Why Study IDS?

Why Study International Development Studies?

Our students are given a thorough understanding of the history, debates, perspectives, institutional approaches, and critiques within the field of international development. Given the program’s emphasis on building a bridge between academic discourse and development practice, our students learn how to evaluate the documents of the international donor community (e.g., those of the World Bank and the IMF), and to conduct original research and write development-related proposals.

Learning objectives: As a student in the International Development Studies (IDS) program, you will:

  • Engage with an intellectually rigorous and relevant curriculum focused on theories of development, the practice of development organizations, and the efforts to build bridges between theory and practice.
  • Learn how to evaluate the policies of the international donor community, conduct original research, and write development-related proposals.
  • Choose two of the following six areas of concentration: Culture, Diasporas and migration, Environment, Gender, Political economy, and Politics, governance and policy.
  • Enjoy unique opportunities for experiential education through placement and practical courses as well as university offerings in international internships and study-abroad programs.
  • Be part and learn from an engaging scholarly community devoted to teaching and research excellence in the IDS field, and access vast resources on international development available across York's faculties, research centres, and programs.
  • Join a vibrant community that promotes an understanding of change leading to a more participatory, socially just and environmentally sustainable world.
  • Gain tools to access promising career opportunities in the broad area of international development with civil society, governmental, international and other organizations.

Employment prospects for IDS graduates are wide-ranging. They include:

  • international development professional in the public, non-governmental or private sector
  • officer in a non-governmental, governmental or international agency
  • teacher, researcher, policy analyst or academic
  • social activist or community development worker
  • specialist in topics of international development such as international law, labour, environment, gender, culture, health, ethnicity, politics, demographics or migration
  • graduate school admission for relevant fields in Canada and elsewhere.