Please note:

To view the current Academic Calendar, go to

World Literature and History Joint Major

Bachelor of Arts

This inter-departmental program explores various relationships between world literature and historical studies. Interested students must plan their program in consultation with both department advisors, and should consult Guidelines for Course Selection which is available from each department.

Program Requirements

Students complete 120 units, as specified below. Students are moreover required to satisfy the prerequisites of all courses (upper and lower division) that are taken within this joint major and should consult regularly with the program advisors regarding course selection.

Lower Division Requirements


Students complete 18 units of 100 and 200 level History courses.

Students must complete at least six lower division history units before enrolling in 300 division work and nine lower division history units before enrolling in 400 division work.

World Literature

Students complete a total of 15 units, including

WL 100 - What is World Literature? (3)

Explores how texts travel beyond their cultures of origin, influence other cultural contexts and ideas, and become works of world literature. Introduces the concepts of cross-cultural literary criticism and translation. Breadth-Humanities.

one 100-level WL Writing course


WL 200 - How to Do Things with World Literature (3)

Introduces major theoretical approaches to literature and fundamental techniques of literary analysis. Develops students' critical skills for analytical writing about literature in comparative, cross-cultural contexts. Prerequisite: six units in World Literature, including one W course.

plus 6 additional lower division WL units

*Students may count one 2nd year language course (3 units) toward their lower division WL units.

Upper Division Requirements


Students complete 24 units of 300 and 400 level history courses, of which 12 must be in 400 level. Students must complete at least one course from each group shown below. Global/Comparative courses that are also included in another group may only be counted towards fulfilling the upper division course requirements for one group.

Group 1 - Europe

Group 2 - The Americas

Group 3 - Africa, Middle East, Asia

Group 4 - Global/Comparative

Students in history joint major programs have the option of taking concentrations to enhance their programs.

Concentration in British History and Irish History

Concentration in Early Modern World History

Concentration in Middle Eastern and Islamic History

World Literature

Students complete a minimum total of 20 upper division WL units including both of

WL 300 - How Ideas Travel (4)

Explores the counterpoint of Western and non-Western approaches to world literature. May draw from disciplines including comparative literature, history, anthropology, and semiotics to focus on how concepts of world literature are imported and transformed in new cultural contexts. Builds on the skills and knowledge acquired in WL 200. Prerequisite: 45 units, including WL 200.

WL 301W - Writing and Research (4)

Helps students develop more advanced critical thinking and writing skills through a selected topic in world literature. Explores specific literary research methods such as formulating a research question, engaging with secondary sources, and creating a strong authorial voice. Prerequisite: 45 units including nine units in World Literature. Writing.

plus 12 additional upper division WL units, of which at least four must be taken at the 400 level

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Degree Requirements

For all bachelor of arts (BA) programs, students complete 120 units, which includes

  • at least 60 units that must be completed at Simon Fraser University
  • at least 45 upper division units, of which at least 30 upper division units must be completed at Simon Fraser University
  • at least 60 units (including 21 upper division units) in Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences courses
  • satisfaction of the writing, quantitative, and breadth requirements
  • an overall cumulative grade point average (CGPA) and upper division overall CGPA of at least 2.0, and program CGPA and upper division program CGPA of at least 2.0 on the course work used to satisfy the minimum program requirements. FASS departments may define additional GPA requirements for their respective programs.

Writing, Quantitative, and Breadth Requirements

Students admitted to Simon Fraser University beginning in the fall 2006 term must meet writing, quantitative and breadth requirements as part of any degree program they may undertake. See Writing, Quantitative, and Breadth Requirements for university-wide information.

WQB Graduation Requirements

A grade of C- or better is required to earn W, Q or B credit



W - Writing


Must include at least one upper division course, taken at Simon Fraser University within the student’s major subject
Q - Quantitative


Q courses may be lower or upper division
B - Breadth


Designated Breadth Must be outside the student’s major subject, and may be lower or upper division
6 units Social Sciences: B-Soc
6 units Humanities: B-Hum
6 units Sciences: B-Sci


Additional Breadth 6 units outside the student’s major subject (may or may not be B-designated courses, and will likely help fulfil individual degree program requirements)

Students choosing to complete a joint major, joint honours, double major, two extended minors, an extended minor and a minor, or two minors may satisfy the breadth requirements (designated or not designated) with courses completed in either one or both program areas.


Residency Requirements and Transfer Credit

  • At least half of the program's total units must be earned through Simon Fraser University study.
  • At least two thirds of the program's total upper division units must be earned through Simon Fraser University study.

Elective Courses

In addition to the courses listed above, students should consult an academic advisor to plan the remaining required elective courses.