Canadian studies seeks to analyze and explain the Canadian experience and to explore Canada’s place in the world through Canadian-centred courses in a number of disciplines.
Faculty: Faculty of Arts
Degree options: BA honours or major; Any degree, minor
Mount Allison’s Canadian studies program is one of the oldest in the country.
The program explores Canadian issues and realities, such as the country’s vast and varied geography, regional distinctions, history and politics, public policy, culture, economy, the environment, Indigenous peoples, bilingualism, and multiculturalism.
In first year you will take introductory courses that examine contemporary Canadian issues and institutions as well as Canadian culture and identity.
Second year course options include cultural diversity, Canadian-American relations, and regionalism, while in third year you can explore Indigenous Canada, gender in Canada, and contemporary issues.
Your fourth year provides opportunities for independent studies, seminars, and advanced studies.
Canadian studies is an interdisciplinary program, which means that in addition to your Canadian studies courses, you will take Canadian-centred courses from fields including:
- History (immigration in Canadian history, labour history, urban history)
- English (Canadian literature, Canadian drama)
- Sociology (citizenship, identity and difference; comparative social policy; non-profit organizations; refugee studies)
- Music (survey of western music, music in Canada)
- Geography (natural resources management, rural and small town Canada, Canadian environmental planning and management)
- Anthropology (folklore, aboriginal peoples and cultures of Canada)
- Economics (economic issues in Canadian public policy, taxation and fiscal federalism)
- Fine Arts (art history, Canadian art)
- French (Quebec literature and culture; Acadian history, culture, and language)
- Political science (political parties and elections in Canada, environmental conflicts in Canada, interest groups and social movements, Canadian foreign policy)
- International relations (Canada, globalization, and international development)
Find a list of Canadian studies courses in the academic calendar — Canadian studies.
Popular career paths for Canadian studies graduates include:
- public policy analyst
- municipal, provincial, or federal elected representative
- community/urban planner
- foreign service officer
- aboriginal liaison
- entrepreneur/business analyst
- museum curator/director
- arts administrator
- mediator/conflict resolution specialist
- public relations specialist
- social media specialist
- immigration officer
- economic development officer
- heritage researcher/interpreter
- tourism development officer
“I was intrigued by the idea of learning more about the country I
live in. Canada occupies a very unique place in the global community. I
love international relations, but I didn’t understand how I could study
it successfully without a solid understanding of my own country and its
specific circumstances. After a few weeks in the intro courses, I was
hooked. Every week there was something new and complicated to discuss —
no easy answers. I realized I cared too much about these issues not to
study them further.”
Kylie de Chastelain
Double major, Canadian studies and sociology (’14)
Mount Allison's 52nd Rhodes Scholar
“I love that the program offers courses on the broadest range
of topics, all of which are situated in a common foundation — Canada. I
was glad to find that the program was not overly concerned with empty
nationalism. Rather, it focuses on critical inquiry of relevant issues.”
Ryan van den Berg
Honours Canadian studies, minors in history and French ('14)
Mount Allison was among the first universities in the country to establish a Canadian studies program. This well-respected program has earned a national reputation for excellence.
As a Canadian studies student, you can take advantage of Mount Allison’s Centre for Canadian Studies, an active research centre that works closely with the Canadian studies academic program. The Centre supports and extends student learning through an exceptional program of public lectures, conferences, and extracurricular events; hosts visiting scholars; and supports student initiatives and academic projects. Visiting speakers, like The Book of Negroes author Lawrence Hill and novelist Jane Urquhart, often take the time to visit classes while they are on campus.
Third and fourth year students have opportunities to work as teaching assistants. There are also opportunities for internships at the Centre for Canadian Studies.
Mount Allison is home to the Edgar and Dorothy Davidson Collection of Canadiana, a rich collection of Canadiana books, imprints, and manuscripts of great rarity and value, and examples of early Canadian glass, 18th century Canadian furniture, and 19th and 20th century Canadian paintings and sculptures.
The annual Davidson Lecture brings a distinguished Canadianist to campus to speak on a matter of importance to the country, while the annual Stanley Lecture is given each year by a Mount Allison Canadianist.