What is Mental Health First Aid Connect?
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Connect is a single platform where you will manage all your classes, purchase and access resources, and connect with your fellow National Trainers, Instructors and First Aiders with ease. More than a platform, MHFA Connect represents a fresh start and an improved MHFA experience.
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Why are we moving to MHFA Connect?
We envision a world where every parent, teacher and school bus driver has the tools to help a child or teen in need, and every first responder, coworker and neighbor can support a friend with the MHFA Action Plan (ALGEE). We envision a day when every household in American has MHFA tools at the ready — just like the first-aid kits we keep in our homes and cars.
To achieve this level of scale, we need to equip our Instructors, National Trainers and Coordinators – with their passion and expertise – with the best tools possible. That’s where MHFA Connect comes in.
What’s new about MHFA Connect?
We kept what was working and fixed what wasn’t. Here are a few things that have changed:
- One site does it all. You no longer need to schedule a class in one platform just to move to another platform to manage and teach your class. MHFA Connect is your one-stop shop for all National Trainer, Instructor and Coordinator needs. You’ll schedule classes, manage rosters, and access resources all from one location!
- No more Training Units. Instructors no longer need to use Training Units to purchase seats. Rather, Instructors will mark learners as attended (or not) in MHFA Connect. When learners are marked in attendance, MHFA USA will invoice you for those seats once your course is complete.
- To Zoom or not to Zoom. Virtual Instructors are no longer required to use Zoom for Instructor-led trainings. They can choose from a variety of options. However, if an Instructor would like a Zoom license, MHFA will make one available to them.
- Put the “connect” in MHFA Connect. Use the new MHFA Connect forums to ask your fellow National Trainers, Instructors and Coordinators questions and share advice.
- Find what you’re looking for. Search Instructor and Coordinator resources by topic to quickly and easily access the tools you need to teach and manage your courses.
MHFA Connect will also improve the First Aider experience:
- Navigation is a breeze. Toggling between “enrolled” and “completed” courses takes just one click.
- Tracking progress. First Aiders can more easily follow their progress through the pre-work.
- Streamlined post-work experience. Fewer steps and clearer labels will make it easier for First Aiders to complete their certification.
You can help make MHFA Connect a success.
We’re going to make it as easy as possible for you to learn this system. But to make MHFA Connect a success, we need you and your passion for MHFA! MHFA Connect is a new system and it requires new processes. We’ll be sure to call out changes that require your attention, and we appreciate your attentiveness. Be on the lookout for opportunities to learn about changes and updates. Attend the training webinars. Be ready to use the technology, so you’re as comfortable with it as you are with the MHFA Action Plan (ALGEE). Above all, continue to teach, to bring your knowledge and understanding to your community. Together, we’ll take MHFA to new heights!
MHFA Connect Frequently Asked Questions
Transitioning to MHFA Connect
- How do Instructors and Coordinators get access to MHFA Connect?
- The Instructor and Coordinator transition to MHFA Connect runs from September 15 through October 8. During this three-week period, access to MHFA Connect will depend on when you complete your training webinar. All webinars will share the same information.
- If you attended an MHFA Connect Onboarding webinar, you will, if you have not already, gain access to MHFA Connect by October 8.
- If you did not attend a webinar, please complete this form and you will receive access to MHFA Connect within seven days of survey completion.
- Once you receive access to MHFA Connect, log in and complete the Onboarding to MHFA Connect for Existing Instructors and Coordinators course located on the My Courses dashboard homepage. You can begin scheduling classes on the platform once you have completed the course and passed the exam.
- How should Instructors and Coordinators schedule and manage upcoming classes during the transition?
- You can begin scheduling classes on MHFA Connect once you have received access, completed the Onboarding to MHFA Connect for Existing Instructors and Coordinators course and passed the course exam with score of 80% or higher.
- All new courses after October 8 will be held in MHFA Connect.
- What do I do once I get access to MHFA Connect?
- Once you receive access, please take a moment to log in and complete the Onboarding to MHFA Connect for Existing Instructors and Coordinators course located on the My Courses dashboard homepage. Here’s what it includes:
- A recorded session of the MHFA Connect Training Webinar for Instructors and Coordinators. Please review this recording and return to it as often as needed.
