Master of Arts in Human Development, Learning, and Culture (MA)
The Human Development, Learning, and Culture (HDLC) program at UBC addresses the interface of research and practice in education, weaving together theoretical models and concepts in their application to real world educational issues. Investigations of learning and development, including the unique contributions of culture to these processes, are applied to a wide range of contexts including classroom, afterschool, work, and technological contexts. This work is interpreted through a variety of theoretical lenses (e.g., constructivist, cognitive, sociocultural, and social and emotional development). Students are encouraged to participate in research and teaching opportunities throughout their program.
Coursework emphasizes three primary areas: a) learning and development, b) culture and diversity, and c) research methods, including qualitative and quantitative, experimental and developmental.
Contact the program
Admission Information & Requirements
1) Check Eligibility
Minimum Academic Requirements
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies establishes the minimum admission requirements common to all applicants, usually a minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC). The graduate program that you are applying to may have additional requirements. Please review the specific requirements for applicants with credentials from institutions in:
Each program may set higher academic minimum requirements. Please review the program website carefully to understand the program requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission as it is a competitive process.
English Language Test
Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.
Minimum requirements for the two most common English language proficiency tests to apply to this program are listed below:
TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language - internet-based
Overall score requirement: 90
IELTS: International English Language Testing System
Overall score requirement: 6.5
Other Test Scores
Some programs require additional test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Test (GMAT). The requirements for this program are:
The GRE is not required.
2) Meet Deadlines
September 2023 Intake
Application Open Date20 September 2022
3) Prepare Application
All applicants have to submit transcripts from all past post-secondary study. Document submission requirements depend on whether your institution of study is within Canada or outside of Canada.
Letters of Reference
A minimum of three references are required for application to graduate programs at UBC. References should be requested from individuals who are prepared to provide a report on your academic ability and qualifications.
Statement of Interest
Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.
Students in research-based programs usually require a faculty member to function as their supervisor. Please follow the instructions provided by each program whether applicants should contact faculty members.
Instructions regarding supervisor contact for Master of Arts in Human Development, Learning, and Culture (MA)
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
4) Apply Online
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
Tuition & Financial Support
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$2,526.47||$4,904.99|
|Tuition per year|
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||$1,500.00 (-)|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$1,057.05 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $17,366.20 (check cost calculator)|
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. Tuition fees are reviewed annually by the UBC Board of Governors. In recent years, tuition increases have been 2% for continuing domestic students and between 2% and 5% for continuing international students. New students may see higher increases in tuition. Admitted students who defer their admission are subject to the potentially higher tuition fees for incoming students effective at the later program start date. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.
Applicants to UBC have access to a variety of funding options, including merit-based (i.e. based on your academic performance) and need-based (i.e. based on your financial situation) opportunities.
Scholarships & awards (merit-based funding)
All applicants are encouraged to review the awards listing to identify potential opportunities to fund their graduate education. The database lists merit-based scholarships and awards and allows for filtering by various criteria, such as domestic vs. international or degree level.
Teaching Assistantships (GTA)
Graduate programs may have Teaching Assistantships available for registered full-time graduate students. Full teaching assistantships involve 12 hours work per week in preparation, lecturing, or laboratory instruction although many graduate programs offer partial TA appointments at less than 12 hours per week. Teaching assistantship rates are set by collective bargaining between the University and the Teaching Assistants' Union.
Research Assistantships (GRA)
Many professors are able to provide Research Assistantships (GRA) from their research grants to support full-time graduate students studying under their direction. The duties usually constitute part of the student's graduate degree requirements. A Graduate Research Assistantship is a form of financial support for a period of graduate study and is, therefore, not covered by a collective agreement. Unlike other forms of fellowship support for graduate students, the amount of a GRA is neither fixed nor subject to a university-wide formula. The stipend amounts vary widely, and are dependent on the field of study and the type of research grant from which the assistantship is being funded. Some research projects also require targeted research assistance and thus hire graduate students on an hourly basis.
Financial aid (need-based funding)
Canadian and US applicants may qualify for governmental loans to finance their studies. Please review eligibility and types of loans.
All students may be able to access private sector or bank loans.
Foreign government scholarships
Many foreign governments provide support to their citizens in pursuing education abroad. International applicants should check the various governmental resources in their home country, such as the Department of Education, for available scholarships.
Working while studying
The possibility to pursue work to supplement income may depend on the demands the program has on students. It should be carefully weighed if work leads to prolonged program durations or whether work placements can be meaningfully embedded into a program.
Tax credits and RRSP withdrawals
Canadian residents with RRSP accounts may be able to use the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) which allows students to withdraw amounts from their registered retirement savings plan (RRSPs) to finance full-time training or education for themselves or their partner.
Please review Filing taxes in Canada on the student services website for more information.
Applicants have access to the cost calculator to develop a financial plan that takes into account various income sources and expenses.
Enrolment, Duration & Other Stats
These statistics show data for the Master of Arts in Human Development, Learning, and Culture (MA). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.
Completion Rates & Times
This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.
Butler, Deborah (special education, learning disabilities, inclusive educational practices, intervention research for students with learning disabilities, Collaboration and co-regulation in teachers' professional learning, collaborative professional development models, learning disabilities in adolescence and adulhood, mathematics, metagocnition and self-regulated learning, research methods in educaiton, strategic performanc ein reading, writing)
Ford, Laurie (Early Childhood Assessment, Youth and Families)
Perry, Nancy (motivation and self-regulated learning in young children; social perspectives on teaching and learning, reading and writing; accommodating individual difference in general education classrooms; learning disabilities; special education, Metacognition, motivation, and self-regulated learning in elementary school children Social perspectives on teaching and learning, including social cognitive and sociocultural theories, Teacher development, Individual differences, Learning disabilities)
Sam, Johanna (Education; Psychology, social and behavorial aspects; Human Development; Adolescence; technology; Indigenous Education; Digital Pedagogy)
Schonert-Reichl, Kimberly (Children’s social and emotional development, empathy, moral development, bullying, risk and resiliency, adolescent stress and coping, transition to school, transition to adulthood (emerging adulthood), social and emotional learning in school, Social, emotional, and moral development of children and adolescents with an emphasis on identifying the processes and mechanisms that promote positive development)
Shapka, Jennifer (Affective and Emotional Development; Cognitive Development; New Technology and Social Impacts; Technology, Media, Social Media, Adolescents, Cyberbullying, Self-regulation, Online Privacy)
Vadeboncoeur, Jennifer (cultural-historical psychology, child/parent relationships, student/ teacher relationships, play and performance based learning, bridging school and out of school contexts for learning, Alternative schooling and pedagogies, Critical theory, Discourse and critical discourse analysis, ethnography, Qualitative research, Socially constructing knowledge and identity, Sociocultural approaches to learning and teaching, Young people placed)
Weber, Barbara (Embodiment and Public Space; ethics; Multiculturalism; Multiculturalism and Recognition; Phenomenology and Hermeneutics; Philosophy for Children; Social justice)
Sample Thesis Submissions
The Human Development, Learning, and Culture (HDLC) program at UBC addresses the interface of research and practice in education, weaving together theoretical models and concepts in their application to real world educational issues. Investigations of learning and development, including the unique contributions of culture to these processes, are applied to a wide range of contexts including classroom, afterschool, work, and technological contexts. This work is interpreted through a variety of theoretical lenses (e.g., cognitive, sociocultural, and social and emotional development).
Coursework emphasizes three primary areas: a) learning and development; b) culture and diversity; and c) research methods, including qualitative and quantitative, experimental and developmental.