Students in Library


Accessibility Services

Vancouver Island University students with documented disabilities may be entitled to reasonable accommodation. Accommodation is determined on an individual basis and must be supported by current documents from a qualified professional. Students are responsible for requesting accommodation and provide documentation one month prior to the semester start date. Learn more about VIU Accessibility Services.

Adult Basic Education Learning Centre

Staff at the Adult Basic Education Learning Centre help students prepare for their assessment/placement and give them a head start on upgrading classes for which they are registered. Students taking ABE courses can also get help with their courses.

Advising Services

Advisors support students in clarifying, evaluating and attaining their educational goals. They do this by assisting students in developing educational plans that are structured and supported by other learning experiences such as practica, volunteering, cooperative education, peer helping, employment.

Students who are not sure of their educational goals may meet with an Advisor to explore different opportunities that are available. Advisors can provide specific program information such as admission requirements and availability.

Advisors are available to help students:

  • interpret academic policies and procedures as outlined in the Calendar and elsewhere
  • understand program requirements and course prerequisites
  • access relevant support services such as academic learning centres, career counseling services, VIU career services, program coordinators, Diversity, Equity and Human Rights Advisor, and student advocates
  • gain knowledge of processes for transferring to other institutions
  • explore additional program and career options (for competitive entry programs)

Information on Programs and Courses

Students seeking admission to Vancouver Island University should discuss their program with an Advisor who will help with information on career and program requirements, transferability, and course content at VIU and other educational institutions.

Grade 12 students from the VIU region, in their final term, will have an opportunity to see a VIU Advisor for course planning at their school. Students are encouraged to complete program planning at that time.

Degree Completion Advising

Degree Advisors are available to help students with course choices in their disciplines and to ensure that students meet all graduation requirements for Vancouver Island University degrees. Most degrees require that students complete a Record of Degree Program (RDP) form with the relevant Degree Advisor before they can become eligible to graduate.

International Student Advising

International Student Advisors provide international students with advice on University programs and community support including accommodation, orientation, and recreation and social opportunities. They also offer help with immigration questions, financial planning and issues related to cultural adjustment. Please email or call 250.740.6527 for information.

Prior Learning Assessment Advising

Students and prospective students wishing to explore the option of gaining credit for learning obtained through work, informal education and personal experience can consult with an Advisor. For information or an appointment, call 250.740.6410.

Assessment and Exam Services

AES administers the VIU Accommodated Exam Services, Pre-Admission Assessments such as Accuplacer, and External Exams for other colleges and institutions. For more information, please visit VIU Assessments, or call 250.740.6276 in Nanaimo or the Student Affairs office at the regional campuses.

Career Information

The Career Studio will help students master the secrets to making the right career decision and following the steps to successful career achievement.

The Career Studio located on VIU’s Nanaimo campus offers career services to students and alumni. This includes work search, interview preparation, building a top-notch resume, career exploration, planning for your dream career, and much more. They also offer current students the opportunity to work on-campus through its Work-op Program.

Child Care

The day care centre, administered by a non-profit society, is located in Building 335 on the Nanaimo campus. It serves students, VIU employees, and the community with day care for children aged three to five years. It is also a training centre for the Early Childhood Education and Care program. To include a child on the waiting list for the day care centre or for information, please phone 250.753.6931.

Counselling Services

Counsellors at VIU are professionally trained to respond to a wide range of issues and provide immediate, confidential service to enrolled students. Counselling staff are also familiar with the spectrum of resources available in the community and can assist students to access those supports. For more information, visit VIU Counselling.

Clean Air Policy

It is the policy of Vancouver Island University to provide a smoke-free environment for employees, students and visitors. Smoking is prohibited within buildings on all campuses, as well as within VIU vehicles.

In accordance with Workers’ Compensation Board Regulations (that limit exposure to second-hand smoke in the work/study environment), smoking is restricted to designated smoking areas.

Financial Aid and Awards

The Financial Aid and Awards office at the Nanaimo campus offers a variety of financial assistance including government loans and grants and institutional scholarships, awards and bursaries. For information, please call 250.740.6423, or drop in to Financial Aid and Awards in Building 255, Mondays to Fridays, 9 am to 3:30 pm. Consult the Calendar for an overview of scholarships, awards and bursaries. Please note, information on financial aid and awards is also available from Student Affairs areas at regional campuses.

First Aid

For first aid on campus, please call 250.740.6600 or Local 6600 from any campus phone.

Food Services on Campus

VIU offers a variety of food services at the Nanaimo campus.

Two campus cafeterias, in Buildings 300 and 185, feature a wide variety of delicious meals and snacks including breakfast, lunch, and dinner, prepared by VIU’s own Culinary Arts and Baking programs. Check the website for cafeteria hours: VIU Food Services.

The Discovery Room, adjacent to the cafeteria in Building 300, features fine dining and is open Monday to Friday for lunch and dinner. Food is prepared and served by students in the Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management programs. Reservations are recommended; call 250.740.6338. For more information, please visit: VIU Discovery Room.

