Tech Skills Initiative Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the cost?
A: This initiative is funded by Alberta Labour to support unemployed and Employment Insurance (EI) eligible Albertans transition back into the workforce. There is no cost for the training; applicants must be able to financially support themselves for personal living expenses for the duration of the program.
Q: Once approved for the program, when do I start the training?
A: The first intake for 2020 is February 24. We also have intakes planned for June 15 and October 5.
Q: What is the time commitment?
A: You must complete both the classroom training portion, which is 16 weeks (4 months), and the work placement component, which is 10 weeks (2.5 months).
Q: How many hours per week will I spend in the classroom?
A: Classroom training is 25 hours per week (5 hours per day, Monday through Friday) and attendance is mandatory. The classroom will be online until further notice.
Q: What courses are included?
A: We offer courses in database administration, business analytics, and computer programming.
Q: Will everyone who applies be accepted?
A: No. There are a limited number of program seats available; typically 16-17 per intake. We recommend you apply as soon as possible with a full and complete application. We recommend a well-crafted resume, fully developed LinkedIn profile, and a strong statement of goals and topics of interest on the application narrative section.
Q: How will you determine who is selected?
A: Application decisions will be made based on:
- Eligibility - are you an unemployed or underemployed Albertan eligible for EI?
- Information collected on the application form, resume, and statement of goals
- Information collected during the interviews
- Information collected during the skills assessments
- Final approval of applicant entry into the program is made by Alberta Labour
Q: Will everyone who applies be selected for an interview?
A: No, due to limited program seats only those who demonstrate that they are the best fit will be selected for an interview.
Q: How can I prepare for the interview?
A: Treat the interview the same way you would treat a job interview.
Q: Where will the interview take place?
A: All interviews will take place online through video call until further notice.
Q: What types of skills assessments will I need to complete if I am successful in the interview?
A: We will require you to complete the following 3 skills assessments:
- Test of Workplace Essential Skills (TOWES). This tests basic workplace skills in the areas of literacy (reading and writing), numeracy (math), and document use.
- Microsoft Office Kenexa Assessment. This tests basic computer literacy in the areas of Microsoft Office products such as Word and Excel.
- IT Aptitude Assessment. This is designed to help you measure your aptitude for IT and set goals for your training specialization.
Q: Can I study and prepare for the assessments?
A: The assessments are designed to provide us with a snapshot of your skills and strengths so there is no need to study.
Q: Is the work placement paid or unpaid?
A: The work placement is unpaid. The work placements will be online until further notice.
Q: Am I guaranteed a job at the end?
A: Upon completion of the training, you will possess a competitive skill-set. We will provide you with resources and support in finding employment in a training-related position, but, ultimately, you are responsible for finding your own employment.
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