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Human Relations and Spirituality (Honours Bachelor of Arts with a Major) for Algonquin College Developmental Services Worker Graduates

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Program description

Would you like to better understand the complexity of the human mind and spirit? Do you want to experience a life of high quality relationships with yourself, others, the world around you, the transcendent? Are you interested in psychological and spiritual development, social justice, and the meaning of life?

If so, Saint Paul University offers you an Honours Bachelors’s with major in Human Relations and Spirituality (42 credits). This program can be combined with a minor in another field of interest!

The core courses in these programs are designed to develop:

  • greater effectiveness in interpersonal communication.
  • an understanding of psycho-spiritual development as well as  different cultural and spiritual traditions.
  • core clinical and relational skills to intervene with various individuals and groups.

The study of human relations involves two main disciplines: human sciences (particularly the study of human behaviour) and spirituality. Interpersonal relationships can be based on companionship, love, solidarity, professional affiliation or other kinds of social interaction. The program’s spirituality component examines our relationship with a supreme being as well as with each other.

Offered by the Faculty of Human Sciences, the Human Relations and Spirituality undergraduate program is the only one of its kind in Ontario. It investigates such topics as social justice, human development, acceptance of diversity, inclusiveness and humanism.

In addition to the foundational courses,* the program teaches students about the psychological, sociological, cultural, spiritual and religious aspects that influence both the individual and society.

A student enrolled in the Human Relations and Spirituality program (Honours Bachelor of Arts with Major) must add a complementary major in Ethics (Theology)Social CommunicationTheology or a complementary minor in Conflict StudiesEthics (Theology)Group Intervention and leadershipPhilosophyPhilosophy and TheologyPrivate and Public EthicsSocial Communication or Theology, according to the student’s particular interests and requirements.

*The foundational courses are a compulsory part of every bachelor’s degree program offered at Saint Paul University.

What you’ll learn

During your studies you will learn to describe and compare key concepts and theories in human sciences, and explain how spirituality can both help and hinder our growth as human beings. You will also discover the different cultural and spiritual traditions and intervention models used in the field of the helping relationship and related fields, such as group intervention and leadership. You will learn how to analyze issues critically and objectively, and to describe and explain the main qualitative and quantitative methodologies used in the field.

Why choose Saint Paul University?

  • For its small class sizes and close student-teacher ratio
  • For its safe, secure and friendly campus with personalized services
  • For its bilingual setting in the heart of the national capital
  • For its diverse student population and international vision
  • For its solid reputation, experience, history and Catholic tradition

Potential Opportunities

Our undergraduate program prepares students for jobs in community and humanitarian organizations, schools, church settings, in the area of human resources, and other related fields.

Honours Bachelors of Arts with major allows you to pursue graduate studies in areas such as counselling, psychotherapy, social work, and human resources development.

Career opportunities

  • Aid worker
  • Community worker
  • Emergency response officer
  • Employment counsellor
  • Employment equity policy consultant
  • Facilitator
  • Human rights officer
  • Immigration advisor
  • Lobbyist
  • Outreach worker
  • Probation and parole officer
  • Social policy analyst
  • Street outreach worker
  • Trainer for ecclesial communities and organizations

Click here to find out more about Admission Scholarships at Saint Paul University.

Other programs that may interest you

The list of required courses is presented under the Program Requirements tab.

A student enrolled in this Honours Bachelor’s Program with major must add a complementary minor.

Procedures relevant to program admission

Eligible candidates from Algonquin College who wish to avail themselves of this agreement must adhere to the following procedure:

  • The admission form for Saint Paul University or the Ontario Universities’ Admission Centre (OUAC) must be used to draw up your request;
  • The Admission request must be received no later than April 30 and an academic transcript showing evidence that the studies program diploma for Algonquin College has been received;
  • If the academic transcript is incomplete, admission will be conditional to the presentation of a final academic transcript showing that the diploma has been received for the studies program at Algonquin College;
  • Administrative fees related to the admission request are applicable.

Saint Paul University reserves the right to refuse this agreement to a candidate who obtained his or her diploma for the studies program at Algonquin more than three years before submitting his or her request for admission.

Offer of admission

You must complete this form:

Apply Now

Note: If you anticipate sending applications for admission to more than one university, we recommend that you complete de Application for admission form of the Ontario Universities’ Admission Centre (OUAC).

Apply through OUAC



In order for us to assess your application, you must submit official transcripts for all of your previous studies (secondary, college and university). These transcripts must be sent directly from your academic institution to the following address:

Saint Paul University
Office of Admissions and Student Services
223 Main Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1S 1C4

However, to expedite the assessment process for your application, you can scan your documents and e-mail them to the Office of Admissions at and then send your official documents through the mail.



