The discussion to reorganize the Faculty of Arts & Science began in 1973. The University had grown dramatically since 1966 with enrolment increasing from 3,740 undergraduates to 10,864 in 10 years. In regards to the continuation of a single Faculty, views were expressed that “serious inefficiencies of scale were apparent” resulting in stresses to communication, management, finances and budgeting, human resources, and questions regarding the viable academic structure of the Faculty.
A long consultation and study process took place that examined both academic and administrative arguments for changing or maintaining the structure of the Faculty. The consultation resulted in a ballot in March 1975 where 68% of the Faculty voted in favor of some form of division with the most preferred form of division being a split into the Faculty of Arts, Faculty of Social Sciences and a Faculty of Natural Sciences.
Following this ballot, the General Faculty Council established a Task Force on the Division of the Faculty of Arts and Science in April 1975. The Task Force recommended that the Faculty be split into three Faculties and a University College: the Faculty of Science would consist of Departments of Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Geology, Mathematics & Statistics, and Physics; the Faculty of Social Sciences would consist of Departments of Anthropology, Archaeology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Psychology and Sociology; the Faculty of Humanities would consist of Departments of Classics, English, Germanic and Slavic Studies, Linguistics, Philosophy, Religious Studies, and Romance Studies. University College would provide a central administrative location to register students and also an academic counselling and program management service.
The reorganization became official on April 1st, 1976.
Commenting prior to the reorganization, R.G. Weyant, the Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Science, stated:
“…this reorganization is likely to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. It is not every day that one has the chance to reorganize half of a university, and the results of the reorganization will have wide-reaching and long-lasting effects for the entire institution.”
The reorganization that occurred in 1976 remained in effect until 2010 when the faculties underwent another change that resulted in the Faculties of Humanities, Social Sciences and Fine Arts being amalgamated into the Faculty of Art.