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Arts Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Global Business and Digital Arts

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From the sleek world-phones of high-powered Chief Executive Officers (CEOs), to the rugged wind-up laptops of Haitian schoolchildren, digital media and global business, together, are shaping our increasingly connected world. This powerful movement has opened up new global markets and business opportunities, but it also entails a complex network of political, ethical, environmental, and ultimately humanistic concerns. Given the need to develop thoughtful and critically-informed citizens of a global digital culture, the University of Waterloo has established the University of Waterloo Stratford campus, home to the undergraduate program Global Business and Digital Arts (GBDA). This program will provide students with a combination of global awareness and digital design skills that will position them as mindful leaders and transformers of 21st-century business, government, and culture.

The first of its kind in Canada, the GBDA program builds on the University's longstanding reputation for leadership in innovation, and draws on the creative traditions of University of Waterloo Arts disciplines, with their focus on critical thinking, aesthetics, and broadly contextualized knowledge. The program's goals are ambitious and innovative: students will graduate equipped with practical skills for project management, team collaboration, and digital design; but these abilities are to be rooted in a solid intellectual foundation that links globalization, cultural studies, business ethics, economics, and marketing. To accomplish these goals, the academic program is based on a careful interdisciplinary strategy that integrates a variety of theoretical perspectives, methodologies, and forms of practice. A project-based focus allows students to explore global business and digital design opportunities, develop solutions to social problems, and create new forms of cultural expression in a global context.

The format of the program is as innovative as its goals and content. Students will spend the first two years at the University of Waterloo campus and then move to a residential program in Stratford for years three and four. The classes will be small, focused on problem-driven and project-based assignments, and enriched by interaction with leading academics, policymakers, industry researchers, and businesses. Students will work in teams, each with an assigned coach, and learn to manage design projects from start to delivery, developing abilities that range from critical conceptualization and technical troubleshooting, to cross-cultural communication and global marketing. A paid spring term internship will allow students to further develop course-related concepts and skills in a real-world environment.

Students in the GBDA program will have access to state-of-the-art media labs and equipment, as well as interaction with experts and guest lecturers from around the world. These resources and opportunities, combined with a unique and progressive curriculum, will ensure that Global Business and Digital Arts is a world-class program suited to meet the challenges of a global digital culture.


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