Education (EDUC)

Education (EDUC)

The Faculty of Education at Saint Mary’s University is dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of education through an exploration and evaluation of education policy and practice, education alternatives and reforms, and perspectives and philosophies that underlie both policy and progress in education. The Faculty of Education offers courses which explore these themes at the local, regional, national and international levels.

Students enrolled in the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science, and the Sobey School of Business can select Education courses as an elective in their degree programs, giving students an opportunity to understand both their own educational experiences and to examine education critically as a major cultural institution throughout the world.

The Faculty of Education offers students who are new to university, or who are new to the Canadian university experience, a selection of unique 1000-level courses that provide an introduction to the nature, scope, and meaning of university education in a Canadian setting.  These courses can be taken as electives, and will support students in their transition to their university studies.

The Faculty’s courses and research focus on five strategic areas: 

1. The Liberal Study of Education

Education is a central social institution—many would say the most important social institution—and the Faculty offers courses, carries out research, and creates initiatives in the history, philosophy and contemporary institutional nature of education from a comparative perspective. The liberal study of education integrates the perspectives and methods from of many disciplines--anthropology, history, philosophy, interdisciplinary studies, linguistics, literature, political science, psychology, religious studies and sociology, among others—to gain a better understanding of education and how both informal and formal education can contribute to progressive policy and practice. This interdisciplinary perspective enables students to explore how education operates in, influences and is influenced by people and cultures both at home and around the world.

All the Education courses offered in this strategic area can be taken as electives for degrees offered in the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science and the Sobey School of Business.

2. University Transition 

The Faculty of Education offers a series of innovative courses that support students in their integration into the intellectual culture and values of the university with an emphasis on the development of critical reflection.  A number of these courses are geared toward international students whose first language is not English.  However, the courses are beneficial for all students seeking a broad, but comprehensive look at the university academic experience. 

All the Education courses offered in this strategic area can be taken as electives for degrees offered in the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science and the Sobey School of Business.

3. Education and International Development

Educational systems are a critical component of the social, political and economic structures of all societies around the world.  Through a comparative and critical examination of national education policies, especially those in the developing world, students will achieve an understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of competing types of formal and informal education systems. A comparative analysis of education policy and practice supporting economic advancement, social justice, the development of national citizenship, social integration, or remedying social exclusion are among the themes of these courses. These studies reflect the importance of the university’s role in Education and International Development by providing students with a foundation in international comparative education, education and development, comparative educational reforms and comparative innovations in education.

All the Education courses offered in this strategic area can be taken as electives for degrees offered in the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science and the Sobey School of Business.

4. Peace Education

The goal of peace education is to transform cultures of violence in society to cultures of peace.  It promotes the development of values such as cultural understanding, active citizenship, and non-violence.  Courses in peace education give students the opportunity to experience and critically examine educational approaches such as global education, intercultural education, or sustainable development education, that teachers can use for awakening learners to strategies for developing humanity and world community.  The Faculty of Education offers field schools incorporating academic credit which provide experiential learning for a greater understanding of the real world challenges of peace education.

All the Education courses offered in this strategic area can be taken as electives for degrees offered in the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science and the Sobey School of Business.

5. Professional Development for Teachers

Mindful of its history in teacher education, Saint Mary’s University currently offers two Continuing Service Education certificates for teachers:

  1. Certificate in Linguistics
  2. Certificate in the Mathematical Sciences for Education 

For more detailed information on each of these certificates, prospective students should visit Section 4 of this calendar for the information under Linguistics and Mathematics.

Teachers should note that while these programs have been generally approved for teacher certification upgrading purposes by the Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development, they must seek approval of these programs from the Registrar of Teacher Certification at the Nova Scotia Department of Education and Early Childhood Development for specific teacher certification upgrades.

Students interested in pursuing a career in teaching in the public schools should visit the teacher certification website at the Nova Scotia Department of Education and Early Childhood Development for information on current academic content requirements. Undergraduate professional teacher education programs leading to teacher certification are offered at the following Nova Scotia universities – Acadia, Mount Saint Vincent, Cape Breton, St. Francis Xavier and Université Sainte Anne.

Students also have the opportunity of studying at the University of Maine at Presque Isle under the terms of an agreement between the universities that has been in place for almost two decades. Further information is available from the Education Advisor at Saint Mary’s or by contacting the Admissions Office at the University of Maine at Presque Isle.

Graduate Studies

The Faculty of Education offers a graduate program in the teaching of English as a second/additional language:  the International Master of Teaching English (IMTE).  Details on graduate courses can be found in the Graduate Academic Calendar.