Year-by-year Plan

There are many opportunities in the UBC Faculty of Arts to develop as an individual, a scholar, a leader, and a professional.

This guide offers:

  • Degree planning advice
  • Suggestions for involvement opportunities

First Year

Prepare for your transition to university by reading through the New Student Checklist and filling out the Arts First-Year Planning Tool for the Bachelor of Arts. Together these resources will guide you through each step of the planning process.

You may also find UBC Student Services’ registration guide helpful when learning how to navigate the Student Service Centre (SSC) in preparation for course registration.

Familiarize yourself with and bookmark this website, It outlines all the opportunities and resources available to you at Arts UBC, including academic and health and safety support.

facebook For student-geared posts that highlight events and opportunities

twitter For the latest news and research emerging from the Faculty of Arts

Second Year

Now that you’ve had a taste of university life, try identifying your academic and involvement goals. Think about which specialization (major) you want to choose, and consider the involvement and career-building experiences you would like to gain while at UBC.

Degree Planning:

  • Explore and begin to define which specialization (major) you are working towards. Do you want to also add a minor or a double major? Have you considered an honours degree?
  • You will officially enter your specialization in second or third year, depending on the major you choose. Some specializations have limited entry and require a certain average, pre-requisites, or an application. You can learn about the different declaration and application processes for your considered specializations by looking at specializations on the Student Service Centre (SSC), the UBC Vancouver Academic Calendar, or department websites.
  • Watch out for department events to learn more about the major(s) they offer and the career paths that specialization could lead to. It’s good to start working on major requirements early on if you would like to graduate in 4 years.
  • Make sure you’re on track with your Degree Requirements, including the Science Requirement and the Literature Requirement.
  • All students must complete the Writing Component of the Writing and Research Requirement before reaching 60 credits.

Involvement Opportunities:

Third Year

Now that you’re a senior student, you’ve got the hang of things at UBC; however, it’s still important to keep on top of your degree planning. And if you have yet to try opportunities outside the classroom, now is the time to dive in.

Degree Planning:

  • You must select a specialization (major) before registering in your third year.
  • This is the year to start your Language Requirement, if you haven’t already.
  • Make sure you’re on track for our degree by learning how to use Degree Navigator, a personalized tool that keeps track of your degree requirements and credit tally.
  • If you’re thinking about grad school, now is the time to explore programs and admissions requirements. The Faculty of Graduate Studies can offer some advice.

Involvement Opportunities:

Fourth Year

You’re on the home stretch, but have you met the academic and involvement goals you aspired to? If you haven’t, don’t worry. It’s never too late to start building up experience that will help prepare you for life after graduation.

Degree Planning:

Involvement Opportunities:

  • What can you do with your Arts degree? What can’t you do? Explore the variety of career paths that your specialization could lead to by visiting the What Can I Do With My Major? webpages.
  • Feeling uneasy about securing work after graduation? Attend and be inspired at employer events and career prep workshops hosted by the Centre for Student Involvement + Careers.
  • Apply your academic knowledge outside of the classroom, by signing up or a Community-Based Experiential Learning (CBEL) course or project.
  • Take over the reins of learning by suggesting a course not currently at UBC through Student-Directed Seminars. With the help of a professor, you’ll lead the course and will be able to tailor the course to your own academic interests.
  • Ask your professors about research opportunities within your department. You never know what projects they may be working outside of their lecture hours.
  • Remember that brilliant research paper you wrote? Apply to present that paper at the Multidisciplinary Undergraduate Research Conference (MURC) or submit it to an undergraduate journal for publication.