The Master of Education in Curriculum Studies is designed for teachers and administrators who wish to engage in research and advanced study in curriculum.
For further program or admissions information, please consult the graduate calendar.
The School of Education in collaboration with Open Acadia periodically offers Part time MEd Cohorts with particular specializations based on demonstrated needs and requests from the field.
Part time MEd cohort programs have, in the past, been offered in curriculum areas of:
- Music Education
- Health Professions
For more information on possible upcoming cohorts, please visit the following website:
The Master of Education in Counselling is intended for teachers pursuing a career in school counselling and others pursuing a career in counselling through various agencies. Full-time students begin the program in July and generally study for 14 months if following the non-thesis route. Thesis students should expect to spend additional time in their program.
A Counselling Programme that is:
- Dedicated to the preparation of leaders of the counselling profession through the pursuit of disciplined inquiry, the understanding of and respect for human diversity, and the development, use and evaluation of effective counselling practices;
- Devoted to the prevention, remediation and amelioration of emotional, cognitive, behavioural, and interpersonal difficulties, and the enhancement of human potential and quality of life;
- Focussed on integrating theory, practice and research, with the awareness and skills to work with diverse populations from individual, social, and organizational perspectives;
- Conceived from an integrative theoretical orientation. Students are exposed to a wide variety of counselling approaches including existential, person-centred, cognitive-behavioural, narrative, and family-systems;
- Designed around accreditation standards and prepares professionals for a variety of work settings and for national certification.
The Council for the Accreditation of Counsellor Education Programs (CACEP) accredits the Counselling Program at Acadia University. All courses offered in the Program meet core competency requirements of CACEP. For a complete description of CACEP program standards and competencies go to http://www.ccpa-accp.ca/accreditation/ .
For further information on the counselling programme, please click here.
The Master of Education in Inclusive Education is intended for individuals possessing some background in inclusive schooling and wishing to prepare for leadership roles in the area of inclusive education.
For further program or admissions information, please consult the graduate calendar.
In addition to the concepts of leadership and organization, the concepts of social justice, democratic action, equity, empowerment and change pervade the program.
A program for educational leaders that:
- Focuses on education leadership, designed to appeal not only to those who are interested in administrative positions, but to supervisors, classroom teachers, other professional educators, as well as those interested in leadership in other organizational settings;
- Does not assume an understanding of the structure of schools and school districts, but rather explores the nature of these unique organizations and the ways in which our tacit images of schools influences our behaviour in them;
- Gives substantial emphasis to equity and social justice and the forms of leadership action that can address the difficult circumstances of marginalized and disadvantaged groups;
- Never forgets that children are at the centre of our work in schools, and that all leadership work - all pedagogical action - ultimately focuses itself here;
- The program can involve coursework that explores the latest technological applications for schools.
For further program or admissions information, please consult the graduate calendar.
Frequently Asked Questions
Updated: January 18, 2016
Looking for Admission Information?
Application Packages: http://gradstudies.acadiau.ca/Graduate_Admissions.html
Admission Requirements: http://registrar.acadiau.ca/tl_files/sites/registrar/pdfs/Academic_Calendars/calendar_final.pdf
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Attention applicants for M.Ed. Counselling
There are two types of cohort programs in the M.Ed. Counselling program: part-time and full-time. You must indicate which you are applying for.
There are two streams for the M.Ed. Counselling program: agency and school. You must specify which stream you are applying for.
The agency stream requires: a 4-year bachelor's degree + 2 years of paid, post-degree experience in social service work.
The school stream requires: a 4-year bachelor's degree + a Bachelor of Education degree + 2 years of paid, post-degree teaching experience.
Many of our applicants have some background in psychology or sociology. While this is a good foundation, it is not a requirement for application.
Looking for Program Planning?
The following FAQs are intended to assist students in their academic planning by directing them to appropriate information.
A common problem arises when students leave the completion of core courses until the end of their program; please intentionally complete core courses in the first year so as to leave yourself the flexibility to complete the program in the timeframe that best suits your professional plans.
It should be understood, that it remains solely the student's responsibility to monitor their own program and whether they have met degree requirements.
Two vital pieces of information in this regard include:
Course Listings: http://www.openacadia.ca/index.php/med-course-list
While faculty and staff can provide some advice, they are not responsible for your academic plan. Please read the FAQs below to guide and inform further questions you may have.
Am I required to attend all classes in my graduate courses?
A strict expectation of all graduate programs is that students will be available to attend all classes. While excusable illness or family emergencies sometimes unexpectedly arise, students who know in advance that they are not available to attend pre-arranged classes should consider themselves ineligible to enroll in the relevant course.
1) Application information and forms and link to the graduate calendar can be found here:
2) You will find program planning outlines here:
Please refer to website information before forwarding inquiries to the School of Education.
Acadia offers a number of graduate education courses and programs for students through a variety of on-line and distance delivery modes. These modes include on-site cohorts (generally arranged through school boards and located in a variety of sites within the Province) as well as on-line access. As yet, we do not guarantee that any graduate program in education is entirely available on-line; part-time students at a distance and not in a cohort generally need to be available to take some summer and/or evening courses on-site in order to complete the program. Nonetheless, Acadia continuously offers a number of graduate courses on-line. Information about available courses, applications for Independent student status (to take a course without or before admission to a graduate program), and about current cohorts is available from Open Acadia at http://www.openacadiau.ca .
The list of upcoming courses can be searched here: http://www.openacadia.ca/index.php/med-course-list by entering EDUCATION and the TERM you wish to search.
NOTE: while some courses are offered open-entry, the listing of many of the upcoming courses is updated the semester previous to offering.
All graduate education students should be aware that their degree will normally include a combination of face-to-face, on-line and hybrid courses. Students wishing to do complete programs online will not be able to do so at Acadia as, especially for part time cohorts, summer schools offer face-to-face core courses. Full-time students will take a majority of courses face-to-face, but they will normally be expected to take at least one course on-line so that they have direct distributed learning experiences. Face-to-face courses may be offered through a variety of models including but not limited to: three hours once a week over 12 weeks; 4 weekends (Friday night and Saturday); 6 Saturdays; or two and three week intensive courses in the summer intersession.
The M.Ed. (Counselling) program (both full-time and part-time) is not offered exclusively on-line due to the nature of the core courses in Counselling and the associated Regional/National Certification Requirements.
Each year, based on the regional requests and the available human resources, a decision is made whether to offer a part-time cohort in Counselling. The nature and location of the cohort is part of this decision-making process as the needs of the Counselling community vary widely and the faculty cannot possibly respond to all requests. It is best to check with Counselling faculty or the graduate coordinator in early fall before applying to a part-time cohort.
The letter of intent should include the nature and focus of study you wish to pursue in a graduate program. It should also include a discussion of relevant academic study and professional experience related to your program interests. Those applying to the counselling program should outline their motivations and expectations in reference to the counselling program.
There is no particular format or length required in your letter of intent; the point of the application is to make a compelling argument that you are prepared for graduate studies.
An academic reference is provided by a person who can comment, firsthand, on your post-secondary academic achievement and skills as well as your potential to undertake graduate study. This information is usually submitted by a former course instructor or professor or thesis/research supervisor.
A professional reference is provided by a person who is familiar with the applicant's work life and experiences and can speak to how those experiences relate to the proposed program of academic study.
Reference form (for M.Ed. applicants ONLY) - Two references are required:
- one academic reference from a recent instructor/teacher/professor.
- one professional reference from someone other than an instructor/teacher/professor who would be familiar with your work yet not a family member.
NOTE REGARDING ACADEMIC REFERENCE: If you have not taken a course (undergraduate or graduate) in the last five years, you may substitute the required academic reference with a professional reference. This is the only circumstance in which two professional references are acceptable.
When you assemble your application keep a few things in mind:
- Transcripts take time to be transferred between universities; start the process early!
- Reference letters take time to write and you should request these of your past professors very early. Be diligent in seeking our academic references. Sometimes you may even have to meet with potential referees at work sites if email requests don't seem to be answered.
- IT IS ABSOLUTELY CRUCIAL THAT YOU INDICATE IN YOUR APPLICATION PACKAGE WHICH REFERENCES FALL INTO EACH CATEGORY (CHECK MARK THE BOXES). YOUR APPLICATION CAN BE DENIED BASED ON THIS INCOMPLETE COMPONENT.
The graduate application process is competitive. Applicants must have the equivalent of two years of full-time, paid, relevant experience following completion of their four-year undergraduate degree. The two full-time equivalent (FTE) years may be accumulated over a period longer than two years. Relevant work experience for those applying to the School Counselling stream includes teaching and/or other related work. Relevant work experience for those applying to the Agency stream is 'helping-focused' employment in social services areas (that calls for strong interpersonal and communication skills). Relevant volunteer work in addition to the two FTE years will be considered an asset. Please note that study cannot be counted as related experience. For mature applicants who started their degree(s) later in life, consideration will be given to paid work prior to commencement of post-secondary studies.
NOTE: WITH THE EXCEPTION OF MATURE APPLICANTS, THOSE WHO DO NOT HAVE THE REQUIRED TWO FTE YEARS OF PAID, RELEVANT, POST-UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE WORK EXPERIENCE WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED IN THE REVIEW PROCESS.
If you do not meet the B (73-76%) average requirement in the courses taken in your last two years (or 60 credit hours) of university study your application will be considered under the following conditions:
a) You document a minimum of 8 years of work experience since graduation, in a field related to counselling
b) You submit your score (that meets or exceeds the mean) on the Verbal Reasoning component of the Graduate Records Exam (GRE) with your application.
If you do not meet the 4-year degree requirement for acceptance into Graduate Studies, you can establish an equivalent standing by completing an extra year (30 credit hours) of university courses prior to applying. Alternatively, if you have a minimum of 8 years of work experience since graduation, in a field related to counselling, you can submit your score on the Verbal Reasoning component of the Graduate Records Exam (GRE) with your application in lieu of additional coursework, if your score is at or above the mean.
The School of Education may defer approval of MEd program entry to the following year for programs other than the Counselling program.
Pay particular attention to the following three caveats:
a) You are required to indicate to the graduate coordinator that you wish to defer your acceptance to next year within 30 days of your admissions letter.
b) When you decide to return next year, you will be required to submit the following as part of the re-application process:
- The application fee
- The application form
- An updated resume
- Additional transcripts if you have undertaken courses during the year. *If no new courses have been added, we will access digital copies of your transcripts on file.
c) If students are unable to accept their offer of admission and want to defer approval, they must reapply the following year prior to March 15.
Full-time students planning to complete a thesis are eligible to apply for Acadia Graduate Assistantships. All full-time students will receive the application form electronically through their Acadia email accounts well in advance of the September 15th application. The selection process is competitive so it is worthwhile preparing your applicaton carefully with all supporting documents.
Potential external / internal funding: http://gradstudies.acadiau.ca/fees_funding.html
Students may take up to 12 credit hours (4 courses) as independent students (see: http://www.openacadia.ca/index.php/med-study-options) to be counted toward a graduate program upon admission to the program. For M.Ed. courses, the student does not need to wait for two years (experience requirement for M.Ed. program application) in order to register as an independent student and take M.Ed. level courses at Acadia. There are some restrictions on independent students taking core courses, especially in Counseling (check with Joy Cunningham at Open Acadia for more details).
Please note, admission as an independent student does not guarantee admission to the program, and in the case of the M.Ed. Counselling program, all core courses are restricted to students already admitted to the program. Nonetheless, if you meet the admission requirements for a M.Ed. program and believe your application is solid, you may consider beginning by taking a course as an independent student. Independent students are admitted to courses on a space availability basis.
Courses which are good choices for the independent student are: EDUC 50G3 (Research Literacy), EDUC 5303 (Principles of Assessment) and EDUC 5003 (Human Development & Learning). These are best because they are either required or appropriate electives for all M.Ed. programs.
The School of Education does not routinely provide advice concerning the choice of electives. Any program-specific requirements or restrictions are noted in the calendar; in the absence of any such limitations you may assume that an elective which complements your area of study is suitable.
>>If the course(s) has already been completed, a form for “Transfer of previously completed courses” can be found at: http://education.acadiau.ca/forms-resources/articles/med-students.html . Complete this form and send an electronic copy (preferably pdf) to the Graduate Coordinator (firstname.lastname@example.org) along with the following information/documents in the attachment: 1) the program you are enrolled in at Acadia and your student number, 2) a copy of the transcript showing that the course is at the graduate level, and 3) a course description from the graduate calendar along with a syllabus from the host institution. The Graduate Coordinator will consider your request and if approved, will place the approval in your file at the School of Education with a copy to the Acadia Registrar.
>>If the course has not yet been completed, email the Graduate Coordinator concerning the suitability of the course(s) you wish to take. In the event that your request is supported, you will need to fill out and submit the form found at: http://education.acadiau.ca/forms-resources/articles/med-students.html .
The process: the School of Education's Graduate Coordinator reviews your transfer credit application and then forwards our assessment to the Acadia University Registrar's Office for final processing. The Registrar's Office contacts the institution from which courses are to be transferred and then forwards a letter to the student outlining the approved number of credit hours to be counted towards their Acadia program.
Principles informing transfer credits:
- Transfer credits are only accepted from universities that have a faculty of Research and Graduate Studies.
- Credits can be transferred only if students are registered in a graduate program at Acadia.
- Courses can be transferred only if they have not been used to satisfy the requirements for another degree or diploma either at Acadia University or elsewhere.
- Courses transferred need to make sense in terms of the student's program at Acadia. Transfer is not automatic, i.e., it requires approval.
- In the case where a student is applying to transfer a credit to replace a mandatory course, the course syllabus is sent by the Coordinator to an appropriate faculty member for assessment. The general principle guiding transfers in this case is that the course elsewhere must be "essentially the same" as the mandatory course it replaces.
Important note #1: If the course is from another University the transfer will not appear on your Acadia transcript until an official transcript from the corresponding institution is received by the Acadia Registrar’s Office.
Important note #2: It is then incumbent on the student to monitor their transcript to see that the appropriate credit has been assigned by the Registrar. In an ongoing iterative process, it is ultimately the student's responsibility to ensure that they meet degree requirements. If you have questions after checking your Acadia transcript, contact the Acadia University Registrar's Office.
In the case where a required course is essentially the same as a course a student has taken in another graduate program, students may request a waiver of that course, to then be replaced by an elective course in the student's program at Acadia. Application for a waiver must be made in writing to the Graduate Coordinator using the WaiverForm at: http://education.acadiau.ca/forms-resources/articles/med-students.html .
Students registered in a graduate program are permitted to do 120 hours of professional development activities to be counted towards course credit in "Educational Explorations-EDUC 5143". The criteria for those 120 hours are specific to guidelines outlined below. (If you have questions about crediting your professional development work please forward them to the Graduate Coordinator.) As students accumulate the requisite 120 hours, they should fill out the "Education Explorations Form" available at: http://education.acadiau.ca/forms-resources/articles/med-students.html . Instructions for completion of the application package are also included at the same site.
Where possible, as students accumulate/compile their professional development hours, they should establish a "dropbox" (see https://www.dropbox.com/) where they place all of the required forms (available above) and scans of the supporting certificates of completion/documentation and supporting letters. When students are satisfied they have the required hours and justification, they should send a "dropbox" link to the Graduate Coordinator such that the application can be evaluated. It is important in the documentation to state your 1) nine-digit Acadia ID number, 2) your program of study, and 3) your cohort (if applicable). **Please assign file names that distinguish application forms and certificates/letters, etc. In the event that all documentation and justification is deemed adequate, students will receive a follow up e-mail instructing them to register in EDUC 5143 - Educational Explorations.
The following principles guide credit in Educational Explorations (EDUC 5143):
- The PD must be voluntary. Students cannot use PD hours that are required of them as part of their job or that are done on mandatory PD days (such as provincial in-service day in October).
- The PD must total 120 hours. This is a combination of in-class and out-of-class time, such as would be required for assignments and outside reading.
