Quantitative and Breadth Science Courses for Arts Students

Feeling anxious about taking Quantitative and Breadth-Science courses? Looking for course options beyond "traditional" math and science to fulfill your Q and B-Sci requirements?

SFU offers many courses with Q and B-Sci designations that have either been designed with students in non-quantitative disciplines in mind or make a point of looking at quantitative reasoning and science in creative ways. The following list includes courses that hold both Q and B-Sci designations.

You’re encouraged to look through the complete lists of Q (http://www.sfu.ca/ugcr/for_faculty/certified_wqb_courses/certified_quantitative_courses.html) and B-Sci courses (http://www.sfu.ca/ugcr/for_faculty/certified_wqb_courses/certified_designated_breadth_courses.html) for other creative Q or B-Sci courses.

**Please note: Course designations approved after September 2006 are noted in the lists below with italicized effective dates. Designations are NOT retroactive; they are effective as of the first offering after Senate approval.**

Last updated 11 March 2021.

Courses are listed alphabetically. Check Course Schedules each term for offerings of (and possible prerequisites for) the following courses:

ACMA 101 Introduction to Insurance - Q and B-Sci - effective September 2017

  • General overview of universally useful concepts in insurance, pensions and financial management. Typical life, health and property & casualty insurance products; underwriting; pricing; reserving; regulation; social insurance; retirement plans and annuities; financial planning: mortgages, loans, wealth management. Corequisite: MATH 150, 151, 154 or 157.

ARCH 285 Archaeological Science - Q and B-Sci - effective January 2015

  • Introduces scientific techniques used for archaeological investigations. Prerequisite: One of ARCH 100, ARCH 201, BISC 101, CHEM 111, CHEM 121, EVSC 100, GEOG 111, PHYS 101 or PHYS 120.

CHEM 110 - Introductory Chemistry (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • General fundamental concepts and nomenclature; stoichiometry and chemical calculations; nuclear and atomic structures, chemical bonding; properties of gases, liquids, solids and solutions; chemical kinetics and chemical equilibrium. This course has the same lecture component as CHEM 111 but no laboratory work. Students who intend to take further laboratory courses in chemistry should take CHEM 111 instead. Prerequisite: Pre-Calculus 12 (or equivalent), MATH 100 (may be taken concurrently), or permission of the Department. No previous training in chemistry is required for this course. Students with a grade of C or better in Chemistry 12 (or equivalent), or who have credit for CHEM 111, or any university chemistry course may not take this course for further credit.

CHEM 111 - Introductory Chemistry and Laboratory (4) - Q and B-Sci

  • General fundamental concepts and nomenclature; stoichiometry and chemical calculations; nuclear and atomic structures, chemical bonding; properties of gases, liquids, solids and solutions; chemical kinetics and chemical equilibrium. This course includes a laboratory component. Prerequisite: Pre-Calculus 12 (or equivalent), MATH 100 (may be taken concurrently), or permission of the Department. No previous training in chemistry is required for this course. Students with a grade of C or better in Chemistry 12 (or equivalent), or who have credit for CHEM 110, or any university chemistry course may not take this course for further credit.

CHEM 120 - General Chemistry I (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • Atomic and molecular structure; chemical bonding; thermochemistry; elements; periodic table; gases, liquids, solids, and solutions. This course has the same lecture component as CHEM 121 but no laboratory work. Students who intend to take further courses in chemistry should also take CHEM 125 or alternatively take CHEM 121 instead. Prerequisite: Chemistry 12 with a minimum grade of C, or CHEM 110 or 111 with a minimum grade of C-. Students with credit for CHEM 121 or CHEM 123 may not take this course for further credit.

CHEM 121 - General Chemistry and Laboratory I (4) - Q and B-Sci

  • Atomic and molecular structure; chemical bonding; thermochemistry; elements; periodic table; gases liquids, solids, and solutions. This course includes a laboratory component. Prerequisite: Chemistry 12 with a minimum grade of C, or CHEM 109 or 111 with a minimum grade of C-. Students with credit for CHEM 120 or 125 may not take this course for further credit.