- A copy of the MHFA Connect User Guide. This document provides a comprehensive outline of all processes related to the roles of Instructors and Coordinators as well as guides for assisting First Aiders in MHFA Connect.
- A series of MHFA Connect tutorial videos that demonstrate how to complete several important tasks for Instructors and Coordinators.
- A copy of the MHFA Instructor Policy Handbook. This document outlines important guiding policies, procedures and practices of importance to an MHFA Instructor. Please note, these policies are also applicable to Coordinators and National Trainers.
- A 10-question exam that tests your knowledge of information delivered in the course. You must get an 80% on this exam to pass, although you will have unlimited attempts to achieve this.
- What happens to courses I’ve already created in Cornerstone?
- If by September 9 you have fewer than seven courses scheduled on or after October 8, you will create them in MHFA Connect. If it’s easier for you, use this course log form to record course details before you start creating the course. If you have more than seven courses scheduled on or after October 8, we will transfer your courses after you’ve received access to MHFA Connect.
- How will Instructors retrieve historical data after they transition to MHFA Connect?
- We encourage Instructors and Coordinators to retrieve all evaluation data courses scheduled through the Instructor Portal as soon as possible. To complete this task, follow these steps. Once you receive access to MHFA Connect, you will no longer have access to the Instructor Portal! After the transition to MHFA Connect, Instructors and Coordinators will need to complete a data request form and submit it through the Request Assistance form to receive their historical In-person evaluation data. You’ll find both forms on the resources page of MHFA Connect. This request can take up to three weeks to process.
Instructor and Coordinators Roles and Responsibilities
- What are the similarities and differences in the roles and permissions of Instructor 1 and 2?
- On MHFA Connect, Instructor 1 and 2 have many of the same permissions. However, there are a few differences. This guide will help you understand the similarities and differences in the roles and permissions of Instructor 1 and 2.
- Will Coordinator Access transfer? What if I am not a Coordinator but I would like to become one?
- Coordinator access will transfer from Cornerstone to MHFA Connect. To receive Coordinator-level access in MHFA Connect, complete all information on the Coordinator Access Request form and submit it via the Request Assistance form. Both are on the Resource page in MHFA Connect. If you are not currently an Instructor and you do not have access to the forms, contact CoordinatorAccess@TheNationalCouncil.org.
- What capabilities will Coordinators have in MHFA Connect?
- In MHFA Connect, a Coordinator can conduct several processes on behalf of Instructors: purchase printed materials, create a course, invite learners to MHFA Connect, enroll learners, edit a learner’s email address, reschedule a course, monitor learners’ pre-work, un-enroll learners, mark attendance, access evaluation data and access learner certificates.
- Does MHFA Connect allow for greater flexibility when moving between divisions?
- On MHFA Connect, divisions no longer exist. Instead, MHFA Connect uses “groups.” Instructors can be in multiple groups, so no switching is required.
- Will MHFA Connect replace the Instructor Portal? Or is this only applicable for virtual or blended course offerings?
- MHFA Connect will be your one-stop shop for all courses – whether they’re fully in person or blended with in-person or virtual Instructor-led training. You’ll schedule classes, manage rosters and access resources all from one location!
MHFA Connect Processes
- How do I submit a request or access support from MHFA?
- If you require support for an upcoming or past MHFA course, submit your request through the Request Assistance Form. You can find it on the Resources page under the Primary Navigation Menu of MHFA Connect and select Request Assistance Form from the category filter dropdown.
- How is In-person different on MHFA Connect?
- Before teaching an In-person course Instructors will need to schedule a course, invite learners and enroll them in the course. The learners will need to accept their invitation, login to MHFA Connect and complete their pre-course evaluation. If needed, learners can accept their invitation and complete their evaluation immediately before the course begins. They can access the site with a smartphone if they have one available to them.
- What will Blended courses look like on MHFA Connect?
