Before Applying

1) Are the courses in the Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies credit courses?

The courses in the Diploma are non-credit, which means they do not offer a university credit and cannot be counted towards another degree program after completion. The focus of the Diploma is obtaining skills, knowledge, and experience required to succeed in the Canadian workplace.

2) What are the admission requirements?

  • Completion of an undergraduate degree 
  • The equivalent of a Canadian GPA of 2.7 (around a B-) as calculated in your undergraduate degree OR most recent degree.  
  • Meet the English language requirement of IELTS 6.5 or equivalent 
  • Receive two (2) positive academic of professional references  
  • Have three years of demonstrated full-time work experience (recommended) 

Selected applicants will complete an interview with our Program Manager before being admitted to the program. If you have questions about your eligibility, you are welcome to contact program staff by emailing PGDipadmissions@dal.ca.

3) When is the deadline to apply?

There are three program start dates per year: September, January, and April. Find the application deadline for each cohort in the table below. Applications are competitive and evaluated on a rolling basis, so applying early is encouraged. Please note that it can take approximately 5-6 months to process your study permit and visa before travelling to Canada.

Important Program Dates - 2024/25

Event January 2025 April 2025 September 2025
Open for application April 1, 2024 July 1, 2024 November 1, 2024
Application Deadline July 19, 2024 October 18, 2024 March 14, 2025
Admissions issues LOO and invoices August 2,2024 November 1, 2024 March 28, 2025
Deadline for the first tuition deposit payment ($6850) - 25% August 16, 2024 November 15, 2024 April 11, 2025
Admissions issues LOA and supporting documents August 30, 2024 November 30, 2024 April 25, 2025
Deadline for the second tuition deposit payment ($6850) - 25% December 6, 2024 March 7, 2025 August 8, 2025
Visa confirmation deadline December 20, 2024 March 21, 2025 August 22, 2025
Orientation: 8:30AM to 3:30PM January 3, 2025 April 4, 2025 September 5, 2025
Start date January 6, 2025 April 7, 2025 September 8, 2025

4) What do I need to include in my application?

For the application, you can upload an unofficial copy of your undergraduate degree translated into English. Successful applicants will be required to submit official transcripts from current and previous post-secondary institutions. The transcripts should show grades for each course and are considered official only if they are submitted to us directly by the registrar or are sealed in the institution's original, unopened envelope. Transcripts that arrive in re-sealed envelopes are no longer considered official. International transcripts and credentials will be evaluated to determine their Canadian equivalency. To convert your grades to Canadian grade equivalency, use https://www.scholaro.com/grade-conversion/.

Personal statement
The personal statement should be no longer than two pages and answer the following:

  • Why are you interested in this program?
  • Describe your current and past leadership experiences and how these experiences demonstrate your leadership capacities and potential. 
  • What are your professional goals, and how will this program help you achieve them?  
  • Describe the areas you would like to improve upon as a leader.

Your résumé should include the following:

  • Education
    List all post-secondary education, degrees, diplomas and certificates you have achieved, and the year completed. 
  • Work & Volunteer experience
    Include the organization, position, length of service and a brief description of responsibilities and tasks. 
  • Professional memberships and affiliations
    List current or past memberships and positions held in professional associations, service clubs, or community organization.

Provide the contact information for two (2)
references including:

  • Full name
  • Professional title
  • Phone number
  • Email address

These references can be professional or academic. References should be able to comment on your commitment, skills and ability to complete a rigorous academic program. We prefer references from direct supervisors and individuals you have worked with in the last five years. Please do not include references from family members. Upon completion of the references section of your application, your references will be sent a secure link in order to provide a reference.

Additional requirements
Submit the following with your application:

  • A digital copy of your passport photo page 
  • Evidence of English proficiency:
       -  An official English language proficiency report OR
       -  Proof that you studied at an English  language institution for at least three years at            the secondary level, or at least one year at the post-secondary level.

Note that we may request additional information to assess your application. Selected applicants will complete an interview with our Program Manager before being admitted to the program.


5) Where should I send my official transcript?

For the application, you can upload an unofficial digital version of your transcript. After being accepted into the program, please ask the educational institution to email the official transcript directly to the Senior Program Manager, Ilie Soloviov, at PGDip@dal.ca or mail it directly to:

Dalhousie University
Faculty of Open Learning & Career Development
Re: Post-Graduate Diploma
1459 LeMarchant Street, Suite 2201, (2nd Floor)
PO Box 15000
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2

6) What level of English do I need?

