Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) is a crucial system for ensuring worker safety when working with hazardous materials. 
To ensure that workers understand the hazards associated with controlled products in the workplace, education and training for WHMIS are essential.

However, these two terms are often used interchangeably despite having different definitions, goals, scope, methods, frequency, assessment, legal requirements, and importance. 

In this blog, we will explore the difference between education and training for WHMIS to help you understand which one is right for your workplace and why.

What does WHMIS Education Refers?

Education for WHMIS refers to the provision of knowledge and understanding about the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) and the hazards associated with controlled products in the workplace. 

Its goal is to ensure that workers are aware of the hazards associated with controlled products and can work safely to prevent accidents and injuries.

What Does WHMIS Training Refers?

WHMIS Training refers to the practical application of knowledge and skills related to the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS). The WHMIS program is developed to focus on areas such as the proper handling, storage, use, and disposal of hazardous materials. 

It aims to provide workers with the necessary practical knowledge and skills to work safely with hazardous materials in the workplace. 

WHMIS training may involve hands-on demonstrations, practical exercises, and simulated scenarios to ensure that workers can safely handle hazardous materials in the workplace. These trainings are mainly conducted through WHMIS training certificate courses. 

Key Differences Between Education and Training for WHMIS

Considering the goals, scope, and methods, education and training for WHMIS are different. Let’s explore these differences:
 

Aspect Education for WHMIS Training for WHMIS
Definition Provision of knowledge and understanding about WHMIS Practical application of WHMIS knowledge and skills
Goal Provide an understanding of WHMIS and controlled product hazards Provide practical knowledge and skills to work safely with hazardous materials
Scope Information about whmis symbols, labels, and safety data sheets Practical application of WHMIS knowledge in the workplace
Methods Classroom-style sessions, online modules, self-study materials Hands-on demonstrations, practical exercises, simulated scenarios
Frequency Typically a one-time requirement May need to be refreshed or updated periodically
Assessment Test or quiz to ensure basic understanding Practical assessments or simulations to ensure safe handling of hazardous materials
Legal Requirements May be legally required in some jurisdictions It may be legally required in some jurisdictions
Importance Critical to ensure worker safety and compliance with legal requirements Critical to prevent accidents, injuries, and promote a safe work environment

FAQs

How can I demonstrate my understanding of WHMIS education and training?

Demonstrate understanding through:

  1. Successfully completing quizzes or tests following WHMIS education sessions.
  2. Participating in hands-on training exercises and drills.
  3. Regularly reviewing WHMIS materials and updates.
  4. Applying safe practices in daily work activities.

What should I do if I miss a WHMIS training session?

If you miss a WHMIS training session, inform your supervisor or safety officer immediately. They will arrange a makeup session to ensure you receive the necessary training and information.

Final Words

While education and training for WHMIS share a common goal of ensuring worker safety, they have different definitions, goals, scope, methods, frequency, assessment, legal requirements, and importance.  

It is crucial for employers to understand the difference between education and training for WHMIS to provide the appropriate level of training and education to their workers. 

Employers can ensure the safety of their workers and prevent accidents or injuries by providing adequate onsite or online safety training, equipment, and procedures.