Media Studies

Bachelor of Media Studies (BMS)

Explore new media and internet technology, blending artistic, technical and critical-thinking skills.

Why take Media Studies at UBC’s Okanagan campus?

Strong community

Work alongside Visual Arts and Digital Media professors in a close-knit learning cohort, which integrates creativity and research into a variety of areas such as creative technologies, multimedia platforms, indigenous media arts, art history, visual culture, and the digital humanities.

Gain in demand skills

Graduates will be accomplished in a range of digital skills, including still image, sound, moving images, digital animations, virtual and data worlds, simulations, games, interface and interactive design, application of encoded media practice and the construction of networked environments and communities. View our media studies blog to see more about our student projects.

Variety and Scope

Students will have the opportunity to take a minor or enrol in a range of media-related courses across disciplines, including visual and digital arts, data science, cultural studies, creative writing, history, and digital media.

Co-op experience

Put your classroom learning to the test with Co-op job placements throughout the region and beyond. Co-op helps you to gain beneficial skills such as how to build your resumé, apply for jobs, expand your professional network and earn money to pay for tuition.

what you need to know

The Bachelor of Media Studies (BMS) is a four-year, direct-entry program that prepares students for careers in digital media creation.

The foundation of the program is the opportunity for students to experiment with ideas and the newest technologies in a team-based environment, with a focus on innovation in digital-media design. The program is designed for students looking towards a future in creative and cultural industries, and to continue their education in design, art, and academics as postgraduates.

The degree in Media Studies combines digital media arts, visual art, media studies, social science and humanities to help you become a creative, articulate, culturally informed, critically reflective and socially engaged citizen.

Program structure
Bachelor of Media Studies is a computational arts program that combines digital arts, visual arts, media studies, social science and humanities. The program begins with designated “core” courses that provide a strong foundation in the following subject areas:

  • Creative Writing
  • Cultural Studies
  • Digital Humanities
  • Media Studies
  • Visual Arts

The core curriculum consists of 63 mandatory credits; students choose the remaining 57 credits from any Arts and Sciences elective courses. This enables them to customize their degree for their optimum career placement or for further study in post-degree programs.

Portfolio Requirement

Students applying to the BMS are required to supply a portfolio of written, visual, and/or digital materials.

Students can take courses in a range of creative and computational arts, including built environments for visual and augmented reality applications; creative coding; visualization and sonification; machine learning; 2D and 3D animation; and digital humanities.

Sample courses:

  • VISA 106 — Introduction to New Media
  • DIHU 220 — Research with Media in the Humanities
  • MDST 310 — Mobile Application Design

The Media Studies (MDST) courses are designed specifically for this program, offering a streamlined set of computer science and critical thinking skills aimed at code-based art and design making in creative arts and digital humanities. These courses provide computer science components in the form of creative code development.

View course descriptions for the current academic year. Browse Media Studies courses and descriptions in the Academic Calendar.

Have a look at our Capstone Courses on our Media Studies Blog.

The following links take you to Visual Arts program details in the Okanagan Academic Calendar, a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services, and academic policies at The University of British Columbia.

Bachelor of Media Studies (BMS)

Find out more about the required courses and course planning for the four-year degree.

Communications and Rhetoric Certificate

Students can receive a Certificate in Communications and Rhetoric by completing 15 credits through courses from four thematic interdisciplinary and relational clusters, and a final capstone project. This is an add on to any major; some credits can be double counted.

Graduate Studies
UBC offers MA, MSc, and PhD degrees in the Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies (IGS) program as well as an MFA program in which students may build an individualized program and have a Media Studies department faculty member as their primary supervisor.

For your application to be considered, you’ll need to do three things:

  • Meet general requirements (e.g., graduate from secondary school)
  • Demonstrate a certain level of English competency
  • Meet specific requirements for the degree you’re applying to.

Then, UBC will take a closer look at your application. We’ll read your Personal Profile to get a sense of who you are and what you’ve achieved.  We’ll also look at all of your Grade 11 (junior level) and Grade 12 (senior level) courses, paying special attention to the courses that relate to the degree you’re applying to.

Find your specific requirements at

Students are encouraged to visit a faculty program advisor who can help tailor courses to best suit their personal interests and goals.

Application Deadlines 
Plan ahead to ensure you meet important deadlines and other target dates listed at

Tuition Fees
UBC Okanagan’s fees compare favourably with universities of the same high calibre. See Financial Planning for helpful resources, and add up your first-year costs with our Cost Calculator.

