Canadian Mennonite University

Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) offers an undergraduate major in peace and conflict transformation studies focusing on conflict analysis and exploring “alternative ways of dealing with conflict that develop healthy relationships and prevent violence.” Both three- and four-year B.A. programs are offered.

The curriculum for the four-year B.A. in peace and conflict transformation studies requires two introductory courses and a senior seminar. Remaining coursework is drawn from long lists of electives grouped by two thematic areas: analyzing peace and violence, and peacebuilding. There is also a credit requirement for practical training in a peace skills field, such as mediation or nonviolent direct action, as well as a practicum in a relevant placement. The three-year B.A. is identical except that fewer credits are needed.

Building on over 25 years of experience in delivering undergraduate programs in conflict resolution, peace, and international development studies, CMU now offers a Master of Arts in Peacebuilding and Collaborative Development that blends these core themes, designed both for practitioners and for those pursuing academic studies.

CMU also sponsors the Canadian School of Peacebuilding, which offers intensive summer courses on topics relevant to peacebuilders from around the world, and publishes Peace Research: The Canadian Journal of Peace and Conflict Studies.

Program contact:
Wendy Kroeker
wkroeker@cmu.ca
(204) 487-3300

 

Conrad Grebel University College

Conrad Grebel University College is affiliated with the University of Waterloo. Students at Conrad Grebel receive undergraduate or graduate degrees from the University of Waterloo, a publicly funded institution.

Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS), a social justice-oriented discipline within the Faculty of Arts at the University of Waterloo, is both an undergraduate and Master’s degree program. “The mission of PACS is to educate students to pursue peace and justice in the context of diverse investigations into the origins and nature of conflict and violence. The program strives to educate, invigorate and mobilize students to make use of conceptual and/or practical models to imagine and build a culture of peace between individuals, in our communities, among nations and around the world.”

The peace and conflict studies undergraduate program is a dynamic 3 or 4 year BA in which theory and practice come together through unique instructors and diverse course offerings. PACS courses are taught by both practitioners in the field as well as committed and engaged faculty members who have assorted research interests and areas of expertise. Students can explore the world and career opportunities through the flexible Field Study option that can be done anywhere in the world. Students majoring in PACS will take a mix of PACS core courses and courses from a list of 120 offerings in 20 other departments that focus on issues of justice and peace from a different lens. This flexibility in core and elective courses allows students to tailor their degree to individual interests, including topics such as conflict resolution and mediation, violence and nonviolence, religion and culture in peacebuilding, and human rights and social justice.

Conrad Grebel also offers a distinctive interdisciplinary professional Master’s program in Peace and Conflict Studies that prepares students with the knowledge and practical skills needed to contribute to nonviolent peace building efforts. Placing a unique focus on the pivotal role that individuals within civil society play, the MPACS program explores the potential of civil society to advance peace through principled advocacy, effective programming, and dynamic engagement with the state and marketplace. A key focus of this program is to prepare students for careers as practitioners, through an optional internship in a local, national, or international setting. Student experiences range from working at Community Justice Initiatives (CJI) mediating disputes, to working as a support worker for refugees at FCJ Refugee Centre, to working for Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) as a project consultant in Tanzania, and working for the United Nations in Cambodia, Switzerland, China and Thailand.

In addition to the academic program, the PACS department hosts a vibrant and growing Conflict Management Certificate Program, offering over 30 skills training workshops for both public and student interest. Workshops can be taken individually or as part of streams focusing on workplace, family or congregational conflict. The program has been part of the College since 1998, and has developed a strong reputation for consistency and quality, engaging leading field practitioners and academics, while responding to current issues and models of conflict resolution.

Program Director:
Lowell Ewert
lmewert@uwaterloo.ca
(519) 885-0220 ext. 24380

 

King’s University College

King’s University College is a Catholic institution affiliated with the University of Western Ontario. It offers a major in social justice and peace studies that examines structural injustice in the world and “calls for social action to transform the world in the interests of equity and the pursuit of peace.” The program is “consciously rooted in the tradition of Catholic Social Teaching.”

The curriculum includes four core courses offered by the social justice and peace studies department – many of which are on changing “special topics” within the field – with the remaining classes drawn from a wide range of other disciplines. Students are required to fulfill a mandatory service requirement.

The university offers “experiential learning” programs that examine issues of social justice and peace in El Salvador, Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, India and other destinations. It also sponsors the Centre for Social Concern, which supports research, awareness and engagement on social justice and peace in Canada and globally. The centre brings speakers to campus, encourages student activism and works closely with the social justice and peace studies program. 

Program coordinator:
Dr. Patrick Ryan
pryan2@uwo.ca
(519) 433-0041

University of Toronto

The Trudeau Centre for Peace, Conflict and Justice administers the Peace, Conflict and Justice program (PCJ) in the Munk School of Global Affairs.

The program provides undergraduates with an interdisciplinary education covering three central pillars: the meanings and causes of peace, conflict and justice; the lived experiences of living in the context of conflict and struggles for peace and justice; and approaches to resolving conflict and producing peace and/or justice. The topics of study are wide-ranging, including the study of peacemaking and peace-building, interstate war and intrastate conflicts, insurgencies, revolutions and rebellions, ethnic strife, global justice, and negotiation theory. We address some of the world’s most urgent humanitarian problems, and train students to deeply analyze these issues across several levels of analysis, from the local through the national and the global.

Established as a degree program in 1985 and as a centre in 2001, this multidisciplinary undergraduate program attracts some of the top-achieving students who go on to take positions in prominent international organizations such as the United Nations, work on social justice issues through non-governmental organizations, and pursue graduate degrees in law and social science. The Centre also provides opportunities to conduct original research in the field, engage with some of the world’s top researchers on the causes and resolution of violence, and conduct internships at relevant organizations.

Scholars associated with the Centre work within and beyond the traditional purview of international affairs, studying interstate war as well as major conflict inside countries, including revolution, insurgency, ethnic strife, guerrilla war, terrorism, and genocide. They seek to identify the deep causes of this strife—from poverty, resource scarcity, and weapons proliferation to competing claims for justice and failures of foreign-policy decision making.

Students can pursue a major or specialist stream within the program, and all students graduate with an Honours Bachelor of Arts.

Program administrator:
Kevin Rowley
pcj.programme@utoronto.ca
(416) 946-0326