Global Challenges courses

Take the lead with exploring complex global issues. Ask important questions and solve problems that mean something to you.

Gain essential teamwork, research and critical thinking skills in one of the most exciting new courses at the University of Calgary

Global Challenges challenges you to think critically about solutions to complex problems. Many students find that knowledge gained in these courses applies well beyond the boundaries of class content.

More generally, the courses are about the study of idea creation. What pathways can we take to answer questions or generate solutions to problems?

The courses have no particular domain or discipline of their own, and therein lies the excitement. Global Challenges empowers you with tools and frameworks that you can apply to any question, regardless of your path, in university and beyond.

UNIV 201: Global Challenges Inquiry I

UNIV 201: Global Challenges Inquiry I introduces you to a global challenge, allowing you to use the inquiry process for exploring a real world problem from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. As a global challenges student, you will initiate your inquiry. You will take the lead in exploring complex issues, identifying important questions, looking for evidence, conducting research and solving problems. Your instructor will serve as a guide and coach throughout the innovation and inquiry process. You will work with a team to develop an innovative idea for addressing one aspect of the global challenge in a meaningful way. Your innovative idea will showcase how you have learned to view the global challenge from many social, cultural, scientific, philosophical, political and economic perspectives. Most importantly, you will work with your peers to drive your learning process, seeking to deeply explore the global challenge and design a new way to create change in the world.

UNIV 203: Global Challenges Inquiry II

Are you ready to take the next step to address our global challenge? UNIV 203: Global Challenges Inquiry II is your chance to enhance the skills and ideas you developed in UNIV 201 as you prepare to take your place as a change-maker in the world. Course workshops are designed to build teamwork skills, prototype and develop new and innovative ideas. Throughout the semester, you’ll build a team of students and community partners to connect your innovative idea with the real world. In UNIV 203, you’ll create partnerships with individuals in the broader Calgary community, bring your innovation to life and get the chance to take part in an end-of-semester showcase for your creativity and discovery! 

Global Challenges is interesting because it is an inquiry-based — rather than lecture-based — course. It allows me to cultivate my knowledge and take responsibility for my career through my own resources and research projects.

Ivan Savytskyy

Astrophysics and Global Challenges student