Dal Alert!

Receive alerts from Dalhousie by text message.


Why Study Here?

Student Tyler DesRoches dances with Kenyan tribesmen. (International Development Studies)


Prospective Students

Are you curious about other cultures?
Interested in overseas travel?
Finding out about the challenges of sustainable development?

Then the Department of International Development Studies may be for you. A fairly new department at Dalhousie — we became a separate administrative unit in 2001 — IDS has quickly become one of the most popular programs of study within the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

Core classes in IDS will introduce you to a broad overview of the themes and issues which define the study of international development — the challenges of debt, development assistance, aid and disasters. These core classes will consider international development from a variety of viewpoints, whether liberal, socialist, conservative or populist.

In addition to IDS core and elective classes offered by the department, you can take classes offered by other departments for IDS credit. These include classes in biology, comparative religion, earth sciences, English, economics, environmental studies, history, philosophy, political science, sociology and social anthropology, and women’s studies.

IDS students are encouraged to acquire competence in basic statistics and research design, as well as one relevant language in addition to English — for example, Arabic, French, Spanish or Russian — to advance your communications skills with those from other countries.

And, you’ll want to take advantage of the exciting study-abroad programs offered in third year. You can study for a semester at the University of Havana in Cuba, for example, or embark on a summer learning experience with the Shastri Summer Program in India or the Laikipia Wilderness Education Centre in Kenya.

Halifax is the Maritime regional centre for official and non-governmental organizations active in international development and IDS has established links with them, especially in terms of development education, international exchange and data resources.

A degree in International Development provides a good background for many careers, including foreign correspondent, teacher, international aid worker, immigration officer, economic development officer, foreign service officer, medical doctor or lawyer.