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About us

For almost a quarter of a century we’ve been an innovative leader in connecting Canadian literacy and learning organizations, in both official languages, to information, tools, expertise and each other through the use of technology.

Man reading

Originally known as the National Adult Literacy Database (NALD), Copian had its beginnings in 1989, in the early days of the Internet, when it was conceived to make use of the new technology to connect literacy organizations across Canada. A project of the Association of Canadian Community Colleges, the idea was to create a database of literacy programs that disparate organizations throughout Canada could use to share and promote programs, and to learn about each other’s services. The National Adult Literacy Database Inc. was incorporated in 1992 as a national, non-profit charitable organization with a board of directors drawn from across Canada.

In the intervening years, as the Internet evolved and the World Wide Web developed, NALD changed with the times. We came to be relied upon by the field as a trusted repository of information, programs, services and research reports. We also became a technology utility for the field ̶ developing, hosting and maintaining websites and electronic mail systems for organizations across the country. Today we still host these services for over 100 Canadian literacy and workplace essential skills non-profits.

In September 2013 we changed our name to Copian in order to reflect the ever-changing dynamics of the services we offer and the markets we serve. The word ‘Copian’ is derived from the Latin word ‘copia’ meaning abundance, which speaks to our abundance of resources, expertise and experience, and the numerous benefits learners accumulate as a result of improved skills.

In the spirit of a charitable, non-profit organization, Copian focuses its efforts on providing information and knowledge-sharing services free of charge to the literacy and workplace essential skills community. With resources in both English and French, our library is the largest, most comprehensive and most current collection of digital tools and documents in the country. To support our charitable objectives, we engage in project and other business opportunities in the broader learning community to generate revenue that is subsequently reinvested in our core services.

Copian is much more than a database of resources and an electronic network. We are an experienced team of professionals that will respond to your needs, whether it is consultation, project leadership or management, or simply the right resources and tools to help you achieve your goals as an organization or practitioner in the learning and workplace essential skills realm.  

Copian relies on the Government of Canada’s Office of Literacy and Essential Skills for its operational support and also receives in-kind support from the Government of New Brunswick.

September 2013


People in a meeting


Sterling House

767 Brunswick Street

Fredericton, NB E3B 1H8

Tel: 506-457-6900

Toll free: 1-800-720-6253

Fax: 506-457-6910

Copian gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the Office of Literacy and
Essential Skills, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. It is also
supported by a significant contribution from the Government of New Brunswick.

© 2015 Copian