First-Year Study Options

Students entering the Bachelor of Arts degree program may choose one of three approaches to their first year of study:

Arts One

Engages first-year students in academic discussion through the analysis of classic and critical texts from within the literature of the humanities and social sciences. Arts One blends three courses into one cohesive theme, with one set of readings, a series of essay assignments, and a final capstone assignment. For more info, visit the Arts One website.

Credits: 18-credit program structured as one course and 12 credits of electives

Length: Two terms (September–April)

Themes: Visit

Teaching Approach: Each theme is team-taught by five faculty members from various departments.

Format: A lecture of up to 100 students once a week; seminars of 20 students twice a week; and tutorials with a ratio of one faculty member to every four students once a week.

Assignments: One set of readings, a series of essays, and a final capstone assignment.

Degree Requirements: Arts One satisfies the Writing Component and three credits of the Literature Requirement.

Coordinated Arts Program (CAP)

Introduces first-year students to a variety of core disciplines within the humanities, social sciences, and creative and performing arts within a supportive cohort setting. Students select a stream of study that encompasses linked but separate courses connected by a broad research focus. For more info, visit the CAP website.

Credits: 18-credit program made up of 5 separate courses and 12 credits of electives

Length: Two terms (September–April)

Streams: Media Studies; Global Citizens; Individual & Society; Law & Society; PPE (Philosophy, Political Science, and Economics)

Teaching Approach: Each course is taught by a different faculty member.

Format: Standard Timetable. Each course has a lecture of up to 125 students once a week and a seminar of approx. 25 students once a week.

Assignments: Each course has its own readings, assignments and exam.

Degree Requirements: All CAP streams satisfy the Writing Component and all streams except PPE also satisfy three credits of the Literature Requirement.

Custom Timetable

Allows students to explore a broad range of Arts disciplines. Students design their own course schedules to meet degree requirements. Read more about a custom timetable.

Credits: Students build a timetable of courses to meet 30 credits.

Length: Typically a mix of one- and two-term courses

Streams: N/A

Teaching Approach: Varies

Format: Varies

Assignments: Varies

Degree Requirements: Students must ensure that they include courses that meet first-year degree requirements, specifically the Writing Component of the Writing and Research Requirement.


First year: A Time to Explore Your Interests

Bachelor of Arts students do not declare a major in first year. The three study options above provide the opportunity to explore diverse subject areas, so you can be prepared to declare or apply to your major before third year.

Why CAP or Arts One?

Arts One and CAP both ease the transition from high school to university by offering small learning communities, coordinated assignment schedules, and access to exclusive study and social space in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. Their cohort structure also makes it easier to meet peers and build social and academic relationships.