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Degrees & Programs

1. Will a degree program in Graduate Programs in Education provide me with a teaching designation?

GPE degree programs do not lead toward a teaching certificate in the K-12 school system. Please consult with the Werklund School of Education's Undergraduate Programs office regarding the Bachelor of Education degree programs offered. You can reach student advisors at 403.220.5639 or

2. What is the difference between a research-intensive (thesis-based) Master's program and professional (course-based) Master's program?

The Master of Arts (MA) and the Master of Science (MSc) degree programs are research-intensive and available on-campus only. These programs require a minimum of two full-course equivalents, and additional courses as recommended by the student's supervisor. After completion of course work, the student writes a thesis, which he/she defends in a final oral examination. The MA and MSc must be completed within four years.

The Master of Education (MEd) degree is a professional program and is course-based.  It requires six full-course equivalents or twelve half-course equivalents. Graduate programs in Education offers MEd programs in "Distance" format only, either fully online or blended, where some courses may be face-to-face (i.e., Summer term) and some are online.  In some cases courses may also be offered face-to-face at an off-campus site.  There are two routes to gaining an MEd degree, the MEd Specialist route or the MEd Interdisciplinary route.

3. How long do the programs take to complete?

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and the Doctor of Education (EdD) must be completed in six years. A doctoral program is typically completed within four years.

The Master of Arts (MA) and Master of Science (MSc) must be completed in four years. An MA or MSc is typically completed within two years.

As noted in question 2, there are several routes to completion of a Master of Education (MEd) degree.  The MEd Specialist route is designed to be completed in two years.  The MEd Interdisciplinary route is completed in 3 steps consisting of 4 courses each.  Each step is one year of study.  Students can move directly from one step to the next or have the option to take a break between steps up to a maximum of 5 years.

The Master of Education (MEd) in School and Applied Child Psychology and Master of Counselling (MC) degrees are designed to be completed over 3 years, however the maximum time to completion is six years.

4. Can I receive advanced credit for my program?

Advanced credit for graduate courses must be requested upon application to program. Advanced credit is for course credit, not fee credit, and only applies to course-based programs, e.g., MEd degree, Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate. Please refer to the Advanced Credit policy under Policies and Procedures for details.

5. Who can advise me on program requirements?

Prospective students may consult the detailed information under Programs, and send questions to Program and timetabling information is available from any of the Graduate Program Administrators in the GPE office.

Academic advice may be sought from any of the Graduate Program Directors, the Educational Studies Area Chairs, or individual faculty members within the GPE office  Please see the Contact Us page for details.

6. Can I apply for more than one area of study?

As admission to programs in GPE is highly competitive, it is recommended that applicants carefully consider and apply to the program which will enhance and further their academic goals. Prospective students are requested to choose one specialization area in their application.