Will Help Adjust Your Learning around COVID Disruptions
COVID has disrupted our continuing education plans as it has our economy-our job/career plans. We have been in the latest lock down since Christmas Day and when will it let up apparently mid February.
Learning Curves usually distributes our Winter issue in December, encouraging our readers to register before the holidays to make sure they get into winter term start date classes- many starting early January. By registering early you would help ensure there will be enough enrollments, so that classes won’t be cancelled for the lack of a few more registrations.
This year we have been self-isolating so as we emerge mid February, we can enroll in classes with a mid term start dates. There are many, we researched how many in this article for you.
This year we are distributing our Winter issue in early February with this feature on mid-term start dates. In our minds we might think continuing education classes start early September (Fall), early January (Winter) and May (Spring) but many providers offer courses with mid-term start dates and have courses that start monthly or throughout the term.
In our Fall 2020 issue we created an adult education mosaic for our readers and in the Spring 2020 issue we created a guide to finding an apprenticeship (education for skilled trades working/learning with an employer)
See www.learning-curves.org for back issues and stories. In the Fall 2018 issue Learning Curves did an article “Schools Offering Continuous Intake to help those who might have missed the Fall start date classes, we are updating this article for the Winter 2021 term.
There are so many providers in the Adult Education Mosaic. See Fall 2020 issue at www.learning-curves.org to scan for providers. Our best advice is to call the ones you are most interested in and ask if they have a list of class start dates they can email you or just tell you what is starting in the next month. Talking to a front line person who knows a course that would fit your needs and its scheduling is better than looking at an information loaded web site where you often have to drill down from program to course to schedule than back up to do it all over again. Print calendars do not include schedules nowadays so the scanning method has become the drilling down one.
As the Winter 2021 Learning Curves will be distributed in early February we looked for courses in the Winter Term from February 8th on. You have plenty to choose from so don’t sit it out till the Spring term, sign up now for the Winter mid term start date courses..
York University – School of Continuing Studies
In scanning start dates we found several that start in February Block Chain Development; Digital Marketing; IT Audit Execution.
Note in their English Language Institute a lot of programs start in August rather than the usual September Fall term start dates.
University of Toronto- School of Continuing Studies.
Given they offer over 1,000 courses in 10 program areas this is a lot more work than York U which has fewer offerings. I drilled down to scan start dates in the following ten program areas, Unique Programs, Arts and Humanities, Business Finance Management, Creative Writing, Health and Social Sciences, Information Technology Environment and Engineering, Languages and Translation, Learning Design, Marketing and Communications and each of these has sub categories, then course titles, then schedules. Sigh.
I found over 80 courses with start dates mid February. I found over 70 with March start dates, and over 20 with April start dates. There are 170 in total to chose from.
And I found an intriguing course, Philosophy and Artificial Intelligence but it starts in the Spring Summer term, May 6th. A sign of the times to partner these two subjects no? To find it I drilled down from Arts and Humanities to a sub category Philosophy and Law.
Those starting in March April would often be in your mind as a Spring term course but they are in the Winter term. The Winter Term classes are on line but the Spring term ones starting in May are more likely to be listed in class so SCS may be hoping that we are out of lock down by then.
Personally, I found an interesting course under Micro Courses under Unique programs but it started Jan. 18th, “Electronic Records and Information Management.” We used to put what was important to record in a letter or memo and social chatting was lost in the phone call. Now they are blended in an email, tweet etc. How do you maintain essential files in this new era. How do you have access to what most employees consider a private email even though it is work related.
A friend also pointed out in making changes to a document as it moves from person to person on line, how does one know which one is the final copy to be officially filed. He works for the Ontario government so finding documents in electronic records is important.
Ryerson- School of Continuing Studies
I drilled down on over 400 courses offered on line. Most have start dates the first week of Winter term- Jan, 18 on. Like my York U search I found three that started in February: Promote Front Line Workers Mental Health; Sexuality Power and Pleasure; Voice Play On Line. So better to search for Spring/Summer term start dates which can be found on the same drill down search. Most start in May.
Like in my U of T School of Continuing Studies I found a couple of Ryerson courses of special interest: Africa Before 1850, before colonization and Modern Africa, after colonization. They are both offered in the Spring Summer Term.
George Brown says on their web site they have 950 on line courses in Continuing Education. Many start in the first two weeks of January. But many others start later. I drilled down for each course from an alphabetical listing of courses to tabulate start dates, starting from February 8th when Learning Curves starts to be distributed. I found 222 courses starting throughout March, 32 in April and 20 after February 8th. In addition 58 course had two start dates one in March and one in April and there were 9 with two start dates one in February and March (two sessions). So that is over 334 courses you can chose from if you missed the traditional January Winter start dates courses.
In addition there were 58 courses with what they call continuous start dates, no specific start date or end date – though there is time limit for getting course work done. So that takes it to 392 courses you could choose from if you missed the traditional Winter Start dates.
