Why a Carleton B.A.?

As a student in the Bachelor of Arts (BA) program, you can choose your major discipline from a diverse range of areas of study. You can explore one area of interest in depth, combine two areas, or earn a specialization in one aspect of your major discipline.

The Bachelor of Arts is extremely popular with our students because it offers them a chance to delve into one or more academic disciplines and explore issues from many perspectives. Under the guidance of outstanding teachers and scholars, students develop their thinking, writing and presentation skills and learn to apply research techniques.

Your Career

Many of our programs offer the opportunity to gain valuable practical experience outside the classroom, either through co-operative (co-op) education, internships or field work.

View our BA Guidebook

Disciplines that offer co-op options:

A great way to broaden your horizons and gain valuable experience is to study abroad for part of your degree. Carleton maintains exchange partnerships with more than 175+ schools in over 35 countries, and some BA programs offer special opportunities for international experience.

As you progress through your BA, it is important to engage in career planning. We have many resources for career planning help and inspiration. Carleton’s Career Services provides career workshops and one-on-one advising.


Find Out What Our Students Are Doing

The B.A. degree teaches not just a body of knowledge, but a body of skills. We teach skills such as critical thinking, analysis of evidence, discovery of underlying principles, visual literacy and — perhaps most importantly — communication skills. These are what we call ‘transferable skills’, which is a fancy way of saying that they make you better at just about everything you do for the rest of your life. (Read more) – Prof. Peter Coffman (Art History).

BA General (Undeclared)

The BA Undeclared is a program of study within the Bachelor of Arts (BA) for students who want to explore their options before deciding on a particular major.

It is the perfect option for students who:

1) are interested in multiple fields and are having a difficult time deciding on one area of study, or students who

2) feel that they would benefit from experiencing their first-year classes before deciding on a particular area of study.

BA General and BA Honours

How you learn is just as important as what you learn. Carleton’s Bachelor of Arts (BA) programs are designed to inspire, challenge and prepare you to become a knowledgeable participant in an ever-changing world.

Understanding the world and its complexity requires an examination of multiple perspectives. Many of Carleton’s programs, courses and minors draw on and combine expertise from a variety of academic disciplines. This interdisciplinary approach helps students understand key issues and improves their ability to critically evaluate, interpret and act upon information from an array of sources.

BA Combined Honours

A Combined Honours (or double Major) is simply two Majors completed in one degree. Although it doesn’t necessarily take longer to complete a degree, pursuing a Combined Honours does reduce the student’s overall number of elective courses. Due to the nature of program requirements, some programs are not available for Combined Honours. If you would like to know if your program offers Combined Honours, please contact Admissions Services.

View Our Comprehensive B.A. Guidebook (PDF) →

BA Formula

At Carleton, we strive to enhance our existing programs and develop new ones. Our list of Bachelor of Arts programs indicates the wide range of areas of study we offer. Our programs are flexible, comprehensive and innovative, and designed to provide you with an outstanding and relevant learning experience.

Carleton’s Bachelor of Arts (BA) programs are offered through both the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and the Faculty of Public Affairs. The Faculties work together to offer students a cross-disciplinary experience in their selected program. Read more about our programs and departments.

What’s in it for you?

As a student of the Bachelor of Arts program, you can structure your BA according to what you want to achieve. You can pursue an intensive Honours degree or a General program.You can choose a minor subject to complement your major subject and you can, in certain cases, pursue a concentration or a specialization—a set of courses in your major directed toward an area of expertise. If you are interested in two fields of study, you may be able to pursue them both in a Combined Honours program.

For first-year BA students you can explore our undeclared option which gives you the flexibility to take courses in any discipline you want to learn more about. You can choose from a wide variety of courses and get academic advice on possible majors and careers. Once you’ve discovered first-hand what Carleton has to offer, you’ll be in a better position to decide on your future path.

Deepen your expertise and make your BA even more rewarding!

If a specific area of your major interests you, concentrations or specializations are also an option. These courses deepen your expertise. You might be equally interested in two fields of study and pursue them in a combined program. Co-operative (co-op) education, internships and field work provide practical hands-on experience beyond the classroom. Other options available: Mention FrançaisFirst-Year Seminars and studying abroad.

First-year Seminars

Our First-Year Seminars (FYSMs) give you theopportunity to strengthen your critical-thinking skills through discussion and debate with both your professor and your peers. FYSMs consist of small classes of around 30 students, and you can choose from a large selection of seminars.

Why Carleton?

Known primarily as the seat of Canada’s federal government, Ottawa is that and so much more. It is home to over 130 embassies and high commissions from around the world, as well as numerous national organizations and museums. A large percentage of Canada’s major medical, clinical and life sciences research centres are located in the Ottawa area, as well as a technology industry comprised of over 1,900 companies.

The best learning environments unite theory and practice. Research shows that experiential learning contributes to student engagement, deeper learning, improved academic outcomes, and enhanced work and life skills.

At Carleton, we strive to provide students with real-life experiences that bring the classroom to the world and the world to the classroom. We emphasize hands-on research, community engagement, work experience and immersive learning.

One of the main reasons why I chose to study History at Carleton University was because of the location. Studying Canadian history in the nation’s capital has some really great benefits like being able to access sources and research material from the National Archives and museums. The Carleton History department also offers a practicum placement, which I took in my third year. This was a wonderful experience that allowed me to gain relevant work experience in my field of study.

Jennifer Trimble, History

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