Research in Arts

UBC is renowned for its research, which includes studies undertaken by Arts professors and students.

The Faculty of Arts is consistently ranked second in Canada as a recipient of funds from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Other major funding comes from the National Science and Engineering Research Council and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Currently, more than a dozen Arts professors at UBC hold Canada Research Chairs, positions awarded by the Canadian government to foster groundbreaking research and enrich the nation’s social and cultural life.

Among them is Professor Michael Byers, an expert on global politics and international law who has published on issues ranging from the trial of Saddam Hussein to nuclear non-proliferation. Canada Research Chair and Psychology Professor Janet Werker conducts research on infant language learning.

Get Involved in Research

  • Honours specialization
    Students in an Honours specialization complete an undergraduate thesis under the supervision of a faculty member
  • Departmental conferences
    Annual conferences that showcase research in a particular department
    e.g. Psychology Undergraduate Research Conference, Geography Spring Research Symposium

Research Resources

Visit the Learning Commons website for help with writing a research paper.

Examples of Research Writing by Arts Undergraduates

The following research papers were submitted for the Russ Patrick Arts Undergraduate Student Research Award. They illustrate the breadth of Arts research in which students are involved, and are strong examples of research writing in their discipline.

Clarissa Forbes – 2011/12 Winner, “Preserving Knowledge of Gitxsan Elders” Supervisor: Dr. Henry Davis, Department of Linguistics

Jennifer Ferris – 2011/12 Honourable Distinction, “GnRH and GnIH in the Rat Hippocampus” Supervisor: Dr. Kiran Soma, Department of Psychology

Dalaina Heiberg – 2011/12 “Escalating Interest and Complexity in the Melting Arctic” Supervisor: Dr. Michael Byers, Department of Political Science

Ashley Whillans – 2010/11 Winner, “From Doing Good to Feeling Good: The Health Benefits of Prosocial Behavior” Supervisor: Dr. Elizabeth Dunn, Department of Psychology

Roydon Tse – 2010/11 Runner-Up, “Arranging and Orchestrating Music for Bassoon” Supervisor: Dr. Jesse Read, UBC School of Music