Virtual Learning Strategist


The Department of Education, Culture and Employment (ECE) is pleased to announce its participation in the Virtual Learning Strategist (VLS) program.

This pilot program will support apprentices who face challenges in formal learning, technical training and exam preparation.

Each participant will work with a Learning Strategist through the VLS online learning platform, who will identify any potential skills gaps, learning disabilities, exam anxiety, and individual factors that could affect their performance, such as study skills and motivational factors, and sensory disabilities (i.e., hearing, vision loss).

The Learning Strategists will then provide the participants with informal assessments. Based on the assessments, customized learning plans will be developed to support individual needs. These plans can include support services provided directly through VLS (such as academic assessments, screening for a potential learning disability, digital literacy, study skills, reading comprehension, exam anxiety, and trade math), or they may refer the student for a formal assessment and/or trade-specific tutoring and academic supports.

The VLS program provides upgrading and skills training opportunities on a flexible, accessible, personalized online platform.

What clients will learn through the VLS program depends on the individual’s needs and goals. How long the program takes will also vary by client. Participants must also be willing to meet with their learning strategist regularly.

Each student completes assessments to determine where they need assistance. Once the learning strategist develops their customized learning plan, the client takes part in active learning to fill those gaps. 
VLS supports are offered to apprentices each year before and/or during their technical training levels, until the apprentice completes their certification. 

The VLS program supports NWT apprentices directly. It will give them a better chance at successfully completing their apprenticeships and, in turn, will help to increase the number of competent and qualified trades professionals in the NWT. 


The Virtual Learning Strategy was created by the Government of New Brunswick. Through a federal research grant, New Brunswick was tasked with providing services to apprentices across Canada via the VLS program. 

The GNWT is partnering in this research with the Government of New Brunswick to provide this pilot program to a cohort of apprentices in the NWT. VLS began in 2012 as part of New Brunswick's apprenticeship model. In 2019, VLS expanded to five other apprenticeship jurisdictions in Canada. 

The success of the VLS over the past few years in those regions has led to it now becoming available to even more jurisdictions. 


Open for applications


There is no deadline to apply.


This program is designed for:

  • Apprentices who are registered in the Northwest Territories.
  • Applicants working with/referred by ECE Career Development Officers.

There is no cost to apprentices to take part.

How to apply

ECE is accepting 30 applicants to the pilot project of the Virtual Learning Strategist program. Contact a Career Development Officer through your local ECE Regional Service Centre to learn more.