Location
Start Dates

  • March 04, 2019
Course Delivery

Start Dates

  • August 29, 2019
  • January 07, 2020
  • September 01, 2020
Course Delivery

  • In Class
  • Blended

The tuition for the current four-month program offering for 2019 Fall (August 2019) is $2,426.

The tuition for the new eight-month Health Care Aide Program starting in 2020 Winter (January 2020) is $5,904 plus applicable fees (subject to final program approval by the government).  For details about the new program, please see the information lower on this page.

All labs are held at Calgary Main Campus.

This program is not recommended to international applicants.

Start Dates

  • March 04, 2019
Course Delivery

  • Blended
Start Dates

  • March 04, 2019
Course Delivery

  • Blended

Program Description

Changes are coming on January 1, 2020 to the duration, tuition costs, and admission requirements for this program. Scroll down the Important Note under Admission Requirements for details.

Through a variety of delivery options, you can earn a Bow Valley College/Government of Alberta Health Care Aide Certificate. 

This program focuses on developing the core skills needed to care for clients in the health care field. Topics include personal care, assisting with mobility and feeding needs, communication, assisting with medication delivery, and clinical skills. 

Bow Valley College offers the Health Care Aide Certificate in three delivery options:

You will learn in a combination of on-campus labs, online or in-class learning, and clinical instruction in continuing care, acute care, and community/home care settings. Clinical shifts may include days, evenings, nights, and/or weekends. 

Due to the popularity of this program, we recommend you apply at least eight months prior to the program start date.

 

Clinical experience

You will be required to travel to various locations in order to complete your clinical and practicum placements. Every effort is made to accommodate learners in clinical placements within the time frame of the program, however in rare instances there may be a delay in program completion until a clinical placement can be arranged.

Tuition and financial aid

Refer to the Program Tuition Fee Chart for an estimate of the cost of completing a Bow Valley College career program. When creating a budget, consider the costs of tuition, learner fees, textbooks, learning materials, and police information check fees. Attend a financial aid information session for advice on financing a Bow Valley College education.

View our breakdown of estimated health care aide program fees here

Related Links


Course Listings Request More Information
Domestic Applicants

Prospective Student Centre
South Campus – Main Floor
info@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-1402

International Learner Applicants

International Education
North Campus – Third Floor
international@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-3476

For regional applications, please contact:

Canmore Campus
403-812-1011
bvcbowcorridor@bowvalleycollege.ca

High River
403-441-2399
bvcfoothills@bowvalleycollege.ca

Strathmore Campus
403-983-1221
bvcstrathmore@bowvalleycollege.ca


Admission Requirements

Starting for new students in January 2020, admission requirements will be increasing. Please see the ‘Important Note’ below for more information.
Academic requirements
  • Credit in either English 10-1 or 10-2 or equivalent

Or

  • Successful completion of the General Educational Development (GED) test with a standard score of 450 in Language Arts: Reading and Writing

Or

  • Satisfactory results on the Bow Valley College Admissions Test 
English language proficiency requirements

See English language proficiency requirements for details.

Pre-practicum requirements
  • A current Police Information Check (PIC) with Vulnerable Sector Search (VSS) must be submitted prior to practicum placements. The existence of a criminal record may postpone or prevent clinical, practicum, or field work placements, and, subsequently, successful completion of the program.
  • Immunization requirements must be met in order to participate in practicum placements. Details will be provided after being accepted into the program. Up-to-date immunizations are valid for the duration of the program.
Additional recommendations
  • You can ensure your CPR certification is up to date by taking FACP9101 Basic Life Support CPR (healthcare provider level) through Continuing Education. You can see the current schedule and register online by clicking here. This certificate is recommended, but not required for clinical placements.
  •  You will have an opportunity to get an N95 mask fitting, at our downtown campus. You will be able to register for this course (SAFT9406 N95 Mask Fitting) through MyBVC (or your regional administrator) once your program begins. This is a requirement for clinical placements.  
  • Applicants must be able to work shifts and weekends, be on their feet for extended periods of time, use their knees, back, and arms to move clients who have minimal body strength and function effectively in stressful situations.
Transferability

You can transfer to the Bow Valley College – Recreation Therapy Aide Certificate Program.


IMPORTANT NOTE:
The Health Care Aide Certificate (HCA) Program is a provincial curriculum.  The curriculum is being updated and will impact all program delivery formats. The program is currently offered in a full and part time delivery format as well as PLAR; all program offerings will be impacted.

  • Why is the HCA Curriculum being updated?
    The HCA Curriculum must be updated to align with the new Alberta Health Care Aide Competency Profile, 2018 and to remain current with health care trends and standards. 

  • How long is the new HCA Curriculum?
    The new HCA Curriculum or program will be two (2) terms (8 months) in length if taken full time. It will be longer when taken part-time. 

  • What are the new program entrance requirements?
    The new entry requirement is a minimum 50% in English 20-1 or minimum 60% in English Language Arts 20-2. 

  • When will these changes take effect?
    The new curriculum will be implemented January 1, 2020. All learners starting in January 2020 and later will need to meet the new entrance requirements. More information will be communicated as it becomes available.

  • How will this impact current HCA learners?
    All current learners, or learners taking the four-month program in 2019, will have to complete their program by June 30, 2020. 
     