- In most cases, the 120 hours of PD must be completed while students are registered in a graduate program at Acadia, i.e., they cannot use workshops or other activities they have done prior to entering one of our graduate programs (see exceptions below).
- The PD must be documented and verified. Documentation can include certificates provided for workshops, etc, or descriptions of programs that have been verified (signed) by a supervisor.
- Students must register in, and pay for, EDUC 5143 once it has been approved by the Coordinator.
Exceptions (i.e., accepted even if done prior to graduate program entry):
- Module One plus any other two modules offered by the Nova Scotia Educational Leadership Consortium (NSELC).
- Module One (NSELC) plus the Annapolis Valley Regional School Board Leadership Development Program (signed certificate required).
- Module One (NSELC) plus the Halifax Regional School Board Leadership Development Program (signed certificate required).
- The Program for Aspiring and New Program Support (PAN PST) offered by the South Shore Regional School Board plus any two modules offered by NSELC.
- A registered Reading Recovery program completed within the last seven years.
- AVRSB Resource Teacher training programs.
- Participation in a school accreditation as a co-chair.
Because of supervision requirements established by external regulation, all practicum experiences must be undertaken concurrent with registration in EDUC 5066, Seminar and Practicum in Counselling. Over the four-month practicum period, students accrue professional experience at their practicum site, receive supervision both from the site supervisor and from the course instructor, and participate in a seminar class. Given that most students in cohorts engage in school-based practica, EDUC 5066 is scheduled in September or January when school is in session. If a jurisdiction cannot accommodate all placements in a given term, a second section of practicum normally is arranged for the following term (i.e., September through December or January through April). Students are required to be available full-time for four months to complete the experiential, supervision, and didactic components of practicum.
School-based Counselling students who will be requesting a leave from their School Board in order to undertake EDUC 5066 - Seminar and Practicum may request a Leave Support Letter from the School of Education. The letter will confirm that arrangements are in place for the student to take EDUC 5066 and that the School of Education supports a leave during a specified time period. Please allow five business days for your letter to be processed. Include your 9-digit student ID when requesting a letter. Requests may be directed to email@example.com or by telephone 902-585-1759.
Students should expect a variety of course delivery formats and be prepared to adjust their schedules to accommodate different models. Modes of course delivery in graduate programs include on-line, face-to-face formats and models that blend the two. Between September and June, face-to-face classes may be held in evenings, on Friday nights, or using an all-day Saturday model. For full-time students, courses are also given during the day through the week. On-line courses are also a possibility. In July and August, various formats of shorter-term, intensive instruction are used. Students should be prepared to experience all forms of course delivery in the course of their studies. It is not possible to arrange the format of classes to fit the needs of individual students.
Review your progress by referring to your program planning form and the requirements stated in the Acadia University Academic Calendar for your year of entry.
Visit http://registrar.acadiau.ca/GraduationandConvocation.html for details about dates and processes.
If you require a letter confirming completion of degree requirements, it may be requested from the Graduate Studies Officer, Division of Research and Graduate Studies. Letters and verifications of enrolment require a written request. Please allow a few days for their completion. E-mail your request to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Office of Research and Graduate Studies requires the following documents from applicants who are re-applying:
- New application noting the student number from the previous application.
- Application processing fee
- Previous references/transcripts: If you applied for admission for 2014-15 and 2015-16, the Office of Research and Graduate Studies has your references and transcripts stored electronically.
- Updated resume
- If applicable, official transcript of academic work undertaken elsewhere since the initial Acadia application.
The M.Ed. in Counselling is an intensive 48-credit-hour program requiring students in the full-time cohort to take courses during the daytime as well as some evenings over a 14-month period. Students cannot maintain a full-time job and participate at the level required in the program. Part-time work should not exceed 12 hours per week. In circumstances where a student works part-time, it is not permissible to miss any class time or practicum time due to work commitments.
With respect to course materials:
a) If you are trying to determine whether a book is required for a course, contact the University Bookstore (902-585-1201); they have a complete list of required texts supplied well in advance by the course instructors.
b) If ACORN is to be used for course management, it is not often turned on until shortly before the course begins given that instructors are making final adjustments. Please be patient and wait for the first scheduled meeting to get the details of how ACORN will be used to support the course experience.
