Housing Policy Fundamentals

Housing policy in Metro Vancouver can be a maze of complicated terminologies and confusing characteristics, face a vacuum of empirical data, and become prone to misunderstanding and misinformation. Amongst the most contentious have been debates on what constitutes “affordable housing”, who should be responsible, and how and where to make affordable housing happen. In this course, you will learn about the foundational concepts and debates of housing Metro Vancouver.

The course will lay the foundation for explaining the local and regional housing landscape, survey the strengths and weaknesses of different housing policy responses and, in particular, the affordability crisis. It will look specifically at some of the innovative policy-making coming out of BC.

This three-evening course introductory course will transform the way you view housing and offer new opportunities to understand the affordable housing crisis. It will be of interest to community leaders, students of urban issues, housing providers, land use planners and related professionals, and anyone interested in elevating the discourse surrounding this complex problem.

Note: You will have up to one week to complete the post-course take-home assignment, which will be graded Pass or Fail.

This course is available at the following time(s) and location(s):

Campus Session(s) Instructor(s) Cost Seats available  
Online - Margaret Eberle $367.50 25 Register
Online - Margaret Eberle $367.50 35 -

Course schedule: Classes run online from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Pacific Time.

What will you learn?

By the end of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe Canada’s housing system, the regional housing market, government’s fundamental role in the housing system, key terminology, why housing policy is important, and the role of other actors in the country’s housing system
  • Explain debates on the nature and causes of postwar housing problems in Canada
  • Describe common housing market problems and myths
  • Identify housing policy tools that can be used to address these problems and their outcomes

How will you learn?

Throughout the course, students will be encouraged to discuss, debate and formulate their own opinions on housing. In addition to pre-class readings, students will explore the issues through exercises and small group discussions.

There will be an assignment (pass/fail) due one week after the last session.

Who should take this course?

Anyone with an interest in learning more about the field of housing policy in Metro Vancouver and Canada.

Textbooks and learning materials

We will provide custom course materials that you can access using SFU's online course management system, Canvas. You will receive course details and Canvas access instructions on the first day of the course. 

Hardware and software requirements

You will need a computer that is connected to the internet so that you can access Canvas, our online course management system. You can check if your browser is compatible with Canvas by accessing Canvas guides here. We recommend you use Google Chrome or Firefox.

Also, you will need to enable your computer’s audio and microphone to participate in live sessions offered via videoconference.

You can find more information on our About Online Learning page. 

Professional development credits

AIBC CES participants, PIBC members and BCSLA members may self-report for continuing education learning unit consideration.

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