First Nations Certificate Programs

The Certificate program is intended to enhance public access to a university education with a flexible course of study that allows either a short term exit (upon completion of C​ertificate requirements) or the option of laddering into other programs, including the Bachelor program.

The Certificate also provides flexibility. All courses in the Certificate are university-credit courses. This means that students can apply credit taken in their Certificate to other programs should they later decide to pursue a Bachelor’s degree. Moreover, the requirements for the Certificate could be completed in one year or could be completed on a part-time basis over several years, depending upon course scheduling and the situation of the student.

As soon as a student completed the 10 courses required in the program of study, the student would be eligible to receive his or her Certificate. The completion of the Certificate would give students the equivalent of one full year of university credit. This provides a laddered program of study which could result in the completion of a Bachelor’s degree with three more years of study at UNBC or another university. Because the program is based on existing undergraduate courses, Certificate students will take their courses alongside regular, full-time students.

The requirements for admission into a Certificate program are the same as for any student enrolled in a UNBC undergraduate program. To be eligible for a certificate, students must achieve a minimum GPA of C, based on all courses taken at UNBC that are applied to the Certificate. University transfer credits also can be applied to the program, as appropriate, to a maximum of 15 credit hours.

Due to the diverse nature of the courses required to complete a specific Certificate the University cannot guarantee that an individual student will be able to complete a Certificate within a specified time period. Before starting to take courses towards the goal of completing a Certificate, students are advised to consult with the Chair of the First Nations Studies Program, and where appropriate the Director of their regional campus, in order to confirm when the required Certificate courses are scheduled to be offered.

Aboriginal Community Resource Planning​

The Aboriginal Community Resource Planning Certificate (ACP) consists of 10 courses (minimum 30 credit hours) drawn primarily from First Nations Studies and Environmental Planning, with offerings from Geography, Commerce, Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, and Natural Resources and Environmental Management. The courses from First Nations Studies provide students with foundations in First Nations in Canada, cultures and languages, internal and external issues, and First Nations environmental philosophies. The courses from Environmental Planning provide foundations in the principles of traditional planning. The program is generic in nature so that the knowledge can be transferred to different community settings, as well as to the variety of situations that students will encounter throughout their lives.

Two important purposes of the certificate are, first, to provide requisite education to assist individuals involved in the resource planning in First Nations communities and, second, to provide expanded educational opportunities at the university level for students who are not in a position to commit to a four year program of study.

Students must meet with a First Nations Studies undergraduate student advisor prior to starting this program.

Certificate Requirements

ENPL 104-3 Introduction to Planning
ENPL 204-3 Principles of Practices of Planning
FNST 100-3 The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada
FNST 304-3 First Nations Environmental Philosophy and Knowledge
FNST 249-3 Aboriginal Resource Planning
GEOG 205-3 Cartography and Geomatics

Any First Nations Culture Level 1 course or any First Nations Language Level 1 course

One of:
ARTS 102-3 Research Writing
ENGL 170-3 Writing & Communication Skills
FNST 200-3 Perspectives in First Nations Studies

One of:
FNST 217-3 Contemporary Challenges Facing Aboriginal Communities
POLS 200-3 Canadian Politics and Government

One of:
COMM 100-3 Introduction to Canadian Business
GEOG 202-3 Economic Geography
NRES 100-3 Communication in Natural Resource

Aboriginal / Indigenous Health and Healing

The Certificate in Aboriginal / Indigenous Health and Healing offers a multidisciplinary program allowing individuals to pursue their interest in Aboriginal / Indigenous Health and Healing through a concentrated program of courses on Aboriginal Health and Health Science subjects.​

The Certificate requires completion of 10 courses (30 credit hours). Individuals working with Aboriginal communities in a health-related field or desiring to pursue a degree in the health sciences with a concentration on Aboriginal health will be especially interested in this program.

The Certificate in Aboriginal / Indigenous Health and Healing allows individuals to receive a credential after 30 credit hours of study. The Certificate especially complements a major in First Nations Studies, Anthropology, Environmental Studies, Community Health, and Psychology. Students desiring to complete a degree after the Certificate are strongly encouraged to speak with the relevant program student advisor.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

FNST 100-3 The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada
HHSC 101-3 Introduction to Health Sciences I: Issues and Controversies
HHSC 102-3 Introduction to Health Sciences II: Rural and Aboriginal Issues
FNST 200-3 Perspectives in First Nations Studies
FNST 203-3 Introduction to Traditional Ecological Knowledge
FNST 217-3 Contemporary Challenges Facing Aboriginal Communities
FNST 280-3                          
Aboriginal Medicines I-Harvesting and Preservation 
FNST 281-3 Aboriginal Medicines II - Administering and Ethics
FNST 282-3 Aboriginal Health Philosophy
FNST 298-3 Special Topics in First Nations Studies

First Nations Language

The Certificate in First Nations Language consists of 10 courses (30 credit hours) and offers a program that allows individuals to pursue an interest in First Nations language through a concentrated program of courses on a particular language.