- Learners and Instructors will find it easier to complete processes in MHFA Connect. The general structure of a Blended course will remain the same, whether the Instructor-led training is in person or virtual. Instructors will be able to teach in-person or virtual Instructor-led trainings for Blended courses over one or two sessions. Learners will complete their pre-work on MHFA Connect, and then attend their in-person or virtual Instructor-led training. After the training, learners return to MHFA Connect to complete the course evaluation and final exam, and to access their First Aider certificate. We’ll share more details about scheduling and managing blended courses during the MHFA Connect training webinars.
- Does pre-work roll over?
- Pre-work for your Learners does not roll over between courses. If your Learner will be attending another course other than the one that they were originally enrolled in, then they will need to complete their pre-work again. This ensures that the course material is fresh in their minds prior to attending the Instructor led training portion of the course.
- Can Instructors use video conferencing platforms other than Zoom?
- Our courses were designed to be used with Zoom, and your Blended Instructor certification fee includes a National Council-provided Zoom account for teaching. However, you may use any video conferencing platform you prefer, as long as you provide the same experience as you would with Zoom.
If you choose to use a platform other than Zoom, you will be responsible for integrating the activities and experiences of the course using the new platform. You’ll need to match the exact functionality required to teach MHFA, including breakout rooms, polls, file upload and screensharing.
First Aiders and Learners
- How will First Aiders certified on Cornerstone be able to access their manuals and certificates?
- Starting November 1, First Aiders who completed their training in Cornerstone can log into MHFA Connect to access their certificates and course materials. They will need to use the same email address they used to login to Cornerstone and click Forgot password? to reset their password.
- How will learners receive information about the course?
- Learners will get automatic emails from MHFA Connect. You can also email your learners to provide additional support.
Storefront, Purchases and Fees
- How do I access the MHFA Connect Storefront?
- You can visit the storefront by going to store.mentalhealthfirstaid.org directly or by selecting Store from the primary navigation button on the top left-hand side of your MHFA Connect home page. If you would like to purchase materials for your course, select Course Materials from the top navigation bar on the MHFA storefront. If you are not already signed in, you will receive a prompt to do so. If this is your first time accessing the new MHFA storefront, select Forgot your password? above the Sign in button. On the next page, enter the same email address you used to access the Instructor Portal. You will then receive an email with further instructions.
- What is the cost per learner for a Blended course with an in-person or virtual Instructor-led training?
- The price will remain $23.95 per learner (discounted from $28.95) until further notice. In 2022, Mental Health First Aid USA will revisit the pricing model.
- How are Instructors billed for Blended courses?
- Instructors are charged for learners’ participation 48 hours after the Instructor-led session is complete. The Instructor is charged regardless of when or if the learner completes the post-work. Instructors will be billed for a learner’s participation if the learner begins but doesn’t complete the pre-work and is not dropped by the Instructor within 48 hours of the completion of the Instructor-led session. A learner can complete post-work any time following the Instructor-led session. The learner is not a certified First Aider until their post-work is complete.
- How are Instructors billed for In-person courses?
- In-person Instructors purchase manuals prior to the course, rather than paying for learners afterward. They will not receive an invoice for learner participation after the course.
- Is there an annual fee for teaching Blended courses?
- Instructors who are certified to teach Blended courses with both in-person and virtual Instructor-led trainings will pay a $150 annual fee. As we progress in 2022, MHFA will conduct appropriate and responsible market research around the new services and systems offered and will revisit the pricing model.
- What will happen to my balance of Training Units?
- Our transition to MHFA Connect includes a new Shopify-powered e-commerce experience where you will have access to all of the familiar MHFA materials. On October 12, Instructors and Coordinators with remaining Training Units in Cornerstone received an email that contains a voucher for the total value of training units they had remaining in Cornerstone.
- Will we be able to pre-purchase seats as we do now?
- With MHFA Connect, we will invoice you after your course is complete for the total number of learners who attended. You will no longer need to purchase seats or Training Units before your session. However, you will be able to purchase a voucher to pre-load your account with funds. Users can also purchase a voucher using a purchase order.
- Can I still purchase Training Units?
- No, the last day to purchase and/or redeem training units in Cornerstone was October 7. On October 12, Instructors and Coordinators with remaining Training Units in Cornerstone received an email that contains a voucher for the total value of training units they had remaining in Cornerstone.