Past course outlines

Please find past course outlines listed below. Current course outlines can be found here.

Reflections on Reason and Passion I

LS 800

The first of two core courses that constitute an extended examination of the tension between reason and passion in human experience. This course will emphasize close reading and discussion of works, drawn from different cultures and epochs, that reflect on human passion.

Reflections on Reason and Passion II

LS 801

The second of two core courses that constitute an extended examination of the tension between reason and passion in human experience. This course will examine writings by some who have insisted on the indispensability of reasoning as a guide to action and the source of truth, as well as writings by some of those who on various grounds have cast doubt on this faith in human reason.

Self and Society

LS 810

This course will examine some aspects of the relationship between selfhood, as idea and experience, and social organization. Approaches to the topic will vary, but may involve scientific, social scientific, philosophical and aesthetic perspectives.

Tradition and Modernity

LS 811

This course will examine ways in which ideas of tradition and traditional societies conflict with forces of modernization and ideas of modernity.

Science and Human Values

LS 812

This course will deal with issues surrounding the nature of the scientific attitude, the growth of scientific knowledge and the impact of scientific and technological change. Specific attention will be given to the value implications of science and technology in relation to other forms of human understanding and experience.

Religious and Secular World Views

LS 813

This course will deal with the conflicts and continuities of secular and religious approaches to such fundamental issues as the origins of the universe and of the human species, human virtue, and human destiny.

Liberty and Authority

LS 814

This course will examine the tension between liberty and authority as expressed in some of the following: political and judicial ideas and systems; conflicting economic ideologies; personal relationships.

Organizing Social Realities: Gender, Class, Race, Nation

LS 815

This course will examine how distinctions among people create pattern and conflict, by studying some of the fundamental organizing concepts of society which both unite and divide people.

The Art of Writing

LS 816

Students will engage in a close study of form and technique in order to better understand the fundamental elements of writing. This study will be enhanced by a writing workshop, where students will improve their ability to write and critique extended work. Genres may include academic, non-fiction, and fiction, with an emphasis on the relationship between established literary/academic traditions and the production of original work.

Selected Topics

LS 819

This course provides an opportunity for the occasional offering of a seminar course appropriate to the program but on a topic outside the regular courses.

Selected Topics

LS 820: Travel study (previously LS 819)

Each year the Graduate Liberal Studies program offers travel study courses, offered either as regular SFU summer courses, or in collaboration with other international liberal studies programs. Learn more about travel study.

Directed Study

LS 829

This course provides an opportunity for individual study on a topic of the student's choice, under the guidance of one or more faculty. Arrangements for this course must be approved by the graduate chair in advance of enrolment.

Liberal Studies Graduating Seminar

LS 898

The final seminar for those students in the graduate liberal studies program pursuing the course option MA. The seminar will revisit the themes raised in the two opening core seminars (LS 800 and 801). Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.

MA Extended Essays

LS 998

Students will present two of their essays for formal examination in order to satisfy the Simon Fraser University requirements for a master's degree. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.

MA Project

LS 999

This course is for students choosing to satisfy part of the requirements for an MA in liberal studies by presenting a project for formal examination. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.