Four-year undergraduate degree programs


A new undergraduate experience is on the way

For future changemakers. The passionate and the curious. Those who are ready to take action.

Coming September 2024. Accepting applications in the near future. Please check regularly for updates.

A unique four-year undergraduate degree

The first two years are delivered through challenge-based learning. Instead of just being exposed to academic subjects, you’ll learn how to apply knowledge from these areas to solve real problems.

At the end of the program, you'll understand how to analyze, interpret and respond to complex challenges in a more informed, comprehensive and ethical way.

Our approach is based on two beliefs:

  • First, everyone needs time to develop their interests and find their passion.
  • Second, that challenge-based learning is the future — it's how the real world works.

First and second years: interdisciplinary foundation

You'll study on campus for your first two years.

Working in teams, you'll design sustainable solutions for local challenges. You'll be immersed in world issues, and you'll develop skills in leadership, communication, critical thinking and collaboration.

You'll take a wide range of academic subjects through a set list of courses:

  • First-year courses include subjects such as ecology, communication, human geography, leadership, theories of interdisciplinarity, history of human rights, statistics and applied research.
  • Second-year courses include subjects such as ecological economics, communication, determinants of health, systems thinking, psychology, economic development and political change, leadership, psychology and applied research.

Third and fourth years: program completion options

After successfully completing two years of challenge-based learning, you’ll progress directly into the third year of your chosen program.

Programs are offered online, on campus or through a blend of online courses and short, immersive residencies on campus.

Choose from one of the following applied and professional programs to complete your undergraduate degree:

How challenge-based learning works

At the heart of challenge-based learning is action.

You’ll learn how traditional academic subjects, such as psychology, economics or literature, contribute to our understanding of the world, and how we respond to it.

Then, you'll learn how design-thinking processes can be used to apply your knowledge to take action.

Stages of challenge-based learning

Your education will be organized around seven-week learning cycles to addressing some of the most urgent challenges facing the world today from economic and gender inequality to biodiversity loss and climate change.

Each seven-week challenge has four stages:

  1. Orientation and engagement stages: you'll develop your understanding of the challenge. First, you'll learn how the challenge affects you, your community and the planet. Second, you'll learn how core subjects like psychology, economics or literature contribute to a deeper and more sophisticated understanding of the challenge.
  2. Investigation stage: you’ll do your own research on the challenge. This is your opportunity to explore an area of personal interest while learning important research and communication skills and understanding the connections between various disciplines.
  3. Action stage: you’ll work with others to coordinate an action response to the challenge. You and your team design, implement and evaluate a response strategy. Along the way, you’ll develop skills related to leadership, systems thinking and social science.
  4. Reflection stage: Every challenge ends with reflection to give you a chance to consider what you’ve learned, how you might apply your learning to other situations and how you’ll adapt in the future.

Throughout the cycle, you’ll gain knowledge and understanding of issues, so you can develop relevant, effective, community-based responses. You'll also acquire key skills needed for the 21st-century job market.