First-Year Study Options

Start your academic journey in the Bachelor of Arts degree by choosing one of three approaches to your first year of study: Arts One, the Coordinated Arts Program, or a custom timetable.

As a Bachelor of Arts student, you do not declare or apply for a program in your first year. Instead, you choose one of three first-year study options to develop your academic interests and help prepare you to declare or apply to your program before your third year.

Arts One

Arts One is team-taught by five instructors from a variety of disciplines. Read and discuss classic and contemporary texts from different historical periods and cultural contexts and consider their influence on culture and society.

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

Length: Full-year. Two terms (September–April)

Recent themes include: Explorations and Encounters; The Human Condition; Dangerous Questions, Forbidden Knowledge.

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)

Explore a range of courses within the humanities, social sciences, and creative and performing arts within a supportive cohort setting.

Select one of five streams that group linked-but-separate courses connected by a broad research focus designed to help students make connections across courses, ideas, and issues. Recent streams include: Law and Society; Media Studies; Individual and Society. Learn more about CAP.

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

Length: Two terms (September–April)

Recent streams include: Law and Society; Media Studies; Individual and Society.

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.

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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.