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Studies & Degrees in Canadian Studies

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Canada is a beautiful country in North America. It is the world’s second largest by land area with its border with the United States to the south and northwest part being the longest in the world. As one of the world’s wealthiest nations, it always fascinates academicians, journalists and even fiction writers. It has also attracted many institutions of learning to establish a discipline devoted to the study of Canada called Canadian Studies. Already many countries have set up this program of study, following Canada where this was started as far back as 30 years ago.

In Canada, Canadian Studies programs are now found in almost every university or college across the country. Various organizations on this discipline have also been set up at home and abroad under the umbrella agency International Council for Canadian Studies. The focus of the study program includes the country’s culture, languages, literature, agriculture, history, government and politics, and Quebec, the only Canadian province having French as its official language and a predominantly French-speaking population. By promoting a study of Canada in most institutions, the government hopes the study will form part of an important endeavor that can help Canada and other countries of the world.

Among the universities in Canada that offer Canadian Studies programs are the University of Toronto, Acadia University, the University of Calgary, and the University of Prince Edward Island. The Canadian Studies program at the University of Toronto is offered under its University College for undergraduate students for a 4-year Specialist, major or minor degree. Aimed at fostering a critical understanding of modern Canada, the program consists of various courses including but not limited to the Canadian Wilderness, Quebec Society, Asian Communities in Canada, Anthropology, Economics, Finnish and French Studies, Geography, History and Political Science. The Department of Canadian Studies of the Acadia University in Nova Scotia offers a similar program designed to introduce undergraduate students to the various aspects and perspectives about the Canadian society, and to allow them to choose their courses focusing on any of the three areas—Canadian Culture, Atlantic Canada, and Contemporary Canada. A Bachelor’s degree program in Canadian Studies at the University of Calgary in Alberta attempts to explore the origins and transformations of the various identities of the country as shaped by its geography, history, economics and political developments, and view these identities in relation to globalization. Its graduate degree program is offered jointly for a Master of Teaching/Canadian Studies. The University of Prince Edward Island in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, has an interdisciplinary Canadian Studies program that is supported by the resources of the University’s 12 departments to provide its students with an in-depth understanding of society and culture of Canada, especially its institutions, arts, literature and language, historical contexts, as well as human identities. A major in the discipline consists of 42 semester hours composed of two such required core courses as Imagining Canada and Research and Tutorial course.