Member learning

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COVID update

All our member learning opportunities have moved online. Since the start of the pandemic, we are delighted to have been able to offer workshops and webinars from providers including The Open University, Cruse Bereavement Care, the WEA, and YGAM.

Take a look at our Events page to see what’s coming up.

UNISON Learning national events and courses

Our regional education teams have also been offering member learning opportunities online – check your region’s website or get in touch to find out what’s going on near you.

Contact your regional education team

We have expanded our online member learning offer vastly with a new partnership with the Staff Skills Academy. This means that UNISON members can access over 600 certified CPD courses for free – including courses as diverse as Organisational Skills for Administrators Certification, Website Development Foundations Certification, and Children’s Story Writing Diploma as well as a range of continuing professional development courses.

See the full list of available courses

Sign up to request an account

More online learning for UNISON members

We have picked out some free online courses which may be of particular interest to certain groups of workers. We’ll be adding further lists soon – watch this space!

Courses for schools workers: TAs and student support

Courses for early years and under 5s workers

Courses for catering staff in schools

Courses for cleaning staff in schools

Courses for schools workers: bursars and finance managers

Courses for schools workers: admin, secretarial, and PAs

Courses for schools workers: caretakers, site managers and janitors

Courses for social care staff

Courses for social workers

Courses for local government workers: bursars and finance managers

Courses for local government workers: caretakers, site managers and janitors

Courses for local government workers: catering staff

Courses for local government workers: cleaning staff

Don’t worry if you’re not confident using a computer or the internet. If you’re trying to get up to speed with IT, there are some resources that can help.

If you’re starting at the very beginning, or helping someone else who doesn’t have much experience with technology, Learn My Way talks you through everything, beginning with how to turn your computer on.

Learn My Way

Our member learning programme may be UNISON’s best-kept secret. But providing learning opportunities for our members has been part of our work since the union was founded.

Member learning courses are organised regionally – and also within branches, by UNISON learning reps and lifelong learning co-ordinators. To find out what’s going on near you, contact your branch or your regional education team.

Our courses can help you:

  • develop self-confidence
  • teach you about yourself
  • become more active and involved around issues that concern you
  • tackle change and uncertainty at work
  • progress your career
  • learn for fun and personal development

Many courses are free and you may be entitled to time off work to attend them. They are designed to be friendly and informal, with practical exercises and no long lectures or exams.


One-day workshops

We offer a range of shorter workshops for both activists and members. These include continuing professional development (CPD) courses delivered by the Open University, and workshops run by the WEA which are intended to build participants’ confidence and explore their skills.

Open University one-day workshops

  • Autism awareness
  • Behaviour management
  • Dementia awareness
  • Mental health awareness
  • Caring for adults
  • Attachment in the early years

Find out more about Open University one-day workshops

WEA one-day workshops

  • Facing change together
  • Get that job
  • Power to be you
  • Your skills, your future
  • Family history

Find out more about WEA one-day workshops

Finding your way back into learning

Our 10-week Return to Learn and Women’s Lives courses are designed for members who may have been away from learning for some time. Run for us by the WEA, these courses offer a welcoming and supportive route back into education.

Find out more

Weekend workshops

Our weekend workshops, Coping with Change and Making a Difference, are delivered by the WEA. They are open to UNISON members only and focus on personal growth and dealing with change.

Find out more

Our partnerships

UNISON works in partnership with a number of well-known organisations, networks and programmes, including the Open University, the Social Partnerships Network, the WEA, the National Extension College, Unionlearn, and the NHS Social Partnership Forum (England).

Find out more

English, maths and IT

UNISON can offer advice and support on other training and development opportunities available for members.

Find out more

Online learning

There are a range of learning opportunities available online. This can offer a flexible and convenient way to study.

Find out more