This certificate program is directed towards individuals who may not wish to commit to a full majors program in First Nations Studies, with the associated requirements of a Bachelor's degree. Persons of First Nations descent and people who are working in the area of aboriginal education will be especially interested in this shorter term program. The certificate program enhances public access to a university education with a course of study that allows flexibility in scheduling individual study programs, establishes a progression mechanism, and provides a short term exit or the option of continuing into other programs, including the Bachelor's degree program.

Credits earned in the certificate program can be applied to the major or minor in First Nations Studies, subject to the requirements of those First Nations Studies programs.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

Five courses (15 credit hours) of study in a First Nations language of Northern BC, including one immersion course.

Two courses (six credit hours) of introductory First Nations Studies, including courses on culture and issues.

Two courses (six credit hours) of English.

One course (three credit hours) of Linguistics of First Nations languages.

First Nations Public Administration

The Certificate in First Nations Public Administration consists of ten courses (30 credit hours) drawn primarily from the Departments of First Nations Studies and Political Science, with offerings from Business Administration and Economics. The courses from First Nations Studies provide students with foundations in internal and external First Nations issues and culture, and the courses from Political Science provide foundations in the principles of government, politics, and public administration, as well as some specialization in First Nations law, self-government and administration. The program is generic in nature so that the knowledge can be transferred to different community settings, as well as to the variety of situations that students will encounter throughout their lives.

Two important purposes of the Certificate are, first, to provide requisite education to assist individuals involved in the administration of First Nations governments and, second, to provide expanded educational opportunities at the university level for students who are not in a position to commit to a four-year program of study.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

COMM 210-3 Financial Accounting
ECON 101-3 Macroeconomics
ENGL 170-3 Writing and Communication Skills
     or ARTS 102-3 Research Writing
FNST 100-3 The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada
FNST 217-3 Contemporary Challenges Facing Aboriginal Communities
FNST 249-3 Aboriginal Resource Planning
FNST 350-3 Law and Indigenous Peoples
POLS 100-3 Contemporary Political Issues
POLS 200-3 Canadian Government and Politics

Three credit hours of any First Nations Culture Level 1 course or any First Nations Language Level 1 course.

General First Nations Studies

The Certificate in General First Nations Studies is a multidisciplinary program allowing individuals to pursue their interests in First Nations Studies through a concentrated program of courses on First Nations subjects.

The program ladders well into a major in First Nations Studies, Anthropology, Biology, History, Education, English, Environmental Studies, Forestry, Geography, Nursing and Community Health, Political Science, Psychology, Social Work and Women's Studies.

The Certificate requires successful completion of 10 courses (30 credit hours). Eighteen of these credit hours are earned by completing six required courses. The remaining four courses (12 credit hours) consist of options from the First Nations Studies program, including at least one course from the approved ancillary course list.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

FNST 100-3 The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada
FNST 200-3 Perspectives in First Nations Studies
FNST 217-3 Contemporary Challenges Facing Aboriginal Communities
ANTH 206-3 Ethnography in Northern British Columbia
     or FNST 304-3 First Nations Environmental Philosophy and Knowledge
HIST 215-3 Global History of Indigenous Peoples

Any one course from the series of First Nations Culture or First Nations Language Courses.

Nine credit hours of First Nations Studies at any level approved by the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Three credit hours from the approved list of ancillary courses. Please refer to the list of Approved Ancillary Courses.

Métis Studies

The Certificate in Métis Studies offers a program that allows individuals to pursue their interests through a concentrated program of courses on the Métis Nation.

The certificate requires successful completion of 10 courses (30 credit hours).

Persons of Métis descent, other aboriginal people, and people who are working with aboriginal organizations will be especially interested in this program.

The Certificate in Métis Studies allows students to receive a credential after one year of studies which can be laddered into any UNBC program. It especially complements a major in First Nations Studies, Anthropology, History, English, Environmental Studies, Forestry, Geography, Nursing and Community Health, Political Science, Psychology, Social Work and Women's Studies.

The Certificate will be primarily offered through the Prince George campus. First Nations Studies is committed to distance delivery where possible. Students at other regional locals could take the certificate through a combination of face to face and distance delivery.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

FNST 100-3 The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada
FNST 200-3 Perspectives in First Nations Studies
Three of:
FNST 171-3 Métis Studies Level 1
FNST 172-3 Métis Studies Level 2
FNST 271-3 Métis Studies Level 3
FNST 272-3 Métis Studies Level 4
FNST 131-3 First Nations Language (Cree Language): Level 1
FNST 132-3 First Nations Language (Cree Language): Level 2
FNST 231-3 First Nations Language (Cree Language): Level 3
FNST 232-3 First Nations Language (Cree Language): Level 4

Note:  Cree is subject to the availability of language instructors.

