Both the three-year and the four-year Bachelor of Arts with a major in International Development Studies provide a breadth of exposure to the humanities, sciences, and social sciences, and include significant depth in IDS. Â This major is designed for students interested in global justice, citizenship, and sustainable development. These degrees prepare students well for any area of employment or vocation with valuable skillsâ€”communication, writing, analytical, critical thinking, and organizing. A three- or a four-year B.A. in IDS also serves as a sound basis for launching into professional studies such as community development, public policy, social work, law, and so on.
The four-year major has been designed for students planning long-term work with development agencies or further study and research. Students may build upon its requirements with courses that either focus on theoretical knowledge or on practical knowledge and skills. The four-year degree is becoming the standard undergraduate expectation across North America.
The minor requires 18 credit hours and can fit alongside a major in any field, whether in the three-year or the four-year Bachelor of Arts. Â The student is given the opportunity to gain a broad understanding of International Development through the required introductory courses, and then may explore a variety of topics, according to their interest. Through a minor in IDS, a student can gain valuable secondary competencies, applicable in almost any vocation, but especially relevant beside a major in Communications, Business, or Peace & Conflict Transformation Studies.
IDS-1110 Introduction to International Development Studies: (3.0 credit hours) This course will survey critical development issues, including understandings and definitions of poverty and sustainable development, broad development theories from modernization to post-development, the historical context of decolonization, and the roles of key local, national and international development actors. It will focus primarily of countries of the global South – Africa, Asia and Latin America - but also examine how Canada participates in local, national and global dynamics of development and underdevelopment.
IDS/PCTS-2000 The Project Cycle: (3.0 credit hours) Time-limited projects remain an important way in which development and other social change assistance are delivered by non-profit agencies. The course will introduce the elements and practices of the project cycle, from identification and planning, through monitoring and evaluation of project implementation, including key issues in the project cycle, such as logical frameworks, managing for results, participatory planning and evaluation, appreciative approaches, and capacity building. Prerequisite: IDS-1110 or BUSI-1000.
ECON/IDS-2010 Economics of Development: (3.0 credit hours) This course introduces neoclassical and alternative economic theories relevant to understanding various aspects of development: (i) national aspects, including theories of growth, inequality, labour, and the role of the state; (ii) international aspects, including theories of finance, international financial institutions, trade and globalization; and (iii) sub-national aspects of development, including theories of growth linkages, micro-credit and community economic development. Prerequisites: IDS-1110 or both ECON-1000 and 1010.
IDS-2110 Participatory Local Development: (3.0 credit hours) The failure of large scale development efforts to eradicate poverty in the South—Asia, Africa, and Latin America—and developing communities in Canada has led to a search for alternative participatory, community development projects. This course examines historic efforts at participatory development, including community development and co-operative formation, and then considers the attention given to non-governmental organizations and grassroots movements today. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level studies, including IDS-1110.
IDS/GEOG-2131 Rural Development: (3.0 credit hours) This course examines changes to rural society and economy in the South—Africa, Asia, and Latin America— and rural communities in Canada brought about historically by colonialism and more recently through modern development efforts. Discussion highlights the impact of agrarian reform, technological change, and domestic government policies on economic development and social differentiation. Prerequisite: one of IDS-1110, GEOG-1010 or GEOG-1030.
IDS-2171 Crisis, Humanitarian Aid, and Disaster Recovery: (3.0 credit hours) Today crises threaten global human security as never before. These crises are caused by a complex mix of natural hazards (such as floods, earthquakes, or droughts) and human action or inaction. This course will explore how humanitarian assistance and disaster recovery efforts can best promote resilience by reducing vulnerability and disaster risk. Community and organizational responses to humanitarian crises will be examined, emphasizing efforts to improve aid quality and accountability. Prerequisite or corequisite: 6 credit hours of introductory Social Science; IDS-1110 is recommended.
ECON/IDS/POLS-2420 Economics of Social Change: (3.0 credit hours) Processes of social change (related to poverty reduction, peace-building, environmental sustainability, economic development) can be supported or inhibited by economic forces. This course will examine and apply (in a non-technical manner) key economic principles that impact efforts to create social change. It also examines the assumptions of economic approaches, and the role of economics in the social sciences. Prerequisites: 30 credit hours of university-level studies or permission of the instructor.
PCTS/IDS-2443 Conflict and Development Issues in Indigenous Communities: (3.0 credit hours) Within the broad framework of international development and conflict transformation studies, this course explores the dynamics of indigenous communities globally, with special reference to the Canadian context. Processes of marginalization and underdevelopment will be presented in order to understand indigenous communities’ social, economic and political situation. Prerequisites: either PCTS-1110 or IDS-1110.
IDS-2521 Study of Voluntary Simplicity: (3.0 credit hours) Within International Development Studies, development is increasingly understood as a participatory, deliberate process aimed at enhancing the quality of life for individuals within community. This course examines the concept, theory, and practice of voluntary simplicity as a means of development for individuals seeking alternatives to consumer values and culture. The course explores both the historical roots of voluntary simplicity and its modern expressions, with special emphasis on the relevance of simplicity to building emotional well-being, vibrant community, sustainable environment, and social justice.
IDS-2950 Topics in International Development Studies: (3.0 credit hours) The content of this course will vary from year to year, depending on the needs of students and the interests and availability of instructors. Prerequisite: IDS-1110.
ENVS/IDS/GEOG-3010 Environment, Society and Resilience: (3.0 credit hours) The course will help students analyze principles of sustainability, resilience and complexity associated with energy, matter and ecosystem functioning, within the context of social values, human technology and politics. The course seeks to equip students to assess socio-ecological issues including water management, climate change adaptation, agriculture, fisheries, forestry and extractive industries from an interdisciplinary perspective.
