In the common core requirements of the BDCI program, students engage in a variety of experiential learning opportunities, including challenge-based, interdisciplinary, and community-centred courses. Students acquire design abilities, skills, and theoretical frameworks with which to address complex city-based issues. Through the following courses, students progressively sharpen presentation, collaboration, interdisciplinary, and community-building skills, as well as project management and leadership:
Studio courses: Develop design abilities, skills, and foundational theoretical comprehension across scales, to address complex city-based issues. Courses provide professional work skills, such as written, visual, and verbal presentations, collaborating with community partners, working in interdisciplinary groups, as well as project management, and leadership.
Visualization and design graphics courses: Develop skills in the visual representation of design, including traditional methods, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Computer Aided Design (CAD), digital modelling, animation, and fabrication.
Technical courses: Examine city policies, infrastructures and systems, landscape ecology, and building science.
Global citizenship courses: Build awareness and critical thinking – through a broad contextual understanding of the environmental, and of the social, technological, historical, and economic forces that impact the physical and social infrastructure of cities – to support the innovative design interventions being explored in the studio courses.
Data science courses: Provide a fundamental understanding of how data, computation, and sensing can help us better understand how the complex and interconnected physical and social infrastructure of cities perform, in both a current state and in response to design interventions.
Sustainability Studies: Provide a basic understanding of how cities and the people who live in them impact the climate crisis. Examine the theory, measurement, and practice of sustainability from the local to global scale.
Entrepreneurial Thinking: Introduce students to entrepreneurial thinking as a mode of implementing design-based solutions in practice.
Students will complete two additional studios outside of the BDCI required common core courses: a work integrated learning studio and a capstone project studio.
Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) Studio: Students will select a project for their WIL studio course that aligns with their interests and career objectives. Working in a small group format within their assigned SAPL studio environment, students will complete the WIL consulting project experience over the course of a term under the direct supervision of an industry supervisory team. This studio provides students with an elevated experience through sustained and meaningful interaction with industry professionals and community groups that benefit graduates as they embark on their careers.
Capstone Studio Learning: The final studio in the BDCI program is a capstone learning experience in which students develop an independent project that aligns with their interests and career goals. Students may develop projects related to, or extensions of, their work integrated learning studio. Projects typically include a community partner or community-based context. Students are expected to integrate the learnings from the degree in the completion of the term-long project, and produce a gallery exhibition and written document of the final results. Students work independently within a studio cohort under the supervision of an instructor and an external project mentor – selected by the student – who provides informal advice and guidance over the term.
BDCI students interested in pursuing professional graduate degrees in architecture and landscape architecture at UCalgary can apply for admission into either the Architecture or Landscape Architecture Concentration in their second year. Both Concentrations consist of a series of 30 units of Concentration requirements in advanced design studio, visualization and technical courses that are discipline-specific (either architecture or landscape architecture), and that students must take to prepare them for direct entry into a two-year course-based professional Master of Architecture or Master of Landscape Architecture degree at UCalgary.
Students will complete 12 units of work-integrated learning and capstone project courses as part of the 30 units of concentration requirements. In addition to the Concentration requirements, students must complete 15 units of open electives.
Interested in graduate programs offered at the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape?
Learn more about the Master of Architecture program.
Learn more about the Master of Planning program.
Learn more about the Master of Landscape Architecture program.
Applying for a Concentration
To pursue either an Architecture or Landscape Architecture Concentration in the BDCI program, you will need to apply for a Change of Program in your second (or later) year, providing you have met the necessary requirements. The degree and Change of Program requirements can be found on the Academic Calendar.
Students pursuing general studies in the BDCI program are required to take 24 units of DCI options. These options can be chosen from:
Students may opt to incorporate an additional Minor or Embedded Certificate to complement the Bachelor of Design in City Innovation program. It is recommended that students seek advice from both the School and relevant Faculties regarding the choice of courses required to ensure that all program and graduation requirements will be met.
The following Minors and Embedded Certificates are recommended by the School to incorporate into the Bachelor of Design in City Innovation program:
Because the Bachelor of Design in City Innovation program with either the Architecture or Landscape Architecture Concentration is highly structured, students may need to complete more than 120 units of coursework when incorporating a Minor and/or Certificate. Students are cautioned to check the Calendar descriptions of the courses required for the Minor/Certificate and to include the necessary prerequisites for these courses in their programs. For admissions requirements and guidance on a specific Minor/Certificate, please contact the relevant School or Faculty for additional support.
SAPL has put together a list of recommended electives for BDCI students to further develop their interest areas and complement the program curriculum. The courses listed below are all offered outside of SAPL and can be used to fulfill BDCI’s general breadth requirements. Students may opt to take these courses to fulfill their DCI options (if it meets the applicable fields) and open electives. To learn more about the courses in this list, please refer to their Course Descriptions and relevant Faculty for more information.
Ahead of registration, make sure to check the course descriptions of all the courses that you plan to take. The pre- or co-requisites listed within each course description (if any), will determine which courses you select and the term you take them in. There is also a guide on how to decipher these course descriptions.
Pre-requisites are courses that must be completed first before progressing onto higher-level courses. The student must first earn at least a C- grade before they can advance to the next course requiring this pre-requisite.
Co-requisites are courses that must be taken together in the same semester. For example, a student cannot take DSGN 201 in one semester and DSGN 211 in another semester – the two courses must be taken in the same semester.
For a visual representation of how SAPL courses are connected via pre-requisites and co-requisites, please refer to the BDCI Pre-requisite Guide for SAPL Courses (diagram).
SAPL has put together a list of recommended Planning electives for BDCI students to engage in courses that would prepare them for the Master of Planning program and a career in Planning. The courses listed below are all offered outside of SAPL and can be used to fulfill BDCI’s general breadth requirements. Students may opt to take these courses to fulfill their DCI options (if it meets the applicable fields) and open electives. To learn more about the courses in this list, please refer to their Course Descriptions and relevant Faculty for more information.