Police Foundations (Online Part-time)

Online Campus | Program Code: 0960
Domestic Students

Domestic apply now subtext

Already Applyed? Login here!

International Students

International students subtext


This program provides training for a career in Policing Services and other branches of Law Enforcement. The goal of Police Foundations is to provide potential police officers and other law enforcement agents with a well-rounded education which prepares them to address the problems of the communities they serve in a flexible and effective manner.

This Online Education program allows students to study online either full-time or part-time and continue to balance personal and professional priorities while completing course work. Convenient, flexible scheduling suits the lifestyle of many individuals. Since the course material is accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, it is ideal for those who are unable to attend regularly scheduled classes. Our online courses offer the same learning outcomes as those offered in class and result in the same academic credentials.

Program Details

Code 0960
Start Date May, January, September
Campus Online
Program Length * Must be completed within 5 years or 60 months
Delivery Part-Time

Program Outline


This course is designed to help students develop and practice the communication skills needed to succeed in college and workforce environments. Emphasis is placed on improving foundational communication strategies-reading, writing, listening, and speaking—and on developing research and critical thinking skills. 

This introductory course provides the student with an overview of the Canadian Criminal Justice System with a particular emphasis on the history, function, role, and organization of Canadian law enforcement services. The operation of the criminal justice system will be examined and analysed in light of contemporary issues affecting the system. Each of the major components from enforcement through the courts and correctional services will be explored.

This course introduces psychology as a behavioural science and assists the student in observing and explaining human behaviours. Course content includes an overview of scientific research methods, the biological basis of behaviour, perception, states of consciousness, memory, learning, motivation, and abnormal behaviour.

This course introduces the sociological perspective and provides the tools needed to examine human society and social behaviour in Canadian society. Topics include the evolution of the discipline, major theories, and methods of research as well as social change, collective behaviour, and social deviance. It is an approach that critically questions, scientifically investigates, and analyzes how concepts, such as race, class, and gender are constructed through cultural and socialization processes.

This course focuses on ethical issues faced by individuals as citizens and professionals with a concentration on issues that might reasonably be expected to arise within the field of law enforcement. Students analyze values, ethical theories, and professional codes of conduct to develop reasoning skills in support of ethical behaviour. Students then apply ethical decision-making models to address personal and professional dilemmas by taking a stand on these issues and defending their approach.

Society has come to recognize that personal and collective wellness is essential to the enhanced quality of life. This course introduces the student to the concepts of wellness and provides practical strategies for developing a healthy lifestyle. Students, through lectures and practical experience and self-evaluation will address physical fitness, nutrition, self-responsibility, and social interaction. The student will develop strategies to develop and design and implement an effective personal fitness program and develop strategies to be successful at the Bonafide Fitness Requirements Standards.

Communications for Law Enforcement focuses on developing communication skills frequently used by police officers and other law enforcement personnel. Students practice reading, writing, and listening to become familiar with professional communication practices, and complete written documentation that follows guidelines used by law enforcement agencies.

This course provides an examination of various theoretical explanations of criminal and deviant behaviour including the sociological, biological and psychological perspectives. Criminological theory provides an explanation of criminal activity and crime causation. The reality of crime in Canada including victimology is examined through crime statistics and issues of criminal behaviour. The impact of criminological theory on the development and effectiveness of the criminal justice system is discussed with an emphasis on future trends within the system.

Interpersonal skills are recognized as being increasingly important in the field of law enforcement. This course focuses on developing self-awareness and interpersonal skills to enhance the student’s ability to interact with others effectively. Topics include leadership, norm setting, conflict resolution and effective group decision-making. This is an experiential course and a safe place to explore new skills.

This course explores the network of community social service agencies that exist and how they link to the Criminal Justice System. Students learn to identify the community service systems, explain how they operate and how persons in need benefit from these services. Through a combination of lectures, exercises, independent learning, and presentations, students gain awareness of local community resources and the role of social service agencies in Canadian society.

