Digital Arts & Humanities

Using digital technologies to explore questions central to the arts and humanities; applying arts and humanities frameworks to digital tools and technologies

Graduate Program Overview

Program Components Expected Duration
MA Coursework and thesis 24 months
PhD Coursework and dissertation 48 months

Digital Humanities, broadly speaking, refers to “the nexus of fields within which scholars use computing technologies to investigate the kinds of questions that are traditional to the humanities…or ask traditional humanities-oriented questions about computing technologies” (Fitzpatrick).

Similarly, Digital Arts is a highly integrated practice combining strong theoretical frameworks with specific acts of making in graphic design, digital photography, digital video and audio editing, web design, 2D and 3D animation, digital writing, and mobile application development. Combining the two fields in one degree facilitates dialogue between creative and critical studies — a conversation that is central to the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies.

Research undertaken in this graduate program brings computing technologies and makerspace methods together to address such humanities topics as social justice, access, sustainability, ethics, labour, ecology, collaboration, interaction, making, pedagogy, and reading, as well as the ways in which the humanities can pose vital questions about computing technologies.

Applications for the program, which begins in September 2019, will open on September 1, 2018. To receive the latest updates, please subscribe to our mailing list: dahu.ok@ubc.ca

The MA interdisciplinary degree in digital arts and humanities draws upon a well-established network of researchers as the foundation for this program. Graduate students have access to the expertise of diverse, nationally and internationally recognized researchers from a variety of faculties and disciplines in a coherent, thematic framework.

Program milestones
  • establishing a faculty supervisory committee
  • completing coursework
  • preparing, presenting and defending a thesis research proposal
  • completing thesis research and writing, and defending the work
Coursework requirements

18 credits of coursework are required, including:

  • Proseminar in Interdisciplinary Studies (IGS 524)
  • Theme Seminar in Digital Arts and Humanities (IGS 502)
  • One research methods course, (IGS 501 or IGS 506, or another methods course approved by the supervisory committee)
  • Additional coursework, selected in consultation with the student’s supervisor (9 credits)
THESIS REQUIREMENTS

Students are required to submit a Thesis Proposal of 2,500 words with a four-page bibliography to the Graduate Programs and Planning Committee; it is developed in consultation with your supervisor. The thesis ranges from 15,000 to 20,000 words and requires an oral defense administered by the College of Graduate Studies.

The PhD degree is centered on participating faculty and students convening on a regular basis to share ideas, learn about each other’s work, identify opportunities for collaboration, and broaden their interdisciplinary expertise. Faculty scholars all have experience with digital arts and humanities research, and are committed to the interdisciplinary nature of the program.

Program milestones
  • establishing a faculty supervisory committee
  • selecting and completing coursework
  • preparing, presenting and defending a thesis research proposal
  • passing an oral candidacy exam
  • completing thesis research and writing, and defending the work.
COURSEWORK REQUIREMENTS

12 credits are required for the PhD degree, including:

  • Proseminar in Interdisciplinary Studies (IGS 524)
  • Theme Seminar in Digital Arts and Humanities (IGS 502)
  • One research methods course, (IGS 501 or IGS 506, or another methods course approved by the supervisory committee)
  • Additional coursework, selected in consultation with the student’s supervisor (3 credits)
DISSERTATION REQUIREMENTS

Students must also complete a dissertation after passing an oral candidacy exam. Students are required to submit a Doctoral Planning Report with a four-page bibliography to the Graduate Programs and Planning Committee; it is developed in consultation with your the student’s supervisor.

Career Possibilities

Our MA students will gain a host of skills that prepare them for careers in education, consulting, governmental and non-governmental organizations, industrial sectors, and more. With the research, teaching, making, and analytical skills they gain in the Digital Arts and Humanities theme, our PhD students will be prepared to pursue academic and alternative academic career paths.

Research & Supervisors

This IGS degree draws on the expertise of 19 nationally and internationally recognized faculty researchers experience with interdisciplinary digital arts and humanities research.

