Back to Top

Helping Students Cope with Grief & Loss

3 Credits
3 Credits

What You’ll Learn in this Online Professional Development Course

The Helping Students Cope with Grief online professional development course provides helpful, practical, information on the developmental stages and understandings of death, how to talk with students about death, and four important concepts about death for student understanding. Examples and strategies for dealing with complicated death such as suicide, long-term illness, multiple deaths and on-campus deaths are explored. Religious and cultural sensitivity is examined, as well as the planning and implementation of campus- based memorials and services for healing and mourning. It is intended to support and encourage the important work that educators are already doing in the area of student care.

This course provides helpful, practical information on:

  • The developmental stages and understandings of death
  • How to talk with students about death
  • Four important concepts about death for student understanding. 
  • Strategies for dealing with complicated death such as suicide, death of estranged family members, long-term illness, multiple family member deaths, deaths that occur on campus, and deaths that effect the whole school community

The course supports educators in:

  • Examining your own responses to death, and how this impacts conversations with your students
  • Cross-cultural and religious sensitivity
  • Exploring specific exercises and interventions

The intent of this course is to expand your skills in providing support and encouragement.  Complete the course with a clear framework for addressing this important aspect of care for students.

Who Should Enroll in this Online Grief Course for Teachers?

This course is designed for K-12 teachers, administrators, counselors, social workers, nurses, coaches, specialists and other educational professionals who seek to enhance their skills in meeting the needs of students who are coping with grief or loss. Death, and other forms of significant loss, will affect the lives of almost all students at some point. These experiences often lead to difficulties in academic, social, behavioral, and even physical health issues. Educators can play a critical role, and often have a life-long impact, on grieving students. However, frequently and understandably, educators are unsure of how to best respond.  

Grief topics will be explored via modalities such as self-reflection, textbook reading, response questions and videos. 

  • Four concepts of death
    • It is irreversible
    • All life functions end
    • Eventually everything dies
    • Death is caused by physical reasons
  • Various faith, religious, and cultural concerns
  • Answering your student’s questions related to attending funerals, visiting dying students in hospitals and engaging with the family
  • Explore the needs of a school community experiencing a shared trauma

Interesting course of providing resources to help with coping with loss for students and staff members and good questions to ask to begin the process of coping. Does provide some internal healing and reviewing of one's own life and the trauma that may have been ignored.”

– Educator, California  

Loved the class! I didn't believe that I would get as much out of the course as I did. All educators should be required to take the course!”

– Educator, New Hampshire  

NOTE: Required book must be acquired separately.

This course is applicable towards the Social Emotional Learning Certificate.

More courses that may interest you:

Connie Enns-Rempel

Educators are among the most important and influential members of our society. Along with families and religious communities, our teachers, administrators, coaches and counselors have a critical impact on the shaping of our children and youth. In my years as a school counselor, I have been deeply impressed that as teachers work to meet the academic and educational needs of their students, they also feel increasing demands to meet students’ social, cultural, emotional and behavioral needs as well. My courses are designed to assist educators in addressing these challenging concerns by providing both helpful and relevant theoretical information as well as very practical, hands-on resources.