Experiential Learning

Some UBC Political Science faculty members have been able to incorporate hands-on learning beyond the classroom for their undergraduate courses.

This emphasis on experiential learning provides our undergraduate students with an unparalleled learning experience.


Poli 377: Nuclear Weapons and Arms Control

This team-taught, combined enrollment, flexible/blended learning interdisciplinary course introduces Arts students and Applied Science students to the history, politics, and scientific principles and practices of nuclear weapons and nuclear arms control. Created and taught by Professors Allen Sens (Political Science) and Matt Yedlin (Electrical and Computer Engineering), this novel course extended into the real-world for five students in 2017, when they presented their social media campaign to reimagine the nuclear weapon security dilemma and the issue of trust between states, at the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty: Science and Technology 2017 Conference in Vienna.


Poli 464F: African Security from African Perspectives

In May 2018, 18 undergraduate Political Science and International Relations students travelled to the seat of the African Union (AU) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, following their successful completion of POLI 464D: African Interstate Relations, a Political Science undergraduate seminar taught by Katia Coleman that spring, which explored key actors and dynamics of contemporary African interstate politics.

Then, the affiliated two-week field work course, POLI 464F: African Security from African Perspectives, took students from the classroom and into the field to conduct interviews and explore their research questions.


Poli 321B: Chinese Politics and Development

In May 2018, Professor Yves Tiberghien led a ground-breaking undergraduate seminar for a group of roughly 40 UBC students in Chongqing, China, at the Southwest University of Political Science and Law. As part of UBC Go Global, this course helped students explore various aspects of Chinese politics and the dynamics of development in China, through field visits in and around its fastest growing city.


Poli 308D: Issues in Canadian Politics

In Professor Fred Cutler’s POLI 308 classes, teams of 6-8 students design and execute projects that present information to the wider public. In 2018, students collectively built a public information website around the BC Electoral System Reform Referendum. In 2019 at the time of the federal election, student teams built separate sites tracking the political parties and their campaigns, made podcasts around the issue of climate change in the election, built separate websites on immigration and an environment in the election, tracked media coverage, and built a political information quiz. Students in POLI 308 work in a fast-paced team environment to design and build a contribution to public dialogue.


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