Research Areas

Our research foci includes:

  • Creative Writing
  • Cultural Studies
  • Data Visualization
  • Digital Humanities
  • Digital Media
  • Indigenous Media Arts
  • Media Studies
  • Visual Arts
Supervisors

Please contact a potential faculty supervisor before you start the application process. We look forward to hearing about your research interests and career goals.


Myron Campbell | Visual Art | myron.campbell@ubc.ca |
Research interests: Visual Art, Media arts, Interactive Installation; Screen-based Interactive Animation; Traditional & Digital Media Arts; Digital Design


Diana Carter | Spanish | diana.carter@ubc.ca |
Research interests: International Cultural Literacies and Practices; bilingualism; second language acquisition; educational psychology; and the effects of language contact on bilingual speech


Jon Corbett | Geography | jon.corbett@ubc.ca |
Research interests: geography; ethnobiology; cartography; exploration, facilitation and promotion of community and ecosystem-based models of land and resource use in communities in Australia, Indonesia, the Philippines and British Columbia, Canada


Lindsay Der | Anthropology | lindsay.der@ubc.ca
Research interests: Human-Animal Relationships, Ritual and Symbolism, Social Inequality, Social Organization, Middle Eastern Archaeology, Archaeology and Ethics, Public Archaeology, Natural & Cultural Heritage, Digital Methodologies, Iconography, Prehistory


Aleksandra Dulic | Visual Art | aleksandra.dulic@ubc.ca
Research interests: Visual Art, New media, video, drawing 2D; Media for Social Change; Climate Change; Interactive Art; Experience Design


Jodey Castricano | Cultural Studies, English | jodey.castricano@ubc.ca
Research interests: 19th-century studies, including gothic studies and psychoanalysis (Freud/Jung); critical animal studies; ecofeminism; critical and literary theory, film and media studies; feminist and queer theory; ethics; social activism.


Mike Evans | Anthropology | mike.evans@ubc.ca
Research interests: urban Aboriginal Issues; Métis history and contemporary issues; Tonga, Trans-national migration and globalization; Regional Food Systems; Indigenous methodologies; Participatory action research; Community based research; and Island studies


Stephen Foster | Visual Art | stephen.foster@ubc.ca
Research interests: Visual Art, Video arts, new media, Indigenous Media Art; Video Art; Representational Politics; Digital Photography; Interactive Documentary


Greg Garrard | English, Sustainability | greg.garrard@ubc.ca
Research interests: Ecocriticism; contemporary environmental writing; critical animal studies; film and media studies; literature and science; Canadian literature.


Denise Kenney | Performance | denise.kenney@ubc.ca
Research interests: Performance, Interdisciplinary Performance; Applied Theatre; Interventionist Performance; Eco Art; Experimental & Documentary Digital Media


Hussein Keshani | Art History and Visual Culture | hussein.keshani@ubc.ca
Research interests: Art History & Visual Culture; South Asia and the Islamic World; Islamic Art History; South Asian art and architecture, Islamic history.


Daniel Keyes | Cultural Studies, English | daniel.keyes@ubc.ca
Research interests: Film, television and media studies; critical whiteness studies; critical and literary theory; cultural studies; studies in the suburban culture of North America; cultural studies in music; postcolonial and decolonization studies; drama and theatre studies; digital culture; Canadian literature.


Fiona McDonald | Anthropology | fiona.mcdonald@ubc.ca
Research interests: Visual anthropology; anthropology of art; sensory ethnography; material culture; curatorial studies; museum studies; textiles; oral history; contemporary Indigenous art; informal science learning and the environment; anthropocene; water rights; open access and digital publishing; North America & Aotearoa New Zealand.


Emily Murphy | Digital Humanities | emily.murphy@ubc.ca
Research Interests: Digital Humanities; text encoding; digital editing; actor-network theory; feminist and intersectional DH; critical and creative making; digital pedagogy; the body and digital culture; twentieth-century literature and culture; high, middlebrow, and popular modernisms; literature of the Spanish Civil War; women’s writing; adaptation and media-specificity; dance, movement, and physical culture; history of psychiatry and psychoanalysis; celebrity culture; little magazines and the slicks; life writing.