Once the Office of Admissions receives all the required documents, it will begin to assess your application. One of the following decisions will be sent to you at the email address you gave us, as well as to your postal address.

Possible decisions

  • Offer of admission
    The Office of Admissions will send you an offer of admission (unconditional).  
  • Conditional offer of admission 
    The Office of Admissions will make you a conditional offer of admission, with specific conditions that you must meet by a certain deadline. You can still proceed to registration (course selection).
  • Deferred decision
    The Office of Admissions can inform you that some information is missing and therefore the University is unable to make a decision regarding your eligibility. If applicable, the Office will tell you which documents to send and by what date.
  • Refusal
    The Office of Admissions will inform you of the reasons for the refusal.



To accept an offer of admission and a scholarship offer, if applicable, you must sign the form entitled Admission acceptance form that accompanies your offer of admission and send it to Saint Paul University by email, before the deadline, to or mail it to: 

Saint Paul University
Office of Admissions and Student Services
223 Main Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1S 1C4



With your offer of admission, you will receive all the information you will need to choose your courses. You will also receive the contact information for our academic advisors; you can meet with them one on one or during information sessions for guidance and to help you finalize your course selection.

Foundational Courses (18 credits)

Compulsory Courses (15 credits)  

  • HTP1101 Trends in Western Thought  
  • HTP1102 Artistic and Literary Imagination: Expressions of the Human Experience  
  • HTP1103 People, Politics and the Planet  
  • HTP1104 Faith, Justice and the Common Good  
  • PHI2181 Human Knowledge

Optional Courses (3 credits)

3 credits from

  • MIS2103 World Religions
  • THO1306 Exploring the Sacred
  • THO1307 Understanding the Bible

Discipline Specific Courses (36 crédits)

Compulsory Courses (21 credits)

  • IPA1122 Human Behavior and Spirituality : Empirical Observations
  • IPA2122 Research Methods and Ethics in Human Sciences (qualitative approach)
  • IPA2127 Developmental Psychology, Spirituality and Religiosity from Adulthood to Old Age
  • IPA3101 Psychology of Spiritual Experience
  • IPA3121 Theories of Personality
  • IPA4121 Basic Skills and Concepts in Counselling and Spirituality
  • IPA4122 Psychopathology: Causes and Impact on Human Relationships and Spirituality

Optional Courses (15 credits)

6 credits from    

  • IGL3112 Spiritual Dimensions of Leadership and Group Facilitation
  • IPA2123 Research Methods in Human Sciences (quantitative approach)
  • IPA3124 Family and Spirituality

3 credits from    

  • ECS3123 Psychological Impacts of Conflicts
  • IPA4123 Credited Internship
  • PHI3307 Ethics and Multiculturalism

6 credits from    

  • IPA4124 Special Topics in Human Relations and Spirituality II
  • IPA4125 Research and Directed Work
  • PHI3309 Ethics and Religion

Elective Courses (36 credits)

  • Students complete a minor (30 credits) and 6 credits.
  • 12 credits must be of 3000 or 4000 level.

ECS 3123 - Psychological Impacts of Conflicts

A multidisciplinary examination of trauma: Disruption of responsive mechanisms. Decision making in crises. Contributing factors affecting the impact of trauma. Conflict and psychological transformation.

Prerequisites: PSY1101 and PSY1102 or IPA1121 and IPA1122.

HTP 1101 - Trends in Western Thought

This course addresses multiple aspects of the evolution of western thought, from Antiquity to current times, and the impact of major events and thinkers, and the influence of other civilizations on the contemporary understanding of human nature, culture and society.

HTP 1102 - Approaches in the Humanities: Interpreting the Human Experience

Introduction to theoretical approaches in the Humanities and to the methods that are applied to interpret the multiple expressions of human experience, particularly those expressed in important works of art and literature.

HTP 1103 - People, Social Justice and Ecology

Social and ecological challenges facing humanity today, and related issues of social justice. These questions will be examined from a perspective of community building and efforts towards ecological and social transformations for a hopeful future.

HTP 1104 - Faith, Justice and the Common Good

This course investigates faith, justice and the common good from religious, philosophical and human science perspectives. The course draws on classic and contemporary resources, in particular those from the Christian intellectual traditions.

IPA 1121 - Human Behavior and Spirituality: Theoretical Foundations

Purpose and method of psychology. Historical perspective. Bases of the nervous system, consciousness. Sensory processes, perception, cognition, memory, language and thought. Emotions and motivation. Learning process. Introduction to fundamental theoretical psychology of religion.

This course cannot be combined for credit with PSY1101.

