The contents of this Register are intended for research purposes only. The heraldic emblems found in the Register may not be reproduced in any form or in any media without the written consent of the Canadian Heraldic Authority and/or the recipient.
Grant of Arms, Supporters, Flag and Badge
August 15, 2011
Vol. VI, p. 63
Click on each image to enlarge. The blazon and symbolism for each element will accompany the enlarged image.
Azure on a Canadian pale Argent a pile reversed throughout Vert;
A demi-bear Azure holding the mace of Athabasca University proper;
Two hawks Azure beaked and membered Argent standing on a grassy mount Vert set with poplar leaves Or;
LEARNING FOR LIFE;
A banner of the Arms;
On a plate edged Azure a spruce twig Vert;
Blue and green are the colours of the university. The central white section, known as a Canadian pale, is taken from the National Flag of Canada, and here represents an open gate, thus symbolizing Athabasca University’s commitment to accessibility in education. The green triangle represents a spruce tree and, by extension, the region of northern Alberta. It also alludes to the letter A and to the idea of striving upwards.
The bear is a local animal, courageous and at the same time nurturing. The mace represents the authority of the university.
The hawks are local birds, known for their keen sight. Poplar, represented here by the leaves, is a local tree.
This phrase has been the university’s motto since 1977.
The symbolism of this emblem is found in other element(s) of this record.
The disc, resembling a globe, is emblematic of the global reach of distance learning. The poplar branch repeats the reference made by the leaves shown at the feet of the supporters.
Canada Gazette Information
The announcement of the Letters Patent was made on March 24, 2012, in Volume 146, page 747 of the Canada Gazette.
Original concept of Bruce Patterson, Deputy Chief Herald of Canada, assisted by the heralds of the Canadian Heraldic Authority.