CHEM 191 Living in a Materials World: From the Stone Age to Nanoscience - Q and B-Sci

  • A survey of materials that have been used throughout human history, from stone, bone and wood to modern plastics and superconductors. The chemical principles that give rise to different materials' properties will be examined, with an emphasis of how small changes at the molecular level can have important implications in everyday life. We will also trace the development of new materials and how they have been perceived and studied throughout the ages. Intended for both science and non-science students.

CHEM 192 Chemistry in Your Home, Work, and Environment - Q and B-Sci

  • The impact of chemistry on modern living. Students will gain a broad perspective on chemical processes with historical, environmental and economic importance in shaping society, examining both the beneficial and harmful aspects of the chemicals that shape our lives. Topics may include: perfumes, explosives, drugs, dyes, plastics, pesticides and greenhouse gases. Intended for both science and non-science students.

CMPT 120 Introduction to Computing Science and Programming I - Q and B-Sci

  • An elementary introduction to computing science and computer programming, suitable for students with little or no programming background. Students will learn fundamental concepts and terminology of computing science, acquire elementary skills for programming in a high-level language and be exposed to diverse fields within, and applications of computing science. Topics will include: pseudocode, data types and control structures, fundamental algorithms, computability and complexity, computer architecture, and history of computing science. Treatment is informal and programming is presented as a problem-solving tool. Recommended prerequisite: BC Math 12 or equivalent. Students with credit for CMPT 102, 128, 130 or 166 may not take this course for further credit. Students who have taken CMPT 125, 129 or 135 first may not then take this course for further credit.

CMPT 128 - Introduction to Computing Science and Programming for Engineers (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • An introduction to computing science and computer programming, suitable for students wishing to major in Engineering Science or a related program. This course introduces basic computing science concepts, and fundamentals of object oriented programming. Topics include: fundamental algorithms and problem solving; abstract data types and elementary data structures; basic object-oriented programming and software design; elements of empirical and theoretical algorithmics; computation and computability; specification and program correctness; and history of computing science. The course will use a programming language commonly used in Engineering Science. Prerequisite: BC Math 12 (or equivalent, or any of MATH 100, 150, 151, 154, or 157, with a minimum grade of C-). Students with credit for CMPT 102, 120, 130 or 166 may not take this course for further credit. Students who have taken CMPT 125, 129, 135, or CMPT 200 or higher first may not then take this course for further credit.

CMPT 130 - Introduction to Computer Programming I (3) Q and B-Sci - effective Spring 2013

  • An introduction to computing science and computer programming, using a systems-oriented language, such as C or C++. This course introduces basic computing science concepts. Topics will include: elementary data types, control structures, functions, arrays and strings, fundamental algorithms, computer organization and memory management. Prerequisite: BC Math 12 (or equivalent, or any of MATH 100, 150, 151, 154, or 157, with a minimum grade of C-). Students with credit for CMPT 102, 120, 128 or 166 may not take this course for further credit. Students who have taken CMPT 125, 129 or 135 first may not then take this course for further credit.

CMPT 166 An Animated Introduction to Programming - Q and B-Sci - effective September 2012

  • An informal introduction to programming using examples drawn from animation and graphics. Fundamental programming language features are covered, including variables, expressions, statements, loops, functions, and objects. Class design, event-driven programming or other advanced programming techniques may be introduced as needed. No prior programming experience is assumed. Recommended prerequisite: BC Math 12 or equivalent. Students with credit for CMPT 102, 120, 128, or 130 may not take this course for further credit. Students who have taken CMPT 125, 129 or 135 first may not then take this course for further credit.

EDUC 211 Mathematical Experience I: Numbers and Beyond - Q and B-Sci

  • Utility and aesthetics of mathematical experience is presented through the exploration of selected topics. Prerequisite: Students who have credit for MATH 150, 151, MATH 154, MATH 157 need permission of the instructor to participate in EDUC 211 and EDUC 212.