If English is not your first language, you will be asked for proof of proficiency in English before you will be admitted to the Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies. Proof of English proficiency can include:

  • A transcript showing proof of study at an English language institution for at least three years at the secondary level, or at least one year at the post-secondary level. 
  • Successful completion of a recognized degree program from an accredited university in which all language of instruction is English, in a recognized English-speaking country
  • Meet the minimum score on one of the following English proficiency tests:
International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

Overall: 6.5

Bands: 6.0

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
TOEFL at Home (online)

Overall: 79

Bands: 19

Duolingo English Test

Overall: 115

Bands: 105

Canadian Academic English Assessment (CAEL) / CAEL Online

Overall: 60

Bands: 50

Pearson Test of English – Academic

Overall: 58.5 

Communicative skills scores: 53.5

CEFR Overall: C1 Proficiency

If you are admitted on the condition that you will complete an English language program to meet the English proficiency requirement, you must submit proof of successful completion before you can begin your studies. Please see Dalhousie’s department of English Language Studies to explore your options.

7) What is the fee schedule for the program and what's included?

The total program cost, excluding living expenses, is $27,400.

This includes:

  • All course fees 
  • Student service fees, including health insurance (there is an extra charge for family members)
  • Access to a 1-on-1 Career Counsellor
  • Canadian cultural training

The payment schedule is as follows:

 Diploma Tuition & Fees January 2025 April 2025 September 2025
Application fee (non-refundable) $200.00 Due upon application
Program Deposit (non-refundable) $6,850.00 Due within 21 days of acceptance
First Tuition Payment $6,850.00 Due 30 days before the start date
Second Tuition Payment $4,500.00 April 2025 July 2025 January 2026
Third Tuition Payment $4,500.00 August 2025 December 2025 March 2026
Fourth Tuition Payment $4,500.00 December 2025 March 2026 August 2026
Total $27,400.00  

* Textbook costs are not included in the program tuition (approximately $400). The estimated cost may vary according to the specialization of choice. Fees outlined in this section are an estimate for the full 16-month program. Total program fees may vary depending on delivery format, student service fees, textbooks and taxes. Tuition and fees are subject to review. Note: The program cost does not include the processing of the relevant visa or living expenses.

8) Can I use an MPower loan to pay for this program?

Dalhousie does not have an official partnership with MPower Loans, but we can accept MPower loan payments for tuition, student service fees, and the meal plan. Please note: we cannot distribute loan money directly to students and so it cannot be used for general living expenses.

9) Does the Faculty of Open Learning and Career Development have a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) number?

Yes, it falls under the same DLI number as Dalhousie University, which can be found on the Designated Learning Institutions List.

10) What is the Faculty of Open Learning & Career Development’s definition of full-time studies?

The Faculty of Open Learning & Career Development deems full-time status as studying a minimum of 3 courses per term.

11) Are students in the Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies program eligible to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)?

Previously, students in non-credit diploma programs have successfully applied for and received approval for a PGWP. PGWP length is typically equivalent to study permit length. PGWP eligibility and length is ultimately at the discretion of the IRCC officer. For more details on the most up to date PGWP eligibility requirements and PGWP validity, please visit the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website. Dalhousie University cannot guarantee that all PGWP applicants will be successful.

12) Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies online?

The Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies is a 16-month, hybrid program with more than 50% of courses held in person on our Halifax campus.

13) Can I take other Dalhousie courses during the program?

There is no cross-enrollment between the Non-Credit Diploma and other Dalhousie courses. If you would like to enroll in an undergraduate or graduate program at Dalhousie after completion of the Diploma, you will have to apply through the admissions office

14) I did my studies in an English-speaking country. Do I still to provide proof of English proficiency?

Students from English-speaking country do not need to provide proof of English proficiency; a transcript that indicates that you studied at the undergraduate level in English is sufficient.

15) What credentials will I receive when I complete the program?

During the course of the program you receive will three certificates and the Post-Graduate Non-Credit Diploma as follows:

  • Post-Graduate Certificate in Leadership Excellence 
  • Post-Graduate Certificate in HR Leadership 
  • Certificate in Human Resource Management, Business Analysis, Project Management, Adult Education, or Business Management (depending on your chosen specialization)
  • Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies

After applying

16) How long will it take to process my application?