IPA 1122 - Human Behavior and Spirituality: Empirical Observations

Heredity, environment and human development. Intelligence. Personality. Mental health, abnormal behavior and therapeutic approaches. Social psychology. Introduction to empirical research in contemporary psychology of religion.

This course cannot be combined for credit with PSY1102.

IPA 2121 - Perspectives on Psycho-Social Human Behavior

History and research methods. The self: content and process. Perceptions, cognitions and attributions. Social influence, attitudes and changes in attitudes. Communication and interpersonal skills. Aggression and helping behavior. Overview of groups and intergroup relations: A study leadership, prejudice and discrimination. Applications. Highlighted according to the themes, specific contributions of the main theories.

Prerequisites: 30 university credits (except for students in Certificate in Human Relations and Spirituality).

Prerequisite or concomitant: IPA1121 or IPA1122.

IPA 2122 - Research Methods and Ethics in Human Sciences (qualitative approach)

Introduction to the philosophy of science and epistemology. Research ethics. The creation of a research plan: questions, hypotheses, variables, and data analysis methods. Documentaries and qualitative methods: bibliographic research, historical research, interviews, case studies, and observation. Specific problems in the study of ethnic and religious conflicts and human relationships and spirituality.

Prerequisites: 30 university credits (except for students in Certificate in Human Relations and Spirituality) and IPA1121.
Prerequisite or concomitant: IPA1122.

IPA 2123 - Research Methods in Human Sciences (quantitative approach)

Project preparation and quantitative comparative research. Use of databases. Surveys and polls. Statistical analysis: correlation, regression, trends, covariance and statistical inference. Examples from the study of ethnic conflicts and religious and human relationships and spirituality.

Prerequisites: IPA1121 and IPA1122.

IPA 2126 - Developmental Psychology, Spirituality and Religiosity from Childhood to Adolescence

Physical, cognitive, emotional, social, spiritual and religious development from childhood to adolescence. Theoretical and empirical approaches in psychology, psychology of religion and spirituality. Development of personal maturity, social and sexual. Development of faith, spirituality and religiosity during these stages of life and how these components influence the psychological development.

Prerequisites: IPA1121 and IPA1122.

IPA 2127 - Developmental Psychology, Spirituality and Religiosity from Adulthood to Old Age

Psychological, social, spiritual and religious development from young adult, adult and older adult. Transition and the tasks and challenges associated with them, the maturation, midlife, retirement, the normal aging process and changes in physical, cognitive, psychological and social functioning. Attitudes towards aging and pathological aging. Development of faith, spirituality and religiosity during these stages of life and how these components influence the psychological development.

Prerequisites: IPA1121 and IPA1122.

IPA 3101 - Psychology of Spiritual Experience

Main currents in the psychology of spiritual experience, with a special focus on psychodynamic, humanist and existential theories. The relationships between spirituality and mental health. The links between spirituality and psycho-pathologies.

Prerequisites: 30 university credits (except for students in Certificate in Human Relations and Spirituality).
Prerequisite or concomitant: IPA1121 or IPA1122.

This course was previously HUM2101.

IPA 3121 - Theories of Personality

Internal assessment and comparison of the many theories of personality. Design of the structure, dynamics, development, normality and abnormality of personality and its many applications in the field of human relationships and spirituality. Main approaches to the study of personality (psychodynamic, existential-humanistic, behavioral, and related types) and contributions of these approaches to the integration of the spiritual in the human person.

Prerequisites: 30 university credits (except for students in Certificate in Human Relations and Spirituality).
Prerequisite or concomitant: IPA1121 or IPA1122.

IPA 3122 - Cultural Diversity and Religious Pluralism

Notions of cultural psychology and psychology of religion. Impact of culture and religion on psychological processes (cognitive, sensation and perception, social behavior). Relations and communications interethnic and interreligious, multicultural and multi-faith society. Development of cultural identity and religious identity. Beliefs and prejudices, discrimination and acculturation. Mental health and well-being among immigrants and refugees from different cultures and religions. Adaptation of theoretical models and measurement instruments of psychology in multicultural and multi-faith context. Psychological assessment and intercultural psychotherapy. Ethical skills in the helping relationships in multicultural and multi-faith.

Prerequisites: 30 university credits (except for students in Certificate in Human Relations and Spirituality).
Prerequisite or concomitant: IPA1121 or IPA1122.

IPA 3123 - The Helping Relationships and Ethical Considerations

Ethical issues in the helping relationship and counselling. Concepts of values and ethical principles. Application of ethical theories to counselling practice and the complex processes involved in making ethical decisions. Considerations of the plurality of perspectives relevant to ethical considerations (theoretical literature, empirical and philosophical). Particular attention will be given to praxeology, the ethics of dialogue and experiential knowledge.

