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Community Development

Community Development: Introduction

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Lead Faculty

Public Health

Participating Degree ​Programs

Adult Education and Community Development—MA, MEd
Counselling and Clinical Psychology (Clinical and Counselling Psychology field)—MA
Counselling Psychology—MEd
Public Health Sciences—MPH
Social Work—MSW


The Collaborative Specialization in Community Development provides students with a multidisciplinary graduate education in community development. Community development involves working with community members and groups to effect positive change in the social, econ​omic, organizational, or physical structures of a community that improve both the welfare of community members and the community's ability to direct its future.

Students must first apply to and regis​ter in one of the participating master's degree programs listed above, and then apply to the collaborative specialization. Students must follow a course of study acceptable to both the home unit and the collaborative specialization. Upon successful completion of the degree requirements of the participating home graduate unit and the collaborative specialization, students receive the notation “Completed Collaborative Specialization in Community Development” on their transcript and parchment.

Contact and Address

Telephone: (416) 978-7542
​Fax: (416) 978-1883

Collaborative Specialization in Community Development
Dalla Lana School of Public Health
University of Toronto
155 College Street, 6th Floor
Toronto, Ontario M5T 3M7

Community Development: Master's Level

Admission Requirements

  • Collaborative specializations are administered under the auspices of the School of Graduate Studies.

  • Applicants must be accepted for admission to a participating graduate unit and comply with the admission procedures of that unit before applying to the Collaborative Specialization in Community Development.

  • Applicants must submit the following to the collaborative specialization committee:

    • ​​​A copy of the letter accepting you into one of the participating graduate units.

    • A resumé or curriculum vitae (CV).

    • A letter explaining how your plan of study, your specific interests, and your career goals relate to community development (i.e., why you want to enrol in the Collaborative Specialization in Community Development); maximum length: 500 words. Include reference to any relevant experience (volunteer, work, education, etc.).

Specialization Requirements

  • Students must register in the master's degree program through one of the participating home graduate units. They must meet all respective degree requirements of the School of Graduate Studies and their participating home graduate unit.

  • To fulfil the requirements of the Collaborative Specialization in Community Development, students must complete the following:

    • The core course UCS 1000H Community Development.

    • An additional 1.0 full-course equivalent (FCE) in the subject area of the collaborative specialization, to be approved by the collaborative specialization director, of which at least 0.5 FCE must be external to the home graduate unit.

    • Participation in a non-credit coordinating seminar on community development.

    • Where required by the home degree program, a thesis or the major research paper (as designated by the home degree program) on a topic related to community development; a member of the thesis committee or the reader of the major research paper must be a faculty member associated with the collaborative specialization. Or where required by the home degree program, a practicum placement with community development content as approved by the collaborative specialization core faculty member from that home degree program.

  • Normally, the required courses listed below are taken as options within regular departmental or faculty degree requirements, not as additional courses.

Community Development: Courses

Core Course

​UCS 1000H
Community Development​​

Students must take an additional 1.0 FCE in the subject area of the collaborative specialization, to be approved by the collaborative specialization director. The following is a list of the currently approved courses; the list is reviewed annually and posted on the Community Development web​site.

Adult Education

​LHA ​1102H
​Communi​ty Development: Innovative Models
​LHA 1104H
​Social Action Education: Community Development, Social Services, and Social Movements
​LHA 1182H
​Nonprofits, Co-operatives, and the Social Economy: ​An Overview
​LHA 1190H
Community Healing and Peacebuilding​
​LHA 1194H
​Cyberliteracy, Adult Education, and Community Development
​LHA 1196H
​Walking Together, Talking Together: The Praxis of Reconciliation
​LHA 3119H
​Global Perspectives on Feminist Education, Community Development, and Community Transformation
​LHA 3182H
​Citizenship Learning and Participatory Democracy
​LHA 5100H Special Topics in Adult Education and Community Development: Master's Level (with approval of the Director)​
LHA 6100H Special Topics in Adult Education and Community Development: Doctoral Level (with approval of the Director)​

Counselling Psychology

​AP​D 1290H
​Indigenous ​Healing in Counselling and Psychoeducation


​NUR 1047Y
Community Partic​ipation and Health​
​NUR 1083H
Comparative Politics of Health Policy in a Globalizing World​


​JPG 1410H
​Institutional​ and Organizational Ecology
​JPG 1415H
​Global Environmental Justice and Social Movements
​JPG 1507H
Housing Markets and Housing Policy Analysis​
​JPG 1508H
Planning for the Urban Poor in Developing Countries​
​JPG 1512H
Place, Politics, and the Urban​
​JPG 1518H
Sustainability and Urban Communities​
​JPG 1615H
Planning the Social Economy​
​JPG 1812Y
Planning for Change​​: Community Development in Practice​​

Public Health Sciences

​CHL 5112H
Community Devel​opment in Health​
​CHL 5126H
Building Community Resilience​
​CHL 5411H
​International Health
​CHL 7001H
Directed Reading

Social Work

​SWK 4210H
Promoting Empowerment: Working at th​e Margins​
​SWK 4304H
Globalization and Transnationalism: Intersections of Policy and Community Practice Locally and Globally​
​​SWK 4306H
Theoretical Approaches to Defining Social Injustice and Engaging in Social Change
​SWK 4422H
Social Housing and Homelessness​
​SWK 4512H
​Research Knowledge for Social Justice​