EDUC 212 Mathematical Experience II: Shape and Space - Q and B-Sci

  • See description for EDUC 211 above.

ENV 452/EDUC 452 Environmental Education - Q and B-Sci - effective May 2015

  • Examines problems entailed in developing awareness and understanding of the environment. Explores issues through a multi-disciplinary approach and develops an understanding of challenges, opportunities, strategies and possible solutions. Includes a laboratory component. Students may be required to complete a Criminal Record Check. Prerequisite: 90 units. Students with credit for EDUC 452 may not take ENV 452 for further credit and vice versa.

GEOG 253 Introduction to Remote Sensing - Q and B-Sci - B effective September 2015

  • An introduction to the theory and practice of remote sensing, including the relevant physical processes, digital image processing and information extraction, and a review of remote sensing applications. Prerequisite: GEOG 111.

MATH 160W - Mathematics in Action (3) – W, Q and B-Sci

  • Students take an active role in modeling mathematics of change through a guided, investigative, discovery-based approach of learning that mimics past and present research methods in mathematics. The course is divided into several modules, each of which centers around a major application in mathematics using calculus such as logistic growth (e.g. spread of diseases), optimization (e.g. cost effective oil pipe line routes), approximation (e.g. security system design), area calculation (e.g. tile design) and volume calculation (e.g. optimal ice cream cone) as well as a function review module and calculus history module. The history module allows students to gain a broad understanding of the developments of calculus and how this branch of mathematics helped to shape other branches of mathematics as well as the sciences. The instructional approach emphasizes conceptual understanding over rote drill and students write, present, and defend their mathematical discoveries. Prerequisite: Pre-Calculus 12 or Foundations of Mathematics 12 (or equivalent) with a grade of at least B, or MATH 100 with a grade of at least C- and SFU FAN credit.

MATH 178W - Fractals and Chaos (3) – W, Q and B-Sci

  • Introduction to fractal geometry and chaos theory, with a survey of applications of these topics in modern mathematics and in other areas outside of mathematics including music, art, computer graphics, finance, and the sciences. Designed to be accessible to students with only high school mathematics. Prerequisite: Pre-Calculus 12 or Foundations of Mathematics 12 (or equivalent) with a grade of at least B, or MATH 100 with a grade of at least C-.

MACM 101 - Discrete Mathematics I (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • Introduction to counting, induction, automata theory, formal reasoning, modular arithmetic. Prerequisite: BC Math 12 (or equivalent), or any of MATH 100, 150, 151, 154, 157.

PHIL 105 Critical Thinking - Q and B-Sci (or B-Soc) - revision of PHIL XX1; changes as of May 2016

  • An introduction to the evaluation of arguments as they are encountered in everyday life. The central aim will be to sharpen skills of reasoning and argumentation by understanding how arguments work and learning to distinguish those which actually prove what they set out to show from those which do not. Open to all students.

PHYS 101 - Physics for the Life Sciences I (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • Force and motion, conservation of energy and momentum, fluids, properties of soft matter and thermal physics with applications taken from the life sciences. Prerequisite: BC Principles of Physics 12 or PHYS 100 or equivalent, with a minimum grade of C-. This prerequisite may be waived, at the discretion of the department, as determined by the student's performance on a regularly scheduled PHYS 100 final exam. Please consult the physics advisor for further details. Corequisite: MATH 150 or 151 or 154 or 157; BISC 100 or 101 or 102. Recommended Corequisite: PHYS 132. Students with credit for PHYS 120, 125 or 140 may not take this course for further credit.

PHYS 102 - Physics for the Life Sciences II (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • Waves and optics; electricity and magnetism; modern physics emphasizing radioactivity, with applications taken from the life sciences. Prerequisite: PHYS 101 or 120 or 125 or 140; MATH 150 or 151 or 154 or 157; both with a minimum grade of C-. Corequisite: BISC 100 or 101 or 102. Recommended Corequisites: MATH 152, 155 or 158; PHYS 133. Students with credit for PHYS 121, 126, or 141 may not take this course for further credit.

