Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Cultural Studies

Gain a unique grounding in questions of identity, power, diversity and justice from global perspectives.

Ruthann Lee
Kelly Panchyshyn, left, and Hailey Meyers in a Cultural Studies class at UBC Okanagan.

What You Need to Know

Why study Cultural Studies at UBC's Okanagan campus?

Research connections
Cultural Studies professors actively engage students in research projects that range from cultural activism, community research, cultural heritage and digital production. Recent student projects include a report on the positive impacts of Parklets for the future of Kelowna and perceptions of fair trade labeling and availability of fair trade certified products in Kelowna. Find out more...

Career opportunities
Via community engaged learning in a collaborative environment, students in Cultural Studies gain practical experience working with non profit organizations. Our graduates go on to professions that demand creative and critical thinking. Students in Cultural Studies enhance their written and oral communication skills while working in team projects that involve textual and critical analysis. The Cultural Studies program is designed not just to provide students a UBC degree but a wealth of skills and experiences that they can apply towards their career path.

Join a culture of diversity
Cultural Studies provides an education for students that integrates their daily experiences and the world around them. The program organizes a number of events each year, including the AlterKnowledge Discussion Series and the Annual Cultural Studies Speaker. The Cultural Studies Student Collective is a community that organizes a variety of social and educational events.

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.

Program Details

UBC’s Cultural Studies program draws together core courses with others from a variety of Humanities and Social Sciences disciplines. They are organized within three themes: Media and Popular Cultures; Global Cultural Studies; Critical and Cultural Theory.

Courses—in internet culture, film and television, activism, globalization, and human rights, among others—provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary for a wide variety of professions.

Increasingly, the program seeks to provide students not just a UBC degree and a transcript but a portfolio of tangible experiences and skills, from collaboration, to digital literacy, to community-engaged research.


UBC Okanagan's Cultural Studies program offers a wide variety of foundational and advanced courses that cover media and popular cultures, film studies, internet culture, performance studies, analysis of consumer society and identity, and studies in critical theory.

Sample courses:

  • CULT 100 – Media and Popular Cultures in a Global Context
  • CULT 215 – Cultural Industries
  • CULT 346 – Human Rights, Literature, and Culture
  • CULT 437 – Postcolonial Studies

The courses are organized in three streams: Media and Popular Cultures; Global Cultural Studies; and Critical and Cultural Theory. Learn more

Browse Cultural Studies courses and descriptions.

Degree Options

Detailed information on the Cultural Studies program can be found in the Okanagan Academic Calendar, a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services, and academic policies at The University of British Columbia:

Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Cultural Studies

Cultural Studies undergraduates can complete a BA in Cultural Studies with a Major, Combined Major, or General Studies BA with a concentration in Cultural Studies. Students are encouraged to declare their major in Cultural Studies at the end of their first year in order to take the prerequisite second-year courses. Refer to the Academic Calendar for required courses.

Learn about graduate studies - Graduate students can complete core courses in Critical Theory and Cultural Theory to shape an IGS graduate degree with a Cultural Studies focus.


British Columbia High School Requirements

  • English 12 or English 12 First Peoples

Did you know that UBC outlines admission requirements according to where you attended high school or university?

For the prerequisites to enrol in a first-year Cultural Studies course, visit the Undergraduate Studies Admissions page within the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies.

Visit for general admission requirements and program specific requirements for students from high schools in other Canadian provinces or transferring from other post-secondary institutions.

Students are encouraged to declare their major in Cultural Studies at the end of their first year in order to take the prerequisite second-year courses. Refer to the Academic Calendar for required courses.

Deadlines and Fees

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.

How to Apply

Apply to UBC 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.

UBC Okanagan

Your Career Options

Cultural Studies prepares students to live in a world where writing, reading, coding and decoding are skills in high demand. Secure a career in marketing, advertising, publishing, or web design, or continue your education to work in professions such as law, teaching or social work.



  • Journalism
  • Non-Profit Agencies
  • Law
  • Intercultural Education
  • Museums
  • Library Science
  • Media Analysis
  • International Development
  • Anti-Oppression Training
  • Teaching
  • Activism
  • Advertising
  • Web Design
  • Community Research
  • Publishing
  • Creative Writing
  • Theatre
  • Film
  • Television
  • Video Game Design
  • Administration
  • Alternative Media
  • Global Education
  • Politics and Government

Potential Employers

  • Cultural institutions
  • Government agencies and departments
  • Media organizations
  • Non-government organizations (NGOs)
  • Organizations that address cultural safety, diversity and oppression

Co-op Experience

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.

Further Studies

Students can pursue a Masters or PhD with a Cultural Studies focus through the Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies (IGS) program at UBC Okanagan.

The IGS program allows students to develop multi- and interdisciplinary course and research programs to suit their interests.

Graduate students who work within the Department of Critical Studies can complete core courses in Critical Theory and Cultural Theory, so it is easy to shape an IGS graduate degree with a Cultural Studies focus within the department; other coursework can be taken from other faculties offering graduate course work with a cultural studies inflection.

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.

Travel and Learn

  • See the world through Go Global, a UBC program that allows students to complete courses or conduct research at one of more than 150 international partner institutions in 45 countries worldwide. Browse a list of partner universities that offer programs related to Cultural Studies.
  • Travel to a conferences or competition with financial assistance available through the Tuum Est Student Initiative Fund, which provides financial support up to $3,500.

Undergraduate Research

Follow your ideas and get a head start on your career.

  • Critical Studies professors engage students in research projects, labs and centres that range from indigenous studies and the study of animal ethics to digitized cultural history.
  • Cultural Studies students work on a variety of projects that range from cultural activism, community research, cultural heritage and digital production.
  • Cultural Studies students help organize and participate in public forums such as the AlterKnowledge Discussion Series and the Annual Cultural Studies Speaker events.

Research Scholarships

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. Available awards include:

Work Opportunities

  • 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 English muscles—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.

Meet Your Peers and Profs

Find out what students, faculty, and alumni have to say about UBC Okanagan's Cultural Studies program:
Emmy Chahal

Emmy Chahal, UBC Student

“At UBCO, I always felt like I belonged.”

David Jefferess

David Jefferess, UBC Professor

“What is exciting to me is the idea of ‘unlearning’ a lot of assumptions.”

Lindsay Balfour

Lindsay Balfour, UBC Alumna

“I recommend students take advantage of the 24/7 access to facilities to experiment, explore personal projects, and collaborate.”

See more professors in Cultural Studies. Get event updates and follow Cultural Studies happenings via Facebook and Twitter.

Welcome to UBC's Okanagan Campus

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 Critical Studies 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.

Fipke-UNC-University Way

Tour the Campus

  • 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.

Day One: What to Expect

On the first day of university, take part in "Meet the Dean" sessions where you can get to know the Dean, professors, and the staff who provide student support. It’s all part of CREATE, UBC Okanagan's new student orientation.

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

Academic Support

  • Peer mentors are a great resource — ask questions and learn from students who've been there, done that.
  • The Library’s Writing and Research 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 campus resources designed to help you succeed. Student Services offers a variety of academic supports, from study sessions to tutoring and writing workshops.
  • Grow your network with these web resources for cultural studies—academic journals and magazines, links to associations and conferences, and more.


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.

Clubs and Associations

  • Make friends with similar interests, attend events and explore career options in the UBCO Cultural Studies Student Collective.
  • Branch out, get involved in student life, and have fun by joining a campus club or association
  • Living in Residence

    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.

    The Okanagan: What to Expect

    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.


    Last reviewed shim2/6/2019 11:53:05 AM