Arts W2016 First-Year Planning Tool

The Arts First-Year Planning Tool is an online questionnaire designed to help you explore your options in Arts, plan your courses accordingly, and ensure that you are on the right track for course registration.

While this tool does not guarantee registration in the courses you choose, you can use your planning here to create a worklist on the Student Services Centre (SSC) and be ready for your registration day! You can even print your completed form and consult with the Arts Academic Advising office.

Give yourself time as you use this planning tool to think about your first year at UBC. If you need to take a break click on the "save and continue later" button, and you will be emailed a link to your saved plan.
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Providing your eight-digit student number is optional. However, having your eight-digit student number helps us make sure that you're on the right track by allowing us to review your registration and contact you if we see any issues.

Please note: your personal information is collected under the authority of section 26(c) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). This information will be used for the purpose of reviewing your intended registration for first-year. Questions about the collection of this information may be directed to

Getting Started - Your course framework.

The maximum course load for the Winter Session (September - April) is 32 credits. Some students may find a course load of 5 classes per term challenging, especially while adapting to the new university environment. There are not a minimum number of courses that the Faculty of Arts requires you to take. It's ok to take 4 courses Term 1 and then 5 courses in Term 2. That would be 27 credits by the end of April which is what you need for second year standing. Remember that there are differing course load requirements depending on housing, varsity athletics, loans, scholarships, and awards requirements. Please consult with your Enrolment Services Professional if you are not sure about course limit restrictions for your specific situation.

Transfer Credit from AP, IB, or another post-secondary institution.

If you have Advanced Placement orInternational Baccalaureate results, you may be eligible to receive transfer credits. You can also consult the BC Transfer Guide if you are coming from a post-secondary institution in BC.

Step 1 - There are 3 First-Year Study Options. Please start by selecting one!

ArtsOne and the Coordinated Arts Program (CAP) offer standardized timetables, in which a portion of your course load is a preset timetable taken with a cohort (a common group of students). A custom timetable is a collection of courses you select based on your schedule and interests.

Step 2 - The Writing Component of the Writing and Research Requirement

As an Arts student, this requirement builds a foundational skill. Being able to read, write and research at the university level is crucial to your academic success. Satisfying the Writing Component early in your university career will help you reach your academic goals. You should attempt this within your first 30 credits and must complete it within your first 54 credits.

There are 4 ways to fulfill the Writing Component. Please select one.

By registering in ArtsOne or CAP, you will automatically be completing the Writing Component as part of the program. NOTE: IB and AP transfer credits will NOT meet the Faculty of Arts Writing Component.

Step 3 - Thinking about your specialization (s).

A "specialization" is an area of study in which you'd like to focus (i.e. Major, Double Major, Combined Major, Honours, Major + Minor). You don't have to be sure what specialization you'd like yet. In fact, many students take their first and second year to figure this out.

However, now is a great time to start thinking about which specializations interest you. This will allow you to start working towards possible requirements. There are over 70 specializations in Arts and several combinations to choose from to build your own area of expertise.

A) Take a look here for more information about choosing your specialization and here for the list of specializations available to you in Arts.

B) Next, enter your ideas for 2 potential specializations below

You only need to choose one specialization, but some students choose to do a second. Any combination of Majors, Minors, Combined Majors and Honours are possible, with the exception of a double Minor. A common example of two specializations is a Major and a Minor.

Your primary specialization cannot be a minor.
i.e. Major, Combined Major, Honours

This can be any specialization
i.e. Major, Combined Major, Honours, or Minor

C) Now you can explore the prerequisite courses you will need to apply for or declare these majors later. See the specializations page , select your possible major, then select "Click here for Program Requirements". When you are reviewing the major requirements, look for first- and second- year courses required.

D) Now list the courses you would need to take for your majors below.

Required & Recommended 100/200-level Courses:

Required & Recommended 100/200-level Courses:

Step 4 - Elective Requirement

As an Arts student you are required to take courses outside your major and thus have the opportunity to explore many areas of study. Electives allow you to tailor your degree by building specialized knowledge that complements your Major, and may even become a second specialization. 

Explore courses to take as electives in the UBC Calendar and list your choices below.

(Note: Not all courses can be taken in your first year or as an undergraduate student.)

Step 5 - Other Faculty Requirements

Apart from the Writing Component, your Specialization, and Electives Requirements, there are 5 other Faculty Requirements to plan for. While these requirements can be completed at any time during your studies at UBC, you should consider whether you meet the Language Requirement within the first year and plan a strategy for completing this requirement within your degree.

I've conducted research on the following:

Step 6 - Create your Course Registration List!

Here's where you prepare your list of courses that you'd like to register in. There is a maximum of 32 credits or 10 courses for first-year students. But, remember you can take fewer than 5 courses per term. Think carefully about your course load as a strategy for academic success and consult with an Arts Academic Advisor if you are not sure. Remember that there are differing course load requirements depending on housing, varsity athletics, loans, scholarships, and awards requirements. Please consult with your Enrolment Services Professional if you are not sure about course limit restrictions for your specific situation.

Term 1:

Term 2:

Congratulations! You just completed your first plan of study at UBC!