G.D. in Transformative Leadership and Spirituality

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  • Program requirements


The Providence School of Transformative Leadership and Spirituality of the Faculty of Human Sciences at Saint Paul University offers a Graduate Diploma in Transformative Leadership and Spirituality. This diploma is conferred jointly by the Senates of Saint Paul University and the University of Ottawa under the terms of the federation agreement between them.

Taught through a hybrid model, the Graduate Diploma provides professional development for established and emerging leaders who are seeking to enhance their practice and skills in leadership and social transformation.

On completion of the Graduate Diploma, qualified students meeting admission requirements may apply for admission to the Master of Arts in Transformative Leadership and Spirituality program and, on admission, complete the requirements of this program with credit granted for relevant courses already completed.

Admission Details

Registration: Full-time and part-time
Program length: Full-time over 3 terms; part-time over 5 terms.
Program delivery: This program is offered in hybrid mode, using a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online classes.


Candidates must meet the following conditions:

  • Hold an honours bachelor degree (4 years) in Humanities or Social Sciences (minimum admission average of 70% or B) and have a minimum of two years of work experience in a leadership role or equivalent volunteer capacity; or hold an honours bachelor degree (4 years) in another discipline (minimum admission average of 70% or B) and have a minimum of five years of work experience in a leadership role or equivalent volunteer capacity.
  • Have attained 6 units in a curriculum that includes reflection on the spiritual dimensions of human experience grounded in either the Humanities, Spirituality or Religious Studies. Prior learning assessment (professional experience, self-teaching, non-credit courses, workplace training, volunteer work, etc.) may be considered.
  • Provide two letters of reference: one professional (providing evidence of personal and professional maturity) and one academic (providing evidence of ability to succeed in a graduate program of study).
  • Provide a CV and a Statement of Purpose.
  • Pass an interview with the program coordinators to verify the candidate’s objectives and abilities for the program.


Compulsory Courses (9 units)

HUM5101 Leadership Theory, Practices and Approaches (3u)
HUM5121 Transformative Leadership and Spirituality (3u)
HUM5301 Practicing Leadership and Professional Ethics: Practicum I (3u)

Optional Courses (6 units)

6 units from:
HUM5103 Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (3u)
HUM5104 Indigenous Spiritualities and Transformative Leadership (3u)
HUM5113 Transformative Leadership, Spirituality and Ecology (3u)
HUM5114 Women’s Spiritualities and Transformative Leadership (3u)
HUM5123 Transformative Leadership and Learning Communities (3u)
IPA5321 Transformative Leadership and Psychology (3u)

HUM 5101 - Leadership and Theories of Change (3u)

Critical analysis of contemporary leadership challenges (shared vision, teamwork, conflicts, etc.) and examination of the role played by leadership in various theories of social change. Exploration of effective leadership practices for achieving social justice in diverse social and organizational contexts.

HUM 5103 - Nonviolence, Peace and Ecological Movements (3u)

Study of the interrelationship between nonviolence, peace and ecology in various contexts (e.g., creative, grassroots, social, political). Focus on the challenges that conflict, violence and peace pose for ethical action in the world. Explores current issues related to nonviolence, peace and ecological movements in dialogue with social justice frameworks.

HUM 5104 - Indigenous Spiritualities, Decolonization and Leadership (3u)

Study of Indigenous knowledge about spirituality and inclusive and interconnected leadership practices. Exploration of Indigenous ways of knowing, including intellectual and spiritual traditions and relationships to the living world. Implications for decolonizing settler societies.

HUM 5113 - Transformative Leadership, Spirituality and Ecology

Reflecting on deep connections between ecological crises and lack of awareness of the sacred nature of creation, who we are as human beings and our relationships with the natural world. Implications for transformative leadership and ecological crisis.

HUM 5114 - Leadership, Gender and Feminisms (3u)

Study of the role of gender and its intersection with other identities in leadership. Critical and reflexive engagement with power structures through global feminist theories. Creative and democratizing approaches to transform collective beliefs, practices and policies.

HUM 5121 - Transformative Leadership and Spiritualities (3u)

Study of approaches and methods of spirituality as a fundamental experience of lived faith and meaning-making. Exploring spirituality as an important source of activism and social justice. Learning to lead from an articulated understanding of spirituality consistent with the student’s personal values and meaning of their work.

HUM 5123 - Integral Ecology (3u)

Study of integral ecology: ecological literacy; interconnected facets of economics, poverty creation, structural injustices and ecological degradation; links between cultural and biological diversity.

HUM 5124 - Equity, Justice and Ecological Issues (3u)

Understanding social justice. Study of the specific links between social and ecological problems with insights from ecojustice, climate justice, environmental racism, ecofeminism and The Earth Charter (2000).

HUM 5301 - Integration Project (3u)

Individualized learning activity fostering the integrate of theory and practice: research project, research-creation project, internship with report, workplace mentoring with report, etc. Evaluation of course content integration.

Graded S/NS.

Prerequisites: HUM5101, HUM5121, HUM5123 and HUM5124

Contact Us

Office of the Associate Vice-Rector, Strategic Enrolment Management
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
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.

Information for future students

Saint Paul University

223 Main Street
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
K1S 1C4


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