By Laura Vizina, Director, Health Sciences and Public Relations Programs
Throughout our lives, many of us could say we’ve participated in formal and informal learning settings. Community enrichment, mindful practices and professional development opportunities touch us at different times in our lives. At the Division of Continuing Studies, we focus on the learner experience by creating diverse opportunities. In the area of Health Sciences we have a strong focus on professional development opportunities for health care professionals. Did you know that health professionals need continuing education credits to maintain their practice?
For these reasons, we offer a wide range of professional health development programs and courses to this committed group of learners. I feel very fortunate to say I show up to work every day purposefully rooted in educational opportunities. Our staff are skilled educators, researchers, health practitioners and administrators who collaborate with content experts and instructional designers to offer the most relevant course content in this ever-evolving field of health care. For example, our online program Wound Management for Health Professionals attracts registered nurses ranging from new graduates to seasoned practitioners; many of these learners practice in clinical settings, such as burn or plastic surgery units or in home and foot care settings.
The Canadian Falls Prevention Curriculum© is another successful online course where Canadian and international health professionals develop an online learning community. Professionals from Norway, the United Kingdom, Egypt, Australia, Trinidad and Tobago learn from their peers as an experienced facilitator leads them through the online course content, providing the flexibility of continuing to practice in their local community.
An important focus for us is the health and safety of our workers in the workplace, and therefore we offer the Certificate Program in Environmental and Occupational Health. Offered exclusively online, this program has been operating for over 20 years and focuses on the latest dynamics of employee health concerns in the workplace, and the impact of the workplace on the environment. Graduates of this program work as occupational health and safety officers, health and safety managers, and senior safety consultants.
Having staff who understand the needs of adult learners and the current climate of health care permits us to design and deliver relevant theory that is taken into daily practice. Another example of the relevant course content we offer in the health care field is our program for dental professionals, Current Concepts in Dentistry. Working closely with an academic consultant and a continuing education advisory committee to identify the most relevant dental topics, dental professionals can attend all four days of this event, earning 28 continuing education credits to maintain their dental practice.
So the next time you visit your health care professional, take a closer look at their credentials and their continuing education certifications to gain a deeper understanding of this dedicated group of professionals, and their commitment to life-long learning. That is why we do what we do!