School of Graduate Studies

School of Graduate Studies
School of Graduate Studies

Law: Graduate Diploma in Immigration and Citizenship Law

GDip Immigration & Citizenship law -students

 

Your next step to a life-changing career!
Queen’s Faculty of Law offers the only English-language pathway to becoming a licensed immigration consultant in Canada. Our program is training the next generation of immigration consultants in the full range of competencies they will need, from immigration and citizenship law to best practices for career success. 

Immigration affects us all, today and for the future.

Immigration is at the heart of Canadian culture and industry. Over seven million foreign-born individuals call this country home, and over the next three years, we will welcome nearly a million more. Developed by leading immigration practitioners and academics from across the country and operating under the guidance of Academic Director Sharry Aiken — one of Canada's foremost experts in the field of immigration law — the Graduate Diploma in Immigration and Citizenship Law is setting a new standard for immigration consultants.

The Graduate Diploma is designed for individuals who are looking to enter Canada’s immigration sector, as well as those seeking to enhance their skills and competencies about the immigration system to support their existing profession. The courses are aligned with the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council’s (ICCRC) essential competencies for Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants, and provide students with a deep understanding of Canadian immigration and citizenship law and procedures, as well as the knowledge and skills necessary for successful practice in a variety of professional roles.

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Program Contact

Andrea Labelle
Program Coordinator
Faculty of Law
128 Union Street, Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6

Phone: 613.533.6000 ext 75799
E-mail: immigrationdiploma@queensu.ca
Website: https://law.queensu.ca/programs/graduate-diploma-in-immigration-and-citizenship-law

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Program Overview

The Graduate Diploma is designed for individuals who are looking to enter Canada’s immigration sector, as well as those seeking to enhance their skills and competencies about the immigration system to support their existing profession. The courses are aligned with the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council’s (ICCRC) essential competencies for Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants, and provide students with a deep understanding of Canadian immigration and citizenship law and procedures, as well as the knowledge and skills necessary for successful practice in a variety of professional roles.

The Graduate Diploma is designed and optimized for the online learning environment. You’ll be able to work directly with faculty and your fellow students in online forums and discussions, and through group activities such as case studies, simulations, and more. 

Program components

The GDipICL is a graduate level diploma with graduate level expectations that simulate and prepare students for the rigors of the profession they will be entering. Students, particularly in the full-time stream, should expect this program to resemble a full-time job in terms of their weekly time commitment. Given the nature of this program, there is an expectation for students to be regularly involved in the learning process each week. Each course typically requires 2 hours of synchronous tutorial time per week (or 3 hours in the case of ICL 890) and significant independent study every week.

The Foundations course, ICL 810, is structured as an accelerated, intensive course (twelve weeks of instructional content delivered in six weeks). Students can expect to dedicate upwards of a full workweek during those first six weeks of the program. Students registered in the GDipICL on a part-time basis who are working full time or have other responsibilities may wish to consider a temporary leave from work or a reduction in their work hours in order to manage the workload associated with ICL 810. Following completion of ICL 810, no other course is structured as an intensive.

Time spent on independent study varies between individuals. Workload also varies between courses with some courses requiring a greater time commitment than others. It is highly recommended that students log into their course(s) 4-5 times per week at a minimum.

Career paths – employment opportunities

The Graduate Diploma is designed for individuals who are looking to enter Canada’s immigration sector, as well as those seeking to enhance their skills and competencies about the immigration system to support and advance in their existing professions. It merges theory with practice to prepare students for a number of vital roles in the immigration sector, as well as functions that support organizations on immigration and citizenship matters. These include:  

  • Immigration consultants  
  • Paralegals  
  • Lawyers seeking specialized training in immigration law  
  • Advisors and recruitment specialists at universities and colleges  
  • Human resources professionals  
  • Leaders in immigrant settlement organizations   
  • Constituency assistants for members of federal, provincial,  and territorial legislatures  
  • Immigration and border policy analysts and program specialists in government agencies  
  • Business development leads at law firms  
  • Diplomatic services and consular support professionals  
Method of Completion

Full-Time

Students who are registered as full-time are expected to engage in their studies on a full- time basis. There are three terms of study for a full-time student. Under no circumstances will a student be permitted to register as a full-time student while maintaining full-time employment (more than 30 hours a week) elsewhere.

A full-time student is expected to engage in his/her studies on a full-time basis. It is expected that a full-time student will limit paid employment unrelated to the student's studies to an average of ten hours per week.

Part-Time

Students who are registered as part-time are expected to engage in their studies on a part-time basis and make commensurate progress. There are up to nine terms of study for a part-time student, and students are expected to complete the program within six to nine consecutive terms.

**Students must complete all nine courses with a minimum grade of B- to graduate.

Single Course Enrolment

Students can register for up to four courses individually as an Interest Student. Students may enroll in an individual course as either an Interest Student for Program Credit or as an Interest Student for No Program Credit. Interest Students must meet all requirements for admission.

Applicants to this category must apply via the “Apply as an Interest Student” now button on the Graduate Diploma in Immigration and Citizenship Law web portal.

Tuition Fees & Financing

Tuition
Total tuition for the program is currently $14,167. Payments can be prorated throughout terms of study.

