Western Identity and OWL Course Information

You must first set up your Western Identity to obtain a secure login - user ID and password. You will use this secure login to access your AQ course in OWL and other secured Western University sites.

*Please Note: The Western student number and secure user ID and password are your official Western University Identification. This Western Identity login is different from the login used to access your registration profile in the Western Professional Education AQ Student Portal. Login to the Portal uses your registration username (your email address) and selected password.


  • Your Western Identity is your UWO secure User ID and Password.
  • Required for login to your AQ course in OWL, Western's Learning Management platform
  • Your key to accessing central services at Western (tax receipts, grades, statement of account, updates to personal information including name, address, phone/email)
  • If you are a previous Western Student or have taken an AQ with Western before, and already have a secured login and password you are not required to set up your Identity again. Please see steps below if you have forgotten your login information.

Activating your Western Identity

Follow the steps below to retrieve your Western Student number and Access code required to activate your Western Identity.

  • To find your Western Student Number, log into the Western Professional Education AQ Student Portal and retrieve your nine-digit Western student number. The student number has nine (9) digits, often beginning with a "2" [ note: the number beginning with an "X" is not your Western identifier]. Your Western student number can be found under the My Profile tab> Associations> Western Student Number.
  • Obtain your access code by entering your OCT#, your Western Student number and your birthdate.
  • Enter your Western student number and access code in the Western Identity Manager and click Submit.
  • Click 'Accept' to the Acceptable Use Agreement.
  • A User ID based on your name will be assigned, and you will be given a one-time password. Take note of the one-time password, and click LOGIN.
  • It will tell you the password is expired. Enter the one-time password and change it to a password of your choice. Set your security questions. * The one-time password does NOT allow access to your course. It must be changed.
  • NEW students to Western - the login will activate within 48 hours. RETURNING students can use their existing Western login ID and password. If you are a returning student resetting your Western Identity, the new login will activate within 1-3 hours. Once activated, you can log into OWL for your course, and access other secured Western University sites.

Important: Your user ID and password are secure and cannot be provided by our office – if the login is misplaced, you will need to reset your Western Identity. Please keep your login safe and secure, as you will need it to access the Student Centre where you view final grades, order transcripts, and obtain official tax receipts.

Expectations and Evaluation

Courses are 125 hours in total, as required by the Ontario College of Teachers. They include 100 hours of online time where you will be participating in the discussion forums and working in groups on a collaborative inquiry project. The remaining 25 hours are allocated to readings and assignments or tasks. In the Summer this represents approximately 30-40 hours per week.

Western AQ courses are asynchronous. Our online courses are NOT “live”. All participation in the Forums is through posting. You can be online at any time of the day/night; however you MUST be online regularly and consistently to be successful in the course. During the Summer course, we expect you to be online and actively participating every day. This will be crucial for you to remain on top of the course and to complete all of the expectations in the required timeframe. You must participate and successfully complete EACH component of the course in order to pass.


Finding Your Online Course

* You will not have access to your course on the online learning platform OWL before the official start date.

Following is an overview on navigating through OWL.

Log in to OWL with your Western Identity user ID and password. Once logged in, you will be on the OWL landing page below.

Your course will activate online on its start date, at which time it will appear across the top with the course code. You can also go to your course by clicking on More Sites.

snapshot of what you will see when you login to owl

When you click on your course tab, or find your course under More Sites, you will see a variety of tabs on the left hand side. Please access each of these tabs to view information for your course.

Ensure to access your course syllabus within the Course Information tab to access important information including Western’s policies (i.e. medical and plagiarism), evaluation and rubrics, assignment and discussion expectations, etc.

Web Browser

The course site works best with Google Chrome or Firefox as your web browser. Please note: ASPIRE courses are not designed to be accessed from a phone. Tablet, laptop or desktop will be required.

Depending on the web browser you are using, you may need to change your security settings to enable mixed or unsafe content and/or always allow pop ups in order to be able to view links within the course.

Navigation of the Course Site

It is important to use the “Back”, “Next”, “Return to Lesson” and “Refresh” buttons within the course site. Please do not use the back button on the web browser.

Instructor Contact

If you have any problems, questions or concerns, email your instructor in the Messages tab.


Your course may or may not have a required textbook.

If you do require a textbook, it can be ordered through the Western Bookstore.

More Questions? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions.