Course Descriptions & Requirements

AUPE will offer seven courses throughout the next education term. The courses are intended to increase the union’s presence at the workplace and represent our members’ interests more effectively.

Introduction to Your UnionLabour History: An Introduction to Workers’ History
Introduction to PoliticsComponent Officer Training
Contract InterpretationBasic Conflict Management
Foundations for Union StewardsIntroduction to OH&S
OH&S for Stewards

Introduction to Your Union (1 day)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30
Description: What does the union do for me, and what is my responsibility to my union? This course will provide you with a basic overview of how the labour movement was integral to lobbying for the legislated rights and working conditions that we enjoy today. You will review AUPE’s structure and democratic process. This course will begin your learning journey with AUPE and help offer opportunities to be active within your union. This course is also offered online.

Labour History: An Introduction to Workers’ History (2 days)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30
Requirements: Must have taken the Introduction to Your Union course.
Description: Have you ever wondered why and how workers formed the first trade unions? This introductory course will help you see yourself in the past, to better understand yourself in the present. You will learn how history and activism are integrated, and gain access to the information, traditions, and knowledge that inform our union’s present struggles.

Introduction to Politics (2 days)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30
Requirements: Must have taken the Introduction to Your Union course.
Description: Politics is not just for politicians. Figure out how you and your union have the political power to make positive changes in your home, workplace, community and the world. This course will help you understand just how politically powerful working people can be and the ways you and your union continue to shape politics on the worksite, in your province and in your home.

Component Officer Training (2 days)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30 both days
Requirements: Must have taken Introduction to your Union and be a Component Officer1. Previous Union Officer Training participants are exempt.
Description: Component Officers will be provided with information on AUPE’s structure, roles and responsibilities of union officers, effective meetings, rules of order, and speaking in a union context. A mock meeting will be held to provide an opportunity to apply some of the knowledge you have gained.

Contract Interpretation (1 day)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30
Requirements: Must have taken the Introduction to Your Union course.
Description: You will be introduced to a seven-step process that facilitates how to read a collective agreement. Examination of contract language and applying a systematic approach to determine contract violations are key components of this introductory class. This course is recommended to all members who want to learn the basics to reading and interpreting their collective agreement.

Basic Conflict Management (2 days)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30 both days
Requirements: Must have taken the Introduction to Your Union course.
Description: This course focuses on basic conflict management skills. The class will look at effective communication as a strategy for preventing negative workplace conflicts and how prevention strategies can be used to address a conflict before it gets destructive. You will assess your own conflict management styles (strengths and challenges), and learn when not to intervene in conflicts. This is a highly interactive course that includes exercises, discussions and practical application of effective communication skills.

Foundations for Union Stewards (3 days + homework and mentorship)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30 all days
Requirements: Must have taken Contract Interpretation, Introduction to OH&S, Basic Conflict Management and be a Nominated Steward. (Previous Union Steward Level 2 participants are exempt)
Description: In the Foundations for a Union Steward course you will focus on the Union Steward as a grievance handler. The following areas will be covered to ensure a thorough process is followed for managing grievances: Roles and Responsibilities of a Steward, Interviewing Members, Legislation, Investigations, Disciplinary and Non-Disciplinary Grievances, Grievance Writing and Presentation. The program will include duty to accommodate situations and exposure to many other workplace scenarios. You will be expected to attend all three days of training and complete a homework assignment within a specific time period to continue on to the mentoring component of the program.

Introduction to OH&S (2 days)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30 both days
Requirements: Must have taken the Introduction to Your Union course (previous OH&S Advocate Level 1 participants are exempt).
Description: This introductory level course provides you with an overview of health and safety elements for workers and workplaces. The history of health and safety issues, legislation necessity, hazard identification, and collective agreement coverage regarding health and safety will be reviewed. You will learn a variety of practical skills and assessment tools to assist in developing effective health and safety cultures in your workplaces. This is a highly practical and interactive course for members interested in developing skills and effective knowledge for introductory occupational health and safety.

OH&S for Stewards (2 days)

Registration: 8:45 – 9:00
Course Time: 9:00 – 4:30 both days
Requirements: Must have completed the current Union Steward Program OR be a Union Steward and completed OH&S Advocate Level 1 (previous OH&S Advocate Level 2 participants are exempt).
Description: You will use Occupational Health and Safety and Workers’ Compensation legislation along with your collective agreements to understand what the union steward’s role is in OH&S. You will focus on developing strategies to identify potential health and safety issues, workplace hazards and proper reporting procedures.


1Component Officer: Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Council Rep., Alternate Council Rep., Chief Steward, Provincial Executive, Alternate Provincial Executive, Union Steward or Worksite Contact