MA in Canadian-American Studies

The Joint Interdisciplinary MA in Canadian-American Studies is an interdisciplinary, interfaculty, and international program jointly offered by Brock University and the State University of New York at Buffalo campus.


While taking courses on both campuses, students will have the opportunity to consider the interplay between discipline-specific topics and broader issues salient to the Canadian, American, or North American landscape and to explore their field of research from both American and Canadian perspectives. Courses and instruction in theory and research methods will equip students to approach their field from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Of interest is the program’s focus on interdisciplinary research in the area of borders and boundaries. The relevance of this concentration is evidenced by the geographical location of the institutions and by the existing cooperation between the two universities.

Choose this program if you want to explore a specific topic related to both countries in all its rich, interdisciplinary significance. Topics like the environment, tourism, military, culture, race, and language communities are addressed across the traditional disciplinary boundaries of History, Economics, English, Political Science, Geography, Tourism, Sociology, Popular Culture, and more. In the real world, laws, environment, cultural activities, economies, and more overlap in rich complexity. This program addresses specific phenomenon (determined by individual students) without sacrificing their complexity by limiting ourselves to specific disciplinary approaches. As such, our program is entirely unprecedented at Brock and elsewhere in North America. It is the ideal environment to rigorously study the fascinating relationship between Canada and the United States.

While the program offers both thesis and major research paper options, students are strongly encouraged to pursue the major research paper option, as the additional coursework provides more opportunity for comparative analysis across disciplines and nations. All students must consult with the Graduate Program Director when planning their programs of study. For full-time students, the program (both options) is normally completed in three terms.

Major Research Paper Option

Students pursuing the major research paper option are required to take six half-credits including three core seminars (CDAM 5P00, 5P01 and 5P02) and complete a Major Research Paper. Normally, half of these courses will be taken on each campus.

Thesis Option

Students choosing the thesis option will take four half-credits including two core seminars (CDAM 5P00 and one of CDAM 5P01 and 5P02). In addition to the courses, each student must complete a thesis and defend it at a public oral examination.

Students in both options will also register in CDAM 5F96 Supervised Teaching at SUNY-UB (for both the Fall and Winter semesters). Students, in consultation with the Graduate Program Director, may under special circumstances substitute two half-credits for this requirement.

Elective Courses

Beyond the three half-credit core courses, students are also required to take three half-credit electives selected from either the Brock or SUNY-UB graduate course banks. Students must have the permission of the Graduate Program Director, the instructor, and the home department of the course to register in each elective credit. Please consult the program website for a list of suitable courses. For courses at SUNY-UB, students will consult with Co-Director Munroe Eagles. A Sampling of SUNY-UB elective credits is available online.

For more information

Consult Brock’s on-line course calendar for Canadian Studies requirements or contact the Centre for Canadian Studies at 905 688 5550 x4029 or