IDS/GEOG-3020 Just and Sustainable Food Systems: (3.0 credit hours) This course explores food system dynamics at multiple scales, from the household to the global, with particular attention to the diversity of worldviews that underpin the current discourses surrounding ecological sustainability, food security and food justice. The course follows food from the farms and fishing boats, through local and global marketplaces and finally to those who eat. Participants will examine models of agriculture, small-scale fisheries, water scarcity, the Asian and African Green Revolutions, corporate concentration in the food system, local and global food markets, community food security, obesity, hunger, food waste, the global food price crisis, energy, and the impacts of climate change. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level studies.
IDS-3111 An Analysis of Development Aid Policy: (3.0 credit hours) This course explores ideology, debates, policies, and program of macro development agencies. The course begins with an examination of the ideology of neoliberalism and the policies of structural adjustment and considers how these affect the South. This is followed by an analysis of the principal actors of macro development and an examination of important issues within the donor community, e.g., poverty and gender imbalance, economic growth and environmental degradation. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level studies, including IDS-1110, ECON-1000 and 1010.
IDS-3950 Topics in International Development Studies: (3.0 credit hours) The content of this course will vary from year to year, depending on the needs of students and the interests and availability of instructors. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level study, including IDS-1110.
IDS-4000 Thesis International Development Studies: (6.0 credit hours) This course is restricted to students completing the Bachelor of Arts, four-year major. For information on eligibility, due dates, procedures, and requirements, students should request a document from the Registrar’s Office. Approval of the application will be contingent on the availability of faculty members to serve as thesis advisor and second reader.
BUSI/IDS-4030 International Microfinance: (3.0 credit hours) This course investigates the emerging field of microfinance – the provision of small loans and financial services to the poor – and its impact on addressing poverty in developing countries. Students will develop an understanding of a range of topics in the field, including the role of credit in microenterprises, lending models, sustainability and best practice for microfinance institutions (MFIs), microsavings and insurance programs, cultural and social factors. The course offers a unique mix of theory and practice as students will have the opportunity to work on projects relating to current issues with microfinance programs in various regions of the world. Prerequisite: BUSI-1000 or IDS-2110 and 60 credit hours of university-level studies, or permission of the instructor.
BUSI/IDS-4040 Economic Development and Microfinance Study Tour: (3 credit hours) This study tour offers experience-based learning opportunities for students to see first-hand how international development has its impact on individuals and communities in underdeveloped regions around the world. The tour builds on learning from BUSI/IDS-4030 International Microfinance, focussing on aspects of economic development and microfinance—the provision of small loans and financial services to the poor. Activities include visiting partner organizations and NGOs in various countries, meeting microenterprise loan recipients and observing their group meetings, interacting with local community and church leaders to learn about the cultural and social context in each country. This course does not fulfill a practicum requirement. Prerequisite: BUSI/IDS-4030 International Microfinance, or permission of the instructor
IDS-4050 Development Theory for Practice: (3.0 credit hours) This seminar takes an interdisciplinary approach to the study of theories that have shaped the practice of development. It examines trends in development theory, types of theory that are useful to development practitioners, and the processes through which selected theories were adapted for use by development organizations. This seminar focuses on the use of development-related theory in non-profit organizations and, secondarily, in multilateral organizations. Prerequisite: 60 credit hours of university-level studies, including IDS-1110.
IDS/PCTS/POLS/SOCI-4100 Senior Seminar in Social Change: (3.0 credit hours) In this capstone seminar, students review and compare inter-disciplinary and discipline-based approaches to social change, including issues in peacebuilding and conflict transformation, social and economic development, environmental sustainability, and democratization and social movements. Using a seminar format, students will examine contending theories of social change, and address questions of power, interpretation, ethics, commitments and virtues in understanding and working for social change. These examinations will allow students to explore ways of integrating theories and practices, and articulate their own understanding and ethics of social change. Prerequisites: 60 credit hours of university level studies, including 18 credit hours in IDS, PCTS, SOCI, POLS, GEOG or PSYC; or permission of the instructor. It is recommended that the practicum requirement be completed prior to taking this course.
IDS-4130 Mennonite Community and Development: (3.0 credit hours) Students are challenged to analyze the Mennonite experience in service and peace work. The objective is to highlight values and techniques that distinguish a unique approach. Speakers and literature describing the work of the Mennonite Central Committee and Mennonite Economic Development Agency and of ecumenical groups such as the Canadian Foodgrains Bank provide examples for reflection and analysis. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level studies, including IDS-1110.
IDS-4140 Religion and Development: (3.0 credit hours) This course will examine the links between religion and development, both philosophically and empirically. It will provide an analysis of particular Christian, Islamic and Buddhist understandings and approaches to development, as well as several other faith-based approaches, depending on student interests. It will examine the role and ethics of faith-based NGOs in development assistance, and investigate how development agents can design interventions that appropriately relate to the religious belief systems that underlie local knowledge in such areas as agriculture, health, and social organization. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level studies, including IDS-1110.
IDS-4940 Independent Study in International Development Studies: (3.0 credit hours) A study in a specific area of IDS under the direction of a faculty member. Prerequisite: IDS-1110, and a minimum of 60 credit hours of university-level studies.
IDS-4950 Topics in International Development Studies: (3.0 credit hours) The content of this course will vary from year to year, depending on the needs of students and the interests and availability of instructors. Prerequisite: 30 credit hours of university-level study, including IDS-1110.
Note on Courses in International Development Studies at Menno Simons College—It may be advantageous for a student majoring in International Development Studies at CMU (Shaftesbury campus) to complete some courses at Menno Simons College (on the University of Winnipeg campus).
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