Department of Global Development Studies


Global Development Studies

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Course Description

Work Study DEVS 410/DEVS 411

To meet the academic requirements of DEVS 410 and DEVS 411 course students are required to attend preparatory meetings, prepare a work-study proposal and a research paper on the placement. Assessments also include a daily journal, chat room participation, a final report and post-placement meetings and presentations as part of the re-entry learning experience. In addition to academic requirements, students are required to enroll in the Queen's emergency support program and attend a pre-departure orientation.

The primary purpose of DEVS 410 is to provide students with the opportunity to gain practical development experience. In most instances, this will be achieved by living/working abroad in a developing country; however, there are also opportunities for students to get involved in valid development experiences in Canada that would qualify for credit under DEVS 410. Students are therefore encouraged to think broadly about opportunities in this regard.

For many of you, this experience in Global Development will be your first exciting step in your professional and personal growth. Our objective is to make the experience as safe and enjoyable as possible, while ensuring academic credentials.

It is important to note that the actual placement is only part of the experience. A large part of development work is the effort and perseverance required to get there. This can be laborious and unglamorous work, but it is an essential part of the learning experience – both in terms of ensuring a safe and rewarding trip, as well as making you a more effective and efficient development practitioner in the future. For this reason, DEVS 410/411 place as much emphasis on the process as it does on the product.  It is also important to realize that organizing placements requires significant lead times. You should ideally begin to plan your placement at least 12 months ahead of your expected departure date.


Enrolment in DEVS 410 is restricted. To enroll for the course, you will have to obtain the permission of the Placements Coordinator.  You can do this by submitting a Petition of Entry to the course.  Enrollment in the course is completed by the DEVS Academic Programs Assistant after permission has been secured.  Students registered in DEVS 410 will be automatically registered in DEVS 411.  Students must complete DEVS 410 AND DEVS 411 to secure 9.0 units.  If a student does not complete DEVS 411, they will not secure the units from DEVS 410.


In addition to identifying one or more possible work-study placements, the ‘Petition of Entry’ should provide at least the following:

  • Your name, student number, contact information, program of study (DEVS major or medial) and year
  • Short biography indicating your educational and career goals, and an overview of any overseas experience you have (where, duration, activities, language skills).
  • Location and overview of the work-study opportunity, including the name and function of the organization, contact names and details, possible start dates and duration, facilities and resources that would be available to you at the work-study location.
  • A description of how you think the work-study will provide a development-oriented experience in relation to your program of study to date, and what you would hope to learn from it.
  • Application dates and deadlines (if applicable).
  • Indication of the financial resources required to undertake the placement and how these will be met.

Your petition should ideally be two to three (2-3) pages in length but may be longer if more than one opportunity has been identified. The petition must go beyond simply preparing a list of organizations and contact details. It must reflect the outcome of conscientious investigation of options, and the identification of one or two options that are most realistic and meet the academic requirements of DEVS 410/411. Please email your petition to Marc Epprecht ( before 4:30 pm on Friday, 29 January 2021.

If your petition is accepted, the Program Coordinator will advise the DEVS Academic Programs Assistant to register you in DEVS 410 for the appropriate term (e.g., spring/summer).

For more information about DEVS 410 and the requirements, please review the DEVS 410 Placement Handbook (2020-2021)

International Exchange DEVS 420*

The opportunity to study abroad is also an option for students in the program. Students spend a term at a school that is located in Asia, Latin America, Africa or the successor states of the former Soviet Union. They may take courses that can be counted towards their DEVS and/or another disciplinary concentration (in the case of Medial students).

The academic requirements for the exchange itself (3.0 units) include: researching and applying to universities, writing a proposal, carrying out a thorough risk assessment, attending a pre-departure orientation session, keeping a journal for the duration of the exchange and writing a report upon return.

NOTE: Students are normally responsible for all costs associated with participation in these courses. Students are also responsible for obtaining a Letter of Permission to study abroad through Queen's International Programs Office, and for arranging for the transfer of credits from the host institution to Queen's upon their return.

Advising: Professor Paritosh Kumar is the Placement Coordinator for Work Study placements and Exchanges in Development Studies. Please contact him directly for an appointment: or (613) 533-2650