The Students' Union Pub is a pub run by the VIU Students’ Union and is open for pub lunches and dinners from September to April.

In addition, lunch, snacks and specialty coffees are available from the campus Subway (located in Building 165), the Starbucks coffee shop (located in the Library), and various outdoor vendors.

Diversity, Equity & Human Rights Office

Vancouver Island University’s goal is to provide students with a learning environment free of discrimination. Students who think they may be experiencing discrimination or harassment because of their race, colour, ancestry, place of origin, political belief, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex (including sexual harassment and pregnancy discrimination), sexual orientation, age, or unrelated prior criminal conviction can consult the Director in the Diversity, Equity & Human Rights Office. The Director can help students assess the situation, identify appropriate ways to respond, assist with dispute resolution, or commence a formal process. To contact the Diversity, Equity and Human Rights office, please call 250.740.6430; send an e-mail to; or drop into the office located in Building 300, Room 100.

Lost and Found

The ‘Lost and Found’ function at the Nanaimo campus is operated by the Security Office, and found items are forwarded to Security, located in Building 315, Room 110. Items found during evenings or weekends can be handed in at the Cafeteria or the Library Loans Desk, or Security. Please check with the respective regional campuses for information on claiming or submitting lost and found items.

Math Learning Centre

The Math Learning Centre, located in Building 460 Room 103, is staffed by qualified student tutors who offer assistance with Math assignments.

Printing and Photocopying

There are photocopy machines available in the Students’ Union Building (Bldg. 193). Printing and photocopying is available in the Library. The VIU ID card is also a copy/print card.

Registration and Records

The Registration Centre, located in Building 200 at the Nanaimo campus, houses the Admissions, Registration, and Records departments. In addition, Registration services are available at the Cowichan and tiwšɛmawtxʷ (Powell River) campuses.





1.888.920.2221 Ext. 6400



tiwšɛmawtxʷ (Powell River)


Services for Aboriginal Students (Shq’apthut: A Gathering Place)

The Nanaimo campus has a Services for Aboriginal Students team to assist First Nations/Aboriginal students (status, non-status, Inuit, Metis) make a successful transition to Vancouver Island University and enable students to succeed in their educational endeavours by providing direct services and appropriate referrals. Please drop by Building 170 phone 250.740.6510, or visit VIU Services for Aboriginal Students.

At regional campuses, First Nations/Aboriginal students can get assistance at the Student Affairs offices. Students interested in sponsorship should contact their First Nations or Metis organization.

Scholarships and Awards

Applications and information are available through the Financial Aid and Awards office in Building 255. Consult the Calendar for an overview of scholarship and award policies and a listing of the awards available.

Student Affairs

The Student Affairs department provides a wide range of services to prospective and enrolled students. For information on these services or an appointment, please visit the website at VIU Student Affairs, or contact each campus.



tiwšɛmawtxʷ (Powell River)

Building 255, 900 Fifth Street

Mondays to Fridays,
8:30 am - 3:30 pm

In person:
8:30 - 4 pm

By Phone: 250.740.6409

2011 University Way

Mondays to Fridays,
8:30 am - 3:30 pm.


Building 610, Room 118,
100-7085 Nootka Street

Mondays to Thursdays,
8:30 am - 4:30 pm; hours may vary.
contact the campus for an up-to-date schedule.

Phone: 604.485.2878

Student-Assisting-Student Program

Under the Student-Assisting-Student program, student assistants are hired to help students with documented disabilities. For more information on services provided under the Student-Assisting-Student program, please contact 250.740.6446.

Student Employment

The Centre for Experiential Learning posts on-campus, summer, part-time and permanent jobs, and helps students and graduates launch their careers. 

Study Help

Students can get help at the Instructional Technology Help Desk, the Math Learning Centre, the Writing Centre, and the Adult Basic Education Learning Centre. The Counselling Centre also offers assistance in the form of study technique workshops.

At the Cowichan campus, students can get assistance in the form of one-on-one learning skills counseling, hand-outs, assessment preparation assistance, volunteer tutors, workshops, as well as issues of anxiety and other school-related issues. Call 250.746.3509.


Technology services include high-speed and wireless networks, computer labs, multimedia production facilities, and much more. For a comprehensive list of resources, please check out VIU Technology.

Work-op Program

VIU’s Work-Op program provides funding for on-campus employment opportunities for students. Non Work-Op positions are also on-campus but funded through departmental budgets. Both provide great opportunities for students to build their skill set and accelerate their job hunt after graduation. Learn more about Campus Student Employment or email

Writing Centre

The Writing Centre is located in Room 447 on the fourth floor of the Library. It is staffed by English instructors who offer free, one-on-one assistance with writing essays, reports, resumes, proposals, and other forms. They help with grammar, punctuation, documenting sources, organization, expression, and any other concerns with writing. Students may sign up for a half-hour session, and drop-ins are also welcome.

At the Cowichan campus, sign up for one-on-one assistance at the Writing Centre located in the Credit Programs department, Building 2.