Undergraduate Program Evaluation & Renewal Projects

TitleRenewing UBC's BA Degree Program Breadth Requirements
Faculty/College/UnitArts
Dep't or UnitDean's Office
StatusCompleted
Duration2 Year
Initiation04/01/2019
Completion03/31/2021
Funding Details
Year 1: Project YearYear 1
Year 1: Funding Year2019/2020
Year 1: Project TypeProgram Renewal
Year 1: Principal InvestigatorGage Averill
Year 1: Funded Amount78,832
Year 1: Team Members

Gage Averill, Dean, Faculty of Arts
Stefania Burk, Associate Dean, Academic / Senior Instructor, Asian Studies, Faculty of Arts
Allyson Rayner, Curriculum Consultant, Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology
Strang Burton, Instructor, Linguistics, Faculty of Arts
David Gaertner, Instructor, First Nations and Indigenous Studies, Faculty of Arts
Tara Mayer, Instructor, History, Faculty of Arts
Andrew Owen, Instructor, Political Science, Faculty of Arts
Nancy Campbell, Business Solutions Analyst, Advisor, Arts Academic Advising, Faculty of Arts
Heidi May, Curriculum Manager and Educational Programmer, Office of the Dean, Faculty of Arts

Year 1: Summary

Currently, BA students fulfill three ""breadth requirements"" - language (12cr), science (6cr), and literature (6cr). These date back more than a century and lack clear outcomes and rationales that delineate why students *need* these learning experiences in the 21st century.

In 2016, the FoA Dean's office struck a working group to consider if, and how, these degree requirements need to be revised. The group's process to-date (detailed below) has led to a consensus that the breadth requirements need updating, and that they should be revised to reflect the following three domains:

  • Ways of knowing: building literacy and skills in various methods of inquiry to enable interdisciplinary work and perspective taking above and beyond the area of specialization;
  • Language and intercultural meaning: working with an additional language to attain competencies that demonstrate how language, meaning making and culture are interwoven and that support professional, social, and personal communication goals;
  • Place and Power: thinking beyond inherited colonial thought processes: a core commitment of the FoA, the Strategic Plan, and the Indigenous Strategic Plan that should be embedded in curriculum so that students critically engage with what it means to live, work, and study on unceded Indigenous territories, while challenging ongoing legacies of settler colonialism.

The objectives of this project, are to: a) complete the definition phase, so that each of the above ""domains"" are clearly defined in-terms of intended learning outcomes, b) map these requirements onto FoA's and UBC's course offerings to create clear pathways of learning, and c) develop a framework for maintaining the renewed requirements.

Year 2: Project YearYear 2
Year 2: Funding Year2020/2021
Year 2: Project TypeProgram Renewal
Year 2: Principal InvestigatorGage Averill
Year 2: Funded Amount70,000
Year 2: Team Members

Gage Averill, Dean, Faculty of Arts
Stefania Burk, Associate Dean, Academic / Senior Instructor, Asian Studies, Faculty of Arts
Allyson Rayner, Curriculum Consultant, Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology
David Gaertner, Assistant Professor, First Nations and Indigenous Studies, Faculty of Arts
Tara Mayer, Senior Instructor, History, Faculty of Arts
Brianne Orr-Alvarez, Instructor, French, Hispanic, and Italian Studies, Faculty of Arts
Andrew Owen, Instructor, Political Science, Faculty of Arts
Nancy Campbell, Business Solutions Analyst / Advisor, Arts Academic Advising, Faculty of Arts
Heidi May, Curriculum Manager and Educational Programmer, Office of the Dean, Faculty of Arts

Year 2: Summary

Currently, BA students fulfill three "breadth requirements" - language, science, and literature. These are sorely outdated and lack clear outcomes and rationales that delineate why students *need* these learning experiences in the 21st century.

In 2016, the Dean's office initiated a process of review. The first phase (2016-2018) involved a working group to consider the current requirements and determine if/how they should be revised. The work of this group lead to consensus that the breadth requirements should be revised and settled on three general domains:

  • Ways of knowing: building literacy and skills, beyond the major, in methods of inquiry to enable interdisciplinary work and perspectives;
  • Language and intercultural meaning: working with an additional language to attain competencies that demonstrate how language, meaning making, and culture are interwoven and that support professional and personal communication goals;
  • Place and Power: thinking beyond inherited colonial thought processes. A core commitment that should be embedded in curriculum so that students critically engage with what it means to live, work, and study on unceded Indigenous territories, while challenging ongoing legacies of settler colonialism.

The second phase (2018-present) of this project focuses on faculty consultations around current proposals, refinement of scope and rationale, and identifying possible student pathways.

The objectives of this project are to: a) define each domain in terms of intended learning outcomes, b) map these requirements onto FoA's and UBC's course offerings to create clear pathways, c) develop a framework/system for maintaining the renewed requirements, and d) communicate them meaningfully to students so they are properly embedded in their overarching BA experience.