Supporting our community through no-cost study

The University of Tasmania has created a set of short courses – the Wellbeing Toolkit – to help people navigate the challenges of COVID-19.

The toolkit, which Tasmanians will be able to study at no cost, will offer a range of modules covering topics including financial planning and budgeting, mental health and resilience, sustainable living, and creativity.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Rufus Black said the University was determined to do everything it could to support the community in this difficult, anxious time.

“COVID-19 has changed Tasmanian lives dramatically – our family, social and working lives are profoundly different to just a few short weeks ago,” Professor Black said.

“People are facing economic challenges, stress and uncertainty, and long stretches of time at home – with family or alone – juggling new and changing responsibilities.

“Learning can help at times like these. We have put together a toolkit that people can study online, at their own pace, to give them knowledge and skills to understand and meet some of the challenges they face.”

Some of the short courses available in the Wellbeing Toolkit are:

  • Stress, self-care and mindfulness – students will learn about their psychological health and wellbeing and how to tailor common stress management approaches to their individual needs.
  • Financial planning and budgeting – students will learn elementary skills and knowledge to manage money effectively, including budgeting, saving, borrowing and investing.
  • The art of healthy eating – understand how and why you make food choices, how these choices impact your health and how to overcome common barriers to healthy eating.
  • Science of gardening – in these times many people are spending even more time in their gardens. Learn about the science that underpins gardening and the skills to put it into practice.
  • Human behaviour in extreme environments – learn how individuals and groups manage distress and enhance resilience in extreme environments such as Antarctica, outer space, military operations, disaster sites, pandemics and cults.
  • History of public health: epidemics and social change – learn how disease shaped the evolution of public health and see the thread of resilience and the role medicine plays in our society.

Other modules include Learning to learn, Arts in health and medicine, Making home, and Supporting ourselves and our community.

“As a university, the most powerful tool we can use to help Tasmanians is education,” Professor Black said.

“Through education, we can help build a more confident and resilient community, providing people with practical skills and knowledge to help navigate this period.”

In line with a national program of short courses in key fields of education, the University is also developing a range of six-month online certificates in Nursing, Allied Health, Small Business, Information Technology, Agriculture, Construction, Project Management, Teaching, Engineering and Dementia.

The Wellbeing Toolkit is designed to support Tasmanians right now; the upcoming short courses are designed to help people and businesses prepare for the post-COVID world.

People can register for the Wellbeing Toolkit now, with study to commence in early May. Visit www.utas.edu.au/wellbeing-toolkit

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