When applying for any of the courses at this year’s school, please note the prerequisites for each course. Applicants must have the met the prerequisites and/or required positions at time of registration.

Advanced Occupational Health & Safety Advocate

Prerequisite: OH&S for Stewards (formerly OH&S Advocate Level 2) and must be a Union Steward

Not all Alberta workplaces have an onsite safety advocate, let alone an OHS Committee – and this is shown through the rates of injury and occupational disease.

Learning Outcomes: This course will help you learn how to resolve common health and safety issues, and hold employers accountable under Alberta’s legislation. You will gain the skills, knowledge and confidence needed to participate effectively in a worksite committee – and take up the torch of union activists who fought hard to get us where we are today.

This course is for: Stewards who wants to start a worksite OHS Committee, or make an existing one more effective.

This courses utilizes: Working in groups, students will discuss current issues with AUPE’s specialist staff, explore case studies from our award-winning CSI video series, welcome a guest speaker, review checklists, and identify risks by examining photos of workplace hazards.

Comments from previous students: “I learned what should happen in an OHS Committee,” “how to respond constructively to my manager,” and “what to share with our members.”

Arts in Labour History

Prerequisite: Introduction to Your Union course

Course Description: This course is designed to promote the expression of working people through arts based activities. This year’s course will focus on the lockout of members at the Points West Living facility in Cold Lake.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover the history of organizing Long Term Facilities in Alberta.
  • Discuss the negotiations and lockout of AUPE members employed by Points West Living beginning in December 2016.
  • Using various arts based mediums create a group presentation to express what you have learned through the week.

This course is for:

  • Those looking to learn through artistic participation to the fullest extent.
  • While note required, those who play an instrument are encouraged to bring it to the course.

This courses utilizes:

  • Various forms of artistic expression will be used in this course, including but not restricted to singing, dancing, drumming, acting and visual art.
  • Course will also include information on the PWL Coldlake lockout and AUPE’s history in regards to organizing long term care facilities.
  • Creations developed over this course will be presented on the last night of labour school to all participants.

Comments from previous students:

  • “I learned how powerful the arts can be to send am message or point on a sensitive topic”
  • “How amazing it was to collaborate with everyone”
  • “Helped to drive my work and enthusiasm to keep me engaged and focused”
  • “The course provides knowledge while encouraging creativity”
  • “We are [now] proposing a labour arts committee at our local to focus on consciousness raising, preparing for bargaining and building community through art”

Beyond Bullying (formerly called Mutual Respect)

Prerequisite: Must be a Union Steward

Workplace harassment, violence and the bullying that stems from them are ongoing issues in the workplace. But what does bullying look and feel like? When does a disagreement cross the boundary into bullying behaviour? In what situations do opinions expressed in the workplace lead to psychosocial, ethical, and/or legal issues? In this course, you will learn how to better discern the boundaries between “the personal and the professional,” and what options are available to both victims and witnesses of workplace bullying. Through experiential activities, scenarios, group work, and role-plays you will be challenged to examine your own biases, and to begin to develop strategies for navigating such situations as a way of creating a safe and mutually respectful workplace experience for everyone.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Create safe and respectful environments
  • Identify bullying behaviour
  • Describe the impact of bullying
  • Articulate personal and professional boundaries
  • Articulate personal strategy to intervene in a bullying situation
  • Determine appropriate use of informal and formal approaches to address bullying
  • Apply course content to actions for promoting a bully-free work environment

Note: This course is not designed as a workshop to navigate a past or current personal workplace harassment, violence, or bullying situation. While it does provide opportunity for sharing and reflection on personal experiences that relate to applications of the course content, it is not intended to replace the professional services available to you. If you have a personal issue you need help navigating, we ask that you raise it with your Member Services Officer.

This course is for: Stewards who are looking for more information in order to support and help their members with issues in their local.

This course utilizes: Experiential activities, scenarios, games, individual reflection, lecturettes, group work, and role-plays.

Continuing Education for Stewards

Prerequisite: Must be a Union Steward

Continuing Education for Stewards will build on the skills of the Grievance Handler by exposing stewards to a number of case studies with multiple issues.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply Grievance Handling Steps
  • Demonstrate proficiency in completion of required grievance handling documents.
  • Describe process for Duty to Accommodate
  • Recognize how different jurisdictions are applied to scenarios.
  • Model appropriate behaviour in grievance hearings

Note: This is not an introductory course.

This course is for:

  • Union Stewards with experience in grievance handling.
  • Those looking to build on their reading, writing and research skills.
  • Those wanting to practice their grievance hearing presentation skills.
  • Those who want to learn about Human Rights legislation and how to be able to identify and assist members who face discrimination at their workplace.

This course utilizes:

  • Guest Speakers
  • Case Studies in both written and electronic forms
  • Group work
  • Individual assignments
  • Possible work before and after the course

Leadership Essentials

Prerequisite: Basic Conflict Management course

Leadership in today’s rapidly changing world requires a dynamic set of both skills and personal attributes. Challenges to effective leadership include a capacity for communication skills, respect, ethics, empathy, mentoring and relationship building. This interactive course will focus on both skill development in these areas and practical application of demonstrating “leadership”

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify effective leadership qualities
  • Recognize effective verbal and nonverbal communication skills.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and self-reflection as it relates to leadership style.
  • Model and incorporate ethical practice
  • Identify systemic barriers to equitable leadership.
  • Assess motivations for leadership and engagement.
  • Apply presentation skills developed through readings, discussion and practice.
  • Correlate importance of relationship building when incorporating effective mentorship.

Note: This is not a component officer training course, though the skills can assist with your leadership roles in component positions.

This course is for: Members interested in reflecting on their leadership style and enhancing their skills. Those willing to maybe step out of their comfort zone in order to learn more about themselves and what they can offer to leadership within AUPE .

This course utilizes:

  • Group work
  • Personal assessments
  • Case scenarios
  • Videos
  • It is important that leaders take a stand and have a voice. Learners will have an opportunity for an individual five minute leadership presentation on the Wednesday of the school. The presentation is made to your class using the communication and presentation skills developed in this course. There will be some class time to work on your presentation but most of the preparation will be done outside of class time. Learners are welcome be creative or use different mediums to explain points of their presentation. Learners may wish (but not required) to bring a laptop to prepare or display a Powerpoint to supplement their presentation. Computers and printing are available during office hours at the school.

Comments from previous students:

  • “I like that we didn’t just sit and read. It was interactive which made it enjoyable for me”
  • “I will have more confidence talking to my members in my chapter and local (my voice will be heard)”
  • “Public speaking isn’t as scary as I thought it would be”
  • “Learned that being a leader means collaborating with others, it does not mean doing everything”

Talking Union

Prerequisite: Introduction to Politics course

Unions are under attack, because they are one of the only institutions powerful enough to stand up to runaway corporate greed and cuts to public services. Fighting back won’t be easy – Alberta has the lowest unionization rates in the country and the media amps up common misconceptions about organized labour.

Learning Outcomes: This course will teach AUPE members how to ‘talk union’ and advocate for worker solidarity by taking on anti-union myths. Participants will leave this course empowered with a plan on how to fight back with your own messaging.

This course is for: Stewards who are looking for more information in order to support and help their members with issues in their local.

This course utilizes: Through group work, examining current data and research, practice public speaking, and discussions with the union’s Executive, students will learn the facts on AUPE and the social impacts of unions.