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the Centre for Learning, Social Economy and Work at OISE, the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto

CLSEW Seminars

The Centre for Learning, Social Economy & Work (CLSEW) at OISE invites you to occasional seminars and continuing education opportunities:


The Online Education Controversy and the Future of the University

When : Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Time : 5:00 – 7:00 pm

Where : OISE NEXUS Lounge (252 Bloor Street West, 12th floor)

The neo-liberal reform of the university has had a huge impact on higher education and promises still more changes in the future. Many of these changes have had a negative impact on academic careers, values, and the educational experience. Educational technology plays an important role in the defense of neo-liberal reform, less through actual accomplishment than as a rhetorical justification for supposed ‘‘progress’’. This paper outlines the main claims and consequences of this rhetorical strategy and its actual effects on the university to date.

Andrew Feenberg

Andrew Feenberg teaches in the School of Communication, Simon Fraser University, where he directs the Applied Communication and Technology Lab. He also serves as Directeur de Progamme at the College International de Philosophie in Paris. He is also recognized as an early innovator in the field of online communication. Feenberg did his PhD with Herbert Marcuse in the late 1960s and early 1970s and was with Marcuse in Paris during the May 1968 events.

All welcome to attend | RSVP at: oise.clsew@utoronto.ca

Nonprofits and Co-ops as Workplace

Date: September-November 2016

Location: OISE and online

The Non-profits and Co-ops as a Workplace program is designed for education professionals who are working and leading in non-profit organizations, co-operatives, social enterprises and unions. The program provides for discovery of two key perspectives: Employee and Organization. Through participatory instructional strategies, you will:

  • Review various traditions of organizing for social justice, the mechanics of labour relations, the context of labour legislation and experiences of success and failure in integrating democratic leadership with employee rights.

  • Examine the strategic role of HR in non-profit organizations in light of the need to adapt to change the social, economic and political environment.

Upon successful completion of two compulsory courses, you will receive a Recognition of Achievement from OISE Continuing and Professional Learning.

For this program, OISE is delighted to have both OlaKunle Akingbola and D’Arcy Martin as our facilitators. 

For more information you can visit the program website by clicking here or, contact Janice Spencer at continuinged@utoronto.ca, 416-978-2107.

Activism, Social Movements, Learning and Knowledge Production

Date: Monday, February 1, 2016; 12:00pm – 1:30pm

Location: OISE Building, Room 7-105, 252 Bloor Street West, Toronto

Please click here for the archived presentation.

Aziz Choudry

Speaker: Dr. Aziz Choudry

Associate Professor, McGill University

What do organizers and activists know and how do they know it?  What is the intellectual labour – the learning, knowledge production and research – which takes place in the course of organizing and activism? This seminar will be based on Aziz Choudry’s new book, Learning Activism: The Intellectual Life of Contemporary Social Movements (University of Toronto Press, 2015). Examples of activist learning and knowledge production will be drawn from migrant and immigrant worker struggles in Canada, anti-colonial currents within global justice organizing in the Asia-Pacific, activist research and education in social movements and people’s organizations in the Philippines, and the Quebec student strike of 2012.

Aziz Choudry is Associate Professor in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education at McGill University and a visiting professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Johannesburg, where he is affiliated to the Centre for Education Rights and Transformation. 

Is the German VET system still a “model” for other countries? Facts and problem issues

Date: Monday, October 5, 2015; 5pm – 6.30pm

Location: OISE Building, Room 5-210, 252 Bloor Street West, Toronto

RSVP:  vesna.bajic@utoronto.ca by September 30, 2015

Thomas Deissinger

Speaker: Dr. Thomas Deissinger

Professor, Universität Konstanz, Germany

Thomas Deissinger is a University Professor of Business and Economics Education at the University of Konstanz. He has specialized in vocational training policy and comparative research activities in the area of VET. Research interests also include didactical issues and the history of VET as well as school-based VET and practice firms in vocational schools. Several among his publications are devoted to the nature and development of the VET systems in the UK and Australia from a comparative perspective. 


The German Dual System has attracted considerable attention in recent years, with a number of countries, above all in Southern Europe, trying to introduce similar concepts of structured apprenticeships leading to initial vocational qualifications. Quite manifestly, there is an expectation among politicians in particular that such a system could help cope with problems integrating school leavers into the VET (vocational education and training) sector and help combat youth unemployment. Focusing on the two “learning venues” (the workplace and vocational school), however, seems short-sighted as the German VET system has more elements than just the dual learning setting. It certainly is more complex than it seems, with a still weighty “transition system” and full-time courses in VET alongside apprenticeships. While the dual system seems to be gradually losing attractiveness among school leavers, the “transition system” firmly remains one of the crucial “construction sites” in the German education system. At the same time, academic pathways are becoming more relevant and tertiarisation as a whole seems to put VET under strain. The presentation will focus on current trends in the German VET system by putting it in the context of these diverse framework conditions. 

For more info visit: www.oise.utoronto.ca/lhae


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