Learning, on a micro-level, is coming to Yukon University.
The continuing studies branch has developed 11 microlearning workshops that will be delivered through the fall, in addition to a number of other courses and seminars.
As Kathryn Zrum, the manager of business studies in continuing studies, explained in a Sept. 7 interview, the new workshops are aimed at providing “short bursts” of focused learning to help participants gain new skills.
Zrum said knowing that many people already have full schedules, the school wanted to offer opportunities for residents to enhance their skill set through one-day workshops.
“I looked at what a lot of universities and colleges are doing,” Zrum said.
Looking at similar microlearning workshops offered by other institutions and what could be most beneficial locally, the 11 workshops for the fall session at YukonU were developed.
Zrum explained that the workshops are aimed at three groups: those looking to enhance their skills in order to reach career goals, those looking to shift to something new, and those looking to add skills to their resume.
The Writing With Impact workshop focused on written communication for the workplace, for example, may appeal to those hoping to gain skills that will help them achieve their career goals, Zrum said.
Meanwhile, the Job Search and Interview Skills workshop may prove more beneficial to those looking to do something different and the Making Meetings Matter focused on making meetings more productive could prove beneficial for those wanting to add skills to their resumé.
In an effort to provide a more central location, the majority of the courses will be located downtown at the North Light Innovation Centre on Second Avenue.
Along with the new microlearning options, the school is also offering longer, multi-day leadership courses as well as some of the more traditional offerings of the continuing education branch in accounting, conflict resolution and more.
As Zrum explained, some courses and workshops — Job Search and Interview Skills, for example — are best done in-person where those skills can be practiced. Others — such as the Systems Leadership Seminar — can be provided easily online and, in some cases, come in at a lower cost as the university does not have to bring in an instructor from Outside.
Similarly, in a Sept. 2 statement, university officials said this semester would see a mix of in-person and online learning overall with 60 per cent of credit courses happening in-person and 40 per cent online as the school welcomes back students and staff after 17 months of online learning due to COVID-19.
While campuses re-opened Sept. 7, a mask mandate remains in place along with a number of COVID-19 restrictions.
At the university’s main Ayamdigut campus in Whitehorse during peak periods, from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., only two entrances are open with screening stations set up at both for those who aren’t fully vaccinated.
The screening includes a COVID-19 questionnaire and non-invasive temperature check.
A fast-track lane will be available for those who have been double vaccinated to go through.
“This measure does not affect campus housing, YukonU Research Centre (YRC), or the Centre for Northern Innovation in Mining (CNIM) buildings where daily traffic is considerably lower and the safe six plus one can be maintained,” the university said in a statement.
“Similarly, the 12 campuses beyond Ayamdigut and the downtown Innovation + Entrepreneurship Centre have lower traffic and will follow the safe six plus one. Additionally, campuses will continue to work with landlords and First Nations and municipal governments to ensure campus protocols align with and respect local pandemic health and safety measures.”
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