Arts & Humanities

Journey towards new understanding
of the world around you.

We currently have 154 courses in
Arts and Humanities

 

Our Programs

Our Arts and Humanities courses are here to help you discover a new passion, or rekindle an old one. Enrich your life and expand your mind with our expertly-created and instructed courses in everything from ancient history to current real estate trends.

 

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Health, Environment, and Science

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

If you’re naturally curious and have a keen interest in living things, the environment, and human biology, this is your opportunity to become part of the journey into the fascinating world of science. Beyond your traditional environmental studies program, our diverse range of courses invites you to investigate subjects ranging from your health to pharmacology to the environment in which we live. These entertaining and inclusive classes will answer many of the questions you might have about the influence of science in our daily lives. 

What’s more, our University Lecture Series covers an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars thinkers and experts, often of interest to learners participating in the Health, Environment, and Science program.

You might also be interested in courses in Environment and Sustainability.

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History

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

To understand the present and the future, it is important that we know the past. History comes to life in our courses that explore the people and the events that have shaped our contemporary world. Our History courses are taught by renowned educators who make local and global themes fascinating and current. 

Explore ancient history, wars and revolutions, influential historical figures, and more. Whatever historical period or personality interests you, you’re sure to find a course that dives deep into the topics that fascinate you the most.

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Life and Leisure

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

We offer an ever-expanding selection of fascinating courses designed to enrich and balance your life. From managing your finances to nurturing a personal passion, to discovering the world around you in a new way, these courses will help you connect with what’s important in your life and see the world from a fresh perspective.   

Each course is taught by an experienced instructor who shares your interest in personal growth and fulfillment. Plus, our University Lecture Series covers an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars, thinkers, and experts, often of interest to learners taking part in the Life and Leisure program.

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Literature

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

The written word, both fictional and factual, is the most compelling form of human expression. Our English literature courses offer a rare opportunity to study a broad range of great writing. Take the time to discover the riches of great books that you’ve always wanted to read, and enjoy the pleasure of discussing them with people who share your passion.  

Our University Lecture Series is a great complement to our Literature program.  Covering an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars, thinkers, and experts, the series is often of interest to learners participating in literature study.

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Music

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

We offer unique perspectives on music, the most ancient form of human art. Our music courses showcase this art form as an influence in classical and popular culture. These courses provide history, context, and insights in an effort to enrich your experiences with various music forms and performances.   

Plus, our University Lecture Series covers an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars, thinkers, and experts, often of interest to learners who study music through this program.

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Philosophy and Law

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

The ability to think critically is one of life’s most valuable skills, both personally and professionally. Providing a blend of study in history, philosophy theory, and literature, our Philosophy and Law courses will lead you to explore life’s big questions and examine the theories of history’s most famous thinkers.   

New to SCS, and presented in partnership with the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, our course "Introduction to Legal Principles, Thinking and Reasoning" supports learners who are preparing for entry into law school, or who interact with legal professionals in their daily work in a fully-online, self-study format.

Our University Lecture Series is a great complement to these courses, as it covers an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars, thinkers, and experts, often of interest to learners who study philosophy and law.

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Religion

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

Belief in the sacred has enduring power. As a source of understanding for life, religion speaks to some of the toughest questions we ask ourselves, such as “Who knows me?” or “What is my place in the world?” Our Religion courses explore the dynamic relationship between religious belief and personal freedom, sacred texts and scientific inquiry, as well as divine revelation and human progress. What’s more, our University Lecture Series is a great complement to these courses, as it covers an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars, thinkers, and experts, often of interest to learners who participate in our Religion program.

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University Lecture Series

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

A consistent favourite, the University Lecture Series is guaranteed to pique your interest with a fascinating list of hour-long talks. This series features a line-up of scholars and thought leaders who weigh in on subjects across the intellectual spectrum, including history, politics, geography, art, science, architecture, media and more.  

Every week offers another illuminating talk that will challenge your assumptions and potentially shift your perspective. Provocative, critical and insightful, this series welcomes learners of all ages.  

 The University Lecture Series is offered in person at the St George Campus in Toronto and in Markham. It is also available online.

 

UNIVERSITY LECTURE SERIES - WINTER 2023

Expand the lists below for lecture information.