Francisco Peña | World Literatures, Spanish | francicso.pena@ubc.ca
Research interests: Spanish Literature, Literary Studies, Biblical Studies, Religious Studies, History of Ideas, literary study of the Bible, the influence of the Bible in Medieval and Early Modern Spanish literature, and Jewish/Christian relations in Medieval Iberia.


Christine Schreyer | Anthropology | christine.schreyer@ubc.ca
Research Interests: linguistic anthropology; First Nations language and culture; land claims and Aboriginal Title; ethnolinguistics, ethnohistory, social memory, oral history, landscape and traditional land use studies; works with First Nations communities on language issues such as language maintenance and revitalization of endangered languages.


Karis Shearer | English | karis.shearer@ubc.ca
Research interests: Canadian poetry; literary audio; cultural studies; critical pedagogy; feminist and gender theory; American poetry; modernism; performance and theatre studies; digital culture; creativity; social activism.


Michael V Smith | Creative Writing | michael.v.smith@ubc.ca
Research interests: Creative Writing, Concrete poetry, experimental film, Canadian literature, fiction and drama, poetry, screenwriting.


Jessica Stites Mor | History | jessica.stites-mor@ubc.ca
Research interests: Transnational solidarity movements; politics and culture of the left; cinema and digital media.


Miles Thorogood | Media Studies | miles.thorogood@ubc.ca
Research interests: Visual Art, Digital Media; interactive sound art; technology-based art; creative coding

 

Facilities & Institutes

Student Opportunities

The Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies (FCCS) cares about the experiential learning and well-being of our students, and about fostering their academic and research excellence.

In fact, FCCS is a significant generator of artistic and cultural events with one of the most active and robust communities on campus and off—in Kelowna, the Okanagan Valley and beyond.

As a domain of scholarship, creative activity, and teaching, Digital Arts & Humanities is wide-ranging and interdisciplinary in nature. FCCS encourages graduate students to become well-rounded scholars, educators, and public intellectuals. During their degree, students will have the opportunity to conduct original research, learn to become effective educators, and work as Teaching Assistants, as well as acquire knowledge in the professional practices of writing for publication, academic CV development, grant writing, networking, and community-engaged research skills.

Students have participated in initiatives on our campus such as the SSHRC funded Textual Editing and Modernism in Canada Summer Institute and the Summer Indigenous Art Intensive, learning valuable skills and receiving the opportunity to connect with colleagues from around the world.

There are opportunities for experiential graduate courses that move outside the traditional classroom, be it in the local area or be it in remote locations such as the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre on Vancouver Island.

FCCS engages in and supports research and creative activity, ensuring that our students and faculty members are given the necessary support to make significant scholarly contributions to the academy and society as a whole. The Digital Arts and Humanities theme draws upon a robust, interdisciplinary network of faculty experts in research and pedagogy to support, mentor, and train graduate students in the pursuit of research and research-creation.

We have a strong commitment to innovation and interdisciplinarity and to actively seeking opportunities to build interdisciplinary capacity that can connect with the growing tech and cultural industry sector in the Valley.

To examine the work of previous UBC Okanagan graduate students, search on cIRcle, the University’s digital repository for research and teaching materials.

Admission Requirements

Admission to UBC graduate programs is competitive. Applicants must meet the following criteria.

MASTER OF ARTS (MA) APPLICANTS 

Applicants to the master’s program are expected to hold:

  • the academic equivalent of a four-year bachelor’s degree from UBC, with a B+ (76%) average or better in their third- or fourth-year classes, or
  • at least 12 credits in third- and fourth-year classes in their intended field of study, with an A (80%) or better average.

Applicant background training must be sufficient for advanced work in their chosen field.


DOCTORAL (PHD) APPLICANTS 

PhD applicants will normally have a master’s degree in a related field, with a B+ (76%) average or better, and clear evidence of research ability or potential. Applicant background training must be sufficient for advanced work in their chosen field.


