learned a bit about you in your Personal Profile, but now they can get even more insight into who you are, what you’ve experienced, what your interests are, and why you want to be a UBC Sauder student.

The admissions committee also wants to see that you can work well under pressure, have the drive to succeed in the program, and can think critically and solve problems. 

We know video interviews are super scary, but trust us — feeling prepared will give you a TON of confidence so you can do a great job on the interview. 

That’s why we created this guide to give you possible questions, tips to prepare, and more, so you can let your personality and confident self shine! 

UBC Sauder Interview Questions – Possible Questions

Here are some examples of the types of questions you can expect for your video interview:

ubc sauder application

You’ll notice that most of these questions are personal questions, meaning they ask you about what you would do in a certain situation, what you value, and the experiences you have had working on your own and with others. 

These questions are meant to gauge how you react to situations and how you apply key skills like leadership, problem solving, organization, and time management, in all areas of your life. 

COACH’S TIP: Don’t waste your valuable time coming up with different answers to every single practice question. To help make your interview prep process easier, we’ve analyzed hundreds of personal questions from programs like Sauder, and we’ve identified 10 common themes that personal questions fall into. We’ve broken each theme down, and provided templates and examples of each type so you’ll be prepared to answer any question that comes your way. Check out the themes and much more in our Interview Skills Guide.

The admissions committee also wants to see that you have self-awareness. This means that they want to make sure you know what your skills are (and what you need to improve on), what you value, and how you plan to make a difference in the world.

It may seem obvious and you’re probably thinking, “Duh.. of course I know what I’m good at and what I care about.” 

This might surprise you, but very few students actually focus on self-awareness. You might think you have it all figured out, but it’s probably more surface-level than you think. 

That’s why we have a whole phase in our coaching methodology (the Discovery phase) where we use a Student Identity Blueprint™ to help you figure out who you are and what makes you tick. Then, when questions like these are asked during the interview, you’ll know EXACTLY how to respond. 

If you haven’t already, connect with a coach to get started on your Student Identity Blueprint™.

UBC Sauder Interview Questions – Examples

When preparing for this section of the UBC Sauder BCom application, practice is key.

Open up your camera and choose a few questions from the section above. Record yourself and practice answering the questions as best you can. Trust us, after a little while you’ll get better and then you’ll have the confidence to do a great interview. You can also work 1-on-1 with your coach and do mock interviews (if you haven’t already, connect with a coach)!

To help get you started, one of our Youth Coaches has recorded two video question examples. 

Here’s an example for the video question: “Is it better to submit average quality work, on time; or high quality work, but late? Explain.”

Here’s another example for the question: “Who has been a role model for you? What have they taught you about responsibility and respect?”.

How to Prepare for the UBC Sauder Interview – Question Tips 

Many students ask us for tips for preparing for the UBC Sauder video interview component of their application. 

Here are the ones we think will help you the most for your video interview:


It seems silly, but it is common to get off track and later realize you didn’t answer the question. Break down each part of the question into smaller components, and address each one as you move through your answer. 


Sometimes when you know you have a limited amount of time you might speed through everything like a mad race against the clock. As you answer the question, remember to take a breath and pause between your sentences to allow the reviewer time to process what you said. Focus on speaking clearly and slowly. 


Remember that every answer you give should tell the interviewer something about you that boosts your application, even if the question isn’t about you. 

Highlight your skills and experiences, show that you have thought about goals, and use the questions to help the admissions committee learn more about you (and want to have you as a part of the program).


Your answers should be clear and to the point, leaving out unnecessary information. During the interview, don’t ramble — get to the point and be clear. It is better to have a short, concise answer than a convoluted answer that is redundant and possibly unfocused. 


When preparing for your video questions make sure that you come across as a young professional with something special to offer the program.  How can you do this? 

  • Dress professionally
  • Make sure the background behind your camera is empty
  • Go somewhere that is quiet and free from distractions
  • Maintain eye contact with the camera as you give your answers
  • Be aware of your posture and where your hands are (you don’t want to appear like you’re slouching or fidgeting on the screen)

While it’s important to be professional, it’s also important to have fun with these questions. The admissions committee wants to admit unique people who have a shining personality and the experiences to match.  Show them who you are and be yourself.


