March 7, 2024

University of Calgary revamps massive open online concussion course with new international guidelines

Open to all, free concussion course begins March 11
A woman smiles at the camera with an experiment occuring behind them
Kathryn Schneider, left, is an international leader on rehabilitation research in concussion. Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

The University of Calgary, in collaboration with the Université Laval, will once again deliver a course to educate the public about concussions, beginning on March 11. The course teaches participants how to prevent, detect and manage concussion in sport. However, this time the course includes substantial updates from the Amsterdam International Consensus Statement — the 6th International Conference on Concussion in Sport. 

“This is the fourth time we’ve offered the course, but this time we’ve updated the course to reflect new best practices in concussion in sport,” says Dr. Kathryn Schneider, PT, PhD, an associate professor and clinician scientist (physiotherapist) in the Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre in the Faculty of Kinesiology. Schneider was also the co-chair on the scientific committee and co-first author on the Amsterdam International Consensus Statement.  

The first Massive Open Online concussion Course, or MOOC, was launched in 2019 and has drawn more than 14,000 participants to date in three iterations. The course was developed for parents, coaches, teachers and administrators of school and sport environments, health-care professionals, those who have experienced a concussion, and other stakeholders interested or involved in concussion. 

The more than 40 contributors to the course include international experts in specific areas of research and clinical practice related to concussion, stakeholders in various environments, and athletes with lived experiences. 

“We hope to engage new participants in the course, but with all the recently updated recommendations, including updated concussion 'tools' to help recognize when a concussion may have occurred, and return to sport, and learn strategies, to name a few of the highlights, we would like to see previous participants take the course as well,” says Schneider. 

Highlights of new recommendations

Schneider, an international leader on rehabilitation research in concussion, noted just a few of the many changes participants can expect to see in the course content: 

  • New recognition and assessment tools for concussion — including the Concussion Recognition Tool 6 (CRT6), Sport Concussion Assessment Tool 6 (SCAT6), and Sport Concussion Office Assessment Tool 6 (SCOAT6)
  • New recommendations for concussion prevention strategies including policy, equipment and training strategies
  • Recommendations for symptom-tolerated exercise, cervicovestibular rehabilitation and collaborative care to treat concussions

“The research literature and recommendations on preventing, detecting and managing concussions changes rapidly. With this latest iteration of the MOOC, we want to share these latest updates broadly and work together to keep our communities informed of the current best practices that are based on the latest research that they can apply in their own environments, ultimately improving the care of all sport participants,” says Schneider. 

Registration is now open

This seven-week course is a non-credit course accessible to everyone. No prerequisites are required. A certificate of achievement can be requested for a small fee for those who have completed the course and have a pass mark on the exams. Learn more and register for the online concussion course. 

Kathryn Schneider is also a member of Integrated Concussion Research Program and both the Hotchkiss Brain Institute and the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute (ACHRI) at the Cumming School of Medicine.

The Faculty of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary is on of the top sport science schools in the world. 

The Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre is one of 11 International Research Centres for the Prevention of Injury and Protection of Athlete Health supported by the International Olympic Committee.

Led by the Hotchkiss Brain InstituteBrain and Mental Health is one of six research strategies guiding the University of Calgary toward its Eyes High goals. The strategy provides a unifying direction for brain and mental health research at the university and positions researchers to unlock new discoveries and treatments for brain health in our community. 

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