In 2008-09, Lakehead University undertook a study to examine the effectiveness of its Gateway program, an academic intervention program offered to a select population of incoming students. The Gateway program at Lakehead is designed for students who exhibit academic potential but who do not meet the traditional entrance requirements of the university at the time of application. The program not only provides access to a university education but also provides support for success. The intentional and holistic programming provided to students admitted through the Gateway program includes special academic support programming and mandatory academic advising.
The reading and math skills of 15-year-old immigrant students, as measured by the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) between 2000 and 2012, vary across regions of Canada.
Regional variations were also observed in the high school and university completion rates of youth who immigrated in Canada before the age of 15, as measured in 2011.
Can Test of Workplace Essential Skills (TOWES) assessments and Essential Skills (ES) training interventions be used to help internationally educated professionals to be more effective at work? Through three worker groups, Bow Valley College (BVC) sought to test, train and re-test IEPs to determine if Essential Skills training could increase workplace success. The worker groups included: WorleyParsons with Targeted training for a specific workplace; Corporate Readiness Training Program (CRTP) which was, in-class training followed by a work experience; Success in the Workplace (SWP) /City of Calgary blended delivery Continuing Education training. In all three worker groups, 142 learners were tested. Of that group 48 tested in at Level 2 in Document Use and completed the training and both TOWES assessments. Results indicated that all workers moved positively within Level 2 and some workers moved from Level 2 to Level 3 and Level 4.
Listening: An Introduction
There seems to be a growing realization of the importance of solid listening and communication skills. After all, lack of attention and respectful listening can be costly ‐ leading to mistakes, poor service, misaligned goals, wasted time and lack of teamwork.
According to Statistics Canada, 25% of Canadian college students drop out of post-secondary training. Many instructors comment that college students are increasingly hard-pressed to keep up with assignments and readings. Would improving student performance through Essential Skills (ES) training enable students to become more effective, and therefore less likely to drop out? In January 2012, Douglas College recruited students into the National Framework for Essential Skills Research Project. In total, 143 students were tested using the Test of Workplace Essential Skills (TOWES) and Canadian Literacy Evaluation (CLE). Of these, almost two-thirds tested below the minimum Level 3 recommended for success in work, learning, and life. Since only those that scored a Level 2 in Document Use were eligible to participate in the project, 66 students were invited to take part in weekly study sessions. Of these, 37 students chose to participate. Following 10 weeks of study sessions, students were tested again. The results indicate that almost all the students moved positively within Level 2 and 75% moved from Level 2 to Level 3 or Level 2(3).
The goal of the ESI (Essential Skills for Immigrants), Pre-Arrival Pilot Project is to develop and test a model for assessing and developing the essential skills (ES) of trained professionals before they arrive in Canada.
Ontario is reviewing its university funding model, an enrolment-based formula through which the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities distributes a $3.5B annual provincial operating grant to the province’s 20 publicly assisted universities.
We examined the existing model in our June 2015 paper The Ontario University Funding Model in Context. We observed that the model is a relatively small (27 %) component of total university system revenues. We concluded that this small slice of funding must be managed in a focussed and strategic way if it is to be effective in shaping behaviour towards desired provincial objectives (HEQCO, 2015).
An important goal of Ontario’s postsecondary education system is to provide the appropriate level of educational attainment to meet the current and future human capital needs of the province (HEQCO, 2009: 19). This purpose reflects the recognition that education and training contribute to the human capital of individuals and make them more productive workers and better informed citizens. Attainment of further education not only provides for individual returns such as higher earnings and lower levels of unemployment , improved health and longevity, and greater satisfaction with life, but it is also strongly linked to social returns such as safer communities, healthy citizens, greater civic participation, stronger social cohesion and improved equity and social justice (Riddell, 2006). In order for the province to maintain and enhance its economic standing in the changing global economy, and to provide its citizens with the social benefits that higher education affords, it must ensure that the human capital needs of its society are met.
Canadians invest considerable energy, resources, and personal and societal aspiration postsecondary education. It is good public policy to assess how we are doing and outcomes we are achieving with that investment. One of HEQCO’s core mandates evaluate the postsecondary sector and to report the results of that assessment. To this end, in this report, we have assembled data that assess the performance of Canada’s 10 provincial public postsecondary education systems.
This report provides parliamentarians with an assessment of the state of the Canadian labour market by examining indicators relative to their trend estimates, that is, the level that is estimated to occur if temporary shocks are removed.
To provide additional information on labour utilization that may not be captured by typical indicators for younger workers, PBO also examines how the educational credentials of younger university graduates match their occupational requirements.
This report provides parliamentarians with an assessment of the current state of the Canadian labour market by examining labour market indicators relative to trend, trends in wages and compensation, and the evidence of labour shortages and
Overall, the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) finds that most labour market indicators remain below trend, although continue to recover from the 2008-09 recession. The weakness in the labour market is also reflected in the modest growth in wages and compensation over the recovery. In an attempt to explain the continued weakness in the labour market, PBO examined indicators of labour shortages and skills mismatches but found little evidence in support of a national labour shortage or skills mismatch in Canada.
With a mandate to prepare students for the labour market, ‘communication’ figures prominently among the essential employability skills that Ontario’s colleges are expected to develop in students prior to graduation. As a result, many colleges have instituted measures to help shore up the skills of students who are admitted to college yet who do not possess the expected ‘college-level English’ proficiency. Several have addressed this challenge by admitting these students into developmental communication classes, which are designed to build their skills to the expected college level.
