Graduate Studies in Adult Education and Community Development


Welcome to our Department website. We offer a Master of Adult Education program with optional specialization in Community Development. We are Canada's first self-directed master's program offered through distance education. Since our inception in 1970, our curriculum has evolved from a traditional format consisting of 10 courses to one that is experiential and individualized wherein students design and implement their own content curriculum.

To date, the Department boasts over 700 graduates. In addition to every province and territory in Canada, our students come from countries such as United States, England, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Chinese Taipei, India, and Egypt.

Watch physician and program graduate Andrew Lodge describe his learning journey here.

"Obtaining a master's degree in adult education isn't just about more knowledge; it's about the deeper meaning of yourself."
- Cindy Crump, student

About Our Program

The Master of Adult Education has a professional development focus. It is a self-directed, distance learning program, with a 3 week residential requirement, wherein students design, implement, and evaluate their own content curriculum. Students choose learning projects and goals on the basis of their own experiences and interests in consultation with their advisor. Students have a 3 year candidacy period within which to complete all program requirements (students who registered before 2017 have a 5 year period). The program is of interest to candidates from a wide variety of sectors:

- Community college (e.g., ESL, Early Childhood Education, and Dental Technology)
- Health (e.g., Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Physician, and Nutrition)
- International and community development
- Human resource management
- Nonprofit and social services
- Organizational training
- Adult literacy
- Social work (Those who work with youth, immigrants, elderly, and people with disabilities)
- Social movements
- Environmental & bio-diversity education
- Legal aid, police training, and correctional services

Please note that there is no deadline to apply; we accept applications on an ongoing basis. Waitlist may apply. Program requirements include:

  1. Foundations Institute: A mandatory 3-week residential orientation at the start of the program
  2. AE500: An annotated bibliography and a learning plan;
  3. AE510: A critical literature review and a professional portfolio;
  4. AE520: A research study project;
  5. AE530: A learning program evaluation;
  6. AE600 or AE601: A thesis or a synthesizing oral examination.

Please Note:  Intakes after April 2017 will experience a slightly different program as we add support for timely completion of the program within 3 years. 


Upcoming Foundation Institutes

  • April 8-26, 2018

  • July 9-26, 2018 (2 running simultaneously in July)