Upon completing the required hours in the Certificate for Emerging Leaders program, students submit a Learning Journal Summary — a written summary of knowledge and skills learned through the program. The summary should be no more than 5 to 7 pages.

The best place to start your Learning Journal is with some reflective questions. You may find value in returning to these questions as you progress through your certificate:

  • What have I learned about myself, my emotional responses to learning; the highs and lows?
  • What have I learned that relates to me, my workplace and my work colleagues?
  • What have I learned about myself in terms of being an Emerging Leader?
  • What learning tasks were most difficult or easy?
  • What was the most significant and/or surprising learning?

You might also want to reflect upon and include responses to the following as part of your Learning Journal:

  • A critique of seminar readings and other texts you find related to each seminar topic.
  • Your reaction to particular ideas, questions or comments raised in class.
  • Your reaction to activities and exercises.
  • Any "aha moments" that may have occurred to you.
  • Insights about your values, biases, personal preferences and leadership style.
  • Connections between seminar topics and workplace issues as well as personal issues.
  • Examples of when you applied learning from the seminars and the outcome.

How to write a Learning Journal Summary

The Certificate for Emerging Leaders is about professional and personal development as an Emerging Leader in the workplace. The journal is a tool for you to capture your learning throughout the program. The summary paper is the culmination of your most significant learning.

The expectation is for you to review your Learning Journal entries and then submit a paper (save as a PDF) that summarizes your learning, the changes you have made in yourself and the changes you have made in your workplace. The paper should be 5 to 7 pages long, double-spaced, following the APA Style Guide (when referencing). A rubric is provided below. It outlines the criteria used to assess Learning Journal Summaries.

While we invite you to reference your course notes in a discussion of your progress, we ask that you do not submit your course notes or a direct summary of each course.

The Learning Journal Summary is to be completed within 3 months of completing the final seminar and is a requirement for attaining your Certificate for Emerging Leaders. Certificates will not be granted until the summary paper is submitted and marked.

Learning Journal Summary Assessment Rubric

Fails to meet requirements Meets requirements Exceeds requirements
Personal Response: the reflections that are provided in the learning journal summary Journal summary indicates activities that were participated in, but provides limited or no reflection on the learning that occurred throughout the program. Journal summary provides a clear reflection on the experience that occurred throughout the program and is presented in a way that emphasizes the key experiences of the program. Journal summary culminates the personal and professional development that has occurred during the program, provides examples of growth and indicates potential new goals or plans to continue professional development.
Application of knowledge: evidence that classroom learning has been transferred to the workplace or elsewhere Journal summary does not clearly identify specific learning that will be transferred to the workplace. Journal summary indicates learning from the program has been or will be transferred to the workplace or to personal development. Journal summary describes how the learning from the program has been or will be transferred to the workplace or to personal development and the impact of this use of knowledge.
Growth/Emergence: indicates the growth that has occurred as a result of participation in the program Journal summary does not explicitly identify growth that has occurred throughout the program. Journal summary shows reflection upon the writer's growth and emergence into new leadership roles and responsibilities. Journal summary culminates the growth and emergence that have occurred throughout the program and indicates how these changes have supported the demonstration of leadership in the workplace and/or elsewhere.
Identification of program highlights Journal summary does not specify learning or takeaways that stood out throughout the certificate program. Journal summary describes difficult and/or significant parts of the certificate program and the learning that occurred. Journal summary reflects upon significant parts of the program and the impact that those parts of the program have had or not had on growth during the program.


If you have any questions, please contact Luisa Cruz-Milette, Program Manager at 403-220-5049, or by e-mail at luisa.cruzmilette@ucalgary.ca.

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