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Friday, January 27
Building a Creative Life
Anne Fitzgerald

lawyer, former chief legal officer, Cineplex

February 3
Dream States: How Smart City Technology Fits into the Post-Pandemic World    
John Lorinc

author, journalist, editor

February 10
Canada and the Civil War: Opening Canadian Eyes about a "Foreign" War    
Brian Martin

author, historian, journalist

February 17

Winnie Cooper: The True Story of a British Home Child in Canada    
Carol Marie Newall

author

February 24

The Future Is Analog: How to Create a More Human World
David Sax

author, journalist

March 3

Can Zelensky’s Ukraine Find Peace? Stories from the Frontline    
Susan Ormiston

CBC international correspondent

March 10

The Future of Data Privacy: A World Beyond Imagination
Patricia Kosseim

information and privacy commissioner of Ontario

March 17
The Invisible Siege: The Secret History of Coronavirus Science and What it Means for Our Collective Future
Dan Werb

writer, epidemiologist, assistant professor, University of Toronto, and University of California, San Diego

March 24
Change for Good: The New Role of Business in Society        
Paul Klein

author, social change advisor

March 31
Good Sleep Requires Shiny Shoes – and Other Life and Leadership Lessons from the Command Post
Matthew Pegg

fire chief, City of Toronto 

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Thursday, February 2
The Invisible Siege: The Secret History of Coronavirus Science and What it Means for Our Collective Future
Dan Werb

writer, epidemiologist, assistant professor, University of Toronto, and University of California, San Diego

February 9
Teacher by Nature, Storyteller by Nurture, Entrepreneur by Necessity
Linda Schuyler

co-creator of Degrassi and CEO, Skystone Media

February 16

The Zoo’s Mission in 2023 (Title to be confirmed)    
Dolf DeJong

president and CEO, Toronto Zoo

February 23

Winnie Cooper: The True Story of a British Home Child in Canada    
Carol Marie Newall

author

March 2
Title to be confirmed
Jo-anne Marr

president and CEO, Oak Valley Health

March 9
"Nothing is Constant but Change”: Leading the Varley Art Gallery of Markham      
Niamh O’Laoghaire

director, Varley Art Gallery of Markham

March 16
Change for Good: The New Role of Business in Society        
Paul Klein

author, social change advisor

March 23
Listening to History’s Ghosts: Writing Eight Strings as Historical Fiction
Margaret DeRosia

writer, historian

March 30
Title to be confirmed
Eric Lariviere

general manager, Flato Theatre, Markham

April 6
What’s at Stake in Ontario’s Ring of Fire?        
Virginia Heffernan

author, geoscientist

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Visual Art and Architecture

ABOUT THIS PROGRAM

We offer dozens of courses in visual art and architecture that allow you to explore the history, imagery, and practice of artistic expression in its many forms. For instance, our beginner drawing classes put you in the studio to learn the techniques of great artists, while our art history courses dive into art through the ages. Our photography, film, and architecture classes examine the applied art forms that enrich our daily lives. 

From practical uses of art to the historic significance of major works, learners in our Visual Art and Architecture courses come away with a fresh perspective on the art that surrounds us, as well as a deeper understanding of the fine arts that have shaped civilization. Our University Lecture Series is also a great complement to these courses, as it covers an eclectic range of timely topics, presented by leading scholars, thinkers, and experts, often of interest to learners who participate in our Visual Art and Architecture program.

Featured Courses

 

Opera and the Supernatural
MUSIC

Opera and the Supernatural

Join opera expert Iain Scott as he explores the supernatural and magical themes that give power to some of the best-loved operas. Opera’s invitation to suspend belief makes it possible to present the worlds that lie beyond. This course will feature many operatic excerpts on video.

American Cinema of the ’70s: The Last Golden Age
LIFE AND LEISURE

American Cinema of the ’70s: The Last Golden Age

Why were the ’70s the last golden age of American cinema? Those films, made mostly by young, up-and-coming filmmakers, successfully broke all the previous rules of how Hollywood movies were made. FInd out how they pioneered the use of taboo-breaking subject matter and hired actors who looked more ‘ordinary’ than previous stars. Discover or re-visit the decade’s classics, such as The Godfather I and II, Nashville, Taxi Driver, Carrie, and Jaws—movies that make today’s mostly pallid American entertainment look dull and out-of-touch.

American Cinema of the ’70s: The Last Golden Age

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