PHYS 120 - Mechanics and Modern Physics (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • A general calculus-based introduction to mechanics. Topics include translational and rotational motion, momentum, energy, gravitation, and selected topics in modern physics. Prerequisite: BC Principles of Physics 12 or PHYS 100 or equivalent, with a minimum grade of C-. This prerequisite may be waived, at the discretion of the department, as determined by the student's performance on a regularly scheduled PHYS 100 final exam. Please consult the physics advisor for further details. Corequisite: MATH 150 or 151 or 154. Recommended Corequisite: PHYS 132. Students with credit for PHYS 101, 125 or 140 may not take this course for further credit.

PHYS 121 - Optics, Electricity and Magnetism (3) - Q and B-Sci

  • A general calculus-based introduction to electricity, magnetism and optics. Topics include electricity, magnetism, simple circuits, optics and topics from applied physics. Prerequisite: PHYS 120 or 125 or 140, with a minimum grade of C-, or PHYS 101 with a minimum grade of B. Corequisite: MATH 152 or 155. Recommended Corequisite: PHYS 133. Students with credit for PHYS 102, 126 or 141 may not take this course for further credit.

PHYS 140 - Studio Physics - Mechanics and Modern Physics (4) - Q and B-Sci

  • A general calculus-based introduction to mechanics taught in an integrated lecture-laboratory environment. Topics include translational and rotational motion, momentum, energy, gravitation, and selected topics in modern physics. Prerequisite: BC Principles of Physics 12, or PHYS 100 or equivalent, with a minimum grade of C-. Corequisite: MATH 150 or 151 or 154. Students with credit for PHYS 125 or 120 or 101 may not take this course for further credit.

PHYS 141 - Studio Physics - Optics, Electricity and Magnetism (4) - Q and B-Sci

  • A general calculus-based introduction to electricity, magnetism and optics taught in an integrated lecture-laboratory environment. Topics include electricity, magnetism, simple circuits, optics and topics from applied physics. Prerequisite: PHYS 120 or PHYS 125 or PHYS 140, with a minimum grade of C-, or PHYS 101 with a minimum grade of B. Corequisite: MATH 152 or MATH 155. Students with credit for PHYS 126 or 121 or 102 may not take this course for further credit.

PHYS 190 Introduction to Astronomy - Q and B-Sci

  • A survey of astronomy designed primarily for non-science students, with a strong emphasis on active learning outside the classroom. Covers the development of astronomy from the ancient Greeks through the Renaissance, to the modern view of the cosmos as revealed by the scientific method. Topics include naked-eye observation of the night sky, modern observational equipment and techniques, the solar system, stellar evolution, galaxies, the Hubble expansion, the Big Bang, dark matter, dark energy, and startling new theories of the origin and destiny of the universe. Experiential activities involve active observations of the moon, stars and planets, and introductory experiments in some of the basic physics that astronomers use to explore the cosmos. Students who have received credit for PHYS 121, 126 or 141 may not take PHYS 190 for further credit.

STAT 100 Chance and Data Analysis - Q and B-Sci

  • Chance phenomena and data analysis are studied through simulation and examination of real world contexts including sports, investment, lotteries and environmental issues. Intended to be particularly accessible to students who are not specializing in Statistics. Students may not obtain credit for STAT 100 if they already have credit for - or are taking concurrently - any upper division STAT course.

TEKX 101 - Introduction to 3D Printing and Laser Scanning Technologies (3) –Q and B-Sci

  • Provides the background and skill set to use 3D printer and laser scanning technologies, and will be done in cooperation with the Maker Space initiative at the SFU Library. Students will learn the basic concepts of 3D printing, computer design tools, and the use of 3D scanners to make replicas of existing objects. Students will complete several 3D printed projects within the course. Quantitative/Breadth-Science.