Five courses (15 credit hours) of First Nations Studies courses dealing with Métis culture, language, or issues. These options will be determined by FNST course offerings in that year. They can be either lower-division or upper-division courses. They can include ancillary courses identified by the Department. An ancillary course is defined as a course in a Department other than First Nations Studies which has sufficient substantive content in common with First Nations Studies. The Department maintains a list of approved ancillary courses.

Nisga'a Studies

The Certificate in Nisga'a Studies offers a program that allows individuals to pursue their interests in First Nations Studies through a concentrated program of courses on the Nisga'a First Nation.

The certificate requires successful completion of 10 courses (30 credit hours).

Persons of Nisga'a descent, other aboriginal people, and people who are working with aboriginal organizations will be especially interested in this program.

It especially complements a major in First Nations Studies, Anthropology, History, English, Environmental Studies, Forestry, Geography, Nursing and Community Health, Political Science, Psychology, Social Work and Women's Studies.

The Certificate will be primarily offered through the WWN. First Nations Studies is committed to distance delivery where possible. Students at the Prince George campus or other regional locals could take the certificate through a combination of face to face and distance delivery.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

FNST 200-3 Perspectives in First Nations Studies
FNST 217-3 Contemporary Challenges Facing Aboriginal Communities

Six of:
FNST 139-3 Nisga's Language: Level 1
FNST 140-3 Nisga'a Language: Level 2
FNST 169-3 Nisga'a Culture: Level 1
FNST 170-3 Nisga's Culture: Level 2
FNST 239-3 Nisga'a Language: Level 3
FNST 240-3 Nisga'a Language: Level 4
FNST 269-3 Nisga'a Culture: Level 3
FNST 270-3 Nisga'a Culture: Level 4

Note:  It is possible to take all four levels of one category, either language or culture, and two levels of the other category.

Two courses (6 credit hours) of First Nations Studies dealing with Nisga'a culture, language, or issues. These two options will be determined by FNST course offerings in that year. They can be at any level. They can include ancillary courses identified by the Department. An ancillary course is defined as a course in a Department other than First Nations Studies which has sufficient substantive content in common with First Nations Studies. The Department maintains a list of approved ancillary courses.

Traditional Ecological Knowledge

The Certificate in Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) is a multidisciplinary program allowing individuals to pursue their interests in TEK through a concentrated program of courses on First Nations and Environmental subjects.

This program ladders well into a major in First Nations Studies, Anthropology, Biology, History, Education, English, Environmental Studies, Forestry, Geography, Nursing and Community Health, Political Science, Psychology, Social Work and Women's Studies as well as leading into majors in Physics and Chemistry.

The Certificate requires successful completion of 10 courses (minimum 30 credit hours). Eighteen of these hours are earned by completing six required First Nations courses. Options for a writing course include one additional First Nations Studies course.The remaining three courses (minimum 9 credit hours) must be selected from the approved list for Ecology, Chemistry, Geography, Physics and Natural Resources.

Students must establish their course of study with approval from the Chair of First Nations Studies.

Certificate Requirements

FNST 100-3 The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada
FNST 203-3 Introduction to Traditional Ecological Knowledge
FNST 304-3 First Nations Ecological Philosophy and Knowledge

Any First Nations Culture course or any First Nations Language Level 1 course.

Two of:

FNST 206-3 First Nations Oral Literatures
FNST 217-3 Contemporary Challenges Facing Aboriginal Communities
FNST 302-3 First Nations Health and Healing
FNST 303-3 First Nations Religions and Philosophy
One of:
ARTS 102-3 Research Writing
NRES 100-3 Communications in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies
ENGL 170-3 Writing and Communication Skills
FNST 200-3 Perspectives in First Nations Studies

Three courses (at least 9 credit hours) from:

Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Planning, Environmental Science, Geography, Physics and Natural Resource Management

BIOL 103-3 Introductory Biology I
BIOL 104-3 Introductory Biology II
BIOL 201-3 Ecology
CHEM 100-3 General Chemistry I
CHEM 101-3 General Chemistry II
ENPL 104-3 Introduction to Planning
ENSC 201-3 Introduction to Atmospheric Science
GEOG 100-3 Environments and People: The Geography of Natural Hazards
GEOG 200-3 British Columbia: People and Places
NREM 100-3 Field Skills
NREM 204-3 Introduction to Wildlife and Fisheries
NREM 210-4 Integrated Resources Management
PHYS 100-4 Introduction to Physics I
PHYS 101-4 Introduction to Physics II
PHYS 110-4 Introduction to Physics I: Mechanics
PHYS 111-4 Introduction to Physics II: Waves and Electricity
PHYS 115-4 General Introduction to Physics