Inaugural University of Alberta Open Education Resources Award: Ukrainian for Professional Communication

28 March 2018

On March 9, 2018, Dr. Alla Nedashkivska, Professor of Slavic Applied Linguistics in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies at the University of Alberta (UofA) and Acting Director of the Ukrainian Language Education Centre/CIUS was honoured in the first presentation of the Open Education Resources Award.

The recognition was for her authoring Вікно у світ бізнесу: ділова українська мова [A Window Into the World of Business: Ukrainian for Professional Communication].

Published by the University of Alberta Press/Pica Pica Press in 2016, this open-access, university level, language learning resource is designed for students to gain professional and socio-cultural competence in Ukrainian via intensive oral and written practice.

Upon being granted the award as part of the UofA's Open Education Week, it was underlined that Dr. Nedashkivska's work "sets the standard for [Open Educational Resources]… created on our campus."

The online textbook includes a broad range of everyday commercial and business topics and terms, such as official documentation, finances and banking, resumé writing, insurance, and employment and job interview processes.

Through computer assisted language learning and contemporary terminology, Dr. Nedashkivska passes on the skills and tools today's students can use to work in Ukraine or to engage in professional activities. By publishing this learning tool in an open-access, online format, the Ukrainian language studies at the UofA provides a competitive savings for students taking a Business Ukrainian course, as they are no longer required to purchase a costly textbook.

You can view A Window Into the World of Business online.

According to their release, the Open Education awards were granted to individuals who "have exerted passion and effort in pushing forward open resources", and contributed to "instructional capacity outside the walls of the University of Alberta."

The other recipients (pictured above) were: Samer Adeeb for creating interactive open content teaching engineering concepts; the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers & Sean Luyk for releasing a collection of readings of traditional folk tales in a number of languages; and, Chris Powter for bringing open web access to documents about the history of oil sands reclamation in Alberta.

Professor Nedashkivska expresses special appreciation to the financial supporters of this initiative, in particular the Alberta Ukrainian Commemorative Society, the Ukrainian Canadian Foundation of Taras Shevchenko, the Alberta Foundation for Ukrainian Education Society, and the Ukrainian Canadian Professional and Business Association of Calgary, as well as for the in-kind support from the Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies and the Ukrainian Language Education Centre at the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta.

Dr. Nedashkivska's work has also been recognized by a number of other major awards, among them:

  • The University of Alberta's 2008 Faculty of Arts Undergraduate Teaching award.
  • The 2012 AATSEEL Book prize for "Best Contribution to Language Pedagogy" for her advanced university level language textbook Ukrainian Through Its Living Culture (University of Alberta Press, 2010).

In June 2018, Professor Nedashkivska will again be teaching the UofA's Ukrainian language and culture study abroad initiative in Lviv, Ukraine.

You can learn more about the opportunity in Lviv and the University of Alberta's various Ukrainian Studies programs by visiting or the study abroad in Ukraine.