Teach Mental Health


Teach Mental Health course is designed for teacher candidates currently in Faculties of Education and for educators currently working in schools, including classroom teachers, administrators, and other specialized roles such as Resource or Learning Support Teachers. Developed by education and mental health professionals, this seven-module (8 to 10 hours), self-paced course offers a foundation of mental health literacy, including effective strategies to use in educational settings and in one’s own life.

The modules are:

  • Module 1: Introduction and Background
  • Module 2: Stigma and Mental Illness
  • Module 3: Human Brain Development
  • Module 4: Understanding Mental Health, Mental Illness and Related Issues in Young People
  • Module 5: What is Treatment for a Mental Disorder and How do we Know What is Likely to Work?
  • Module 6: Seeking Help and Providing Support
  • Module 7: Caring for Students and Ourselves

Each module includes a Core Materials section that contains a Self-Assessment and a Supplementary Learning Resources component. Course users should complete the self-assessment at the end of each module prior to moving onto other modules. Course users who want to explore the subject matter covered in the modules in more detail can engage with the Supplementary Learning Resources and materials in the Deeper Dive section.

This information is presented as Core Material and Deeper Dive material in each module. The core material constitutes the content designed for use by teacher candidates, as part of their academic learning components. This can also be the focus of continuing professional development for certified educators. The Deeper Dive material constitutes a more in-depth treatment of each module topic. It can be used to supplement the core material or as additional learning for those interested. Also, if taken together, the combined Core Materials and Deeper Dive materials can be used in postgraduate education courses (for example, MEd programs) or for additional self-directed learning.

Learning Outcomes

This resource aims to:

  • Enhance mental health literacy of teacher candidates in Canadian Faculties of Education and other educators;
  • Provide classroom congruent materials that can be used both during practicum and after graduation to help address mental health literacy of students.

This resource does NOT educate on how to diagnose or treat mental illnesses. If a teacher is concerned about a student’s mental health, he/she should talk to the leadership team at school and consult with health professionals at school or at the school district level and provide information they need to better support that student. As part of the school-based team of professionals, the teacher will determine what his/her role will be to better support the student.

The course opened on August 15, 2018.

Project Team

Course Authorship & Instruction

  • Dr. Stan Kutcher, Professor of Psychiatry at Dalhousie and Sun Life Financial Chair in Adolescent Mental Health
  • Dr. Yifeng Wei, Research Associate in the Sun Life Financial Chair in Adolescent Mental Health
  • Dr. Wendy Carr (Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia)
  • Dr. Susan Rodger (Faculty of Education, Western University)
  • Dr. Chris Gilham (Faculty of Education, St. Francis Xavier University).

Key project participants included

  • Vanessa Bruce (Teenmentalhealth. org),
  • Dr. Melanie-Anne Atkins (Western University),
  • Amy MacKay, Mina Hashish, Kate Elliot, Mallory Comeau, Jillian Thorpe and Amanda Higgins (Teenmentalhealth.org).

Team Lead

Natasha Boskic

Learning Technology Lead

Ian Linkletter, ETS

Instructional Design & Multimedia Production

Sharon Hu, ETS

UBC Studios

Web Programming and Digital Media Development

Bill Pickard, ETS

Project Development Support – student staff

Amber Lum

Amanda Punch

Jenny Zhu