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Graduate Diploma in Critical Leadership in Social Services and Communities

The Graduate Diploma in Critical Leadership in Social Services and Communities is grounded in a recognition of the contemporary conditions of social service and community work, and in expansive and critical definitions of leadership. The diploma aims to enhance progressive leadership in the community and social service sectors. All students admitted to the program will have experience as leaders in community or social service settings. The Graduate Diploma enhances critical leadership practice through an academic exploration of issues that deliberately and consistently draws on students’ own leadership experiences

G.Dip.Graduate Diploma in Critical Leadership in Social Services and Communities

The Graduate Diploma in Critical Leadership in Social Services and Communities is grounded in a recognition of the contemporary conditions of social service and community work, and in expansive and critical definitions of leadership. The diploma aims to enhance progressive leadership in the community and social service sectors. All students admitted to the program will have experience as leaders in community or social service settings. The Graduate Diploma enhances critical leadership practice through an academic exploration of issues that deliberately and consistently draws on students’ own leadership experiences

Students will deepen their understanding of how contemporary social, political and economic forces are (re)shaping social services and communities, and particularly how these forces shape leadership and leadership practices, including practices of research and evaluation. They will engage a range of theories of critical leadership and of social / organizational change and  demonstrate a capacity and identify, analyze and convey how leaders (can) create space for justice-oriented social service and community work.

The Graduate Diploma: Critical Leadership in Social Services and Communities curriculum is comprised of four courses. Students take one of two courses that consider specific contexts of social work practice:  institutional contexts (SW 740) or community contexts (SW721). Two required courses focus explicitly on aspects of leadership, organizational and social change; and one considers critical approaches to evidence and evaluation (a key feature of contemporary leadership).

Required Courses:

  • SOC WORK *741 / Changing Social Services, Changing Communities: Focus on Leadership
  • SOC WORK *742/  Organizational and Social Change: Theories, Practices and Possibilities for Leadership 
  • SOC WORK *743/ Critical Approaches to Evidence and Evaluation in Social Services and Communities

And one of:

Eligibility

To be eligible for admission to the Graduate Diploma in Critical Leadership in Social Services and Communities applicants are required to have:

  • Community or social service leadership experience
  • A completed M.S.W. or M.A. degree with a minimum average of A- on whole degree. In exceptional circumstances, applicants with a B.S.W. or B.A. and an A- average on senior level undergraduate courses who have extensive leadership experience may be eligible


Application Materials

In order for your application to be considered complete, it must include the following items:

  • Online Application Form and Fee
  • Statement of Interest (applicant uploads pdf directly)
  • Resumé (applicant uploads pdf directly)
  • Referee Reports (referees complete online report directly using e-referencing system)
  • Transcripts (applicant uploads unofficial transcript directly). Original transcripts must be sent directly from issuing institution*.
  • *English proficiency requirements, if applicable (applicant uploads unofficial copy). Original document must be sent directly from issuing institution*.

*Note: Transcripts and English Proficiency documents must be sent directly from issuing institution(s) to:

Darlene Savoy, Administrative Assistant
School of Social Work, McMaster University
1280 Main Street West, KTH-319
Hamilton ON L8S 4M4
dsavoy@mcmaster.ca  


Timelines for Application

Deadline to Apply: February 15th

Review of applications will continue until all positions have been filled.  Transcripts and evidence of English language proficiency sent directly from the issuing institution will be accepted up to two weeks past the deadline. If you have an unofficial copy of your English Language Proficiency (if applicable) and transcript(s) available prior to the deadline date, please send by email to Darlene Savoy, Graduate Administrative Assistant so that we may expedite assessment of your qualifications.

 

Offers of admission and financial assistance are normally sent out late February to mid June.

Application Form and Fee

Applications forms must be completed online (portal now open). Please note the search criteria for Academic Program is “Social Sciences Graduate Diploma” and be sure to choose, "Full-time" option as our program is not offered on a part-time basis. In the “Upload Documents” section, in addition to your CV & Statement of Interest, please also upload Unofficial Transcript(s) and TOEFL (if applicable). Please note that all documents must be uploaded before paying the application fee.

 

A non-refundable $100 (CAN) application fee is applied to all applications. The fee can be paid on-line by Mastercard.  If you choose to pay by cheque or money order please send it to the School of Graduate Studies address noted below. There is a handling fee of $15 (CAN) for cheque or money order, making the total amount due $115 (CAN).
School of Graduate Studies
McMaster University
Gilmour Hall, Room 212
1280 Main Street West
Hamilton ON Canada L8S 4L8

 

Transcripts

Applicants must provide one official transcript of university academic work completed to date, sent directly from the issuing institution to the School of Social Work (address above).

 

Statement of Interest

All applicants must provide a Statement of Interest not exceeding 5 typed double-spaced pages, expanding on your resumé, covering the following areas:

  1. Discuss your leadership experience. You might describe program planning, practice development, advocacy or administration.  Your description should reflect the length, range and diversity of your experience.
  2. Describe a leadership challenge or dilemma salient to a community or organization with which you are familiar. Outline your understanding of this dilemma and how you have worked to address it in your own practice.
  3. Indicate why you are interested in this particular diploma program and how you expect it to help you in pursuing your career and personal development.

The supplementary statement is assessed based on comprehensiveness, clarity of presentation, capacity for critical and innovative thinking, and capacity for critical reflection based on experience. The declaration of your career goals and your ability to connect these with the specific focus of this program is important.

An MSW or an MA is normally required for admission. If you do not have a master’s degree, describe your experience and facility with social science concepts and theories (maximum 2 pages).

 

Letters of Reference

A complete application includes three confidential letters of recommendation - one academic, and two from work colleagues. Referees will be asked to describe work you have been involved in that they have direct knowledge of, and comment on a) your understanding and analysis of the organizational, community or activist contexts in which you work, and b) your capacities and potential for justice-oriented leadership in social services or communities. McMaster University uses the Electronic Referencing System. You must enter the email addresses of your referees as part of the on-line application form. The system will automatically send an e-Reference request on your behalf to the referees.

 

English Proficiency Requirements

If applicable, an official copy of your TOEFL score, or other evidence of competency in English is required. A minimum TOEFL score of 580 (or 237 on the computer-based TOEFL test) is needed.

 

Additional Information

Please complete our Pre-Application form so that we can verify your academic qualifications before you send a full application.

The School of Graduate Studies policy with regard to students with disabilities can be found in section 6.6 of the School of Graduate Studies Calendar. The full policy and further information may be obtained from the School of Graduate Studies or the Student Success Centre 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail studentsuccess@mcmaster.ca.  For further information, consult McMaster University’s Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Apply Now 

Darlene Savoy

Graduate Administrative Assistant
School of Social Work

dsavoy@mcmaster.ca

905-525-9140, x24596

Program Brochure
For more information:
School of Social Work
KTH 319
905-525-9140 ext. 24596
dsavoy@mcmaster.ca
Length:
1 year
Required Credential:
N/A
Program Type:
Course Based
Program Options:
Full-time
Typical Entry:
September
Current Deadline:
Applications will be reviewed starting February 15, 2017, and accepted until all positions are filled.