Our program offers a cohesive structure to an arts education consisting of several related disciplines. When completed, students graduate with a Bachelor of Arts conferred through the University of Waterloo.

What is Social Development Studies?

In Social Development Studies (SDS), students take courses in Psychology, Sociology and Social Work, along with Social Development Studies courses designed to approach topics from an interdisciplinary angle.  Our courses blend well-founded traditional scholarship with an innovative mindset by addressing current social issues that are relevant to our globalized world, to our local communities, and to people on an individual level.  Learn more about the courses we offer.

Choosing a particular school, faculty, program, or major often depends on a multitude of factors. Learn more below about why Social Development Studies at Renison may be the best fit for your child.

Why Social Development Studies?

Supportive learning environment

The great benefit of studying at Renison lies in the small class sizes and excellent teacher-student ratio. Students get a truly interactive experience, with more chances to ask questions and engage in group discussions. Professors get to know students by name and can more readily act as helpful academic mentors.

SDS students also have their own academic advisor and can access many of the amazing resources Renison has to offer, including local counselling and registrar support.

Transferrable, practical skills

Our innovative curriculum develops skills in critical thinking, problem solving, interpersonal relations, leadership, civic engagement, and global citizenship.  The various plans available provide an excellent foundation for graduate studies and professional programs, as well as careers in human services, education, theology, law, social work, community/international service organizations, and public service.

Many of our courses incorporate experiential learning and the degree's flexibility allows for even more hands-on learning opportunities (e.g. exchange, volunteer/work, student council, etc.).

  • Check out some of the career paths our alumni have chosen with their SDS degree.
  • Read about some of our students and alumni and their impact in the community.

Variety of learning opportunities

The SDS program offers a strong multi-disciplinary background. Moreover, students are able to add a specialization to their degree if interested in any of the topics below:

  • Diversity and Equity
  • Social Policy
  • Social Work
  • Individual Well-Being and Development
  • Education

Each specialization consists of a group of courses which focus on certain issues in more depth, preparing students at a more advanced level for careers or further education in the related fields.

In addition to the breadth of topics that students can choose from, research and applied learning opportunities are also available to our students. Upper year honours students may work with award-winning faculty members on specific research projects or gain valuable experience in the field through an Applied Apprenticeship placement that mixes hands-on learning with directed classroom mentoring.