Transformative Learning

Transformative Learning

UBC is renowned for the excellence and breadth of its education and has a long-established track record in teaching and learning innovation. But changes in learner demographics and interests are reshaping the university. A rapidly diversifying economy, social context and job market require a different kind of education — one with a greater focus on transferable skills, such as critical thinking, collaboration and communication, and one that promotes and supports continuous learning. Universities are systemically addressing these demands, with the best efforts engaging students as co-creators of their education. Our work at UBC will focus on enhanced support for program redesign around competencies; the development of problem-solving experiences; technology-enabled learning; and continued growth in work-integrated education. Sustained progress will require leadership across the institution to model, inspire and celebrate excellence in teaching and mentorship.


Strategy 11. Education renewal: Facilitate sustained program renewal and improvements in teaching effectiveness

Strategy 12. Program redesign: Reframe undergraduate academic program design in terms of learning outcomes and competencies

Strategy 13. Practical learning: Expand experiential, work-integrated and extended learning opportunities for students, faculty, staff and alumni

Strategy 14. Interdisciplinary education: Facilitate the development of integrative, problem-focussed learning

Strategy 15. Student experience: Strengthen undergraduate and graduate student communities and experience

Snapshot: Transformative Learning

Arts One is an established eight-month program that features learning in small groups with an integrated, interdisciplinary curriculum. Every year, students choose between two themes, such as ‘Knowledge and Power’ or ‘Hero, Anti-Hero’, each led by a dynamic team of instructors from different disciplines. Together, students and instructors analyze ancient and contemporary works that have shaped and challenged society across the centuries. Arts One students engage in their learning via expert lectures, seminar discussions and small student- centred tutorials in which they present and workshop their essays. These tutorials form one of the most distinctive and valuable Arts One experiences, fostering independent thinking and scholarly ways of knowing that enable students to thrive beyond their first year.

Arts One delivers transformative learning experiences through a commitment to excellent program design and regular renewal. It embodies the understanding that the study of humanities disciplines such as philosophy, history and literature cultivates empathy, perspective and critical thinking. It fosters these competencies in the context of enduring challenges, such as class and power, and emergent ones, such as technological and environmental disruption.

Local & Global Engagement

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