Prerequisites: IPA1121 and IPA1122.

IPA 3124 - Family and Spirituality

This course combines theory-based with applied research to focuses on the family and spirituality. A historical overview provides the circumstances that gave rise to the modern nuclear family, and the different ways social arrangements are made. The course will review on family transitions that occur across the life-span: intimacy, marriage and commitment, child- bearing and child-rearing, adoption, sibling relationships, divorce, re-constituted families, child launching in the middle-years, and aging families. Lastly, the course will focuses on sociological family matters such as class and poverty issues, raising children with disabilities, family violence and sexual abuse, relationships between parents and children and among various social contexts (nursery, school, workplace). Family counselling. The place and role of spirituality within families will be examined.

Prerequisites: IPA1121 and IPA1122.

IPA 3126 - The Spiritual Dimensions of Leadership and Group Facilitation

Deepening of one's conception of spirituality and presentation of various guiding methods adapted to personal development groups: self-training, support group meetings, life experience analysis and planned action. Community cooperation and psychosocial basics are addressed.

This course was previously ANI3112 and IGL3112.

IPA 4121 - Basic Skills and Concepts in Counselling and Spirituality

Main theoretical and practical guidance during interventions with individuals, couples, families and groups. Phases of psychotherapy. Attitudes and basic skills necessary for the practice of psychotherapy and integration of the spiritual component. Notions of resistance, transference and countertransference. Principles of professional ethics.

Prerequisites: 24 IPA credits.

IPA 4122 - Psychopathology: Causes and Impact on Human Relationships and Spirituality

Currents of thought in psychopathology. Mental issues in the field of human relationships and spirituality. Variables, human and spiritual, that promote and / or maintain various mental disorders such as mood disorders, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, somatoform disorders and other problems relevant to the field of human relationships and spirituality.

Prerequisites: 24 IPA credits.

IPA 4123 - Internship II

Internship of a minimum of 120 to 150 professionally supervised hours in a professional environment related to human relations, working on a clearly defined personal development project. Incorporates a structured reflective practice component explaining the integration of theory and practice. Writing a detailed practicum report stating outcomes of the project. Graded S/NS.

Prerequisites: Minimum of 12 IPA credits and a GPA of B.

IPA 4124 - Special Topics in Human Relations and Spirituality II

Study of a particular topic in human relationships and spirituality. The content and format may change depending on the professor.

Prerequisites: 24 IPA credits.

IPA 4125 - Research and Directed Work

Readings, development, delivery and production of a major research project in human relationships and spirituality under the guidance of a teacher or a professor.

Prerequisites: 24 IPA credits including IPA2122 and IPA2123.

ISC 2309 - English Composition

This course is dedicated to the improvement of writing skills in order to become an effective communicator in several contexts.

ISC 2314 - Public Speaking

Learning the techniques of efficient public speaking. Introduction and training to personal impression making in electronic media. Development of a professional attitude and self-confidence.

PHI 2181 - Human Knowledge

Study of the traditional, universalist, approach to knowledge as well as contemporary standpoint approaches, such as feminist and postmodernist.

PHI 3307 - Ethics, Multiculturalism and Immigration

This course examines the relation of ethics, multiculturalism, and immigration, studies the questions regarding the possibility of a multicultural ethics, and addresses the issues and debates arising from cultural relativism and identity politics in the functioning of modern societies.

PHI 3309 - Ethics and Religion

This course examines the philosophical foundations of various ethical and religious traditions and addresses the possibility of their convergence in modern liberal societies.

THO 1306 - Exploring the Sacred

The human effort to express the experience of the sacred and to name our sense of the “Beyond”. The different forms such expressions have taken: cosmic wonder and its symbols, foundations stories, ritual life. The meaning of this effort for understanding the quest of the human spirit and its attempts to build order in society and community.

THO 1307 - What is the Bible?

The Bible: book or library, history or story? History of the Jewish people and of the culture in which the Bible was written. The Bible and its content. Interpreting the text. The Jesus event. The influence of the Bible on history and on contemporary culture.

THO 2410 - World Religions

Introduction to the world religions with an emphasis on Christian faith in interaction with other living faiths.

Contact Us

Office of Admissions, Registrar and Student Services
Room 148
Saint Paul University
223 Main Street
Ottawa, ON
K1S 1C4

Notice to gmail address holders, be sure to check your junk mailbox regularly, as due to your server's firewalls our email response to your application may end up there.

Telephone: 613-236-1393 ext. 8990
Fax: 613-782-3014

Hours of Operation

Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Please leave your documents in the mailbox in front of room 148 when our offices are closed.