This study assesses the effects of developmental communication courses on students’ communication skills and persistence at four Ontario colleges. To do so, it measures student performance on a standardized communication test (Accuplacer’s WritePlacer) both before beginning (incoming) and after completing (outgoing) the developmental communication course. It also investigates persistence through the first academic year for students who took the course.
This paper argues that competency-based training in vocational education and training in Australia is one mechanism through which the working class is denied access to powerful knowledge represented by the academic disciplines. The paper presents a modified Bernsteinian analysis to argue that VET students need access to disciplinary knowledge using Bernstein’s argument that abstract, conceptual knowledge is the means societies use to think ‘the unthinkable’ and ‘the not-yet-thought’. I supplement Bernstein’s social argument for democratic access to the disciplines, with an epistemic argument that draws on the philosophy of critical realism.
Keywords: competency-based training; academic disciplines; sacred and profane knowledge; vertical and horizontal discourse.
The aim of this paper is to develop and extend a social realist critique of competency based training (CBT). Its key argument is that knowledge must be placed at the centre of curriculum, and that because CBT does not do this, it excludes working class students from access to powerful knowledge. Developing this argument reveals that constructivist critiques of CBT not only miss the point, they are part of the problem. The paper argues that this is because the relationship between constructivism and instrumentalism structured the development of CBT in the vocational education and training (VET) sector in Australia, even though they are distinct theoretical approaches to curriculum. Constructivist discourses were appropriated and reworked through the prism of instrumentalism, thereby contributing to the justification and legitimation of CBT, but also to its continuing theorisation and development. The basis for the appropriation of constructivism by CBT is that both emphasise the contextual, situated and problem-oriented nature of knowledge creation and learning and in so doing, sacrifice the complexity and depth of theoretical knowledge in curriculum in favour of ‘authentic’ learning in the workplace. Consequently, in developing its critique of CBT and the instrumentalist learning theories that underpin it, constructivism misses the main point, which is that theoretical knowledge must be placed at the centre of curriculum in all sectors of education, and that access to knowledge is the raison d’être of education (Young 2008).
As at June 2009, ten technical and further education (TAFE) institutes in Australia are able to offer degree qualifications. The presence of such ‘mixed sector’ institutions is relatively recent in Australia, the consequence being that we do not yet know a great deal about this type of higher education or about how it may be reshaping boundaries in the tertiary education sector. This project sought to capture different perspectives about the nature of this provision.
This report is the culmination of desktop research and interviews with staff from state offices of higher education, senior managers at dual-sector universities, TAFE institutes that offer higher education and some that do not, and teachers and students across six states. It also considers several implications arising from the Bradley Review of Australian Higher Education (2008).
This report is part of a wider three-year program of research, ‘Vocations: the link between post-compulsory education and the labour market’, which is investigating the educational and occupational paths that people take and how their study relates to their work. It is specifically interested in exploring the transitions that students make in undertaking a second qualification (that is, whether they change field of education and/or move between the VET and higher education sectors). It also looks at the reasons why they decide to undertake another qualification.
The authors use a combination of data from the 2009 Australian Bureau of Statistics Survey of Education and Training and interviews with students and graduates, as well as managers, careers advisors, learning advisors, teachers and academics, to examine these transitions. The finance, primary, health and electrical trades/engineering industries are used as case studies.
You have picked up this book for a reason! Perhaps this is required reading for a course you are taking or teaching in a post-secondary or continuing education context. Or you may be an instructor, learner, or leader (formal or informal) in another work and learning context— someone who facilitates the learning of adults—and you seek a deeper understanding as to how adults learn.
You may be a nurse, social worker, teacher, instructor at a community or vocational college, community worker, human resource consultant, training and development specialist, sports coach, career counsellor, or art teacher at a community recreation centre. Regardless of how we identify and where we are located, we assume, unless we are working in complete isolation, that our work and learning involves being with other adults and engaging in ongoing, formal professional development
or informal learning activities. If any of these roles or contexts resonates with you, what you are interested in, or what you hope to do in the future, we invite you to partic- ipate in a conversation—a dialogue—as we reflect, make meaning of, and navigate our individual and collective pathways as lifelong adult learners.
America’s community colleges have adaptation and change in our DNA. As the youngest upstarts of the higher education family, we cling to our self-concept as agile responders to the learning needs of our students and communities. Particularly at the student level, our colleges have extraordinary track records as agents of change. The learning we make possible expands our students’ social and economic prospects. It transforms them psychologically, behaviorally, and even physically, modifying the basic anatomy of their brains. The deep changes and growth that students undergo during their time with us are the double helix of our community college genetic code and our inspiration for this work.
In recent years, the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has launched several studies that analyze and conceptualize the differentiation of the Ontario postsecondary education system (Weingarten & Deller, 2010; Hicks, Weingarten, Jonker & Liu, 2013; Weingarten, Hicks, Jonker & Liu, 2013). Similarly, in the summer of 2012, the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) initiated several projects to identify ways to drive innovation and improve the productivity of the postsecondary sector.
An independent arbitrator will soon hear a case at Queen’s University that raises serious questions about protection of faculty who allege colleagues’ academic misconduct.
The university’s office of the provost has found Professor Morteza Shirkhanzadeh guilty of workplace harassment in a dispute that dates back a decade. As a result, he is banned from entering three university buildings and communicating with certain administrators, professors and the board of trustees.