Course Description


**Course description for 2019/20.**
The rationale of this program is to bring GRS students together to form a community of learners for sharing cross-cultural experiences and perspectives on global issues.  This course will connect you to your GRS colleagues before they go abroad for their international experience, while they are abroad and after they return to campus. Students are required to take GRS 290, 390 and 490 during the time that you are enrolled in the GRS program.  This will ensure that you are part of a GRS community of learners from the time you enter the program until you graduate.  You can contribute different questions and different perspectives to the learning process as you develop academically and personally throughout your undergraduate program.  In your last year, you can focus on global leadership development as you assist new GRS students in understanding global issues and being effective in their international settings. Whether abroad or on campus, you will interact and share perspectives on-line that will help both groups understand their place in a global world and build skills as global citizens.  In addition to on-line participation, you will attend a series of face-to-face classes during the time you are on campus.
Learning Outcomes
  • Interact and learn from student colleagues, both in the classroom and on-line.
  • Recognize cultural differences and value cultural diversity (academic, agricultural, gender, ethnicity, nationality).
  • Identify the different stages of cultural shock and describe alternative approaches for dealing with them.
  • Articulate important global issues that relate to agriculture, food, and natural resource systems.
  • Describe the interrelationship between global issues, regional issues, local issues, and culture.
  • Interpret your area of resource specialization within the context of the global community.

Dr. Les Lavkulich, Program Director, Global Resource Systems, Faculty of Land and Food Systems Roxana Quinde, Coordinator, Global Partnerships, Faculty of Land and Food Systems Office: MacMillan 344 Phone: 604-822-0181
Teaching Assistants
Skylar Kystra, Njoki Mburu,
Alumna and Resource Person:
Adriana Laurent,
2019 Term 1 Topic: Climate Change; From Rhetoric to Action by Youth Empowerment
You will be assessed on your attendance and contribution in class and on-line, through asking questions, raising global issues, contributing responses, stimulating debate and sharing cultural experiences.  Following your international experience, you will prepare a poster presentation to be displayed on Poster Night toward the end of the term, and post information on the GRS website about your exchange or internship.  You will also be assessed on assignments and on the content and delivery of your poster. The grading system for the course is pass/fail. Requirements for assignments can be met in one of three options:
Option A: Discussion Groups & Members
Welcome to the GRS 290/390/490 discussion groups! Discussion topics that will emerge from the class will be posted on-line on the Canvas site. The same topics will be discussed by all groups. Further details and instructions will be provided during our class sessions. The first discussion topic will be posted in the Discussion Section of the GRS Canvas site on September 12th
Discussion Groups
You can approach the questions from any angle: from your resource specialization, personal experience in your region, the information you gather in the news or on the internet…any perspective is welcome!  Be as specific as possible in your contributions.  Try to back up your opinion with examples or case studies in your region.  Please remember to follow the discussion forum guidelines.  The idea is to learn from each other and generate some thought-provoking conversations.
Option B
Submit a 1000 to 1200 word synopsis regarding the GRS classes, GRS-arranged event that had the greatest impact on your perception of global issues in a cultural context during term 1.  Please submit the synopsis to Les via e-mail ( with a copy to Roxana ( no later than December 16th. Synopses will be posted in a Student synopsis site on Canvas.
Option C
This option involves a combination of some blog posts and a shorter synopsis to be determined in consultation with Les.  Canvas posts and the synopsis should be completed by December 16th.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where do I post? The format and location for the discussion groups is within GRS Canvas. How often do I post? There will be five or six discussion topics posted during each term.  You need to post at least three discussion items during each term.  Response to a class member’s discussion posting will be included as a posting for you. When do I post? Each topic will start on Thursday. You can post at any time within that period. Please do your utmost to contribute on time to each topic. You can continue posting comments on past topics as well. All discussion postings should be completed by December 16th. On-Campus Component Contact: For all matters regarding the on-campus matters please email Roxana Quinde ( Attendance: Attendance is mandatory. If you cannot attend a class for a valid reason, you must send an e-mail before the class to both Roxana and the TA’s.