The Learning Specialists Association of Canada was formed in 2011 through a merger of the Learning and Study Skills Association of Canada (LASSA) and the Learning Specialists Association of British Columbia (LSABC).
LASSA was an organization dedicated to the professional staff and faculty members in post-secondary education institutions who worked daily to improve the learning skills and strategies of students. The first pre-LASSA meeting was organized by David Palmer in 1977 and was held at Glendon College. The first official LASSA conference was held at McMaster University on May 26th, 1978. For many years, LASSA published the LASSALETTER newsletter. The last LASSALETTER was published in 1997 when the membership began to communicate through their e-mail distribution list. As the field of learning strategy development and study skills grew so did LASSA. Historically the membership of LASSA included members within the provinces of Ontario and Quebec. In December 2008, LASSA members voted to expand its membership to include any learning specialist within Canada in preparation of forming a national association. LASSA continues within LSAC as the Eastern Region.
LSABC was an organization that supported the coordination and professional development of Learning Skills instructors and counsellors in British Columbia. Formed in 1979, LSABC prided itself on hosting two one-day conferences each year to support its membership. LSABC continues within LSAC as the Pacific Region.
In December 2008, the memberships of both associations voted to create an ad-hoc committee to explore merging their associations to form one national higher education learning specialists association. Through the efforts of volunteer members from across Canada, both associations merged in 2011 to form the Learning Specialists Association of Canada (LSAC) and organize its first national conference.
Members of the Learning Specialists Association of Canada are professionals whose work in higher education institutions supports and furthers students, faculty, staff, and administrative goals by providing comprehensive learning development support through a variety of assessments, methods, strategies, and programs that are developed using scholarship, empirical data, practical experience, and sound pedagogy. They are known by many titles, including disability specialists, learning skills counsellors, and learning strategists, but all are considered learning specialists.