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Program Overview

Program Overview

How does our program work?

The DSc (RHL) is a 36 month full-time program. Students will complete 5 required (core) courses (15 credits). The required course are:

  • RHL 900 Applying Theory to Enable Change
  • RHL 901 Applied Research and Evaluation
  • RHL 902 Leadership Development Seminar
  • RHL 903 Communication, Advocacy and Action
  • RHL 904 Preparing Competitive Funding Proposals

Students will also do 2 electives (6 credits), a Comprehensive Examination and an Applied Dissertation.

Students entering with a Bachelor’s degree will complete RHL 905 Critical Literature Review as an additional core course. This course is an elective for Master's entry students.

The elective course are (all courses are 3.0 credit-unit courses unless otherwise specified):

  • RHL 906 Emerging Issues in Rehabilitation Seminar (1 credit)
  • RHL 907 Emerging Issues in Rehabilitation Seminar (1 credit)
  • RHL 908 Emerging Issues in Rehabilitation Seminar (1 credit)
  • RHL 910 Research Coordination & Management
  • RHL 911 Promoting Research in Practice
  • RHL 921 Teaching, Learning and Capacity Building
  • RHL 922 Coaching and Mentoring
  • RHL 930 Ethical Issues in Rehabilitation and Health Leadership
  • RHL 931 Issues in Diversity, Inclusion and Accommodation
  • RHL 976 Independent Study


Courses listed in the Rehabilitation and Health Leadership Graduate Calendar represents the range of Rehabilitation and Health Leadership (RHL) graduate course offerings in the School of Rehabilitation Therapy.

Learning outcomes will be achieved through several interwoven strategies:

  • An inititial 5 day, on-site intensive to orient students to the program in general, launch work on core courses, and meet peers, faculty members, academic advisors, etc.;
  • On-line course work that integrates synchronous and asynchronous components including regular, technology-supported, group-based discussions that are independent of course work to support the development of a community-of-learning and professional network.

Subsequent on-site intensives are spaced throughout the 3 year program to support peer-to-peer and student-to-faculty interaction, experiential learning, and completion of the comprehensives and the dissertation.

  • First Onsite Session in May
  • Second Onsite Session in November/December


Participation in the on-site intensives is mandatory, other than in cases of exceptional extenuating circumstance. RHL students pay to cover the costs of accommodation and meals during the on-site intensives. Students are required to fund their travel to and from Kingston. 

These sessions are held at the Donald Gordon Conference Centre, a conference facility on the Queen’s University Campus.

DSc (RHL) students are expected to successfully complete their comprehensive examination prior to the fifth term of study in the program.

The examination will be presented in the form of a single task/case that will be formulated by the student’s advisory committee based on the student’s identified learning needs and applied dissertation topic.

Students will identify a real-world problem in a rehabilitation or health setting, and design, implement and evaluate a process, program or system to address this problem. The dissertation proposal will be publicly defended. The final dissertation will consist of a scholarly document that complies with the Queen’s School of Graduate Studies regulations, and includes an appendix that contains a knowledge translation product suitable for distribution to a stakeholder audience.

To learn more about the applied dissertations our students and alumni are doing, go to Our Community