Financing
Queen's Law has partnered with RBC to offer a student line of credit tailored to your needs (subject to credit approval). 

Admission Requirements

For a detailed breakdown of admission requirements, please review the Handbook of Academic Regulations, Policies and Procedures. 

1. A Bachelor’s degree from a recognized university (or equivalent institution).

A complete application must include official, up-to-date transcripts for all current and previous study you have listed in the Academic Background section of the application. Transcripts must be scanned (black and white recommended) and saved as a PDF file, then uploaded to the online application. Please see the “Tips for Transcript Upload” document HERE. You can also consult the School of Graduate Studies website for more information, HERE.

*Applicants with a degree from a post-secondary institution that is not a recognized university will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

2. A minimum of a B average or equivalent in the bachelor's degree * 

* Note: Queen’s University School of Graduate Studies is committed to enhancing diversity in graduate education, which includes ensuring mechanisms for applications from prospective students who may not have had opportunity and advantage equal to others to be considered.

On an individual basis, consideration may be given to highly motivated individuals with some post-secondary degree studies at the university level, as well as professional experience who do not have a minimum of a B average or a bachelor’s degree from a recognized university.

Applicants wishing to apply as an “access” candidate should apply through the regular admissions portal and are requested to identify the life circumstances that may have prohibited, presented barriers, and/or discouraged access to advanced degree studies, in their Statement of Interest (see admissions page).

Applicants must also send a detailed resume demonstrating a minimum of five (5) years relevant work experience to immigrationdiploma@queensu.ca by the application deadline. Some examples of relevant work experience include prior work as a paralegal, community legal worker or in the immigration sector.

The Admissions Committee retains the discretion to require a personal interview.

3. Language Proficiency 

Applicants whose native languages do not include English will need to earn satisfactory standing in an English Language Proficiency Test as part of the application process, and before final acceptance is granted. 

There are only two grounds for exemption from this requirement, as elaborated below:

(i) Any applicant whose native languages do not include English, but who, within the 12 month period prior to the month of application, has studied on a full time basis for at least one complete year at a university where English is the official language of instruction, may submit with their application a request to be exempted from the English language proficiency test requirement. Proof will be required that it has not been more than one year since the applicant was a full time student at the university and also that English is the language of instruction there. Acceptable proof of this is the original, official transcript, received from the issuing post-secondary institution or uploaded as part of the application for admission. If it is not stated on or evident from the transcript that English is the language of instruction, arrangements must be made for a separate, official letter that confirms this to be sent to the School of Graduate Studies from the issuing post-secondary institution.

(ii) Any applicant who has successfully completed ESLA 150 (University Preparation Level) in the Queen's School of English, English for Academic Purposes program, with an "A" grade may also submit a request to be exempted from the English language proficiency test requirement.

Those applicants who do not meet one of the two requirements listed above, will be required to obtain satisfactory standing in an English Language Proficiency Test as part of the application process.

Minimum requirements for the four English language proficiency tests which are accepted for applications to this program are as follows:

IELTS (Academic) minimum overall score 7.0 with at least 7.0 in each component

TOEFL-PBT Paper-based test minimum overall score of 607

TOEFLiBT Internet-based test minimum overall score of 101 with a minimum score in each component test as follows:

Writing test: 25/30
Speaking test: 25/30
Reading test: 25/30
Listening test: 26/30

CAEL CE: Canadian Academic English Language Test, Computer Edition minimum overall score 70

To support students in meeting their requirements, English language upgrading and support opportunities are offered by Queen’s School of English, in particular the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) program. This 12-week intensive English language program develops knowledge, skills, and strategies for academic success. It is offered three times per year in Fall, Winter, and Summer.

4. References  

Applicants to the Graduate Diploma are required to identify two referees who will submit letters of reference. At least one academic reference is required for students who have graduated from their most recent degree studies less than five years prior to application. The second reference may be either a professional reference or an academic reference. A professional reference should be someone who has supervised you at work or in a volunteer position. Applicants who have graduated more than five years prior to application are not required to submit an academic reference and may instead provide two professional references. References cannot be from a friend, colleague or relative. 

Choose referees who know your skills and experience, and who can communicate your ability to succeed in an academic program. We recommend that you contact your referees with a minimum of four weeks’ notice before the application deadline. Ensure that your referees are available and have ample time to complete the reference form before the application deadline. Your referees will be contacted by the School of Graduate Studies via email, and asked to provide their reference using an online reference form. The referees listed will not be contacted until your application has been successfully submitted and the application fee has been received.

Note that all reference forms are verified for authenticity. 

5. A Statement of Interest

Applicants must submit a two-part, 200-300 word (1280-1925 characters) statement of interest explaining their career objectives and reasons for wanting to pursue the Graduate Diploma in Immigration and Citizenship Law. The statement of interest should be submitted through the online application system. More specific instructions are included in the online application.

Please note the maximum 2000 characters in the online application system does not  Apply.

Eligibility

The GDipICL is open to applicants of all nationalities, regardless of residency or citizenship status in Canada. However, the Entry-to-Practice (EPE) exam administered by the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) can only be written by Canadian citizens and permanent residents. For more information, see: ICCRC’s “Become a RCIC” and the Entry-to-Practice Exam Application Checklist.

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