Classes and Schedules

To join the First-Year Focus Program, you will first to choose a Stream from the 2 options we offer: FYF-C (Computation) and FYF-L (Life Science): (1) FYF-C focuses on developing computational skills in math, data sciences, and computer sciences, which is a foundation to many other science majors; (2) FYF-L focuses on life sciences and is designed for students who are interested in entering the fields such as microbiology and immunology, biology, and health related sciences, etc.

For both FYF-C and FYF-L, we offer multiple Standard Timetables with a combination of online and in-person lectures/discussions/labs. Depending on your preferred way of learning and course schedules, you can register for courses by choosing a Standard Timetable.

Please click on the dropdown menu below to see an overview of different timetables for both FYF-C and FYF-L.  For detailed Standard Timetable schedules, please explore on BSC Standard Timetables webpage.

Note: You will need to fulfill pre-requisites (if applicable) before taking the courses in the timetables. 


Example FYF course schedules

First-Year Focus program allows students to build a core group of peers by taking same sets of courses, while still giving freedom to explore their own professional interests. Adding to the courses in Standard Timetable, students can still self-select 1-2 courses per term based on their academic interests and availability. Students can pursue most specializations* after completing FYF. The examples below give some insight into how this program can apply to your future studies and towards your career goals.

Student A: Getting ahead of water-borne disease

Self-selected courses Term 1

  • CHEM 121

Self-selected courses Term 2

  • BIOL 112
  • CHEM 123

This student comes from a rural community where a number of preventable water-borne diseases impact the health of their friends and family. They're considering focusing their studies in ways that can contribute to preventing future outbreaks. They're also interested in bioinformatics, ecology, protein structure and metabolic modelling—all of which increasingly rely on a foundation in computational sciences. Based on the courses selected by Student A, they may be headed towards microbiology and immunology or biology. Coursework in computational sciences can facilitate future studies no matter which life science they specialize in.

Student B: Where earth science meets food security

Self-selected courses Term 1

  • CHEM 121 

Self-selected courses Term 2

  • PHYS 131
  • + two electives, such as Earth Science

Student B is curious about earth sciences, including air pollution, natural disasters and weather. They've learned the field involves computer programming—including producing weather and climate forecasts, predicting sea level rise and its impact on infrastructure, and water supplies that support farming. They come from a drought-prone part of the world and want to help forecast and combat the impacts of climate change. Student B expects to apply to the major in earth and ocean sciences


Student C: Combatting the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Self-selected courses Term 1

  • CHEM 121

Self-selected courses Term 2

  • CHEM 123
  • + one or two electives

This student came across the work of Nobel prize-winning chemist Frances Arnold on the directed evolution of enzymes and was inspired to learn more about chemistry in our everyday world—from how the touch screens on our phones work, to why leaves change colour in the fall, to how soap is an effective precaution against COVID-19. One thing that caught their eye is the concept of bioplastics as a way to reduce ocean pollution. Student C knows the computational sciences are key to integrating chemical theory and modeling with experimental observations, such as predicting the atomic structure and properties of organic and inorganic materials. A foundation in computational sciences, paired with their expected major in chemistry, can set them up to identify cost-effective and sustainable products that won’t wind up in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

Student D: Reducing viral spread in a pandemic

Self-selected courses

  • 1 lab course, such as ASTR 101
  • + three or four electives

In the face of recent pandemics, Student D has become aware of how statistics play a vital role in modelling the impact of proposed mitigation strategies and shape public health approaches. They've noticed how influential these models can be on their friends and family and how likely they are to follow health and safety guidelines. News headlines that Canada needs to improve its data collection for First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities to better understand the impact of the pandemic on Indigenous peoples have also caught their attention—they’re passionate about reconciliation and, paired with their studies in statistics, they’re realizing they can help support Indigenous populations through modelling. Student D is keenly aware that solutions are rooted in the computational sciences and building a foundation in the area will be instrumental in their future studies and career aspirations.


Musqueam First Nation land acknowledegement

UBC Science acknowledges that the UBC Point Grey campus is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm.

Learn more: Musqueam First Nation

First Year Focus


Faculty of Science

Office of the Dean, Earth Sciences Building
2178–2207 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC Canada
V6T 1Z4
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