Society has come to recognize that personal and collective wellness is essential to the enhanced quality of life for the individual and to benefit society as a whole. Students, through a variety of teaching strategies, including lectures, practical experience and self-evaluation address physical fitness, stress management, coronary heart disease, shift work and back health. The student is provided with experiences and knowledge to implement an effective personal fitness plan that develops the physical capacities related to occupational evaluations in policing and law enforcement in general.

Prerequisite(s): POFP108 

This course provides the student with a transitional analysis of issues relating to criminal law within the Canadian Justice System. Students explore the foundation of criminal law in Canada, identify and interpret statute and case law relating to procedural and substantive law, identify the function of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms within Canada, along with applying the fundamental principles of criminal law as they apply to pre-trial, trial and sentencing matters. In addition, this course provides the student with an introductory examination of civil law in Canada. The students identify how civil law matters in Canada relate to law enforcement.

This course provides an introduction to the democratic system of governing in Canada along with an overview of organizational theories as they pertain to delivering publicly funded services. The course examines the organization of our government, federal, provincial, and municipal, and examines the main function of each. Students explore and analyze the political processes in Canada along with contemporary issues affecting our political system and the organizational administration workings.

This course focuses on the theories and models of community mobilization and engagement and the role of the community in reducing and preventing crime using proactive crime prevention strategies. Students learn how police use mobilization and engagement with communities to promote the safety, security, and well-being of its citizens. Through this course, students demonstrate their understanding of community mobilization and engagement by applying basic proactive crime prevention strategies.

This course provides the student with an in-depth analysis of offences within the Criminal Code of Canada. The student locates and analyzes selected offences against the person, property and public order. Case law relating to these offences is examined by applying the fundamental principles of criminal law. The student identifies and applies potential defences to these criminal offences found in the Criminal Code of Canada.

This course examines a number of pertinent areas of policing and police powers including sections of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms that impact Canadian criminal procedures, citizen and police powers of arrest, release authorities, and police discretion. Through a variety of teaching strategies including practical scenarios, students have the opportunity to examine the procedures involved in arrest, release, and use of discretion.

This course focuses on interviewing and investigation principles and procedures. Students learn to recognize and develop the observational and communication skills needed to conduct a basic interview with victims, witnesses, suspects and the accused. Students study problem solving methods, various interviewing techniques, and learn the basic investigative sequence that is applicable to any investigation.

Prerequisite(s): COMM204

Based on the skills and knowledge gained in Lifestyle Management 1 and 2, this course centers on the practical application of physical occupational requirements. Students apply the fitness concepts both learned and experienced to develop and improve the physical components of fitness related to the occupational field of law enforcement. Students are exposed to a variety of physical evaluations used in law enforcement including the PREP and PARE. In addition, students develop a better understanding of stress and its influence on officer performance and mental health. Through practical applications, theory, and self-evaluation, students identify the physiological response of the human body to stress and the impact it has on fitness, job performance, decision-making, and individual wellness.

This course introduces students to an overview of the nature of mental illness and mental health. In addition to examining various types of mental illness, students evaluate current issues in the mental health field and identify the role of law enforcement in assisting with mental health problems.

This course is designed to develop the ability of the participant to intervene in conflict and crisis situations with competence and confidence. The conflict situation is examined from its inception through intervention by police. Various problem-solving skills and non-violent intervention techniques are discussed along with intervention strategies directed toward specific incidents. The student is taught to recognize behaviour patterns that may lead to violent encounters and the appropriate legal responses to these encounters. These responses emphasize officer safety through awareness and preparation.

This course focuses on helping students assess potential career choices available to them upon graduation in relation to their personal skills and abilities. Students learn the importance of establishing a professional image, as well as how to prepare a cover letter, resume, and develop references. Students are introduced to a variety of law enforcement entry exams and have an opportunity to complete practice tests. Students prepare for employment opportunities by implementing strategies and practicing assessment methods used by employers.

This course enables the student to explain and analyze the philosophical, contemporary, and historical perspectives of young people in conflict with the law in Canada. The Youth Criminal Justice Act, the Child and Family Services Act, and other relevant legislation are examined from the perspective of both the young person and the involved agencies.

