The pandemic has changed our world and our lives in a multitude of complex ways. A recent study estimates that for each COVID-19 death, nine close family members are left to grieve¹. This is compounded by the countless non-death related losses so many of us have experienced during the pandemic—such as losing a loved one or a friend, a job, an identity, a routine, or anything else that has left our lives.
Although grief is a natural process experienced in many ways, it can be an overwhelming subject to acknowledge both personally and professionally. Being equipped and able to understand and normalize grief – in all contexts – can benefit everyone, from educators, front-line health care workers, and other professionals to offer grief education and support when it is needed most.
This new, three-course, online Grief Education certificate program has evolved from our former Bereavement Education program with insight from leading scholars, researchers and practitioners. The new Grief Education program offers a broadened context, more tools and strategies for learners, an equity and cultural humility lens, and reflective and peer-to-peer practice opportunities.
Please Note: If you have completed courses in the former Bereavement Education program between 2016 and 2020, and are interested in the new Grief Education program, please contact us.
What You’ll Learn
Through self-reflexive opportunities, you’ll explore grief across the lifespan (children, adolescents, adults), and explore the knowledge, skills and resources needed to create inclusive spaces and learning environments for grief support for a diversity of responses to loss.
You’ll gain a better understanding of Canadian bereavement and grief contexts and how grief impacts our experiences and explore grief and bereavement theories, research and practices.
Throughout the program, you’ll have opportunities to practice skills to relate and respond to people experiencing grief, hold conversations, or educate students, clients, or community members about grief.
Note: the completion of this program does not imply competency to become a grief counsellor or to conduct any form of psychotherapy.
Under 30 Learners
Each Course is 6 Weeks
3-6 Hours Per Week
$2,625 + HST
($875 per course)
COMPULSORY COURSES (TAKE ALL 3)
This introductory course explores foundational knowledge related to grief and bereavement definitions, theories, research, and practice. Learners will be introduced to historical and contemporary perspectives, variables that influence grief experiences, diverse beliefs and styles of grieving, death practices and rituals, and best practices and resources for grief and bereavement care. Death and non-death losses will be examined. The approach to learning is collaborative and reflective. Learners are encouraged to think critically and consider their own experiences and attitudes about death, dying, grief, and bereavement. This course provides a conceptual framework for the exploration of grief and bereavement in more depth in subsequent courses.
Grief and bereavement experiences are shaped by the various contexts in which they occur. In this course, learners take a more in-depth look at grief and bereavement experiences in the Canadian context, including death systems, care pathways, the funeral industry, bereavement policies, social movements, and resources. Through employing critical perspectives, learners will explore various forces (e.g. social, economic) and power dynamics that influence individual and collective grief experiences. Multiple stakeholder perspectives will be considered in the process of analyzing ethical dilemmas and tensions in the field. This course will also investigate approaches to advocacy, community building, and social justice. The learning approach encourages a culture of knowledge sharing and critical reflection, so learners can enrich the content by contributing knowledge of their unique roles and perspectives.
This course focuses on skills, values, and practices to offer grief support and education. Multiple levels of engaging bereavement are explored: individual support, group support, and working with a public audience. Learners examine current research and approaches for engaging with bereaved individuals across the lifespan, supporting “normal” grief and assessing when intervention is necessary. Learners will also explore and practice strategies for public engagement and knowledge mobilization. Through collaborative and self-reflexive learning, learners are encouraged to think critically about creating sustainable practices for bereavement care and education.