The admissions committee reviews thousands of applications. You’ll never stand out if your answers are the same as everyone else’s, so come up with answers that are unique. 

For example, if there’s a question that asks “Describe a time when you had to adapt” don’t simply talk about how COVID made everything more difficult. Instead, you can talk about a leadership experience where you took on a challenge and tried something that hadn’t been done before. Then, shift the question into talking about your successes and what you learned from the experience.  

Trying to come up with a different approach is important and you should only resort to these easy answers if you get stuck. Using storytelling to create an emotional connection with the reviewers can also make a huge difference in creating a unique, authentic, and memorable application. Check out this blog about our Narrative Communication Approach™ to learn more. 

If you would like more tips to help you prepare, as well as the chance to up your game and do some mock interviews, connect with a coach today. Our coaches have helped hundreds of students do great interviews and achieve admissions success! 

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UBC Sauder Interview – Questions Themes

Even though you might not know exactly what questions you’re going to be asked, it will help to think generally about a few themes and ideas that you can use across various types of questions. 

Here are some themes you can draw upon as you’re thinking about your answers.


It is very likely that there may be a question around leadership. To prepare for this, make sure you know a few examples of how you have shown leadership in the past. It is important to not just explain what the leadership role you had, but actually how you demonstrated that leadership (being the President of a club doesn’t necessarily mean you are a good leader).


UBC Sauder wants students who are actively involved in the community (you’ll also notice a question about it on your Personal Profile). Community involvement shows commitment, selflessness, and passion, but also because it highlights time management. Make sure you have 1 or 2 examples of how you have been involved in your community. As much as possible, quantify the impact you had. 


There is often a question about how you have dealt with conflict. This is mainly around how you have dealt with conflict in a team setting or a potential inflammatory situation. Remember to not just focus on the problem, but more so the resolution or lessons learned. 


In addition to conflict in team settings, a lot of the time there are questions about how you have worked in a team effectively. Once again, make sure you can clearly define how you succeed in the team, and not just the team’s success.


There are questions that are really just structured around seeing how you handle pressure and manage your time. Be sure to really explain why the example you are giving is a good example of how you can manage your time and operate under stressful situations. 


This is an opportunity for you to discuss something you have achieved. For this, try to think of something that is differentiated and you can really explain how you achieved it, and why that achievement will help you at UBC Sauder.


In short, you need to know why you want to study business, and how it will lead to a future career. Be specific and think ambitiously. 


Similarly, you need to be able to concisely communicate why you want to attend UBC Sauder. Make sure to do lots of research and use it in your answer. The more depth to your research, the more differentiated your answer will be. In all of your answers, make sure you have a statement (or a ‘pitch’) at the end of each answer that shows exactly why you are the perfect fit for the program and how you would add value to their program as a student. 

If you want to learn how you can align these themes to your unique interests and experiences, check out our Interview Skills Guide and connect with a coach now.

UBC Sauder School of Business Program

Now that you’ve created an extraordinary application, we want to show you what your future at UBC Sauder School of Business looks like! 

Check out this Day in the Life of a UBC Sauder Student by Jerry, one of Youthfully’s student Insiders. He’ll give you a sneak peek at life as a first year, the UBC campus, application tips, and much more!

You’ve Got a Dedicated Coach in Your Corner

For over a decade, we have worked with thousands of students to help them achieve more than they ever thought possible.

Our coaches have a strong success rate supporting students as they apply to UBC Sauder BCom, among other top university programs.

Our 1-on-1 Youth Coaching fills that gap that most high schools miss. We can help you build self-awareness through probing questions and assessments, set bigger goals to elevate your extracurriculars and future career plans, and improve skills that matter on applications, such as interviewing, written communication, critical thinking, and creativity.

We use a coaching methodology, called ‘full student’ development, that’s been proven to increase your chances of admission to top-tier universities and obtaining competitive jobs/internships.

So, what are you waiting for? Fulfill your post-secondary potential with the mentorship and coaching you’ve always wanted! 🙂

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