Portfolio Deadline
Portfolio submissions will be accepted until January 31 each year.

Apply to UBC’s BMS program at—there are just five steps in the application process. Soon you could be studying at one of the world’s top universities.

Check out the steps to apply to UBC, and be sure to choose “Okanagan campus.”

Or let our Student Recruitment & Advising experts guide you: call 1-877-807-8521.

Portfolio Requirement

The Bachelor of Media Studies is a four-year, direct entry program. Students applying to the program are required to supply a portfolio of written, visual, and/or digital materials.
Please see the Academic Calendar for admission details specific to the Media Studies program.

Your Career Options

Earn a UBC degree that’s respected by employers around the world. Your skills will be applicable to careers in gaming, web design, interactive media, sound design, film production, public relations, or future graduate studies.

  • Animator
  • Animation and Sound editor
  • App Developer
  • Art Director
  • Art Illustrator
  • Digital Animator
  • Digital Marketing Strategist
  • Entrepreneur
  • Game Designer
  • Graphic designer
  • Magazine designer
  • Market research analyst
  • Media planner
  • Mobile application developer
  • Multimedia producer
  • Production artist
  • Product package designer
  • Researcher
  • Simulated environment designer
  • Software Designer
  • Sound Producer
  • Technical illustrator
  • Technology startup lead
  • User experience director
  • Video Editor
  • Vlogger
  • Web designer
  • Technology software and service companies employing software developers, mobile application developers and graphic designers.
  • New media and Internet technology companies specializing in interactive media, gaming, web design, and development and consulting services.
  • Industry, non-profit and governmental organizations looking for employees with artistic, technical and analytical skills.

Graduates of the Media Studies program will be well equipped to flourish in large corporations or government agencies as agents of communications between specialized individuals, and will make strong candidates for managerial positions.

Learn and earn with Co-op, a paid opportunity for students to enrich their education with work experience. At UBC’s Okanagan campus, sign up for Co-op to: build your resumé with professional experience; learn valuable tips on how to successfully apply for jobs; expand your network of industry contacts; and earn money to pay for tuition. Inquire about Co-op by phone at 250.807.9623 or by email.

The UBC Okanagan Arts Career Apprenticeship Program (UBCO ACAP) connects upcoming arts, humanities and social sciences graduates from the Irving K. Barber Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies with Okanagan-based employers for one-year, paid, early career opportunities.

The Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies program with a theme in  Digital Arts and Humanities brings computing technologies and makerspace methods together to address such humanities topics as social justice, access, sustainability, ethics, labour, ecology, collaboration, interaction, making, pedagogy, and reading, as well as the ways in which the humanities can pose vital questions about computing technologies.

The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree with a specialization in Visual Arts at UBC Okanagan provides students with the theoretical and practical tools involved in obtaining a degree in the Fine Arts. There are three specializations under the MFA: Creative Writing, Visual Arts, and Interdisciplinary Studies.

Gain Valuable Experience

Learning experiences beyond the classroom help prepare you for a career and life after university. Expand your horizons while studying abroad, conducting meaningful research, or working in the community with your UBC colleagues.

  • See the world through Go Global, a UBC program for exchange and study with more than 150 international partner institutions.
  • Travel to conferences or competitions with financial assistance available through the Tuum Est Student Initiative Fund, which provides financial support up to $3,500.

Take advantage of the many ways to pursue new work and show your art, on campus and in the community. Here are just a few examples:

  • Display or perform your studio work in the FINA Gallery, located in the Creative and Critical Studies Building.
  • Participate in Draw By Night, a bi-monthly public event that promotes creativity, imagination, and collaboration through the process of drawing.
  • Join the local arts community to celebrate your work as a graduating student in the year-end gala fundraiser Art on the Line.
  • Follow your ideas and get a head start on your career. Our professors engage students in research projects, labs and centres that range from Indigenous studies and the study of animal ethics to digitized cultural history.
  • Check out the the Research Studio for Spaces and Things (RSST), an open platform for research and creation in the field of visual arts.
  • Take part in Eco Art Incubator, a research initiative that provides students and artists with a platform from which to work, as well as access to artist-friendly resources for conservation and ecological initiatives.
  • Investigate opportunities offered through the Centre for Culture and Technology (CCT), an interdisciplinary institute that engages in multiple forms of art, media, and information technologies as vehicles for the exploration and expression of community, culture, and identity.
  • FCCS faculty run the AMP Lab, which houses projects that engage the work of the humanities, adding value to cultural artifacts through interpretation and analysis in a digital context.

