Completed Projects

Forging Links 2008

Funded by National Literacy Secretariat

AWES designed and delivered a Process Model for Integrating Workplace Essential Skills into Curricula, which various colleges, learning centers, and pre-employment programs across Canada have since used to assist in curriculum development. This project was in partnership with the Alberta Government and key social sector partners. AWES delivered workshops for coordinators, instructors and tutors in rural Alberta communities to familiarize them with essential skills and related resources. AWES also worked in partnership with an Alberta-based college to integrate essential skills into the literacy program. As a result, the gulf between the classroom and workplace was narrowed, better preparing learners for career opportunities.

Surveying the Construction Sector 2007

AWES conducted an essential skills needs assessment across the Alberta construction industry. This project was in partnership with Construction Owners Association of Alberta. The findings revealed that reading, record keeping, report writing, numeracy, continuous learning and adapting to a changing work environment are vital skills for workers in the construction industry. As a result, AWES established an ongoing sector partnership that has led to further research, development and training initiatives such as our 2013 Sustainable Solutions project with the Alberta Construction Association.

Broadening the Base 2009

Funded by Adult Learning, Literacy and Essential Skills Program (ALLESP), Business/Labour Partnerships and Workplace Literacy

AWES developed 52 safety talks for workers with low literacy and essential skills levels. The project included a train-the-trainer manual for supervisors of these workers. This project was in partnership with All Weather Windows, the Adult Learning Literacy and Essential Skills Program, Business/Labour Partnerships and Workplace Literacy. The initiative enabled the company to improve their safety communications. As a result, they were able to continue recruiting from less traditional labor sources during one of the tightest labour market periods in Alberta’s history.

Environmental Scan: Workplace Language, Literacy and Essential Skills Programs in Alberta 2007

In 2007, Alberta was in the midst of an unprecedented economic boom. With companies drawing from non-traditional labour pools, Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry contracted AWES to conduct an environmental scan on program offerings to support these workers in language, literacy and essential skills.

AWES surveyed 32 service providers, 21 associations and 30 employers. The research team recommended addressing workers’ skills needs in several ways, including the development of additional resources. In response, AWES created many quality resources from safety posters and training manuals to cultural tips sheets and workplace integration tools for newcomers to

Needs Assessment for Alberta Food Producers Association 2006

Funded by National Literacy Secretariat

AWES conducted an essential skills needs assessment across the food processing industry to evaluate how future trends will affect skill requirements. The objective was to identify essential skills needs and make recommendations for workforce development. We acted in partnership with the National Literacy Secretariat, Alberta Learning, and the Alberta Food Processors Association.

The research team interviewed representatives from 83 companies in 22 Alberta communities. AWES put forward a set of recommendations, including industry-specific workshops for supervisors, numeracy courses and language training to continually adapt to workplace change. As a result, the AWES solutions were translated into broader sustainable initiatives such as the internal “Molson Learning Centre” that focused on essential skills courses, general education and skills development.