The nature, philosophy and methodology of the Bachelor of Arts Community Studies degree (BACS) are outlined below. The BACS degree includes the core Community Studies (COMS) courses.

Here are some of the fundamental beliefs of CBU’s educational philosophy for the BACS program.

BACS is premised on life experiences and self motivation for students as learners.
BACS acknowledges the importance of content-based as well as process-based courses.
BACS stresses the importance of relating theory and practice.
BACS promotes participatory education.
BACS is career-oriented.
BACS encourages students to develop the skills of inquiry.
BACS emphasizes self-directed learning.
BACS professors act primarily as facilitators.
BACS promotes self assessment.
BACS maintains a problem-based approach to learning.
BACS is student-centered

For detailed information, see the Academic Calendar

Community Studies core courses

The process-based learning approach of the core Community Studies (COMS) courses are part of what makes BACS a distinctive degree.

All BACS degrees require the Community Studies core.

  • Community Studies 1100: Introduction to Community Studies
  • Community Studies 2103: Experiential Introduction to Research Methods
  • Community Studies 2105: Experiential Approach to Community-based Research
  • Community Studies 2101: Work Experience Placement I
  • Community Studies 3100: Community Action Project
  • Community Studies 3101: Work Experience Placement II
  • Community Studies 4100: Senior Seminar (4-year BACS programs only)

The 2016-2017 COMS course handbook can be found here.

Degree Options

There are many ways to create a BACS degree – options that fit all of your interests.  An overview of the options can be found here: 2016 BACS Programs.

Below are worksheets for a variety of those degree options (3 years, 90 credits or 4 years, 120 credits, plus Honours; general or specialized).

2016 BACS 3 Year General

2016 BACS 3 Year SPAL

2016 BACS 4 year Major/Minor

2016 BACS 4 year Double Major

2016 BACS 4 year Area Major (3 foci)

2016 BACS 4 year Music Major

2016 BACS 4 year SPAL Major

2016 BACS 4 year SPAL Honours

2016 BACS 4 year Honours (general)

2016 BACS/BBA 4 year

Opportunity for Advanced Standing

If you have previous University course credits they can be assessed for transfer into the BACS degree program. There are also special transfer credit opportunities for students who wish to enter a BACS degree  after successfully completing one and two year diploma programs. CBU has agreements with the Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), New Brunswick Community College (NBCC), College of the North Atlantic, the Atlantic Police Academy (APA) and many other institutions. Additional college diploma programs can be assessed for transfer credit. For more information see CBU Admissions’ transfer agreements page.

Prior Learning Assessments (PLAs) are available. Non-traditional students can submit a portfolio of their life, volunteer and work experiences for assessment. CBU recognizes the value of both formal and informal learning and may grant academic credit for skills and knowledge gained through life experience and volunteer activities. For more information see Advanced Standing.

BACS Online and On-Campus

The core Community Studies courses are all available online and on-campus. In addition, other academic subjects may have course available through online delivery such as Communication, Political Science, Sociology, and Psychology. See the Online Education section of the CBU website for further details.

Full or Part-time Study

Students can complete course work for a BACS degree through either full-time or part-time studies – the choice is yours. Given that course offerings begin in September, January and May/June/July you can study according to the schedule that works best for you.

Pat Maher
Associate Professor, Community Studies

Office: B-268-D

Phone: 902.563.1230

Jane Connell
Assistant Professor, Community Studies

Office: B-268-A

Phone: 902.563.1222

Bettina Callary
Associate Professor, Community Studies

Office: B-268-C

Phone: 902.563.1452

John Hudec
Assistant Professor, Community Studies

Office: B-268-E

Phone: 902.563.1982

Sue MacKenzie
Part-time Instructor, Community Studies

Phone: 902-371-3473

Emily Root
Assistant Professor, Community Studies

Office: B-268-B

Phone: 902-563-1889

Pam Seville
Part-time Instructor, Community Studies