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Department of Leadership, Higher and Adult Education

Collaborative Specialization in Working Learning and Social Change 

The Collaborative Specialization in Workplace Learning and Social Change (WLSC) is designed for students interested in developing their understandings of work and learning trends in Canada and internationally, with a focus on the relationships between workplace learning and social change.

WLSC has three intellectual objectives:

  • to situate workplace learning within broader social trends such as globalization, neo-liberalism, and organizational restructuring;
  • to allow exploration of the connections between learning as an individual phenomenon and learning as a social/organizational and public policy phenomenon; and
  • to highlight the learning strategies that seek to foster social change through greater equality of power, inclusivity, participatory decision-making, and economic democracy.
     

Faculty associated with WLSC have expertise in issues related to workplace learning amongst immigrant workers, foreign trained professionals, marginalized workers, as well as workers embedded within progressive organizational structures. They also contribute expertise in the areas of social policy, organizational development, technological change, industrial relations, labour market analysis and school-to-work transitions.
 

Centre for Learning, Social Economy and Work (CLSEW)

WLSC has a close relationship with the Centre for Learning, Social Economy and Work (CLSEW). Established in 2014, CLSEW merges two research centres – the Centre for the Study of Education and Work and the Social Economy Centre. To learn more, visit the CLSEW website. Students are encouraged to participate in their Speaker Series events, workshops, and other activities.  

 
 

Participating degree programs

The Collaborative Specialization in Workplace Learning and Social Change is open to students enrolled in the following programs:
 

Adult Education and Community Development, 
Educational Leadership and Policy, and
Higher Education
- Department of Leadership, Higher and Adult Education
MA, MEd and PhD
Industrial Relations and Human Resources   MIRHR, PhD
Rehabilitation Science   MSc, PhD
Social Justice Education 
- Department of Social Justice Education
MA, MEd, EdD and PhD
Women and Gender Studies MA

 

Participating faculty

Department of Leadership, Higher and Adult Education –Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

  • Shahrzad Mojab
  • Linda Muzzin
  • Jack Quarter
  • Kiran Mirchandani
  • Peter Sawchuk (Director)
  • Marcelo Vieta
  • Leesa Wheelahan
     

Department of Social Justice Education–Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

  • Nancy Jackson (Professor Emeritus)
  • Paul Olson  
     

Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy

  • Bonnie Kirsh
     

Women and Gender Studies Institute

  • Marieme Lo
  • J.S. Song


Centre for Industrial Relations & Human Resources

  • Rafael Gomez

Admission requirements

Applicants must apply to and be admitted to both the collaborative specialization and a graduate degree program in one of the collaborating departments. The WLSC collaborative specialization encourages diversity in academic disciplines and life experiences. 

In their application to the home program, applicants must indicate that they are also applying to the Collaborative Specialization in Workplace Learning and Social Change. Applicants should indicate to referees that their letters of support will be used in application for both the collaborative specialization and the home program. 

Qualified applicants to the Collaborative Specialization in Workplace Learning and Social Change should demonstrate well-developed, scholarly awareness of the field of workplace learning and social change in their application materials.

In addition to corresponding to all home department requirements, the application should include a statement of interest which includes:
 

  • Relevant personal and/or professional experiences, a career plan, motivation in seeking advanced training in Workplace Learning and Social Change 
  • An indication of specific courses of interest 
  • For thesis students, a brief outline of their proposed research project 
  • For thesis students, Indication of their preference of supervisor  
     

Students who are already enrolled in the Department of Social Justice Education or the Department of Leadership, Higher and Adult Education will be allowed to apply to the collaborative specialization after they have been admitted. Requests from already enrolled applicants will be considered on a rolling basis.  

Students should submit the add a collaborative specialization form and a half-page statement explaining their interest to the program administrator in person (Room 7-107, OISE) or via e-mail (oise.wlsc@utoronto.ca). 

Specialization requirements

During their graduate studies, students will be registered in the home department and the Collaborative Specialization and will follow a program of study acceptable to both. 

The Director of the collaborative specialization will review students' progress to ensure that they are meeting the requirements of the collaborative specialization. If a student changes their thesis topic or the focus of their studies mid-way through their degree and no longer wishes to pursue the area of work and learning, they will be required to withdraw from the collaborative specialization.

 

Requirements for master's students:
 

  • All students complete the core course, Introduction to Workplace Learning and Social Change (WPL1131H).
     
  • MA students must complete one elective half-course from the master's-level course list.
     
  • MEd students must complete two elective half-courses. Note: MEd students enrolled prior to September 2017 are only required to complete one-elective half-course. 
     
  • Thesis students will develop a topic of relevance to the focus of the collaborative specialization. 

     

Requirements for doctoral students: 
 

  • Complete the core course, Advanced Studies in Workplace Learning & Social Change (WPL3931H).
     
  • Complete one elective half-course from the masters OR doctoral-level electives course list.
     
  • For the thesis, develop a topic of relevance to the focus of the collaborative specialization.

 

Course lists

The following is a complete WLSC course-list for master's and doctoral-level. It is important to note that not all courses are offered every year – here is a list of all WLSC courses available in 2017-2018
 


 Master's-level courses
 
Workplace Learning and Social Change (Core course) WPL1131H
Adult Learning LHA1108H
Gender and Race at Work
LHA1113H
Creating a Learning Organization LHA1119H
Organizations and the Adult Educator: Historical and Theoretical Perspectives on Organization Development LHA1141H
Participatory Research in the Community and the Workplace LHA1145H
Women War and Learning LHA1146H
Women Migration and Work LHA1147H
An Introduction to Workplace, Organizational, and Economic Democracy LHA1148H
Critical Perspectives on Organizational Change LHA1150H
Non Profits, Co-operatives and the Social Economy: An Overview LHA1182H
Leadership in Organizations: Changing Perspectives LHA1185H
Organizational Change in the Non-Profit and Private Sectors LHA1186H
Technology@Work: The Internet in Workplace Learning and Change LHA1195H
Education and the Professions LHA1812H
Faculty in Colleges and Universities LHA1849H
* Special Topics in Higher Education: Lifelong Learning and Vocational Education LHA5800H 
* Special Topics in Adult Education (Master’s) LHA6100H
Gender and Globalization: Transnational perspectives WGS486/
WGS1020HF
Education and Work SJE2942H
Special Topics in Social Justice Research in Education: Sociology of Learning and Social Movements SJE5000H
Organizational Behaviour IRE1362H
Sociology of Industrial Relations IRE1611H
Labour and Globalization IRE1615H
Labour Relations in Historical Perspective IRE1620H

 


 Doctoral-level courses
 
Advanced Studies in Workplace Learning and Social Change (Core Course) WPL3931H
* Special Topics in Adult Education LHA5100H
Mapping Social and Organizational Relations in Education LHA3183H


Special topics courses: Only the special topics course titles listed can be counted toward the WLSC specialization requirements in the current year. Please confirm current year courses with WLSC program administrator.

 

 

Contact

Specialization Director

Professor Peter Sawchuk, Department of Leadership, Higher and Adult Education
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto


Program Administrator

Joanne Bacon 
Room 7-107
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
University of Toronto
252 Bloor Street West
Toronto, Ontario
M5S 1V6  

416-978-0892
oise.wlsc@utoronto.ca