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Convenient: complete coursework online and on your schedule
Relevant: created in collaboration with law enforcement to teach policing in today’s world
Focused: focus on graduating quickly and affordably with transfer credit options
Designed for Police Officers by Police Officers: Laurier's Police Studies Degree
As a police officer, you are asked to continuously be a leader. Leaders are committed to excellence in serving the community and continuously exploring possibilities to better aid the public. Laurier is an established and accredited university that offers a 100% online policing degree taught by experienced officers. We can help you enhance your role as a leader through a curriculum that is designed to help you understand the changing world of policing.
Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP)
WLU has partnered with the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP) to advance education and learning for police personnel. The partnership’s mandate is to provide educational options in support of personal and professional development for Ontario police agencies and their members.
Honours BA in Policing Program Summary
Why Choose Laurier’s BA in Policing?
Prepare for leadership positions with a degree in policing
Take courses online with other police officers
Gain up to 10 transfer credits to save time and money
Study areas deemed critical by law enforcement leaders throughout Canada
Receive training in areas deemed critical by law enforcement leaders across Canada
The Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development recognizes crime and justice as areas of institutional strength for Laurier
Hear first-hand experiences related to experiencing trauma and critical incidents to help you develop strategies for personal resiliency
Made up of 10 credits of required police courses and 10 elective credits
Each course is twelve weeks long
Courses can be taken at any pace to a maximum of three courses per term. By completing two to three courses per term, officers can earn their degrees in three to four years
Due to the broad range of police work that is available, the program is specifically designed for the types of officers listed below who have at least one year of professional work experience and who are:
Currently employed by, or retired from, a police service or law enforcement organization and meets the definition of a police officer under s.2 of the Ontario Police Services Act or similar legislation defining police officer at the provincial or federal level of government
Police officers who are employed by a First Nations Police Service
Special Constables who are employed by a governmental agency; and
Authorized by, and accountable to, the appropriate jurisdictional legislation (e.g., Police Services Act, RCMP Act) to enforce provincial and federal legislation
Peace officers are also eligible to enroll in the BA in Policing program. Peace officers can include members of Canadian Forces engaged in civil service, correction officers, mayors and more.
Academic Background (based on the highest level of education):
High school: Six Grade 12 university/academic level courses with an overall average of 70%, including university-level English at 60% or higher
College transfers: 70% or higher overall average, with a minimum of 1 year completed in an academic college program
University transfers: 67% or higher overall average, with a minimum of six months of study completed
You may be able to reduce the time and cost of the degree by transferring up to 10 of the 20 total credits required
Civilian or non-Uniformed Officers can receive transfer credits in 2 ways:
Previous education partially or fully completed (University/College)
Professional Development Training Form Please note that any students without the completion of their Basic Constable Diploma will not be eligible for those transfer credits
Officers who do not have previous post-secondary credits may still apply:
In addition to the required Laurier Honours BA in Policing courses, more courses from Laurier or another Canadian university are required to satisfy the graduation requirements of 20 total credits
For students without post-secondary credits, a High School transcript is required
The BA in Policing curriculum is designed to provide you with the skills to evaluate and apply different perspectives to better operate in a society that often scrutinizes and challenges police actions.
This course reviews international models of policing to trace the development of modern police response strategies in Canada. The course traces the historical, social and political contexts surrounding the incorporation of police response strategies over time. Students will theorize about how the role and nature of police work differs under each model of policing, and identify solutions to problems that modern strategies face.
PD202: Leadership and Career Development in Law Enforcement (0.5 credit)
Increasingly, leadership skills, capacity and awareness are needed by members of today’s law enforcement organizations. This course provides an overview of the leadership approaches – historical and contemporary, the role of context in determining leadership approaches, the crucial relationship of leadership and followership and leadership strategies for building relationships and motivating others. Self-awareness is a fundamental element to leadership development. Through self-assessments and leadership skills development exercises you will also have the opportunity to gain insights into your own leadership style – the strength of your style and ways to enhance your leadership skills and capacity.
PD306: Ethics, Corruption, and Police Accountability (0.5 credit)
This course will explore contemporary issues of ethics, corruption and accountability for law enforcement personnel. Specifically, this course will explore how police institutions, the media, the public and overseeing bodies respond to allegations of unethical or improper conduct by law enforcement. Students will apply relevant criminological theories to understand well-known cases of police corruption, racial profiling, noble cause policing and use of excessive force. Students will understand how the powers afforded to police may be used to both uphold and undermine legitimate police practices.
PD402: Indigenous Communities and Policing (0.5 credit)
This course examines historical trauma and its generational impacts on First Nation Peoples. Students will learn from elders to better understand respectful ways of practicing law enforcement in First Nations communities and with Indigenous Peoples. They will learn to engage and acknowledge the varying supports and integral roles law enforcement officers offer in First Nations communities. The goal of this course is for law enforcement officials to gain a diverse understanding of the issues that face First Nations communities.
PD404: Cybercrime (0.5 credit)
This course offers an in-depth exploration of the legal, social and technical issues related to cybercrime within a globalized context. Emerging legal responses to cybercrime will be discussed with reference to challenges facing law enforcement. Applied issues in cybercrime will also be considered, including the collection of digital forensic evidence, the preservation of rights guaranteed under the Charter and the logistics of leading cybercrime investigations across international jurisdictions. Relevant criminological theory will be used to guide discussions of the methods and motivations of cybercriminals.
What Can I Do With an Honours BA in Policing Degree
The BA in Policing provides the foundation and credentials you need to accomplish your goals and stand out from the competition. Acquire the edge to prepare you for leadership roles, especially in police organizations that place importance on a commitment to lifelong learning.
Below are answers to frequently asked questions about Wilfrid Laurier University BA in Policing online programs. To speak with an enrolment advisor who can help answer questions by email, email us at MCSadvising@wlu.ca.
Does the BA in Policing help me become a police officer?
A Bachelor of Policing is not required to become a police officer in Ontario, but it can help. The BAP is only available to current police officers, civilian members of police services, and peace officers, but the Ba in Criminology and Policing is a good pathway for civilians interested in becoming police officers. Learn more about the process of becoming a police officer in Toronto.
How long does it take to complete the BA in Policing program?
The time to complete depends on the number of transfer credits you are eligible for and how many courses are taken at once. Some students are able to transfer up to 10 of the total 20 credits and take two twelve-week courses at a time in order to complete their degree in less than three years.
What are the requirements to apply to the BA in Policing program?
In addition to the details outlined in the Admission Requirements section above, prospective students must provide a letter of employment; proof of minimum one-year full-time employment, up to and including the time before classes begin. The letter of employment must be verified from the human resources department of the police services or governmental agency from which the officer, special constable, non-uniformed officer, or civilian has been employed.
Does a police officer need a police bachelor’s degree if they’re already in the police service?
Not necessarily, though as police organizations evolve there has been a greater emphasis put on lifelong learning and obtaining post-secondary education. A degree in policing can give you an edge in your career and help you stand out from your peers, as well as providing opportunities for promotions and increased earning potential.
Do you need a degree to become a police officer?
Yes, you need to have completed a college of applied arts and technology diploma or a university degree to become a police officer. Degree specialization and GPA can be good for setting yourself apart from other candidates when looking for employment.
Are transfer credits accepted for the BA in Policing?
Yes, we provide the option to transfer up to 10 of the 20 total credits required. Not all law enforcement courses will be eligible for transfer. To find out if your credits qualify for transfer, call us at 888.368.0345 to speak with an advisor who will be happy to discuss your existing credits with you.
Further reading on our Honours BA in Policing program