Get a financial boost to start your research experience and help pay for travel and other expenses. Merit-based cash awards also look impressive on your resumé.

  • Learn through doing, create strong connections, and develop professional skills with a campus job arranged by UBC’s Work Study Program.
  • Meet a community need and get practical experience by volunteering for a Community Service Learning project— a life-changing experience.
  • Build up your portfolio by flexing those creative muscles — photograph, illustrate, write, edit, interview and perform other journalistic roles at UBC Okanagan’s newspaper, The Phoenix, the official students’ free press.
  • Co-op puts your classroom learning to the test, allowing you to explore career options while earning money. Inquire about Co-op by phone at 250.807.9623 or by email.
  • More Employment Opportunities in FCCS.

Meet Your Peers and Profs

Find out what students, faculty, and alumni have to say about the UBC’s Okanagan campus:

Professors and instructors who teach in the Bachelor of Media Studies program are members of the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies (FCCS). They draw from a wide range of media-literacy skills and experiences.


The University of British Columbia is a global centre for research and teaching, consistently ranked among the 40 best universities in the world. In the psychology program at UBC’s Okanagan campus, you gain all the benefits of attending a globally respected university while studying in a close-knit learning community.


  • Get a glimpse into life on UBC’s Okanagan campus at
  • Take a virtual tour of our state-of-the-art labs, modern facilities, campus residences.
  • Visit the campus for a personal guided tour led by a student ambassador.
  • Tour the campus, city and lake with this interactive 360-degree Kelowna From Above* video.
    * Best viewed in Chrome and Firefox 

On the first day of university, faculties offer “Meet the Faculty” sessions where you can get to know the Dean, professors, and the staff who provide student support. It’s all part of UBC Okanagan’s new student orientation: CREATE.

Attend an orientation tailored to your needs as an aboriginal student, domestic student, international student, or student living in residence. You can even register your parents for an orientation that includes a workshop and campus tour.

  • Peer mentors are a great resource — ask questions and learn from students who’ve been there, done that.
  • Navigate your studies with the help of a professor, your Program Advisor.
  • Use the library which offers print, audiovisual and electronic research materials, a leisure-reading collection and loaner laptops. It also offers research consultations, instruction and workshops.
  • The library’s Writing and Resource Centre can help you articulate your ideas. Pursue your research in a range of subject areas and scholarly genres, including essay writing, grammar, presentation skills, punctuation, thesis development, and coursework.
  • Familiarize yourself with resources designed to help you succeed. Student Services offers a variety of academic supports, from study sessions to tutoring and writing workshops.

Take advantage of the many opportunities to get involved and stay active—from workout space in the new Hangar Fitness Centre, to athletic courts, intramurals, fitness classes, and varsity athletics.

Learn more at Sports and Recreation, which includes links to fitness facilities, sport clubs, intramurals and recreation programs, as well as the nationally ranked UBC Okanagan Heat varsity teams that compete in the Canada West Universities Athletics Association.

Meet new people while living in a study-oriented environment with easy access to academic and personal support.

UBC Okanagan offers modern residence living surrounded by hiking and biking trails. One of the newest residences, Purcell, includes a rooftop patio that offers a panoramic view of the campus and the Okanagan Valley.

Find out more about living in residence at

UBC’s Okanagan campus borders the dynamic city of Kelowna, a hub of economic development with a population of more than 150,000 people—the fourth fastest growing population in Canada. In fact, the Okanagan Valley is rated one of the best communities in Canada to grow your business.

More than 160 buses travel daily from campus to key locations such as Kelowna’s cultural district and thriving downtown waterfront. The campus is two minutes from the Kelowna International Airport, one of the Top 10 busiest airports in Canada.

UBC Okanagan is situated within the First Nations territory of the Okanagan Nation, whose spirit of stewardship for the land is reflected in the university’s respect for sustainability.

A diverse natural region with sandy beaches, beautiful farms, vineyards and orchards, and snow-capped mountains, the Okanagan Valley features sweeping stretches of lakeside and endless mountain trails for biking and hiking.

Explore the Okanagan lifestyle at