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Context & Related Documents

This academic plan was developed in the context of three significant areas of social challenge and opportunity:

  1. The global COVID-19 pandemic, which necessitated a period of intensified remote learning and working beginning in March 2020 and extending into the 2021/22 academic year.
  2. Worldwide solidarity against anti-Black racism, initiated mainly in response to repeated incidences of entrenched and persistent police brutality, but also as a reaction to institutional violence more generally.
  3. The ongoing commitment to centre reconciliation efforts to promote the resurgence of First Nations, M├ętis, Inuit, and all Indigenous peoples.

Accordingly, this Academic Plan focuses on healing and recovery in myriad ways. We have heard from colleagues that building connections will be important for our academic work in the years to come. In the short term, this will help us recover from our extended period of isolation and social distancing. On a more profound level, building connections will be an important first step in confronting the twin legacies of settler colonialism and the forced migration of peoples of African descent through enslavement and colonization. These particular histories inform the institutional choices that we make in terms of curriculum; hiring and representation; and funding and resource allocation. In our consultation visits, colleagues expressed a desire for LA&PS to address anti-Black racism, support Indigenous scholars, and enhance inclusion as foundational principles within our academic mission. We take up that challenge here.

Related planning documents

The LA&PS Academic Plan 2021-2026 is one of two key documents that shape the academic mission of the Faculty. While the Academic Plan is a statement of principles outlining the values we collectively determine, the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) is the administrative planning and implementation document that guides resource allocation on the basis of the principles set down in the Academic Plan.

The LA&PS Academic Plan 2021-2026 also exists in relationship to a number of other important institutional frameworks. It is guided by Building a Better Future: York University Academic Plan, 2020-2025, and aligns with the goals set out in that foundational document. These include the Six Priority Areas for Action and the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. The Six Priority Areas for Action are: living well together; 21st century learning; knowledge for the future; from access to success; advancing global engagement; and working in partnership.

Just as the UAP influences the Academic Plans of the 11 York Faculties, the LA&PS Academic Plan inspires planning documents at the unit-level for the 20 schools and departments in the Faculty, as well as the colleges and Organized Research Units. Thus, the LA&PS Academic Plan bridges the macro, meso, and micro levels by establishing guiding principles to inform institutional planning for our constituent LA&PS units.

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Important documents

In addition, the following important documents inform the goals and principles set out here, and express the vision of the university at the present juncture relative to teaching, learning, research, and community outreach.

Addressing Anti-Black Racism: A Framework on Black Inclusion Publication Cover

Addressing Anti-Black Racism: A Framework on Black Inclusion

Opportunities for alignment:

  • Eliminate barriers to access and academic advancement for Black scholars
  • Support the recruitment and academic success of Black students
  • Ensure that Black scholarship is represented in the curriculum
  • Include, acknowledge, and elevate Black perspectives within research, information resources, and collections across all disciplines
  • Promote a climate of respect and support for Black students, staff, and faculty
  • Enhance representation of Black tenured faculty, instructors, staff, and senior administration, and support the emotional labour that they often undertake
York University Sustainability Strategy Publication Cover

York University Sustainability Strategy

Opportunities for alignment:

  • Enhance options for studying sustainability within LA&PS academic programs, including Experiential education opportunities that focus on sustainability
  • Include learning outcomes in undergraduate and graduate programs that address the sustainability challenges facing our world
  • Foster a culture of sustainability within our spaces of academic learning
  • Integrate sustainable practices into our roles as researchers and scholars
The Indigenous Framework for York University: A Guide to Action Publication Cover

The Indigenous Framework for York University: A Guide to Action

Opportunities for alignment:

  • Work with the Indigenous Council to expand Indigenous programming and curricular offerings
  • Seek guidance from the Indigenous Council in the hiring of Indigenous faculty and support the inclusion of more Indigenous instructors generally
  • Support the recruitment and academic success of Indigenous students
  • Enhance outreach to Indigenous communities to build reciprocal learning relationships and promote academic opportunities
Towards new heights york university strategic research plan 2018 - 2023

Towards New Heights: York University Strategic Research Plan 2018-2023

Opportunities for alignment:

  • Foster research excellence and the development of new knowledge and creative activities
  • Support research initiatives that cross disciplinary boundaries
  • Develop and implement knowledge mobilization strategies
  • Deliver research that positively affects the communities we serve
  • Maintain our commitment to social justice and responsibility in our research endeavours