Undergraduate Independent Work/Study Courses Guidelines (IDEV*3200/4190/4200)

IDS Undergraduate students have the option of registering in an Individual/Independent Work or Study Course (IDEV*3200, IDEV*4190/IDEV*4200). These courses can be used for work, study, research, volunteer, study abroad, internship and other experiential learning opportunities. Read through the Course Guidelines and registration information outlined below and contact the IDS Academic Advisor if you have questions.

Course Descriptions

IDEV*3200 Individual Work/Study in International Development S, F, W (3‐0) [0.50]

This course is intended for international development students who seek to combine work and study in development with their academic course work. It may be used in connection with internships or work at international development agencies or other appropriate businesses and organizations (in Canada and abroad), for research and/or experience in a developing country, or for other practica or programs. Any faculty member at the University of Guelph with appropriate expertise may supervise the work/study project. In each case, the student and faculty member will agree on an outline of the work/study project and evaluation criteria. In all cases the project will involve a writing component. This course may be used also as a reading or special‐topics course.

Prerequisite(s): 10.00 credits

Restriction(s): Written approval of the academic advisor for international development

IDEV*4190 Regional Context S, F, W (1.5‐0) [0.25]

In this course students will learn about a region that they intend to study further in an advanced work/study project (IDEV*4200) or in a structured semester abroad. It may be offered on a reading basis or as a seminar.

Prerequisite(s): 10.00 credits including IDEV*2500

Restriction(s): Written approval of the academic advisor for international development

IDEV*4200 Advanced Work/Study in International Development S, F, W (3‐0) [0.75]

Individual international development work/study option at an advanced level. See IDEV*3200 for course description.

Prerequisite(s): IDEV*4190

Restriction(s): Written approval of the academic advisor for international development

Use of these courses:

  1. These courses may be used to combine work, research or volunteer experience with academic course work OR as regular reading or special topics courses.
  2. The project and assignments should reflect the credit weighting assigned to each course. See Suggestions below for possible course assignments on following page. All work/study courses will involve a writing component.
  3. With the permission of the Academic Advisor for International Development Studies, IDS students may substitute 0.50 credits from their Area of Emphasis with IDEV*3200, or 1.00 credits from their area of emphasis with IDEV*4190 and IDEV*4200 (as noted in the academic calendar).
  4. To successfully complete an advanced work/study project (IDEV*4200) worth 0.75 credit, it is important that students complete IDEV*4190 Regional Context to gain the necessary background knowledge and experience of the specific region or subject area. The student may take IDEV*4200 without the IDEV*4190 prerequisite only if the supervisor feels that the student has acquired sufficient knowledge in the area to warrant a waiver.
  5. A student may take IDEV*4190 and IDEV*4200 during the same semester for 1.0 credit, as long as the supervisor and the ID advisor are agreeable. The student must register for both courses and a grade must be submitted for each course.

Suggestions for Possible Course Assignments

NOTE: All work/study courses will include a writing component.


Course includes work or experiential learning component

Course taken as reading or special topics course


Proposal, final report or reseach paper, journal, blog posts, logbook

Research paper, notes on readings, discussions/meetings with supervisor,

annotated bibliography, outline of paper and references, proposal, book review, oral review


Proposal, reading notes, discussions with supervisor, annotated bibligraphy, outline of paper and references, book review, research paper

Proposal, reading notes, discussions with supervisor, annotated bibliography, outline of paper and references, book review, research paper


Research paper requirement (and proposal, if not completed as part of IDEV*4190), primary research, formal journal or logbook of work/research with references to readings, formal presentation to supervisor.

Research paper required (and proposal, if not completed as part of IDEV*4190), primary research, research/reading notes, discussions with supervisor, annotated bibliography, outline, formal presentation to supervisor.

Course Guidelines and Registration Process for Students

  1. Find a faculty supervisor: Your supervisor must be a faculty member at the University of Guelph. Begin discussions about the work/study project at least one semester before you are registered. Before contacting potential supervisors, you should think carefully about what it is you want learn and research as part of this course. You are responsible for finding a supervisor, although the IDS advisor can provide some guidance. 
  2. Research Topic: Together with the supervisor, decide on a specific research topic for the work/study project, deadlines and method of evaluation.
  3. Participation Agreement: To register in the course, you and your supervisor must first complete and sign the Participation Agreement form, and then submit the completed form to the IDS Advisor. The IDS advisor will not give approval to register for the course without having a completed Participation Agreement form in hand. The Participation Agreement is available below in both Word and PDF format.
  4. Course Registration: After approving the agreement, the IDS advisor will provide you with a signed Course Waiver Request form so that you are able to register in the course. You will need to submit the completed course waiver request form to Enrolment Services to register.
  5. Ethics approval process: Ethics clearance must be obtained before conducting any research involving human participants. For the purposes of ethics application and clearance, undergraduate students must list their supervisor as the principal investigator. For more information, visit the Research Ethics Board website and discuss with your supervisor.
  6. You may register for the course in the semester during which the research or work experience is undertaken or in a subsequent semester.
  7. DepartSmart (if you are planning to travel as part of this course): Given the inherent risks to international travel, all U of G students are required to register for and complete DepartSmart, an online pre-departure orientation facilitated by the Centre for International Programs.  DepartSmart is mandatory for any student travelling internationally as part of a University of Guelph activity, even if the student has lived, travelled or worked in this same country in the past. This is a University policy put in place to minimize the risk to the student and the institution. DepartSmart modules cover information on topics which are particularly relevant for those pursuing academic travel.
    Remember, it is your responsibility to ensure you are adequately prepared for your trip.
  8. All regulations and procedures applying to regular courses also apply to these work/study courses. You should be familiar with the policies on academic misconduct and other University policies.

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