International Relations

at UBC's

Okanagan Campus

Our international relations program draws on diverse disciplines, including political science, history, sociology, economics, and anthropology, to equip you with the skills necessary to critically assess the contours and dynamics of international politics and events – from conflicts in Afghanistan and the Congo, to the rise of women as political actors.

This program is also offered at UBC's Vancouver Campus
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Why this program?

  • Earn a UBC degree respected by employers around the globe.
  • Learn from renowned faculty researchers studying topics such as genocide and structural violence, gender and international political economy, humanitarian intervention, and peace building.
  • Prepare for a career in law, politics, diplomacy, communications, or with non-governmental organizations.
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Program information

  • Campus: Okanagan
  • Faculty: Irving K. Barber Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts
  • Length 4 yrs
  • Co-op Yes
    You can combine your studies with full-time, paid work at top local and international organizations.
  • Honours No
    You can study intense specialization in a single field.

International Relations is the interdisciplinary study of nations and how they interact, from the historical origins of the notion of nationalism to the present political context. You will develop a solid background in related areas of political science, history, sociology, anthropology, economics, and modern languages. The program stresses critical thinking and essential communication skills.

You’ll  learn how to critically examine global issues and interactions between state and non-state actors. Graduates of the International Relations program may go on to work in diverse fields such as government, academia, business, journalism, and international development.

Experiential learning and research

Advanced courses give you the opportunity to apply your education to real-life situations. You can also complete advanced coursework where you will be guided in the practical application of research methods for planning and carrying out program evaluations, including developing your own evaluation designs. Directed studies courses give you the opportunity to conduct an investigation of a research problem, which will require a written report of your findings. The Irving K. Barber Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences holds the annual Undergraduate Research Conference on UBC’s Okanagan campus to showcase student research projects.

Campus features

UBC is a global centre for research and teaching, consistently ranked among the 40 best universities in the world. UBC’s Okanagan campus is home to several renowned experts in international relations, including Adam Jones, associate professor in Political Science at the Okanagan campus, is an acknowledged expert in the field of genocide. In addition to his academic duties, he is currently an expert consultant to the United Nations Office of the Special Advisor for the Prevention of Genocide (OSAPG) in New York, and has led training for officials from the UN, governments, and NGOs in Sarajevo, Geneva, Bangkok, and Jakarta.

Life at UBC's Okanagan campus

UBC's Okanagan campus is renowned for its research opportunities and access to professors. You can branch out, network, and meet people with similar interests in various clubs on campus, such as the International Relations Course Union.

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Your future

A UBC education will introduce you to people and ideas from around the world, open doors to new opportunities, and take you places you never imagined. You’ll graduate not only with expertise in your chosen field, but with the skills you need to continue growing, learning, and evolving.

Program requirements

English-language requirements

English is the language of instruction at UBC. All prospective students must demonstrate English-language competency prior to admission. There are numerous ways to meet the English Language Admission Standard.

General admission requirements

IB Diploma Programme

  • Completed IB Diploma, including at least three Higher Level courses.

IB Certificate Courses

  • IB Certificate courses (Standard and Higher Level) may be used in an admissions average if you are graduating from a recognized high school curriculum that can be used as your basis of admission.
  • IB Math Applications and Interpretations SL, or IB Math Studies, do not satisfy the math requirement for admission to UBC’s science-based programs, the Faculty of Management, the UBC Sauder School of Business, or the Vancouver School of Economics.

Degree-specific requirements: Arts

  • No specific courses required beyond those needed for general admission

Related courses

The following subject categories are particularly relevant for this degree. Consider taking courses in these areas in your junior year and senior year.

  • Language Arts
  • Mathematics and Computation
  • Second Languages
  • Social Studies
  • Visual and Performing Arts
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