What is interesting is that all 950 Continuing Education George Brown courses are on line. Some are designated as Online Option which indicates they have just recently been put online due to COVID no doubt. Other are just listed as on line so I assume they are regular George Brown on line courses. Twenty- eight are Learn Ontario courses. The website www.learnontario.ca offers distance education courses through a consortium of the 24 Ontario colleges.
Mind a lot of George Brown courses indicated they were not being offered in the Winter term but if you are interested George Brown says “keep checking back.”
Centennial says on their website there are 1,242 on line courses for Part- time studies (continuing education). This time I kept track of how many I drilled down on, 1,218 so where did miss the other 24. Again I drilled down for each course from an alphabetical listing by course code to tabulate start dates starting from February 8th. I found 55 courses starting in March, and 48 with sections starting after Feb. 8th. So you would have 103 course to choose from.
Of interest of the 1,218 courses, 586 were not scheduled either for the Winter or Spring and 372 were offered in the traditional start date for Winter Term courses, mostly Jan. 12th. Note not all of those courses would be running if they did not get enough enrollment. Most classes were offered on line but the Spring term listings often indicated campuses in hopes the COVID lock down would be over.
All Winter courses were listed as being offered “distance online’. Some were not under a course category like Business but under one titled Distance Learning. Were these Ontario Learn classes, unlike George Brown it does not say. The ones that are just designated “distance online” have most likely just been converted to deal with COVID.
Praise be. If you put senecacollege.ca/ce/online/online-correspondence-month.html you will get a listing of Winter Term courses by month, first by January, then February, then March. You do not have to drill down through all the courses for Continuing Education to see which ones are offered in each month for the Spring term. This saves search time.
I did analyze the February listings to identify how many had starts dates Feb 8th or later- 28. March had 106 and April had 44 So in total that is 178.
The courses are categorized by On Line Virtual Class Room and On Line Self Directed.
I started to wonder if On Line Self Directed would ensure your class would not be cancelled for lack of enough registrations. They take you in one at a time, whereas the classroom model whether in class or virtual class would require a designated number of registrants.
Humber also has an option to list their courses by start date. So I could chose February start dates, March start dates and April ones. In total there were 19 starting February 8th and after, 69 in March and 75 in April for 164 in total.
What I found interesting is when you click on each course to get the schedule you are also given a contact person and phone number. Perfect. As websites never seem to answer your particular question. Most of the courses are listed as being offered by Distance Learning/On line.
My favourite course at Humber is Math for Moms and Dads (How to tutor your children). It should have increased enrollments given all the home schooling with COVID.
Sheridan lists 192 course for the Winter term. Of those, 6 were offered starting Feb 8th or later, 11 with start dates in March and 1 in April. So in total there was 18 starting after Feb.8th.
These Winter term courses were listed as a whole so there was more drill down work/time to identify start dates. Most of these were coded Virtual Campus so I assume these have been put online re COVID.
One was listed as Online (Ont. Learn) the www.ontariolearn.ca website where all colleges contribute distance ed courses.
This seemed to be the most work/time as the courses were listed by interest area. So you had to drill down to the schedules for the courses in each interest area. Some courses were listed in more than one interest area.
Durham seemed to list the most Ontario Learn courses which often have monthly start dates. If they were just coded online the course usually started the first of January and were Ontario Learn courses. If they were coded Monthly Intake On Line, they were still Ontario Learn courses but often with two starts dates for one course March and April sessions and some just a March start date or an April start date.
Note when I was counting courses I do not tabulate sessions, so a course with a March and April start date was counted as one course not the two sessions. This was the practice I used with other colleges
Durham seemed to have the most Ontario Learn courses, these courses are listed on the website www.learnontario.ca which offers distance ed courses through a consortium of the 24 Ontario colleges.
So what are the numbers at Durham 11 for February, 67 for March, 60 for ones with March and April start dates, and 8 for April- 146 in total.
Whew, that ends the drill down work, so we hope you will get going as there is still lots to chose from in Winter Term Start Dates.
On the www.learning-curves.org site on the cover page there is a chart of 10 school Boards in Toronto and the GTA. If you click on “see more” below the start of the article about this chart the chart will expand so you see numbers to call. Most of these programs are now offered on line. ELS and Literacy have continuous intake, the adult day schools have four terms a year so the Spring term is coming up.
Community Programs, Career Colleges, Professional Associations
These providers are harder to find as there are many to find whereas there are only 6 colleges and 3 universities in Toronto and the GTA, but unlike these institutions they each offer fewer courses so are easier to research once you find them. In the Fall 2019 issue of Learning Curves on page 6 an article “How to Find Community Programs, Career Colleges and Professional Associations” details how to find this multitude of providers. See www.learning-cuves.org.
In short to find Community Programs search 211, to find Career Colleges search the Ministry of Colleges and University web site, to find Professional associations search the directory of Associations Canada on line.