Programs Requiring Prior University Study

The following programs lead to a degree, and require you to complete some university study before you apply.

To find programs that require you to complete some college study before you apply, view Collaborative University and College Programs.

7 Prior Study Programs

Canon Law

University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University


The study of canon law mainly consists of the study of the Code of Canon Law. A number of disciplines are related to this subject: theology of canon law, philosophy of law, fundamental concepts of Roman law, elements of civil law, history of the fundamental canonical structures of canon law, history of the sources of canon law, the relationship between the Church and civil society, and canonical administrative and judicial practice. We also offer an introduction to the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, and the study of Latin, as well as optional courses, exercises and seminars.

Offered by the Faculty of Canon Law, the ecclesiastical programs in Canon Law also allow students to receive civil degrees, such as the Graduate Diploma in Canon Law, Graduate Diploma in Canonical Practice or Graduate Diploma in Ecclesiastical Administration, and the Master's in Canon Law.

Conflict Studies

University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University


Saint Paul University offers an MA in Conflict Studies, which is conferred jointly by the Senates of Saint Paul University and the University of Ottawa. The focus of the program is on the ethnic and religious identity distinctions that characterize many deep-rooted conflicts. The program explores the meaning of and generates processes for reconciliation, healing, and structural change. It combines a social science orientation common to Conflict Studies programs with a philosophical, ethical and theological orientation. The field of specialization is ethnic and religious dimensions of conflict in Canada.

Program Objectives

  • - Analysis: To explore the connections between conflict, violence, social justice, conflict resolution and peacebuilding in human communities;
  • - Training: To develop the attitudes, knowledge, research and skills necessary to analyze ethnic and religious conflicts so as to cultivate peace;
  • - Outcomes: To produce graduates who are competent, to analyze ethnic and religious conflicts in a multidisciplinary perspective, and to devise and evaluate appropriate conflict resolution strategies.

Two levels of learning are distinguished:

  • - Foundational Level: This level entails intensive study of major themes in Conflict Studies. Graduate training is initiated in research skills and methodologies in preparation for the research project.
  • - Advanced Level: This level of study concentrates on the development of specific dimensions of Conflict Studies. Research seminars meet to define the problem, purpose, scope and methodology of the master’s research project.

Counselling and Spirituality

University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University


The Faculty of Human Sciences at Saint Paul University offers programs leading to a graduate diploma in Couple Counselling and Spirituality, and to a Master of Arts (MA) and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Counselling and Spirituality, all conferred jointly by the Senates of Saint Paul University and of the University of Ottawa, with which Saint Paul is federated.

The objective of the master’s program is to train specialists to counsel and guide couples or individuals with regard to their values and their spirituality, as well as both their individual and couple dynamics, and to prepare graduates for a career in research.

Each concentration of the MA program (individual counselling; couple and family counselling; spiritual care) includes three components: Knowledge acquisition; a research project or thesis; and professional practice.

The MA program is offered in French and in English on a full-time basis, with part-time registration permitted only under exceptional circumstances. In accordance with University regulations, students are permitted to write assignments, exams, and theses in either French or English.

A collaborative program in Women’s Studies at the MA level is also offered.

The MA is recognized by the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (ACPA) and the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO).

Public Ethics

University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University


The Faculty of Philosophy at Saint Paul University offers the Master of Arts in Public Ethics.

The program is based upon course and seminar work, reflection on practical experience, and research in public ethics. The program is designed for students wishing to specialize in public ethics at the graduate level or to prepare themselves for doctoral work, or for mid-career professionals wishing to reflect and build on their professional experience and previous studies and who may wish to advance their carriers, make career changes, or prepare for doctoral studies.

Program Objectives

The program is designed to prepare graduates who are public ethics analysts and consultants with competencies in the following:

  • - to discern the values and ethical concerns involved in particular policy statements or social and political practices and to propose appropriate strategies for taking these values and ethical concerns into consideration in the further formulation of policy statements and establishment of such practices at regional, national and international levels;
  • - to study more deeply the major ethical questions raised by society; and
  • - to discern the values and the ethical concerns arising from, or involved in, a society defined more and more in terms of information creation and transfer and to propose appropriate strategies for taking these values and ethical concerns into consideration in the further evolution of an information-oriented communication society.

Social Organization Development

University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University

Certificate and Diploma Programs

The School of Social Innovation of the Faculty of Human Sciences at Saint Paul University offers a Graduate Diploma in Social Organization Development.

The study and practice of social organization development cover the creation, the consolidation and the strengthening of organizations working in the social field (NPOs, social movements, foundations, charities, co-ops, etc.).

This program is directed at a specific clientele: people already working in the field (employees and management of social organizations, social entrepreneurs, activists, community workers, trade unionists, members of cooperatives, and some workers from the public and parapublic sectors), or people who already have professional experience but wish to reorient their careers and start their own innovative project.

The program, based on the linking of theory with practice, provides students with the main analytical frameworks and approaches needed to meet the current challenges facing social organizations.


University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University


The MA program is intended for candidates who already have a good basic formation in Theology, with courses in various areas of Theology such as systematic theology, history, biblical studies, ethics and spirituality. It is designed to allow these students to gain greater familiarity with the various research methods in Theology, and to begin a specialization in a particular area, while promoting an integration of the theological formation already acquired. The program prepares students to teach at undergraduate level, to undertake doctoral studies in Theology, and to assume diverse administrative responsibilities in institutions or organizations requiring a formation in religious studies or theology.

Transformative Leadership and Spirituality

University of Ottawa – Saint Paul University


The first Graduate degree of its kind in Canada!

The Faculty of Human Sciences of Saint Paul University offers a new interdisciplinary graduate program leading to the degree of Master of Arts in Transformative Leadership and Spirituality. The degree highlights personal and social transformation, critical analysis and practice base learning.

Integrating the spiritual, ethical and transformative dimensions of leadership, this degree is designed to build leadership capacity for animating the personal, social, cultural and systemic change required for meeting the challenges of the 21st century. It allows participants to identify and develop their leadership capacities in order to become transformative agents within their respective environments.

Leaders and emerging leaders in health care, education, pastoral, government and non-governmental organizations are among those welcome to apply.

*Offered in English only.