Full time students should be aware that they have access to Medical and Dental coverage while at Acadia.
All students who are enrolled in the Master of Education in Counselling program at Acadia University must complete a practicum component involving work with children and/or vulnerable adults and will have to undergo a criminal record check before being permitted to register in the practicum. Some practicum sites also require a Child Abuse Registry search. If your Criminal Record Check and/or Child Abuse Registry search results raise concern about potential risk to children or vulnerable adults, you will not be permitted to register in the practicum. Because the practicum is required for successful completion of the Counselling program, non-eligibility to undertake a practicum would mean that you would not be able to complete the program or graduate. Therefore, you should consider this requirement carefully before applying to, or continuing in, Acadia's Master of Education in Counselling program.
M.Ed. Counselling application files are assessed by School of Education faculty during the months of January and February. Short-listed applicants are normally interviewed in March and April. Decision letters are forwarded via postal mail and generally applicants can expect to receive these by the end of April. As decisions are communicated to applicants as soon as they are received from faculty, we respectfully ask applicants to avoid making inquiries concerning the status of their file before April 30.
Students in the full-time and part-time cohorts commence the M.Ed. Counselling program with a three-week on-campus Summer Institute that typically begins on the first weekday following the July 1 holiday. During these three weeks, students will attend an Orientation Day and a Summer Conference Day, and will complete two courses in daily morning and afternoon classes.
Information about Acadia's graduate program costs (tuition, health, and other fees) is available at http://gradstudies.acadiau.ca/fees_funding.html, https://www.openacadia.ca/index.php/med-fees, and https://openacadia.ca/index.php/intersession-fees. Students enrolled in any of the Master of Education programs pay a per-course fee (per three credit hour course). The total credit hours for the M.Ed. Counselling program is 48 (or 51 if a thesis is undertaken).
All aspects of the admissions process are conducted separately/independently for the full-time and part-time cohorts, including review and shortlisting of applications, interviews, and admissions decisions. Applicants are encouraged to apply to the cohort model that best meets their graduate study needs and/or preferences.
The M.Ed. Counselling program operates on a cohort model, which means that students stay with the same group from the beginning of their program through to graduation. Students who are admitted into a part-time cohort and wish to transfer to a full-time cohort must apply in writing to the Coordinator of Graduate Programs in Education by December 1st in order to be considered for transfer in the next academic year. The request for transfer will be considered along with all other full-time applications for the next intake period. Students who transfer to the full-time cohort will have to register in a sufficient number of courses in the following fall and winter semesters to be considered full-time students.
Students who are admitted into a full-time cohort and wish to transfer to a part-time cohort may do so only if they have completed EDUC 5033 and EDUC 5133 during the first summer of their program of studies, and if there is room available in the cohort to which they are applying. This request also must be made in writing to the Coordinator of Graduate Programs in Education.
Given that the degree is a generalist M.Ed. Counselling, with considerable overlap (of at least 36 credit hours) of common coursework, there is latitude in subsequent employment possibilities. As long as graduates hold a B.Ed. and an M.Ed. Counselling, they qualify for school-based counselling positions. Conceivably, interviewers for school positions could decide in favour of graduates from the school stream who have taken the School Counselling Programs and Counselling Adolescent and Children courses over someone who completed the agency stream.
Graduates of the school stream are permitted to work in agency settings (referring to any setting other than P-12 school settings), including private practice. However, the practitioner would need to be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of practice by virtue of education and supervised experience (e.g., in the event of an ethics complaint); competencies may be developed within and subsequent to the period of graduate study.
Acadia's Share the Air policy encourages our community to avoid using scented personal-care products.
Inquiries of an academic nature may be referred to the School of Education Graduate Coordinator,
Dr. Gregory MacKinnon, email@example.com , Fax: 902-585-1071
Please include your 9-digit Acadia ID on all emails and forms.
School of Education, PO Box 57
Wolfville, NS CANADA B4P 2R6