Undergraduate Program Roadmaps
- For your first year of English studies, be bold. Take courses that ask you to read widely; discover genres and authors that you've not heard of before. Perhaps you love Sherlock Holmes and want to know more about the Victorian period. Maybe you are thinking about Teacher's College and want English as a teachable area. Perhaps you are a voracious reader and want to know more about what and how to read, and maybe why you like it so much. Your first year at Laurier is intended to help you figure out what subjects you like and what programs you might want to major in.
- For an Honours BA in English, you can take two of our 100-level courses to learn key concepts associated with analysis, elements of literary interpretation, and research skills. You can choose from our themed courses, including EN111: Literature and Crime; EN107: Literature and Catastrophe, and EN108: Literature and the Environment. Other choices include our always-popular EN119: Reading Fiction, or the seminar-style course EN165: Enriched Literary Studies.
- To be an English minor, you need to take only one credit (two courses) of our first-year courses. Many students take more and these courses are included in the English GPA, but only one credit counts towards the program requirements for those who major or minor in English.
- Separate from the courses required for you to be an English major, but very useful to take near the start of your study, is EN190: Introduction to Academic Writing. This course is designed to instruct you in the skill of writing research essays, using argument, rhetoric and clarity of written discourse to communicate clearly. You may take this course at any point of your study, but many students tell us that taking it close to the start of your study is a good idea.
- At the end of your first year in April, you can go onto LORIS and declare English as your major, or combined major. If you are a declared major, you will have access to English courses in the registration period before they open up to non-majors.
- During your first year, consider joining the English Students’ Association to meet other readers and writers, find a study group or a peer mentor, and enjoy literary readings, game nights, and other events.
- For your second year, you have many choices, but if you want to major in English, we recommend that you take courses that will introduce you to the British literary tradition. You can do this by choosing EN245, a survey course that will introduce you to literature from the medieval period through to 1800, and then EN246, which features literature from 1800 to the present day.
- You could consider another route that would take you through a variety of critical approaches in courses ranging from Contemporary American and Canadian Literature (EN218 and EN267) and Postcolonial Literatures (EN211) to genre courses in comedy and tragedy (EN203 and EN207) and Children’s Literature (EN201) to courses concerning specific authors, such as Shakespeare or Tolkien (EN233 and EN238), and a lot more besides.
- Class sizes will be a little smaller in these upper-level courses. Take advantage of small student-to-professor ratio to increase your understanding of the texts and ideas, and develop your understanding of the English literary canon and the wider cultural, historical, and political worlds of literature.
- Tutorials, group work, and frequent class discussions will help you develop oral skills while the written assignments (short response papers and research essays) assist you in developing persuasive written argument as well as professional documentation of sources.
- Your third year of study will be concentrated on refining your conceptual, reading, and writing skills, and you will be exposed to more in-depth classroom discussions. Your research essays will have greater range and greater specificity.
- In Year 3, you will continue to see a wide variety of specialized courses which will include period courses; courses in national or cultural literatures; courses in specified genres; or creative writing courses.
- Honours English students are required to take EN301: Literary Theory, and this course is highly recommended if you are combined major or an English minor. Third year is an ideal time to take this course; it covers a variety of approaches to culture and literature, and will be useful to apply to all your other courses.
- Our new EN303: Advanced Academic Writing is also excellent preparation for your final years.
- The emphasis in Year 4 is on polishing your reading, research, analytical, writing, and oral presentation skills as well as deepening your understanding of literature and culture through the completion of fourth-year seminar courses.
- Seminar courses will ask that you talk more, in group discussion, formal oral presentations, or conference-style papers on specialized research topics. Your written assignments will be more advanced, requiring you to gather, evaluate, and contribute to professional academic discussions; often these assignments include essay proposals, annotated bibliographies, and thesis construction exercises.
- With this background and with your highly developed oral presentation and writing skills, you will see that our best students find themselves well prepared for graduate school, professional schools (such as law or journalism), and a variety of professions in the civil service, the private sector, and not-for-profit organizations.
- Fourth-year students with GPAs over 10.0 will have an opportunity to apply for admission into a master’s level course in lieu of one of the 400-level seminar courses. This is a great chance for you to experience graduate-level studies in your final year.
- For first year, explore! Maybe you are thinking of teacher’s college and want to pick up more “teachables” through taking minors. Maybe you are thinking of doing a master’s degree in Film Studies or maybe you are thinking of taking a film production program at Vancouver Film School or Sheridan College! Your first year at Laurier is intended to help you to figure out what subjects you like and what programs you might want to major in.
