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UOttawa- First Year Social Science Electives

Updated: Aug 16, 2020

Are you looking for first-year courses that can be taken as electives to boost your GPA? Here are some courses that are often chosen for this reason and enjoyed! Before getting into the details, it’s important to know that all of these courses are also available to take in french! All you have to do to find the course of your preferred class in French is add 400 to the English course code. For example, CRM 1300 (English) becomes CRM 1700 (French).

BPS 1101: Drugs 101 - "Drugs 101" is a course taken by many students in all years of university. It talks about the pharmaceutical industry and its history, with mentions of different types of pain relievers, and cold medications. Students are also able to learn about cancer and how it develops in the body, the drugs used by athletes, antibiotics, tobacco, vaccines, and much more! Though this class does have a lot of material, it is relatively easy to study after attending the lectures. Many students recommend taking this course with Professor William Ogilvie

SOC 1101: Principles to Sociology - This introductory course is definitely an interesting one to take if you’re interested in learning about different sociological theories, the cultural aspect of societies, ethical inequalities, as well as social differentiation. Many students love to take the class, whether in English or in French, with Professor Stephan Larose since he always prepares his lectures thoroughly and is passionate about the topics!

FLS classes: French as a Second Language - FLS classes are the perfect option for French immersion students wanting to find courses that will improve their french as well as boost their GPA! These courses can be taken as language courses (any FLS course code) or as a class that accompanies another (FLS 2581). These accompanying classes are destined for French immersion students enrolled in courses taught in French, in order to help understand the vocabulary included in the content. For example, if you are taking a political science or economics class in french, there may be an FLS class taught that semester for that specific class. For more information on accompanying courses, see

DVM 1100: Canada and the Challenges of International Development and Globalization - This course talks about Canadian aid programs, the history of the nation’s colonization, and its human security approaches. The class also goes into depth about fragile states are as well as some of the ethics incorporated into international development. We suggest you take this course with Professor Mahmoud Masaeli (available in English and in French) as he always knows what he is talking about and absolutely loves the topics!

EAS 1101: Introduction to Indigenous Studies - This course focuses on the history and culture of the Indigenous societies in Canada. It touches on a variety of subjects such as the colonialism that have experienced by the Indigenous people in various regions of Canada. Professor Daniel Rück is very popular among students for this course; if you get the chance to take this class with him, we highly suggest you do so!

More first-year elective options include:

CRM 1300: Introduction to Criminology (course description available in the link below)

PSY 1102: Introduction to Psychology: Applications (course description available in the link below)

To look at all course options, visit

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