Your application will be considered complete after we have received the questionnaires from your references. All supporting documentation must be received within 30 days of the original application submission or the application will be cancelled. Please note that during high volume periods, application processing times may vary, but we aim to process applications within 15 business days. To check the status of your application, please email PGDipadmissions@dal.ca.

17) When will I receive my Letter of Acceptance?

When you are accepted into the Non-Credit Diploma in Professional and Leadership Studies program, you will receive a Letter of Offer (LOO). This document outlines the program's duration, total cost, policies and rules, and deposit instructions. Once the $6,850 deposit is received, you will receive the Letter of Acceptance (LOA), which is usually issued 4 to 5-months prior to the start date.

18) Once admitted, how do I guarantee my spot in the program?

Once we receive your deposit, your spot in the program is guaranteed. Your deposit is due within 21 days of acceptance to the program.

19) How can I pay for the program?

Dalhousie University accepts payment from international students via the following methods:

  • Convera (a Western Union Holdings Inc. company)
  • Credit cards (MasterCard or Visa)
  • Bill Payments for international students with a Canadian bank account: Students who are already in Canada can make their payments using the Bill Payment functionality on the App of their respective bank. Dalhousie University DOES NOT accept e-transfers or direct deposits.

Instructions for Bill Payment:

  • Sign into your online banking.
  • Add "DALHOUSIE UNIVERSITY" as a bill payee.
  • The account/customer number is your student ID (B00xxxxxx)
Electronic Fund Transfer Information


Dalhousie University
6299 South Street, PO Box 15000
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
B3H 4R2


886806561 RT0001

Trevor Knocton
Phone: 902-494-1721 



The Bank of Nova Scotia
Business Service Centre
44715 Tahoe Blvd., 3rd floor
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
L4W 0B4 

Bank Number: 002
Transit Number: 33993
Account Number: 70003 00017 16


20) I need medical insurance. What are my options?

All Dalhousie international students are automatically enrolled in the Dalhousie Student Union (DSU) International Health Plan. The DSU International Health Plan is for international students who don't have MSI coverage (Provincial Health Insurance). It covers general doctor visits, and emergency medical services. The fees for the admitted student are already included in the cost of the program. Please note: if family health insurance is required, an additional fee will apply. To learn more about medical coverage, student fees, and MSI coverage, please visit the Dalhousie University International Health Plan page.  

21) What is the Program Refund Policy?


All refunds for students enrolled in the Non-Credit Diploma in Professional Leadership Studies program at the Faculty of Open Learning & Career Development (FOLCD) are subject to the conditions and exceptions listed below:

Non-refundable application fee

The diploma application fee ($200) is non-refundable. The tuition deposit ($6,850) is fully refundable in case of visa refusal. 

Fraudulent documents

b) Submission of fraudulent documents, making false claims during the admissions process, or failure to receive a Study Permit due to fraud/alleged fraud/dishonesty will result in complete forfeiture of the admissions deposit.

Refunds after the start date

c) Once the program has started, the FOLCD will follow the rules as describe on the table below:

Refund Policy Table
Duration of the program: 16 months
Completion Refund
Less than 10% of courses completed 50% of program fees
10-30% of courses completed 30% of program fees
More than 30% of courses completed No refund granted
* Application fee and material fees are non-refundable

d) If a new PGDip student or a returning Diploma student fails to cancel in writing and he/she/they has a valid study permit or temporary visitor visa, Dalhousie's PGDip program will move to collect any tuition fees that are due according to the schedule outlined above. 

Exceptional circumstances

e) Students who withdraw due to exceptional circumstances may submit a petition for a larger refund. The FOLCD retains the right to determine what an exceptional circumstance is and what documentation is required to prove that an exceptional circumstance has occurred.

Deferral policy

f) If a student is unable to start the program on their selected start date due to a delay in receiving a Study Permit or an exceptional circumstance, a student may apply to defer to a future intake on a one-time only basis, excluding situations outlined above. The Deferral Request must be submitted in PDF format to the Senior Program Manager within at least 30 business days (Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays/University closures) prior to the first day of the intake along with the following documentation:

  1. Completed and signed Deferral/Refund Request Form;
  2. Copy of Study Permit Rejection Letter or other relevant supporting documentation.

Change of fees and dates

g) Tuition Fees and dates are subject to change without notice. Students are responsible for checking with the Senior Program Manager of any changes close to the start of classes or upon arrival to Canada.

