Soft skills for a strong foundation in workplace performance.

Charles Darwin once said, "It is not the strongest or most intelligent who will survive, but those who can best manage change," and managing change requires essential soft skills. While hard skills (or technical knowledge) are still important, the increased use of technological and AI advancements in the workplace means that things can change quickly, and employers are looking for people who can demonstrate the human touch that machines cannot replace. The Essential Soft Skills Training (ESST) micro-certificate program will complement your hard skills and give your career a strong foundation for growth.

Jump to:

Program description

Essential Soft Skills Training provides learners with foundational soft skills such as communication, creativity, productive conflict resolution, self-awareness, social intelligence, problem solving, process management and more. In light of how digital work environments affect these skills, this micro-credential will prepare learners to be more effective in working collaboratively and constructively with colleagues, thus increasing their competitive advantage in the workplace.

Theory will be presented with practical action steps that learners will apply through class simulations or in the workplace. Progress will be assessed through personal reflection, quizzes, peer review and instructor feedback.

Program highlights

All learners who complete the Essential Soft Skills Training micro-credential will receive a non-credit micro-certificate from the University of Victoria, Division of Continuing Studies.

Calendar icon
This is a six-week program.

Computer icon
Online asynchronous delivery will increase access for those in rural/remote areas.

Waypoint icon
  • Online delivery style for those with school, employment or family commitments
  • Laddering opportunities into other micro-credentials or to non-credit programs

Network of people icon
Career enhancer
Opportunity for increased employability or to upskill or reskill across industries.

Certificate icon
A micro-certificate from a respected and recognized institution.

Program outcomes

This micro-certificate program provides an engaging multi-media environment for learners to grow their core skills and aims for learners to:

  • constructively develop their soft skills
  • acquire key concepts that improve critical thinking
  • articulate thinking matrices for creative and strategic problem solving
  • adapt to change and overcome obstacles
  • engage in compelling communication even in tough conversations
  • collaborate effectively within teams
  • bring the core skills together for improved process and people management in the workplace  

Who is this program for?

The Essential Soft Skills Training micro-certificate will appeal to those:

  • interacting with people in their current or desired careers
  • wanting to increase their competitive advantage in their careers
  • looking for professional development opportunities to improve workplace performance or employability
  • interested in adding industry certification to their resumes

Learners are typically:

  • early to mid-career professionals in a wide range of industries including, but not limited to, health and safety, health care, education and engineering
  • recent graduates of post-secondary institutions who want to complement their specialized education (i.e. hard skills) with soft skills training
  • skilled newcomers to Canada who want to complement their international education and training with a Canadian micro-credential


News and resources

Application and fees

Admission requirements

  1. Though not required, current or prior experience in a work environment is recommended for success in this program. It is the responsibility of the participant to ensure they can complete all assignments and contribute meaningfully to all discussions by drawing from their experience. If you have any questions about your suitability for this course, please contact us directly before the course start date.
  2. Regular access to a computer with a reliable internet connection.


How to apply

There is no application necessary for this program. Simply register for the one course below, and upon successful completion, you will receive a micro-certificate.

Registration details

You have already registered for this course.

View My account

This item is already in your shop cart.

View shop cart
Loading section fee(s)...

You're already on the waiting list for this item.

Sorry, this section is full.


Fee Tax Subtotal
{{ ::(fee.price | currency) }} {{ ::( | currency) }} {{ ::( | currency) }}
{{ ::(child.price | currency) }} {{ ::( | currency) }} {{ ::( | currency) }}
    Total {{ fee.totalFees | currency }}

Add to Shop Cart Loading

Note: You will be asked to sign in or create an account to register and pay for this course.

Having trouble registering online? Register by phone: 250-472-4747

Online registration temporarily unavailable

Sorry, this course is not available for registration at this time.

This course is in progress. Please contact us for more details.

Online registration is closed for this course. You may still be able to register by phone. Call 250-472-4747 to find out.

This course is on your wish list. You will be notified when this course becomes available.

Want to receive notification when this course becomes available?

{{ loggedIn ? 'Add to wish list' : 'Sign in/create a new account to add to wish list' }}

Info you should know:

Continuing Studies statement on use of educational technology

This course will require the use of Zoom for orientation and check-in sessions, and may use other education technology such as internet-based applications, cloud services, or social media. In order to complete this course you will be required to either consent to the disclosure of your personal information outside of Canada to enable use of these technologies, or work with the Division of Continuing Studies to explore other privacy protective options (such as using an alias or nickname).