- For an Honours BA in Film Studies, you can take two of our 100-level courses: FS101: Film and Narrative; FS102: Film and Image; and FS103: Film and Genre.
- For combined majors, you need only one of our 100-level courses, but you can take two of them and count the other as an FS elective.
- For the Film Production Option, you need to take one of our 100-level courses.
- Interested in film production? Meet with the Film Studies program coordinator/undergraduate advisor to hear about the Vancouver Film School Pathway program and scholarship opportunities.
- At the end of first year in April, you can go onto LORIS and declare “Honours Film Studies” as your single major, as one of two majors, or declare the Film Production Option.
Note: You must be a single major Film Student to be eligible for the Vancouver Film School Pathway.
- In second year, we recommend that single majors take one or both of the “Film History” required courses (To 1950 and Since 1950) and one of the “National Cinema” required courses (French, Italian, German, Canadian, Bollywood, Indigenous, World). You can also take some of your “FS electives” in second year (Film Musical, American Film, Animated Film, Film Sound). You can also take the “Film Production” courses, including “Industry” courses (Business of Film, Screenwriting) and “Studio” courses (Intro to Video Editing).
- For students in the Film Production Option, we recommend that you take your “Film History” required course (To 1950 or Since 1950) and one of your “Industry” courses (Business of Film, Screenwriting). You could take the first of your “Studio” courses (Intro to Video Editing). Lastly, you can take one of your senior “FS electives” (Film Musical, American Film, Animated Film, Film Sound).
- For combined majors, make sure you are on track with the courses in your other major and that you have room to take electives in other programs.
- Remember, even if you are doing a single major in Film Studies, you should take electives in other programs! Taking courses in other fields can help you expand your knowledge, develop other interests, and offer more to your future employers.
- Interested in international study opportunities? Meet with Laurier International. (Third year is the best year for an international exchange.)
- Planning for the Vancouver Film School (VFS) Pathway program? Start thinking about your application and pitch.
- Don’t forget to join the WLU Film Society to meet other cinephiles and attend Film Studies events like the Free Film Series.
- Also plan to meet with the Film Studies program coordinator/undergraduate advisor at some point in the year to make sure you are taking the right courses to stay on track.
Note: 200-level courses are open to all senior students, and 300-level courses to senior students who have taken two FS courses.
Note: If you are taking the VFS Pathway, you cannot take the majority of Laurier’s “Film Production” courses (including “Industry” courses like Business of Film and Screenwriting and “Studio” courses like Intro to and Advanced Video Editing), depending which program at VFS you want to take. To be eligible for the “Excellence in Media” scholarships, you must have completed 2.5 credits in FS courses by the end of fall term in your second year and 10.0 credits in total courses before you can attend VFS.
- In third year, you can take more electives, another Film History course and another National Cinema course if you only did one in second year. Also take one of your “Film Theory” courses (Classical, Contemporary, Gender, Mass Media) and more production courses.
- For combined majors, you will continue to take courses in your other major alongside Film Studies courses.
- If you're in the Vancouver Film School (VFS) pathway, your third year will be spent at VFS taking one of VFS’s three eligible programs: Film Production, Writing for Film and Television, or Acting for Film and TV.
- For Film Production Option students, you can take another “FS Elective” (Detective, Sci Fi, Animation, Youth Culture), another “Industry” course, and/or one of your “Studio” courses in Video Editing.
- Alongside your Film Studies courses, you will take courses in your other major and electives in other programs. Taking courses in other fields can help you expand your knowledge, develop other interests, and offer more to your future employers.
- Make sure you meet with the Film Studies program coordinator/undergraduate advisor at some point in the year to make sure you are on track to graduate on time and to discuss postgraduate opportunities.
- Thinking about graduate school? Consider the directed study or grad course option for fourth year.
- Best year for an international exchange.
- Remember to check out the WLU Film Society and Free Film Series.
- For fourth year, take any remaining required courses (History, Theory, National, Production), and your fourth-year seminars (two for single majors, one for double majors).
- For Film Production Option students, take any remaining required courses for the Film Production Option (Industry, Studio, History).
- The rest of your schedule is free to take more FS electives — maybe a “genre” course (Gangster, Detective, Western, Sci Fi) or exciting “topics” course (Cinematic City, Animation, Youth Culture, Film Sound, Auteurs).
- Planning to pursue graduate school? Attend the EN/FS info session, apply for SSHRC (fall) and OGS (winter), and apply to your preferred programs (fall and winter).
- Make sure you will be ready for graduation by meeting with the Film Studies program coordinator/undergraduate advisor in September while you still have time to add courses.