Global Development Certificate

Queen’s online Global Development Studies Certificate (formerly the DEVS Certificate Programme) is a professional certificate designed to provide working professionals and upper-year students in professional programs a deeper understanding of development issues at home and abroad. The flexible yet rigorous courses are designed to accommodate demanding work schedules. New online courses begin in May, September, and January.

Our current course offerings focus on health and engineering professions, but we welcome participation by interested professionals from other areas.

Who the Program Is For

  • Physicians, nurses, and other health professionals interested in global development health issues (online courses are eligbile for Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits)
  • Engineers and technology professionals interested in global development and technology issues
  • Professionals in other disciplines interested in expanding their understanding of development issues

Goals of the Program

  • To provide you with a solid understanding of development and social justice issues so that you can  apply them in your professional and/or personal life
  • To offer enough flexibility to accommodate your schedule while providing rigorous, in-depth study of the key issues in development.
  • To expand the reach of global development research so that it can impact the professions where it can make the most difference
  • To provide professionals with an academic foundation for engaging formally or informally with development programs and policies

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June 3, 2014: Free Public Roundtable Discussion

Please join us on Tuesday, June 3, 2014 for a public roundtable discussion on Knowledge Translation for Global Health in Context: Lessons from the Poorest Countries to the Richest. The event is free and open to the public. It will take place at the Queen's New Medical Building (lecture room 132) from 7-9 pm.

For more information, please download the event flyer (138 KB PDF).

Continuing Medical Education Credits (CME)

Physicians can request Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits (64 CFPC Mainpro – M1 credits) from the College of Family Physicians of Canada upon the completion of each online course.

What You'll Gain from the Program
  • critical awareness of development issues both in Canada and in other countries
  • preparation for global citizenship and professional ventures
  • a comprehensive understanding of international development issues to help you engage formally or informally within your professional organizations
  • knowledge of the context and history of development and social justice movements in Canada
  • awareness of the health and technology impacts of global organizations, NGOs, and multinationals
  • ways that development and social justice issues affect men and women

For more information on this Certificate, visit the Development Studies Department's Certificate Program webpage.

  • Option 1: Complete five online courses. See Course Descriptions below.  
  • Option 2: Complete three online courses plus a one-week capstone on-campus seminar course related to your profession.
  • Participants can start in May, September, or January. Each course is eight weeks long.


Each course uses readings, lectures, and multimedia content. Online forum discussions with the professor and fellow participants create opportunities to engage with others and discuss the relevant issues.

Each program begins with a mandatory introductory course. Health and technology professionals take one core course tailored to their profession. (Other participants may take these courses as electives). The remaining courses are electives.

You have the option of finishing your program with a Capstone On-Campus Seminar Course in lieu of two online elective courses. This one-week course is offered in the summer on Queen's campus. Capstone courses are not offered every year and are dependent on enrollment. Accommodation is available.


DEVS-CERT 101.1: Introduction to Development Studies

What do people mean by Third World, Fourth World, Global South, and majority world? Why are some countries so rich while others are poor? Why are there seemingly intractable pockets of poverty within otherwise wealthy communities? What is development? Learn the theories and debates behind these questions in this introductory course. Deepen your understanding of the history of global development efforts and the impact of colonialism. Appreciate the complexity of these issues.

DEVS-CERT 201.1: Introduction to Health and Development (Core)

What does global development mean for health? How do we measure global health? Examine the impact of globalization, global institutions, and NGOs involved in health. Explore key topics in health, such as HIV/AIDS, displaced peoples, and aboriginal communities. This core course is tailored to healthcare professionals.

DEVS-CERT 202.1: Introduction to Technology and Development (Core)

What impact can and does technology have in developing and developed countries? Explore the links between technology, capitalism, colonialism, racism, and states. Analyse case studies about the typical role of engineers and NGOs in development projects. Take a critical approach to development concepts such as efficiency, sustainability, charity, and solidarity. This core course is tailored to technology professionals.

DEVS-CERT 211.1: Globalization and Gender and Development (Elective)

What impact does gender have on the success of development projects? Explore the social underpinnings of gender, including gender planning, mobilization, globalization, neoliberalism, privatization, militarization, and poverty. Analyse case studies from Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Discuss critically the role of women’s resistance and activism movements and the influence of international aid and feminist organizations.  