Initiate a withdrawal or refund

h) To initiate a withdrawal or obtain a refund of any application or tuition fees under these circumstances, the student must write to the Senior Program Manager. The request must include a copy of the letter of refusal from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada or any other supporting documents the student deems necessary.

Any refunds due

i) Students will receive any refunds due to them within 30 business days of the FOLCD receiving written notice of cancellation from them or a notice of dismissal. 

Payment through an agent

j) Students who enroll or pay through an agent will receive that refund through their agent. 

By taking the action of paying a deposit, you agree that all terms of the Refund and Deferral Policy for International Students are legal and binding and you agree to the FOLCD’s decision and interpretation of these terms. Additionally, you agree that Dalhousie University may inform Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and/or Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) of any information deemed to be important to maintain the integrity of the Canada Study Permit Program.

During the program

22) Refund Scenario Examples

Scenario 1: Withdrawal from program with less than 10% of course completed.

If you withdraw from the program when you have completed less than 10% of the courses, you are entitled to a refund of 50% of the Total Program Fees.

Total Program Fees: $27,400

50% of Total Program Fees: $13,700

If you have paid the Total Program Fees and withdraw before 10% of the program is completed, we will refund you $13,700. If you have not paid the Program Fees for the remaining terms, we will cancel any future invoices up to a value of $13,700.

Scenario 2: Withdrawal from program with between 10%-30% of course completed.

If you withdraw from the program when you have completed between 10%-30% of the courses, you are entitled to a refund of 30% of the Total Program Fees.

Total Program Fees: $27,400

30% of Total Program Fees: $8,220

If you have paid the Total Program Fees and withdraw when you have completed between 10%-30% of the program, we will refund you $8,220. If you have not paid the Program Fees for the remaining terms, we will cancel any future invoices up to a value of $8,220.

Scenario 3: Withdrawal from program with more than 30% of course completed.

If you withdraw from the program after you have completed more than 30% of the courses, you are not entitled to a refund. If you have not paid the Program Fees for any remaining terms, Dalhousie University will move to collect any amounts owing.

23) Is this a full-time program?

Yes. You will be in class between 7-10 hours per week depending on your specialization, and you should expect to spend a minimum of 30 hours per week engaged in courses, study, and experiential learning.

24) Can I work while I am studying?

Eligible international students are generally permitted to work off-campus 20 hours per week. Please see the IRCC website for more information about working while studying in Canada.

25) Am I guaranteed a job during the work term?

During the program you will work with the ISANS team to find and apply for jobs in your field of study. Although you will receive a high level of support, ultimately the responsibility for finding a job, internship, or volunteer opportunity falls on you, the student. Our program manager and the ISANS team are here to support you every step of the way.

26) Is the work term paid?

We make every effort to ensure that you will be paid for your work during the mandatory work term.  

27) What are the Program end dates?

Since there are three program start dates, there are also three program end dates.

Program Start Date Program End Date
January 2024 May 2025
April 2024 August 2025
September 2024 December 2025

28) Am I eligible for a professional designation?

Depending on your work experience, you may be eligible for a professional designation as part of this program. Please consult the pages for Project Management and Business Analysis for more information on eligibility and requirements. 

29) Where can I stay during the program?

During the program you will have the option to stay in off-campus housing

30) What are the tech requirements for the program?

To ensure you can successfully participate in the program, there are some minimum technology requirements:

  • Regular access to a computer
  • Reliable Internet connection  
  • Webcam  
  • Headset or microphone/speakers 
  • Software - web browser (Chrome or Firefox preferred), access to Microsoft Suite. 

31) I need to take an Authorized leave. What is the process?

Please email the Program Director with your written request for authorized leave from your studies. The Program Coordinator will then review your request, and further documentation may be requested. Please see the IRCC web site on Study Permit Conditions for more details on Authorized Leaves and what is acceptable.  

32) I have other questions. Who should I contact?

Any other questions or concerns can be directed to PGDip@dal.ca.

33) Is my spouse (wife/husband) allowed to work during the program?

According to IRCC, only spouses (wife/husband) of students enrolled in Master’s Degree and PhD programs are eligible to apply for a work permit during the duration of the program.

34) Can I enroll my children under the age of 18 years old in public schools?

Yes. Children under the age of 18 years old have free education provided by the provincial government while their parents are enrolled in a post-secondary education institution.