This course allows learners to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to locate, interpret, and analyze provincial legislation. Students have the opportunity to practice enforcement procedures in relation to a variety of provincial offences. The course emphasizes the importance of working collaboratively with other provincial and municipal agencies when enforcing provincial statutes.

This course provides the student with an in-depth analysis of offences within the Criminal Code of Canada and other relevant federal statutes. Case law relating to these offences is examined by applying the fundamental principles of criminal law. The student identifies and applies potential defences to these criminal offences found in the Criminal Code of Canada and other relevant federal statutes. The student examines the role of law enforcement in the investigation and prosecution of selected criminal and federal offences.

Prerequisite(s): POFP302

This course is a continuance of Police Powers 1. It focuses on police powers of search and seizure, police governance, accountability, management and labour issues, law and legal issues related to the use of force, and officer safety.

This course focuses on the procedures for collecting and presenting evidence in a court of law. Students acquire the skills and knowledge required to conduct a preliminary analysis of a crime scene. Students learn how to properly identify, collect, document, and preserve evidence so that it may be used as part of a police investigation and may be presented as admissible evidence in the court of law. Students learn court procedures related to evidence.

Prerequisite(s): POFP304

This course exposes learners to federal and provincial traffic law and provides them with an understanding of policy and procedures relating to other traffic-related matters including traffic stops, accident scene management, the direction of traffic, policy relating to suspect apprehension pursuits, and police powers of search, seizure, and arrest as they apply to traffic situations. In addition, learners apply acquired knowledge by investigating and reporting on traffic-related incidents.

This course is designed as a continuation of the need for lifelong commitment to fitness to enhance the opportunity to achieve success in the physical occupational requirements in law enforcement. Students have the opportunity to apply previous experiences and knowledge to further develop the physical literacy required in law enforcement occupations. Students also continue to build on their understanding of the human body's response to stress by examining methods that would minimize its negative effects. Through practical scenarios, theory, and self-reflection, the student develops techniques and strategies to build a resiliency to stress for improved performance, mental health and overall wellness.


Admission Requirements

Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) with the majority of Grade 11 and 12 courses at the C, U or M level including the following prerequisites:

  • Grade 12 English at the C or U level
  • Grade 11 Math at the C, U or M level

For OSSD equivalency options, see Admission Requirements.

Other Requirements

The program prepares graduates to successfully complete the PREP (Physical Readiness Evaluation for Police) test, a standardized entry requirement for all provincial and municipal Police Services.

Applicants are expected to have the physical and mental health needed to:

a) successfully cope with the program of instruction

b) meet the public health requirements of any law enforcement or volunteer agency to which they might apply.

It is highly recommended that applicants check the Essential Hiring Requirements of the police service to which they may want to apply. In addition, a vision and hearing test is strongly suggested. This information is required to assist applicants to understand the requirements of the employer and how their results compare with these requirements.

In order to be considered for employment by a police service, an individual who has been criminally convicted under a federal statute (other than the Youth Criminal Justice Act or the Y.O.A.) must obtain a pardon prior to submitting an application. There may be a fee for the criminal history check.

Please Note: To participate in learning activities with policing agencies, a criminal background check will be required. If you have been in conflict with the law by con­travening a federal statute(s), you may not meet the security clearance(s). Meeting the behavioural standard will be the responsibil­ity of the student.

Career Opportunities

The Police Foundations program assists you in developing and enhancing your knowl­edge, skills and abilities for a career in polic­ing and law enforcement. The hiring trend for qualified police and law enforcement candidates is unprecedented in this decade. The policing and law enforcement commu­nity (Federal, Provincial and Municipal) and Canadian Border Services have identified a substantial need to hire officers for the next three to five years. The Police Foundations program provides an excellent base for ca­reers with Police Services, Canadian Border Services, Military Police, the Ontario Ministry of Transpor­tation, private/corporate security and various correctional institutions.

Other Information

Programs at St. Lawrence College are delivered using a variety of instruction modes. Courses may be offered in the classroom or lab, entirely online, or in a hybrid mode which combines classroom sessions with online learning activities. Program delivery can be run weekdays, weekends or evenings. Upon registration, each full-time student is provided a St. Lawrence College email account which is used to communicate important information about program or course events.