Post Baccalaureate Diploma: Adult and Community Literacy Education


This general post-baccalaureate dipoloma pulls together core and elective courses relevant to adult and community literacy education and aims to provide key competencies for educators and community workers who want to support the literacy and learning needs of adults and families in diverse settings, including Adult Basic Education*, family and community based literacy programs, employment training and so on.

The coursework models content associated with equity and innovation in adult learning, including community development, digital literacies, positive family-school relations and research-in-practice. The cornerstone of this PBD is a supervised 50-hour practicum. During the practicum, student will work in diverse adult and community learning settings to apply their skills, critically reflect on their experience and network with other agencies and educators. There is also an option to undertake the practicum in a French-language literacy setting, subject to instructor availability.

* A recognized teaching qualification may be required to work in an Adult Basic Education setting.

Required Coursework

Literacy, Education and Culture

EDUC 341

Literacy has a far-reaching impact on the creation of knowledge, the organization of society, and the formation of institutions. This course explores leading policies, practices and ideologies guiding literacy education for adults, youth, and children in formal and informal education settings, in which traditional print literacy and digital literacy cultures intersect. This course is required for the certificate in literacy instruction. Prerequisite: 60 units including three in EDUC courses. Breadth-Humanities.

Literacy Practicum

EDUC 343

The literacy practicum is the vehicle through which students in the Certificate in Literacy Instruction implement and evaluate the model of adult literacy instruction developed in EDUC 342. Implementation may occur in a variety of contexts and institutions with adults; the literacy practicum will be supervised and may involve supervised teaching, curriculum developments, or research field work. Prerequisite: EDUC 342. Students must successfully complete a criminal records check.

Curriculum and Instruction in Teaching English as an Additional Language

EDUC 467

Designed for prospective and beginning teachers to learn more about theory, research, and practice in teaching English as an additional language (EAL) in today's multilingual classrooms. Exploring an integrated approach working with learners to develop language skills through designing and delivering curriculum, instruction and assessment. Prerequisite: 60 units plus one of the following: six units of EDUC course work; or completion of EDUC 401/402; or admission to the Certificate in Teaching ESL program, or co-requisite EDUC 403.

In addition to the above four required courses, student must complete 15 units from the courses listed below:

  • EDUC 311: Aboriginal Language, Education and Culture (3 units)
  • EDUC 324: Foundations of Multicultural Counselling (3 units)
  • EDUC 325: Assessment for Classroom Teaching (3 units)
  • EDUC 351: Teaching the Older Adult (3 units)
  • EDUC 355: Theatre in an Educational Context (4 units)
  • EDUC 382: Diversity in Education (4 units) or EDUC 441
  • EDUC 422: Learning Disabilities (4 units)
  • EDUC 426: Teaching Children and Youth with Special Needs (4 units)
  • EDUC 468: Sociocultural Perspectives on Language (4 units)
  • ENGL 371: Writing: Theory and Practice (4 units)
  • FNST 327: Aboriginal Women in Canada (4 units)
  • GERO 302: Health Promotion and Aging (3 units)
  • GSWS 309: Gender and International Development (4 units)
  • GSWS 312: Immigrants, Women and Transnational Migration (4 units)
  • HUM 320: The Humanities and Philosophy (4 units)
  • HUM 321: The Humanities and Critical Thinking (4 units)
  • SA 333: Schooling and Society (4 units)
  • SCD 301: Sustainable Community Development Theory and Practice (3 units)
  • SCD 401: Social Enterprise for Sustainable Community Development (4 units)

Other upper division courses with a focus consistent with literacy education will be considered. These may include special topics such as "Family and Community Literacies" or "Adult Education in Global and Local Context."

Admission Requirements

Students must meet the Post-Baccalaureate Diploma (General) program requirements; have completed two upper level Education courses; submit a written submission of career interest, and have experience working in community-based settings with youth or adults.

The minimum requirements for admission to the PBD are as follows:

  • Admission ( or re-admission ( to Simon Fraser University through the Office of the Registrar
  • Completion of a recognized Bachelor's degree from either:
    • a university in British Columbia with a minimum graduation GPA of 2.0 or
    • a university outside British Columbia with a minimum graduation GPA of 2.4.
  • Submission of a statement of objectives in undertaking the diploma program and a proposed list of courses (use the Proposed Program of Study form availble below).

How to Apply

  1. Apply for admission to SFU. More information:
  2. Submit to the Faculty of Education's Undergraduate Studies Office:
    • a statement of objectives in undertaking the Adult and Community Literacy Education Diploma Program
    • copies of unofficial transcripts
    • a completed Proposed Program of Study form

Ready to apply? Download the brochure and the Proposed Program of Study form.

* BrochureAdultCommunityLiteracy.pdf
Adult and Community Literacy Education Brochure

Teacher Upgrading: A Post Baccalaureate Diploma (Education) may qualify a teacher for a higher category. Students seeking a reclassification are advised to have their Proposed Program of Study reviewed by the TQS.