MORE INFORMATION

Visit the UBC Okanagan Academic Calendar* for full admission and program requirements information. The calendar is a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services and academic policies at the University of British Columbia.

* In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct. 

MASTER OF ARTS (MA) APPLICANTS 

Applicants to the master’s program are expected to:

  • hold the academic equivalent of a four-year bachelor’s degree from UBC
  • demonstrate superior academic standing

Applicant background training must be sufficient for advanced work in their chosen field.

Applicants from a university outside Canada at which English is not the primary language of instruction must present evidence of competency to pursue studies in the English language prior to being extended an offer of admission. Acceptable English language proficiency tests for applicants to graduate studies are:

  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language): minimum score of 550 (paper version); 90 overall with a minimum score of 22 in Reading & Listening and a minimum score of 21 in Writing & Speaking (Internet version), or
  • IELTS (International English Language Testing Service): minimum overall band score of 6.5, with no individual component score less than 6.0, or
  • MELAB (Michigan English Language Assessment Battery): minimum overall score of 85, with a final score of 3 in the speaking test.

DOCTORAL (PHD) APPLICANTS 

PhD applicants are expected to hold the academic equivalent of a two-year master’s degree from UBC in a related field and to demonstrate superior academic standing. Applicant background training must be sufficient for advanced work in their chosen field.

Applicants from a university outside Canada at which English is not the primary language of instruction must present evidence of competency to pursue studies in the English language prior to being extended an offer of admission. Acceptable English language proficiency tests for applicants to graduate studies are:

  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language): minimum score of 550 (paper version); 90 overall with a minimum score of 22 in Reading & Listening and a minimum score of 21 in Writing & Speaking (Internet version), or
  • IELTS (International English Language Testing Service): minimum overall band score of 6.5, with no individual component score less than 6.0, or
  • MELAB (Michigan English Language Assessment Battery): minimum overall score of 85, with a final score of 3 in the speaking test.

MORE INFORMATION

Visit the UBC Okanagan Academic Calendar* for full admission and program requirements information. The calendar is a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services and academic policies at the University of British Columbia.

* In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Required Grades and Credential Guide

Grades and degree credentials required by UBC vary by country. Search the Required Grades and Credential Guide—a guide to assist international students in estimating their eligibility.

International Advisors

An international student advisor can answer questions about immigration, medical insurance and the transition to UBC’s Okanagan campus in Kelowna, BC. Visit the International Programs and Services website to meet the team.

Tuition & Funding

Tuition

Tuition amounts presented here are estimates only and all fees are subject to change. For official tuition amounts and fee information, visit the UBC Okanagan Academic Calendar*, a comprehensive guide to all programs, courses, services and academic policies at the University of British Columbia.

Program Schedule Domestic (per year) International (per year)
MSc/MA Full-time $4,897.86 $8,604.66
PhD Full-time $4,897.86 $8,604.66

Tuition is paid three times a year at the beginning of each term, as per the Academic Calendar: Winter Term 1, Winter Term 2, and Summer Term.

* In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct. 

Funding Opportunities

Graduate student stipends are funded through a combination of internal and external funding awards, Teaching Assistantships and Research Assistantships.

Although funding and stipend amounts are not guaranteed, UBC’s Okanagan campus has a number of assistantships available for qualified students. Talk to your potential supervisor about funding opportunities.

Students are expected whenever possible to apply for relevant scholarships and fellowships.

Assistantships

Teaching Assistantships (TA)

Paid TA positions allow graduate students to develop skills in teaching, supervision, facilitation, and student assessment. Teaching assistants may lead seminars, help teach undergraduate courses, or assist in student evaluations and marking. Teaching assistants are mentored by their supervisor and via the Centre for Teaching and Learning.

Research Assistantships (RA)

As paid research assistants, graduate students assist their supervisor or other researchers in conducting high-level research, which often contributes to the student’s thesis. RAs are typically funded by the supervisor’s external grants, contracts, and sometimes, other sources of funding.

