B.C. Politics and Government

Humanities & Social Sciences
Political Science
Course Code
POLI 2205
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Method(s) Of Instruction
Typically Offered


Course Description
British Columbia’s politics is the Wild West of Canadian politics. This course examines the evolution of the province’s politics and government. This examination will be considered from both descriptive and comparative perspectives, with a focus on the structural approach to exploring the ideas, institutions, and
political actors that have played a role in the development of British Columbia. The focus of the course will be on current political issues facing the province, its future development, and on the provincial legislature, First Nations, cities, towns and villages, and regional districts.
Course Content
  1. The political, social, and economic context of British Columbian government and politics.
  2. The ideal and practice of democracy in British Columbia.
  3. The evolution of British Columbian political institutions.
  4. Contemporary policy issues facing all levels of government in British Columbia.
  5. Future challenges.
Learning Activities

Instructor presentation of the course will involve the use of formal lectures, structured group work, and in-class discussion of assigned materials. Audio-visual and interactive materials may be used.

Means of Assessment

The course evaluation will be based on course objectives and in accordance with the policies of Douglas College and the Department of Political Science. A minimum of 30% will be assigned to the various components of a formal research essay. Specific evaluation criteria will be provided by the instructor in course outlines.

One example of an evaluation system:

Quizzes 10%
Participation 10%
Mid-term exam 25%
Term essay  30%
Final exam 25%


Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the course, successful students will be able to:

  1. demonstrate an understanding of how politics and government in British Columbia evolved pre- and post-Confederation;
  2. discuss the institutions, ideas, and political decision-makers that have shaped British Columbia ’s political institutions from structural and other perspectives;
  3. identify and critically assess the various policy issues facing all levels of government in British Columbia today.
Textbook Materials

Textbooks and readers will be selected based on instructor expertise and preference, and in consultation with the Department of Political Science. Some examples include:

Howlett, Michael, Dennis Pilon, and Tracey Summerville. eds., British Columbia Politics and Government (Toronto: Edmond Montgomery, 2010).

McKee, Christopher. Treaty Talks in British Columbia: Building a New Relationship. Third edition (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2009).

Tindal, C. Richard, Susan Nobes Tindal, Kennedy Stewart, and Patrick Smith. Local Government in Canada. Eighth edition. (Toronto: Nelson, 2013).

Additional readings may be assigned for each course unit and placed on library reserve or via selected websites.



POLI 1101 or POLI 1102 or permission of instructor


No corequisite courses.


No equivalent courses.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

These are for current course guidelines only. For a full list of archived courses please see

Institution Transfer Details for POLI 2205
Capilano University (CAPU) CAPU POL 202 (3)
College of the Rockies (COTR) COTR POLI 2XX (3)
Columbia College (COLU) COLU POLI 2nd (3)
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU POLI 2235 (3)
Langara College (LANG) LANG POLI 2241 (3)
North Island College (NIC) NIC POL 2XX (3)
Okanagan College (OC) OC POLI 2XX (3)
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU POL 2XX (3)
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU POLI 2XXX (3)
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU POLS 2XX (3)
University Canada West (UCW) UCW POLI 2XX (3)
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) UBCO POLI 2nd (3)
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) UBCV POLI 306 (3)
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC POLS 2XX (3)
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV POSC 350 (3)
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC POLI 2XX (1.5)
Vancouver Island University (VIU) VIU POLI 2nd (3)

Course Offerings

Summer 2023