Related Links


Course Listings Request More Information
Domestic Applicants

Prospective Student Centre
South Campus – Main Floor
info@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-1402

International Learner Applicants

International Education
North Campus – Third Floor
international@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-3476

Course Listing


Curriculum subject to change. 

Required Courses

Includes theory, lab, and clinical courses

This course will focus on safety - safety of the client, the health care worker and the work environment in a variety of employment settings. The course provides information that will result in safe care, based on the needs of the client.

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

In this course, the twelve systems that make up the human body will be studied and the milestones of growth and development across a lifetime will be discussed. The concepts of healthy aging and maintaining independence will also be addressed. Learners will gain knowledge about the most common chronic conditions the Health Care Aide may encounter and how to provide safe care based on best practices according the client's diagnosis, needs, and care plan.

Course Delivery

This course will focus on the roles and responsibilities of a health care aide working in a variety of employment settings, as well as professional communication with other team members, clients and client families. The health care environment requires competent verbal, written and electronic skills. Strategies for overcoming communication barriers caused by disease and aging will be discussed. In addition, the course will provide problem solving strategies and tools to handle conflict.

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course encompasses the skills needed to assist clients with daily grooming, hygiene, bathing, elimination, bed making, and nutritional needs. Learners in this course will learn to support clients to maintain independence and to meet their care needs according to individual care plans. This course is designed to develop confidence and competence while providing basic client care.
Pre- or Co-Requisites: HCAD1101, HCAD1102 and HCAD1103 (B- in each).

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course includes comprehensive materials to prepare the learner to assist with medication delivery within the scope of practice of the Health Care Aide.
Pre-requisites: HCAD1104 (B-)

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Blended A mixed course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through a blend of scheduled in-class and online delivery methods. Learners ARE required to participate in scheduled in-class learning activities and one or more forms of online activity. Scheduled exams may be required. Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required.

The skills introduced in this course are sometimes referred to as advanced skills for Health Care Aides. The opportunity to learn the skills for supporting care activities, such as ostomy care, respiratory care, catheter care, tube feeds, and vital signs are taught in this course.
Prerequisites: HCAD1104

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

Health Care Aides may have the opportunity to work with families to provide care for infants and children. Information and skills to assist with these care assignments are included in this course, as are care strategies for assisting other diverse client groups, such as clients with a mental health diagnosis, developmental delays, and physical disabilities. Course information will provide the learner with care strategies to support the client, the client's family, and self through the process of a client's dying and death.
Pre-requisites: HCAD1104 (B-)

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course provides opportunity for the learner to incorporate and demonstrate previously acquired skills in a hands-on setting. For two weeks in an extended care setting, a facilitator supervises and guides the learner in the application of skills and knowledge.
Prerequisites: HCAD1201, HCAD1202 and HCAD1203 (B- in each)

Course Delivery
In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course provides a three-week opportunity for the learner to adapt learned skills to an acute home/community setting under the direct supervision of a preceptor.
Prerequisite: HCAD1301

Course Delivery
In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

Program FAQs

The full-time program at the Calgary Campus (or at a regional site if available) is 16 weeks (in-class study).

Almost every course contains a lab component and a theory component. Learners can expect to spend one and a half days per week in the lab and three and a half days per week in the classroom covering theory.  The program is divided into three “blocks.” The courses in Block 1 must be completed before moving onto Block 2. Block 1 is seven weeks of theory/lab, Block 2 is four weeks of theory/lab, and Block 3 is five weeks of clinical (three weeks of instructor-led clinical and two weeks of preceptored experience.) The schedule for the clinical is determined by the clinical site and could include shift work. Learners are expected to treat the clinical like a job and are expected to be flexible and make necessary childcare or work arrangements. Bow Valley College arranges these placements.

Classes are normally scheduled between 8:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Monday to Friday. Learners can expect to spend an additional two hours per day working on homework. Attendance at the Calgary campus is crucial, since the program emphasizes hands-on skills training in the lab. We do not recommend working full-time while you are completing this program.

Learners who fail a course must retake that course.  Courses require a grade of 70% to pass, and clinical courses are graded a pass or fail. Different courses have a variety of assessments.  There are no rewrites on exams.

The College must maintain a certain instructor-to-learner ratio for the placements and preceptorships (for example, one instructor per eight learners). Placements are set up based on availability and learners must be flexible regarding the location and scheduling of the clinical placement. Learners are expected to treat the clinical like a job. Bow Valley College arranges these placements, and learners may be required to travel to various locations in Southern Alberta.

Graduates of a provincially-recognized health care aide program may qualify for advanced credit in the Practical Nurse Diploma program. To be considered for prior learning assessment and recognition, learners must have completed the Health Care Aide Certificate program and must have completed 1,900 hours of work experience as a recognized health care aide. Graduates of the Health Care Aide Certificate program may be eligible to receive credit for two nursing courses. For more information, visit the transfer credit page.

Book lists and costs can be found on the Bow Valley College Bookstore website.

The Bow Valley College Health Care Aide program follows the Alberta Health curriculum. Bow Valley College has an excellent reputation with the provincial government and our graduates are preferred when applying for health care aide jobs in the Calgary area because they are work-ready, and have met our high standards.

Health care aides are currently in high demand. For the employment outlook for this profession, visit the Alberta government’s Alberta Occupational Profile (OCCinfo) page.

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