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Program Description

What is knowledge mobilization? It is the act of transforming knowledge into action. It is the ability to identify new insights produced by academic research and harnessing them to meet societal and economic needs. Knowledge mobilization is the process through which cutting edge new research is applied in practice by organizations that want to make the most of the best science available.

This program is unique in the country: it is multidisciplinary, includes a multi-week practicum during which students will apply their learning and develop their skills in the field, and will prepare its graduates for their entry to the job market or to further their studies at the post-graduate levels. Upon completing this program, graduates will be able to:

  • Identify a societal need and translate the research knowledge produced by academia to meet this need;
  • Make connections between research expertise and policy practice in order to improve outcomes in various organizations and sectors;
  • Draw upon advanced communication skills and technical abilities to produce a variety of knowledge mobilization tools;
  • Evaluate the impact and effectiveness of knowledge mobilization practices.

Graduates of the Graduate Certificate in Knowledge Mobilization will be appealing to employers such as government, NGOs and healthcare organizations, to name a few, and will have the necessary skills to introduce evidence-based new practices outside of academia. Because knowledge mobilization is increasingly encouraged by government granting agencies, students who go on to graduate studies with specific training in knowledge mobilization will have a competitive edge.

Curious to learn more about what it takes to get started in Knowledge Mobilization? Check out this Quick Start Guide to the world of Knowledge Mobilization created by some of our certificate graduates with support from The Conference Board of Canada through the Government of Canada’s Future Skills Centre.

Download the guide in English or in French!

Courses Offered

To complete the Graduate Certificate in Knowledge Mobilization, students will complete four graduate-level courses, including one practicum course, for a total of 15 credits.

KMB 511: Theories of Knowledge Mobilization in Research Settings (3 credits)* pending approval

This course is an overview of the theories and practices involved in the creation, synthesis, translation and dissemination of knowledge in science and social science research contexts, including areas of knowledge translation and implementation science.  We will discuss various contexts in which knowledge is created, ethical and equity principals of what research “should” be mobilized, integrating knowledge mobilization (KMb) into research design, and how to identify barriers and facilitators researchers face using and sharing knowledge.  Across various disciplines, we will identify current tools and techniques to evaluate the success of KMb initiatives.  Students in this class will create their own KMb plan for a program of research and will design an evaluation of their KMb project.

KMB 515: Theories of Knowledge Mobilization in Applied Settings (3 credits)* pending approval

This course is an overview of how applied settings such as health, social services, and non-profit sectors, can engage with research at the level of practice, program development, and policy. We will also discuss how these sectors can inform research creation.  We will discuss various contexts in which research could/should be applied and weighed in decision making, how to identify audiences for specific areas of knowledge, and how to identify barriers and facilitators to brokers or people in the field in acquiring and applying research.  We will discuss how researchers can build partnerships with consumers of their research. Across various sectors, we will identify current tools and techniques to evaluate the success of KMb initiatives.  Students in this class will create their own KMb package to inform or raise awareness, and will design an evaluation of their KMb project.

KMB 520: Science Communication (3 credits)

This course will focus on skill development, writing and communication strategies for online and print media, such as online blogs, and columns in local newspapers, as well as current innovations in communication such as infographics. Students will hone their skills in writing technique, particularly in communicating complex scientific material to a broader audience.

KMB 530: Knowledge Mobilization Practicum (6 credits)

The practicum will explore the application of knowledge gained from the theoretical courses taken in the first half of the Certificate. Students will work with an organization with a mandate to translate knowledge into action: projects can be completed remotely, and may be carried out with a student’s current employer or another organization with which a student may already be associated. Alternatively, the practicum instructor can organize a practicum placement for a student. Examples of projects that could be conducted during a practicum include establishing a KMB strategy for an organization, creating KMB materials that would meet the organization’s needs, researching and writing a column in a local newspaper, or participating in a virtual KMB internship at Bishop’s University’s Research Office. At the end of the practicum, students will submit a portfolio that would include the KMB projects that they have led and/or supported over its duration, a preliminary evaluation of these projects, as well as a journal outlining how previous study of KMB theories and of science communication informed their practicum experience.

The first 12 weeks of the program will consist of online course activities (KMB511*, KMB515*, KMB520); students will then conduct their practicum (KMB530) over an additional 12 weeks. Students enrolled in this program will have full-time status at Bishop’s University.

Knowledge Mobilization

Admission Requirements

Individuals wishing to apply to this program must have an undergraduate degree in any field from a recognized university, with at least a B standing in the final two years of study. All prospective students must provide a statement of interest (maximum 500 words) explaining their objectives for taking this program and their plans for completing the practicum component. For students coming from non-English or French-speaking curriculums, a proof of proficiency in English in accordance with the general application procedures stipulated in the Academic Calendar will also be required. Students with knowledge of research methods applied regularly in Psychology, Sports Studies and Biology (Health) will be given priority.

Questions about the program can be directed to Dr. Heather Lawford at hlawford@ubishops.ca.