DEVS-CERT 212.1: NGOs and Global Civil Society (Elective)

Examine the rapidly expanding field of nongovernmental organizations from their early roots to their current roles. Explore the relations of power between NGOs, states, and communities. Discuss critically the impact of the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization. Topics include the role of corporations and private companies, microfinance, infrastructure, and democratic movements.


This course explores some of the current thinking around the role that volunteers, skilled professionals and development workers from the Global North play in relation to their counterparts in the Global South.  Through a survey of literature, films and popular publications on the subject, we consider some of the challenges and ethical issues that arise out of relationships that are usually based on good intentions yet sometimes have unintended or unanticipated outcomes.  By weaving together the literature on development-related issues and theory, international experiential learning models and global citizenship, we explore and reflect on some of the ethical challenges related to working and volunteering in the Global South.

DEVS-CERT 214.1: Issues and Actors in Development (Elective)

Building on the topics covered in the introductory course, this course explores the actions and motivations of the major players in global development: multinational corporations, states, NGOs, and individuals. Apply principles learned in this program to evaluate current and future issues, such as aboriginal rights, environmental issues, food security, and anti-globalization movements.

Capstone Course 2014 (Global Health Summer Institute)

DEVS-CERT 401.2: Advanced Seminar in Health and Development (Global Health Summer Institute)

Knowledge Translation for Global Health Summer Institute
June 2-6, 2014
Kingston, Ontario

Knowledge translation for global health is the science and art of bridging the gap between what we know about global health and social problems, and what is being done to improve or solve them.

Intended Audience

This program is open to researchers, practitioners, and graduate or professional-level university students with an interest in global health issues and who would like to build knowledge and skills in research and knowledge translation. There are two options for participation in this event:

  1. A two-day workshop Tuesday, June 3 and Wednesday, June 4 focused on specific KT skill training in areas of dialogue facilitation, partnership building, situational assessment, KT planning, engaged dissemination strategies and the creation of KT products such as policy briefs.
  2. An advanced five day workshop from Monday, June 2 to Friday, June 6 that facilitates the application of students newly acquired skills to real world case studies with mentors who have experience in the field and who will be available to the students on a one-to-one basis throughout the week.


  1. To help participants build knowledge translation skills through an intensive, problem-based learning experience;
  2. To provide opportunity to apply new knowledge translation competencies in a current or emerging global health project;
  3. To build a supportive community for knowledge translation and global health with valuable onsite interactions and offsite virtual networks.

Download the five day advanced workshop agenda: June 2-6, 2014.

Download the two-day workshop agenda: June 3-4, 2014.

Capstone Course Registration

Register here for the 2014 Summer Capstone Course:

Course Fees

Online course: $750

Capstone course: early bird registration (prior to April 30, 2014) is $1200 for the advanced five day workshop or $500 for a two day workshop.

After April 30, 2014, the fee is $1300 for the advanced five day workshop or $600 for the two day workshop.

Refund Policy for Online Courses

  • End of first week: 100%
  • Up to end of fifth week: 50%
  • After fifth week: No refund

Refund Policy for Capstone Courses

  • More than one month prior to course: 100%
  • Up to two weeks prior to the course: 50%
  • Less than two weeks prior to the course: No refund
Certificate Course Schedule

Fall 2013
101 Introduction to Development Studies
211 Globalization Gender and Development
214 Issues and Actors in Development

Winter 2014
101 Introduction to Development Studies
201 Introduction to Health and Development
212 NGOs and Global Civil Society

Summer 2014
101 Introduction to Development Studies
202 Introduction to Technology and Development
213 Perspectives on Working and Volunteering in the Global South
401 Advanced Seminar in Health and Development

Fall 2014
101 Introduction to Development Studies
211 Globalization Gender and Development
212 NGOs and Global Civil Society

Winter 2015
101 Introduction to Development Studies
201 Introduction to Health and Development
202 Introduction to Technology and Development

Summer 2015
101 Introduction to Development Studies
213 Perspectives on Working and Volunteering in the Global South
214 Issues and Actors in Development
401 Advanced Seminar in Health and Development