Board Governance Basics

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This 30-day module is designed to provide you with the fundamentals of non-profit board governance and understand your role and responsibilities as a board member in a non-profit society. You will also learn about a model that places the board within a whole governance system to help you better understand: 1) the board’s responsibilities (the What); 2) the people and contexts that influence boards (the Who); and the tools and practices that boards use to help them govern effectively (the How).

Throughout the course we only address non-profit society frameworks. The course is not limited to housing societies, however. And, as you will see, non-profits work differently than for-profit, cooperatives, partnerships, or other types of corporations.

Topics include:

The Meaning of Governance | Board Purpose and Responsibilities | How Boards are Organized | Governance and Management | The Board’s Power to Make Decisions | The Decision Making Process | A Summary of Governance Basics

What you'll learn

By the end of this module you will be able to:

  • Explain why the governance of non-profit societies matters
  • Recognize the steps to transition to the new BC Societies Act
  • Understand the roles, responsibilities, and duties of board members
  • Describe the six primary governance responsibilities
  • Explain the board’s role in the oversight of these areas of responsibilities

Throughout the course you will read and watch content, and be encouraged to engage in various offline activities to apply your learning to your board role. We know that you may not all have the opportunity to take activities back to your board while you’re in this module; however, this learning is all about your involvement with your board. Our invitation to you is to take the information in this module and make it live in your own situation.

Once you have completed this module you can go on to learn more about board governance in our other self-serve modules.

This module is one of 4 modules which comprise the 12-week facilitated online Board Governance course curriculum, which has been developed in partnership with BC Housing.

Time commitment

You have 30 days to complete the module. At the end of the 30-day enrollment period you will be automatically unenrolled from this module.

The learning content is provided in a lesson format that allows you to progress at your own pace. The lesson includes non-graded checks for understanding. This module also includes an non-graded pre-test and a graded post-test. You’ll need to complete the non-graded pre-test in order to access the lesson.

To receive a certificate you’ll need to score 70% or more on the post-test. You can re-take the post-test as many times as needed, within your enrollment period.


This is an online course and participants must have basic computer skills and have regular access to a computer with MS Office 2010 or later and a modern, safe browser. We recommend Chrome, however any updated browser will work. Templates used in this course may require MS Excel, MS Word and .pdf reader. This course is provided in English and requires reading and writing at a grade 8 level.

Start and End Dates

This module launches February 1, 2018.  Registration opens January 8, 2018.

Modules run in 30-day cycles at the start of each month. Once a module is launched, you may register at any time. You will receive your log-in details at the end of the month in which you registered, for access to the module beginning on the first day of the following month. For example, if you register on February 15, you will have access to the module on March 1. If you register any time after March 1, for example, March 5, you will have access to the module on April 1.

Once you receive your log-in details, you can log into HousingU at any time to start your module. You will have 30 days to complete the module from the date that you receive your log-in instructions. After the 30-day enrollment period, you will be automatically un-enrolled from the module.


Start and end dates

February 01, 2018 - December 31, 2018


$39 (+GST) for members $59 (+GST) for non-members

There are no bulk discounts available for this module and registration fees are not refundable.


To register, click the large green button at the top of this page: “Login to account”, or “Create an account” (if you do not yet have one). Note: We require a unique email address for each course participant as our online learning system will not accept duplicate emails. If you need further instructions, click Course registration instructions.

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