Program Overview

Who is the program for?

The Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Humanities (MAIH) is a fully accredited degree program designed with three main groups of students in mind:

  1. Academics
    • ​​Students desiring to advance to doctoral studies in English, Philosophy, History or Interdisciplinary Humanities.
  2. Educators
    • Teachers and administrators wanting to enhance their instruction and leadership by engaging the general Humanities or one of the streams of English, Philosophy or History.
    • Professional development that contributes to the British Columbia Teachers Qualification Service.
  3. Professionals
    • Career-based technicians, lawyers, doctors, entrepreneurs, administrators, pastors, and others wishing to engage the Humanities to gain skills and grow in understanding of cultural issues and faith-based perspectives.
    • Pre-professionals seeking qualification to prepare for careers in law, education, librarianship, non-governmental organizational leadership, social services, public relations, and the ministry, to name a few. 

Program Delivery

This MA comprises 30 semester hours and offers multiple entry points.  Complete the degree full-time in one year (Fall, Spring and Summer semesters) or go part-time and create a program adapted to your unique educational plan. The program’s flexible learning environment, which includes some distance learning opportunities, can be tailored to your specific area(s) of interest, and you may choose a general humanities approach or concentrate on English, History, or Philosophy. Candidates satisfy their degree requirements by taking three core courses, disciplinary course electives and, in most cases, a final assignment, which may be a traditional major research essay / thesis or an applied-research project.  The applied research project is a creative and innovative experiential assignment that is directly relevant to the candidate’s desired academic, educational or professional outcomes.  No matter what approach to the program you take, academic accomplishment will serve you well in your career and personal journey.

Certificate Options - Forthcoming

We offer several certificates that recognize competency in specific themes that are informed by the Humanities. Certificates include one of the Core courses (English, History or Philosophy) and several additional courses that together form an expertise cluster.  Although you do not need to be enrolled in the MAIH program to earn stand-alone certifications, graduate courses completed for any of our certificates can be used to satisfy the MA in Interdisciplinary Humanities degree requirements. Please contact us for further information.

Program Outcomes

  • Broaden your way of thinking and wrestle with what it means to be human.
  • Gain a holistic understanding of your chosen studies by analyzing historical, philosophical, and literary texts.
  • Learn how spiritual beliefs and practices shape the way we think about the world.
  • Prepare for entry into Ph.D. programs in Canada and internationally (future academics).
  • Qualify for salary upgrades through the British Columbia Teachers Qualification Service (educators).
  • Lead with meaning and purpose in your vocation or service (professionals).


One of the great strengths of TWU’s MAIH program is our commitment to work with each student as an individual, to create a unique program pathway that meets his/her particular needs. This is carried out in the following ways:

  • The advising and shaping of an individual's program within the broad structure of the overall program.
  • The availability of a very wide range of directed or independent study courses.
  • The commitment of the faculty members to give considerable personal attention to the academic and career interests of the student.

Over the past 12 years, the MAIH has distinguished itself as an academically rigorous and intellectually challenging program.

  • Twenty-four students have received MA scholarships through the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) while attending the program and nine graduates have earned SSHRC Doctoral awards.
  • MAIH graduates have gone on to Ph.D. programs at major research universities, including the University of British Columbia, the University of Toronto, Baylor University (Texas), and the University of St. Andrews (Scotland), and many others have utilized the knowledge and skills gained through the program to enhance their vocations of teaching, writing, media relations, administration, development, and public service, to name a few examples.

MAIH faculty members are committed to the individual student's success and spend extra time advising, directing individual study courses, and supervising theses. In many cases, it is that extra attention from faculty members that makes all the difference in students getting papers accepted at conferences, completing application forms for significant grants and awards, and being accepted into Ph.D. programs.  And, the ongoing connections with faculty and peers means that educators and professionals create a life-long network of thinkers who share a common interest in and love for the Humanities. 

The MAIH utilizes cross-disciplinary teaching and research to educate thoughtful and well-informed graduates who have the ability to understand some of the most pressing social issues of our time, the courage to make sense of an increasingly complicated and globalized world, and the confidence to find relevance in their own expression of faith. Feedback from our graduates confirm that we are exceeding expectations when it comes to fostering cross-disciplinary social analysis, encouraging personal/intellectual growth, breadth of awareness, moral sensitivity, and balanced judgment, requiring graduate-level competency in and across the disciplines of English, History or Philosophy, thereby equipping for effective leadership in academic, educational, and professional contexts.

The MAIH’s dialogical approach to the integration of faith and learning, focused on but not limited to Christian thought and action, has produced a half-generation of talented scholars, teachers, and life-long learners who have made hopeful contributions to our exploration and examination of the ideals of truth, goodness, and beauty.

Because of our exceptional faculty, we offer many areas of focus within the overarching disciplines of history, English, and philosophy. Such areas of focus include:


  • Religion (esp. Christianity) and literature
  • Gender and literature
  • Nature and literature
  • Poetry, Place, and Spirituality
  • Trauma and literature
  • Literary and Cultural Theory
  • Creative writing
  • Children's literature
  • Fantasy literature
  • British literature
  • Canadian literature
  • American literature
  • The moral imagination
  • Selected Individual Authors: William Shakespeare, John Milton, Henry Vaughan, Margaret Cavendish, Daniel Defoe, James Hogg, Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, George McDonald, Emily Dickinson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Charles Williams, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Thomas Merton, and Madeleine L'Engle.


  • History & religion (especially early Christianity, Europe, Canada & the United States)
  • ​Canada (government, indigenous nations, Christianity, environmental history)
  • US/Canada relations
  • Medieval, Renaissance and reformation Europe
  • Family & gender
  • Alterity and Historical Difference (including (dis)ability studies)
  • War & peace
  • Science, the environment and religion
  • Government - developments in Europe and Canada
  • Atlantic world
  • Middle East


  • Analytic philosophy
  • Continental philosophy
  • Epistemology
  • Philosophy of body
  • Philosophy of language
  • Philosophy of religion
  • Social and political philosophy