Student directed seminars

The Student Directed Seminars program provides upper-year undergraduate students the opportunity to coordinate and lead a small 3-credit seminar on a topic not currently offered at UBC.

Get involved

The Student Directed Seminars program provides upper-year undergraduate students (in 3rd year or later) the opportunity to propose, coordinate, and lead their own 3-credit seminar class with a small group of peers on a topic not currently offered at UBC-Vancouver.

Each seminar brings together a group of highly-motivated students to explore and investigate a topic through learning activities including group discussions, research papers, presentations, guest lectures, applied problem-solving, and Community Service Learning.

Having the opportunity to coordinate a seminar has instilled a level of personal agency over my learning that I would not have likely obtained from the traditional classroom environment.

former sds coordinator

Be a student coordinator

Student Directed Seminars are an expansion of the directed studies option offered by most departments and are a great way to enhance your own learning experience while gaining facilitation and leadership skills. You will also have the unique opportunity to work closely with a faculty member developing the course proposal and syllabus.  

Learn more about how to create your own Student Directed Seminar.

Be a student participant

Student participants have a role in shaping many aspects of the course as well. From helping to edit the course syllabus and choose readings, to peer marking, facilitating learning activities, and leading individual classes, each student builds their own learning experience and contributes to the learning outcomes for their peers.

Check out the list of current Student Directed Seminars to see what courses are being offered this year and what types of courses have been offered in the past. 

This is an incredible forum for discussion, venturing into meaningful topics that pressed all the students to question themselves, their peers, the authors.

former sds participant

Past Student Directed Seminars

Check out previous Student Directed Seminars that have been successfully facilitated at UBC from 1999 – 2017 here.

Advisory committee

The Student Directed Seminars Advisory Committee is made up of faculty members from various departments, staff from the Centre for Student Involvement & Careers, the Alma Mater Society (AMS), and a former SDS Student Facilitator.

All course proposals are reviewed thoroughly for academic rigor, quality of course plans, appropriate marking schemes and assignments, and the overall qualifications and suitability of the student coordinator(s).

Advisory Committee Members 2020-2021

  • Dr. Pam Kalas, 2019-20 SDS Program Chair, Senior Instructor (Botany)
  • Dr. José Rodriguez, 2020-21 SDS Program Chair, Senior Instructor (Chemistry) 
  • Robyn Leuty, Manager, Workplace Learning (Program Sponsor) (CSI&C)
  • Natalie Gerum, Educator (CSI&C)
  • Pam Garcia, Program Coordinator (CSI&C)
  • Kristen Palmer, SDS alumna (Psychology/GRSJ)
  • Elizabeth Wong, SDS alumna (Integrated Science)
  • Tommy Kuo, SDS alumni (Chemical Biology)
  • Jeff Miller, Senior Associate Director, Faculty Partnerships (CTLT)
  • Dr. Sarika Bose, Lecturer (English)

Student Directed Seminars

Student Directed Seminars

Brock Hall
1874 East Mall Room 1036
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1

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