Scholarships & Awards

UBC Awards

The College of Graduate Studies administers merit-based graduate awards at the Okanagan campus. The College manages a number of award competitions each year and administers payment of all internal awards and selected external awards.

External Awards

All prospective graduate students (Domestic and International) should explore and apply for external awards and fellowships, including awards offered by Canada’s three research councils: CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC.

Graduate scholarships and awards may also be available from foundations, private companies or foreign governments (check with your country’s education authority).

How to Apply

Find a Supervisor

Please contact prospective supervisors before starting an application. Admission to the program requires the support of a faculty supervisor, as well as meeting program-specific criteria for admission requirements.

Please note: Interested applicants are encouraged to begin contacting potential supervisors. The formal application process for IGS Themes will open in the Fall.

Required Documents

A complete application package will contain:

  • Online application and application fee
  • Official transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended
  • Statement of Intent
  • English language test (for non-native speakers of English)
  • CV or resumé
  • Three reference forms or letters
Deadlines

Applying takes time. Students are advised to start the application process two months in advance of the application deadline.

For full consideration, students should submit all application materials by the following deadlines:

Intake Application Deadline
Domestic applicants
September January 15
International applicants
September January 15

Applicants who wish to enter the program in the second semester of the academic year or in the summer semester should consult with the theme coordinator to determine if accommodation is possible.

UBC's Okanagan Campus

The University of British Columbia is a global centre for research and teaching, consistently ranked among the 40 best universities in the world. In the psychology program at UBC’s Okanagan campus, you gain all the benefits of attending a globally respected university while studying in a close-knit learning community.

DYNAMIC CITY

UBC’s Okanagan campus borders the dynamic city of Kelowna, a hub of economic development with a population of about 150,000 people—the fourth fastest growing population in Canada. In fact, the Okanagan Valley is rated one of the best communities in Canada to grow your business.

More than 160 buses travel daily from campus to key locations such as Kelowna’s cultural district and thriving downtown waterfront. The campus is two minutes from the Kelowna International Airport, one of the top 10 busiest airports in Canada.

UBC Okanagan is situated within the First Nations territory of the Okanagan Nation, whose spirit of stewardship for the land is reflected in the university’s respect for sustainability.

NATURAL BEAUTY

A diverse natural region with sandy beaches, beautiful farms, vineyards and orchards, and snow-capped mountains, the Okanagan Valley features sweeping stretches of lakeside and endless mountain trails for biking and hiking.

Check out this 360-degree video: Kelowna From Above (best viewed using desktop Chrome or Firefox or YouTube’s mobile app).

CAMPUS HOUSING

Full-time UBC Okanagan students can live in residence, which offers modern living with easy access to academic and personal support. Residences are surrounded by hiking and biking trails, plus panoramic views of the campus and valley.

OFF-CAMPUS HOUSING

* UBC does not verify or endorse information shared on this third-party website, which is offered here as a public resource only.

College of Graduate Studies: CoGS offers orientation events to support you in your first steps as a graduate student at UBC’s Okanagan campus.

Stay active: Take advantage of the many opportunities to get involved and play—from workout space in the new Hangar Fitness and Wellness Centre and our 1,561 square-metre gymnasium, to athletic courts, intramurals, fitness classes, and nationally ranked varsity athletics. Have a ball in Sports and Recreation.

Relax: The Graduate Collegium is a gathering place where grad students can hang out, eat lunch, spend time with their fellow students, and attend or host special events. The lounge-style room is open seven days and week and is outfitted with comfortable furniture, kitchen facilities, and individual and group-work spaces.

College of Graduate Studies: Your hub for administrative support and such things as graduate workshops for professional development and for assisting you from the admissions process through to your graduation.

Centre for Scholarly Communication: Supports graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, staff, and faculty in disseminating their research. The Library’s CSC provides one-on-one consultations and workshops, including writing support for theses, dissertations, journal articles, and grant proposals.

Centre for Teaching and Learning: Provides support related to teaching, TA training, and use of technology in educational programming.